A Beginner's Guide to [Simplified] Boondocking
Updated: Mar 31, 2021
Dry camping or "boondocking" is off-the-map camping. No bathrooms, no water or electricity hookups, just you and the great outdoors. A huge part of the appeal of boondocking is to fully escape the crowds and completely immerse yourself in nature. You can guarantee there won't be people nearby blasting music out of speakers, and you won't be waking up to the sound of people packing up their cars.
It can seem intimidating to boondock for the first time. Without any of the luxuries found at campsites, and without any other people nearby, the wilderness suddenly seems a lot more... wild. With proper preparation and packing, boondocking can be an incredibly fun way to experience the great outdoors and really get in touch with nature.
1) Deciding Where To Stay
One of the first hurdles of boondocking is figuring out where you're going to stay. Most national forests and areas managed by the BLM (Bureau of Land Management) offer tons of campsites available for use. Note, these rarely offer any amenities, so it's usually safe to assume they don't. Forest service roads, trailhead parking lots, and public lands are great places for first-time boondocking (and any-time boondocking) as they're fairly easy to locate (most of the time). Pin Drop Travel Trailers can easily navigate unpaved roads, so you can really get out there. Be sure to plan ahead and either print directions or download an offline map onto a maps app; you're likely to lose cell service once you enter into unoccupied land, and you may not be able to load a single thing. For a few recommendations, check out our blog posts with suggestions for locations near Globe and Cottonwood.
This seems like an obvious one, but is worth mentioning all the same. Before boondocking (especially for the first time) be sure to check the weather and make sure you'll be out in mild conditions. Spending a few days in extreme cold or heat can turn a camping experience into a negative one very quickly. Pin Drop Travel Trailers are well-insulated (R13 equivalent insulation throughout) and will keep you warm at night, and there are optional fans to help you cool down if things get too hot, but it's still a smart idea to make your first trip in pleasant weather. If you are craving a specific adventure guaranteed to place you in adverse weather, just be sure you pack accordingly.
3) Pack Smart
Preparing to boondock is similar to any camping packing list, with a few added items. The first (and most important) of these is water. Since you'll be off-the-grid with no way of getting your own fresh water, it's essential to bring more than enough to sustain you for your stay. Pin Drop Travel Trailers come with a 12-gallon fresh water tank and pump to the sink, which makes doing dishes and brushing your teeth that much easier.
Another essential item to remember is a shovel. Whether you're digging a firepit or a hole to do your business in (remember, no bathrooms), a shovel is super handy. We recommend using a mini one, which we can equip you with if needed.
Most national forests allow fires, but there are occasionally limits or temporary bans (especially in Arizona!) that may ruin your plans for a fire. Check ahead of time if the area you're planning on visiting allows fires, and pack plenty of firewood if so. While Pin Drop Travel Trailers come with a stove for cooking meals, having a fire at night is a great way to roast up some s'mores or hot dogs.
A few other essential items include first-aid kit, ample warm bedding, toilet paper, trash bags, paper towels (or rags), and folding chairs. Pin Drop Travel Trailers come equipped with solar-powered wall-ports, so you can charge your cameras, phones, and any other devices you might need. You also have the option to rent your Pin Drop Trailer fully equipped with bedding and kitchen equipment to make things easier.
While boondocking can seem intimidating, it doesn't need to be. Staying in a Pin Drop is an easy and comfortable way to really get off the grid without sacrificing comfort. You'll get to wake up surrounded by nature with a full day of incredible experiences ahead of you, it's the ultimate way to unplug and relax.
Good luck boondocking, and happy camping!
More information about Pin Drop Travel Trailer features can be found at: pindroptraveltrailers.com and @pindroptraveltrailers