Today we want to talk to you about an important subject, Boondocking Safety. Getting totally away from stress, noise and pollution is the best way we have found to truly enjoy all of the gifts that nature has to share.
What Is Boondocking?
The first thing you may ask yourself when you first hear about boondock camping is what on Earth is boondocking and do I need to worry about Boondocking Safety? Let me try to explain it to you this way…Boondocking is going way out there into the woods to camp. Take your on the ground tents, take your roof top tent, or your RV if you can get it there. Boondocking is really going into the wilderness just as far as you can go and some issues can arise concerning Boondocking Safety.
There will be no water or electric hookups. No light switches or coffee pots. Just you, your friends and family, and the great vast out doors. You’ll have the chance to really survive in the wilderness, and learn how to live off of the land. You’ll learn the most natural way of living in harmony with nature itself. Boondocking is a great family experience. My family and I have gone several times.
We will go several more. It is simply amazing how peaceful, serene, and even therapeutic a good boondock camping trip can be. We are always refreshed when we go back home. Sometimes I think we’d rather live out in the middle of the woods.
Want more ideas to round-out your Boondocking and Camping Knowledge?
A lot of great ideas are in these posts!
- 5 Top Boondocking vs Dispersed Camping Choices
- 14 Top Must Know Boondocking Tips For Beginners
- What is Dispersed Camping and can Anyone Do It?
- 8 Tips to Free Boondocking and Free Camping
- Boondocking Lifestyle – 10 Easy Beginner Tips
How To Stay Safe and Secure Boondocking
Boondocking can be explained as raw camping. You aren’t at a pretty little campsite. You aren’t camping outside in the back yard. You go far into the woods. Just as far as you can possibly get. You seek the experience of living with nothing but trees surrounding you for a while. It is exhilarating! It is divine or at least can put you back in touch with all things divine. It gives you a nice break from the business and chaos of life.
You leave it all behind and seek nature as your refuge. You’ll likely have no communication with the outside world. You should try to at least have some sort of communication though in case of an emergency. It’s a good idea. It’s also a good idea to learn as much as you possibly can about it before you take off and go. Boondocking has it’s dangers, like many outdoor activities do. As long as you are aware of the Boondocking Safety dangers.
Being forewarned you will be able to prevent them from being a problem. This articles tips Boondocking Safety tips will show you just how to stay safe and secure boondocking.
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Boondocking Safety Tip Number One: Stay In Contact
The first tip that will show you how to stay safe and secure boondocking is to leave your information behind with a close, trusted friend or family member. What happens if you are out there in the wild and you have no cell phone service let alone a way to charge your phone? This is just a simple Boondocking Safety tip that makes sense. You cant get out of trouble without contact.
You then ask what happens when you have don’t have that phone access and your kid get’s hurt and you need to call someone for help? What happens when you’re ready to end your camping trip and go home just to realize your truck won’t start or your tire is flat? All of these things need to be thought carefully about.
That is the first key to a Boondocking Safety program for your journey. Think about potential problems and come up with solutions before you even take the trip. Don’t wait until last minute to make a plan of what to do…be prepared. Write down your exact latitude and longitude if you can. Write down exactly where you will be, when you are leaving, and when you plan to come home. In the event that something does happen you at least know that someone knows where you are.
This is good for another reason too. Imagine being out there in the wilderness having a ball and back in the real world there’s a car accident involving someone dear? It was my personal experience to have this happen to me which is why I emphasize so strongly to leave your trip information behind with a trusted individual.
Had my husband and I have not left our information with his mother no one would have ever been able to reach us when that accident occurred. Thankfully we did and they drove out to us and we able to go to where we were needed. We would have never known it even happened had we not written that little note and left it with someone trusted.
Boondocking Safety Tip Number Two: First Aid
Another tip for how to stay safe and secure boondocking is to build yourself, or your family a well stocked first aid kit. Accidents happen and this tip could save your life in the event of an emergency. You can purchase first aid kits at most drug stores, you can order them online and have them delivered, or you can make your own. Simply find a smallish Tupperware container and start filling it full of all the essentials.
You will want to include things like cotton balls, alcohol wipes, tweezers, rubber gloves, burn treatments, bandages, an emergency heat wrap blanket, thermometer and fever reducer, bandage wrap and medical tape. This is NOT a complete list of supplies. This serves as a good start. Anything you can think of that would be helpful in an emergency should be put into this first aid kit.
When you are out there in the wilderness there may be poisonous berries. Include a poison control number and other emergency numbers in your kit. Supervision is most often the way to prevent kids from getting hurt. There are some times though where freak things just happen and a Boondocking Safety preparation program will keep you safer.
Being prepared means you can handle any situation when it happens. Every second counts when there is an emergency and it could be hard to contact the outside world, or have help get to you when boondocking.
Boondocking Safety Tip Number Three: Fire Safety
Boondocking requires the use of fire and Boondocking Safety tips should always concern possible fires. You should be concerned not only with not starting a fire that gets out of control but to do if you are a victim of another persons careless mistake. You will need to build a beautiful campfire that will provide a certain safety in itself.
How to keep safe and secure boondocking using fire you ask? Well, the fire will keep you warm first of all. If you keep it going all night you can sleep close enough to it to feel it’s comforting heat.
Having a fire lit will also help to keep any predators, pests, bears, etc. away. The wild animals will see it and will not come near it so you won’t have to worry so much about being eaten by a bear. Having a fire allows you to cook. You can go out hunting guys and bring back your prize and cook it for the whole family the good old fashioned way.
Or your fish. Fished cooked over an open fire is amazing. There are yet still other ways you can stay safe and secure boondocking using the fire. If you have a metal pot or pan you can boil water to sterilize it well enough for drinking! You can warm up cold creek or spring water for bathing, or even washing your dishes.
Boondocking is really living the good old fashioned way. Some people love it. I am one of those people and fire is the biggest tool you have out there in the woods. It should be respected and used with caution. Be careful. Use common sense and keep the kids back to prevent accidents and injuries.
Boondocking Safety Tip Number Four: Leave No Trace
Be cautious and careful of your surroundings. Say you are walking through the woods. Be cautious of where you are stepping to avoid tripping over a random stick, or falling into an old well. You just never know what is just below the surface of the leaves. Some things, like holes and old hand dug wells, were covered with thin pieces of wood. Over the years that wood rots and will not longer hold the weight of anything but the leaves that hide it.
Always place your feet gently, feeling before you put your weight down. Doing so prevents falling in that hole, tripping over that stick, or worse. How to stay safe and secure boondocking is to be careful and cautious of ALL of your surroundings, not just when walking through the woods. Say you are fishing at a nearby pond or creek and your kid can’t swim but is there enjoying the time with you. Use caution. Keep your kid away from the edge of the water. Keep them by your side.
Even adults should really always use some sort of buddy system whether it’s when going near water, or out for firewood, or what have you. Using caution can and does prevent accidents.
Boondocking Safety Tip Number Five: Bring A Compass
Another great stay safe and secure Boondocking Safety tip that will help you and your family to stay safe and secure boondocking is to bring a compass. Say you wander out into the woods for some firewood and you lose your path. If you are carrying and using a compass you will know just which direction to walk to get back to the tent.
If you do not have that compass you’re lost. You might not find your way back if you are out too far and that could really be a problem. Especially when it gets dark and cold. Prevent the problem entirely and stay safe and secure boondocking by always having a compass on you when you go into the woods or off of a path.
Boondocking Safety Tip Number Six: Have A Solar Light Source
Another way to stay safe and secure boondocking is to make sure you will always have light. It get’s pretty dark out there in the woods at night and even darker when the fire goes out. Be sure to have several flashlights, plenty of batteries, probably some propane lanterns and several filled spare tanks. Don’t let yourself or family get caught in the dark. Candles are fun to bring along too but are not really environmentally friendly.
Solar lanterns a dimmer, more gentle light and are energy efficient A simple solar lantern like the one we use is so much better. Wouldn’t it be sweet to eat dinner by light that is safe and environmentally friendly with your love while out boondocking? We think so.
Boondocking Safety Tip Number Seven: Water Sources
The seventh Boondocking Safety tip that will help you stay safe and secure boondocking is to bring along plenty of water. Bring at least a case of bottled water per week for every camper involved in the trip. On top of that bring along several gallon jugs full of purified water to use for cooking, even washing.
Always try to find a location to boondock where you will have some sort of natural source of water like a creek, pond, spring, even ditch. If you have that natural source you really just need drinking and cooking water but if you do not have access to that water source you will need to bring water for EVERYTHING. Cooking, cleaning, bathing, laundry, personal hygiene, everything.
When you have a natural water source you can use that to do almost everything requiring a need for water. Now that’s true boondocking.
Boondocking Safety Tip Number Eight: Cooler or Fridge
Food safety is one of the most important Boondocking Safety tips. Don’t let your meat be out in the heat. This is another important tip that will help keep you and your loved ones safe and secure boondocking. It will also prevent you from getting salmonella, ecoli, and in other words…food poisoning. Many, if not most, people can not survive without eating meat.
When they go out boondocking they work hard and get hungry and they don’t want to eat grass, ya know? Many avid boondockers enjoy the thrill of the hunt and love to provide meat for their families. This is wonderful and the absolute way it should be…but…meat has to be kept cold to stay good. If you eat the whole meal as soon as it’s caught, no problem. Say though there are left overs that you want to save for a meal the next day.
Well, unless you have coolers and ice I wouldn’t recommend it. If you have brought meat with you from home of course you probably most likely have it cold and packed in a cooler. What happens when you run out of ice? Do not ever eat meat that has been at room temperature for too long. You don’t want to end up sick on your boondocking trip. This is especially true for fish!
If you and your family plan on boondocking for longer than you can keep ice then the best thing you can do is invest in a camping generator. A generator will usually run on gas or fuel and will ensure that you can not only keep your food cold, but also charge your phone, maybe make coffee if you bring a coffee pot, etc.
Most camping enthusiasts that go camping a lot, especially the ones who go for longer periods of time, have a dependable camping generator. It does not take away from the pure rawness of boondocking as some people might think it does being a convenience . Using a generator is the best way to keep your family safe and secure boondocking for these reasons listed, and for many other reasons as well.
For this we choose a solar powered Jackery inverter. The Jackery 1500 will power everything you have from a fridge to computers and will last at least 48 hours between charges. We only need about 3 hours of sunlight with the 4 provided solar panels to charge back to 100%
Boondocking Safety Tip Number Nine: Instincts
The ninth safety tip that will teach you how to stay safe and secure boondocking is to use your instincts. You are out there in the middle of no where with no one around. You are just another animal in the woods. How do the animals survive? They use their instincts. We humans have instincts just like the wild animals do.
If we learn to listen to them we can use them to stay safe and secure boondocking. If you feel like something is watching you look around for a predator or wild critter hiding and peeking near by. If you feel like something might not be a good idea, or safe, it’s probably isn’t.
Boondocking Safety Tip Number Ten: Commonsense
The tenth Boondocking Safety tip I can give you to stay safe and secure boondocking is this: Use your common sense. Think about things before you do them. Survey your surrounding closely and be alert, cautious, and aware. Be very careful where you step both on trail, and off trail. You just never know. Always use a buddy system, and keep your kids close. Watch them very carefully. I always keep my children right by my side.
We work together and learn together and it is so bonding as I teach them how to survive in the great outdoors. I have found that most accidents could have been prevented with simple supervision and the use of common sense alone. Common sense, along with the use of your instincts will help to keep you safe and secure boondocking.
Have a Safe and Secure Boondock Adventure!
I hope this article has served it’s purpose of teaching you how to stay safe and secure boondocking. Have an excellent adventure! This article of course does not cover every way you can stay safe out there. Always do your research and learn as much as you possible can about the area and surroundings of the location you choose.
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