Tips on drycamping for newbs - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-09-2011, 03:40 PM   #15
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Great info Byron! Thank you! Do know if the furnace uses up the propane fast? I've been told where we are going camping it can get close to freezing at night due to the elevation(5280ft) and will need heat for our daughter....
Close to freezing should be OK. You're 16' is a bit bigger than my 13' so in very cold weather you'll probably use a bit more propane than I. When I was in Big Bend National Park the temperatures got down to 5 degrees at night and near freezing during the, I keep the thermostat set at 55 at night and at about 67 during day. Under those conditions a full tank lasted about 3 1/2 days. If you're just getting down to freezing at night and warmer during the day you shouldn't have any problems.

I know that some people turn off the furnace at night, but not me. I have the furnace to keep my trailer warm day and night. Not as warm at night, but I don't allow it to freezing or below either.

We do us sleeping bags. Individual bags are warmer than blankets and provide both top and bottom insulation.
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Old 05-09-2011, 03:44 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Barrie Bochoff View Post
I camped in the northeast last November and temps were around the freezing mark through the night. I found if I used the furnace all night I would use about 25% of a 20 lb tank. I usually ran the furnace before bed, turned it off while I was sleeping, (very warm sleeping bag) and then started the furnace again in the morning about a half hour before climbed out of the sleeping bag. While there may be a bit more discomfort... it's camping. LOL, and you'll save propane.
Barrie

I think that Scamp trailers have a bit more insulation than older Trillium Trailers, which would account for the difference between your experience and mine. I bring the temperature up to around 65 before crawling out the sleeping bag.
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Old 05-09-2011, 05:04 PM   #17
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Thanks you Carol, great tips! Does the heater really drain the propane fast?
Nope but its fan with drain the battery depending how often it comes on during the night - its a battery hog or at least the orginal built in one in my scamp is! If you are planning on doing a lot of camping where the heater is needed you might want to think about picking up a solar panel which will let you keep using the heater. It will also come in handy in a year or so when you need to keep a DVD player or computer going for movies for the child at night! :-)

The fridge also does not use a great deal of propane - not sure how many days mine will actually go - but I do know that I have had it off the grid a number of times for 5 days at a time and I also use the inside stove top and hot water tank (but not the heater) and I haven't run out of propane using a 20lb tank.
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Old 05-09-2011, 07:19 PM   #18
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Before we go on a long trip I charge the battery and install a full tank of propane. I make sure my connection to the truck is in good shape. Using propane for the fridge and stove, coffee and toast in the morning and the occasional dinner, we are fine for several weeks. Use the furnace a couple nights/morning and I usually run out. We never run the furnace on the thermostat. We just turn it on as needed. As far as grey water is concerned, leaving any yuk for others to deal with is not appropriate. We once camped at a BLM campground in Utah where we were encouraged to water the plants with it. I think it depends on where you are. Our set up is like Gregs, in a jug next to the trailer so it is easy to deal with. When i dump the porta pot, I dump the jug. Raz
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Old 05-09-2011, 07:23 PM   #19
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We let or gray water out right on to the ground. We use a nylon stocking as a filter, biodegradable soap, limit our water use, and pretty much always boondock. This wilderness ethic that is way more stringent than those used by most backpackers and river runners I know.
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Old 05-09-2011, 08:43 PM   #20
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We let or gray water out right on to the ground. We use a nylon stocking as a filter, biodegradable soap, limit our water use, and pretty much always boondock. This wilderness ethic that is way more stringent than those used by most backpackers and river runners I know.
In Oregon you'd get a big fat fine for allowing gray water to just run onto the ground. There's a reason it needs to be dispursed even in BLM or our forests. And don't even think about it in any park, improved or not.

Donna D. proud to be a tree hugger and steward of Oregon
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:20 PM   #21
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Thanks for that heads up...it would mainly be dishwater or handwashing...so if u do this outside it goes on the ground aswell..no? Unless there is a wash station at the campground of course...the place we are going is very primitive...we are planning on 3 nights or as long as our 8month old daughter can go haha, might only end up being one night, we shall see how she does...
You can buy heavy duty paper plates and plastic ware at Costcov ery inexpensively. I use the disposable stuff rather than run out of water. Just remember to pack it out.
I envy you, I'm pushing 70 and remember starting my boys camping when they were about a year old. It can be frustrating with little ones but the fun times and memories outweigh everything.

Take at least an extra 5 gallons of extra water as the small Scamp tank does not go very far.

Happy camping,
John
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:35 PM   #22
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I think the bigger concern with using the furnace is the battery drain to run the furnace fan.
I've found the blackwater tank is good for about 6-7 days for one person - so three days will probably work for your family if you're a bit careful.

Have a great time camping!
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:43 PM   #23
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We usually use a small 120v night light at night so we don't kill ourselves getting up.

Whilst dry camping at Quartzsite, we discovered our solar lights work great. Just leave them charge up during the day and they will provide light at night, at least enough to navigate with.

Grey Water:

http://bullinfull.typepad.com/bif/20...ater-brea.html
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Old 05-09-2011, 11:08 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Scott H View Post
We let or gray water out right on to the ground. We use a nylon stocking as a filter, biodegradable soap, limit our water use, and pretty much always boondock. This wilderness ethic that is way more stringent than those used by most backpackers and river runners I know.
I sorry but I resent that remark about backpackers. I spent over 30 years backpacking and the total amount of gray water I produced during that time was far less than many RVer produce in a week-end. it was always proper dispersed in a location away from surface water. Those us that really care manage to find ways to minimize out impact. No trace camping is correct phrase.
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Old 05-09-2011, 11:44 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post
In Oregon you'd get a big fat fine for allowing gray water to just run onto the ground. There's a reason it needs to be dispursed even in BLM or our forests. And don't even think about it in any park, improved or not.

Donna D. proud to be a tree hugger and steward of Oregon
Same here in BC Donna!
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Old 05-09-2011, 11:55 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
I sorry but I resent that remark about backpackers. I spent over 30 years backpacking and the total amount of gray water I produced during that time was far less than many RVer produce in a week-end. it was always proper dispersed in a location away from surface water. Those us that really care manage to find ways to minimize out impact. No trace camping is correct phrase.
Byron, you have a right to be upset. I'm 69 y. o. and have enjoyed the outdoors all my life. I have found that most people, be they hikers, equestrians, ATV riders or Mtn. bikers that actually get out into the wilderness and leave their campers behind for days at a time are usually the best environmentalists and have a true love and respect of what I like to call Gods Great Cathedral.

John
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Old 05-10-2011, 12:00 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Scott H View Post
We let or gray water out right on to the ground. We use a nylon stocking as a filter, biodegradable soap, limit our water use, and pretty much always boondock. This wilderness ethic that is way more stringent than those used by most backpackers and river runners I know.
Sounds just plain lazy and uncaring to me.

John
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Old 05-10-2011, 01:23 AM   #28
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For greywater holding in campgrounds, I keep a dedicated collapsible 5 gallon container. I've modified the spout to allow a drain hose to be attached, as some campgrounds don't allow the use of an open container for this purpose.
The biggest problem with greywater in other settings is that if improperly controlled you'll create bug/ smell problems for yourself and the next camper. Not to mention general nastiness if it's just dispersed here and there!
Unless you're big users of strong chemicals, your greywater poses no risk to the environment. Use mild soaps to wash yourself and your dishes- its strength will be expended on the task, leaving you with-dirty water!
Greywater can be properly disposed of in dispersed camping situations by digging a hole at least 100 ft. from water, placing your drain hose into it, and temporarily backfilling with a few big rocks. Ashes (COLD) from the inevitable fire ring can be liberally sprinkled in for bug control. The use of a simple filter as suggested above is a good idea.
The hole must be filled and tamped before leaving the site.
The same protocol governs latrine holes, if you need them, although they should be deeper, especially if you put T.P. in it- animals like to dig the paper up. Cold ashes are also an excellent bug/odor control for a latrine hole.
If you use NO chemicals and put NO toilet paper in your porta-potty, you can dispose of its contents in a deep latrine hole, as before well filled and tamped upon breaking camp.
If you're a minimalist that uses small amounts of water for dishwashing- or a tent camper- the best place to pour the dregs is into the fire ring. They're usually many inches thick with ash, which is a very efficient natural filter. If you're using the fire ring at the time, just pour it in at the edge- it won't extinguish your fire. Any food bits will be consumed, and won't attract bugs and/or rodents.
Make sure when you break camp to thoroughly mix the fire ring ashes so that the next camper will have a clean place to start with.

And have fun!

Francesca
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