Dry-camping is when you park your Airstream in a place with no hook-ups but usually a deated campsite. And what that means for you is that you will have to monitor both your electricity and water consumption, and forgo hours of TV watching and long hot showers just take short hot showers.
Also another term related to dry-camping is dispersed campingbut dispersed camping pertains to parking in sites that are not deated campsites and can only be done on public land that allows for it like BLM land.
The term boondocking can pertain to both dry-camping at a deated campsite and dispersed camping not deated campsites. Dry-camping challenges can be categorized by the different resources that have to be managed during your trip: power, water, and tank space.
The upgraded batteries are especially useful during the colder months of dry-camping, when you want to be able to run your furnace day and night. Even though the heat is created by burning propane, the furnace needs battery power to run the blower that spre the warm air.
The other items that use power when dry camping are the lights, the water pump, the flat panels, DVD player, refrigerator, fans, and running the inverter. The trailer has an inverter that converts the battery 12V power to V power that allows you to run any electrical item up to 1, Watts. Unfortunately, this leaves the coffee maker, hair dryer and air conditioner off limits when dry camping unless you have rented our optional generators.
The primary uses for the generator are recharging batteries and running high wattage appliances. Running the generator for few hours during the day will bring the batteries back to a reasonable charge and allow you to have an enjoyable evening with heat, refrigeration and lights. Also the only way you can enjoy air conditioning while dry-camping is with a generator.
The trailers have two 30nlb. We make sure each trailer leaves our facility with full tanks and the propane is included in the rental price.
The water heater, refrigerator, stove and oven all work off of propane. This resource may be the most challenging one to stretch over multiple days. We have 6-gallon water jugs available which can provide water to refill the tank and provide that extra shower or extra day of camping. Some campgrounds have water available on the premises but not at each campsite, so the jugs can be handy to shuttle water from the water spigot to refill the water tank.
For campgrounds with no water you can bring water with you or take the jug and fill up in town when you are visiting the local sites. Typically, the gray water tank water from shower and faucets will fill up first. The outdoor shower head is another alternative for quick rinses. Cleaning dishes can also use up the gray holding tank so using paper plates and cups can help save water.
The black water tank sewage is good for several days up to a week depending on the size of your Airstream. As with water, many dry camping sites may not have a sewer connection at the site but provide a dump station where you can dump on your way out this is recommended only for those who are going on multi-day dry-camping trips, otherwise we flush and sanitize all tanks when they come back as part of our service.
What does it mean to dry-camp?
For us personally, we love both dry-camping at State Parks and other campsites as well being hooked-up at well-maintained RV Parks. Both types of RV stays have their rewards, and we have found that if we are on longer road trips of a week or more that doing both dry-camping and full hook-ups are the way to go. Usually we will do a 3-day stint dry-camping at a campsite followed by another couple days at an RV park with hook-ups.
That way you get both the private camping experience and then you can refill, dump, and refresh at an RV park. Plus we have found that this is the best way to satisfy Brian who rather rough it in the woods Airstream water hook up myself a certified city girl.
How to use your Airstream without any hook-ups aka Dry-Camping. Dry Camping at Bull Bend, Oregon. Dry-camping at Alabama Hills, CA. All Rights Reserved.
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