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Saturday, January 9, 2010

Stocking up for a boondocking trip

Because we live in a culture with a supermarket on every corner, many of us find it difficult to plan our stores for an extended period of time ahead, like laying in supplies that will last throughout an extended camping or boondocking period, when the nearest supermarket might be dozens of miles away.

We are so used to having our friendly markets nearby and popping out to pick up a quart of milk or a pizza. When you are in the boonies, a trip to the store becomes not only a project but an irritant.

It's not easy to predict what your needs or wants may be. Do you get a sudden urge for Vlasic dill pickles? Or did you forget to pack the ice cream or the extra rolls of toilet paper? This is not necessarily a threat to the success of your camping trip (well, maybe the ice cream is) but it will surely make your camping or boondocking experience a lot more fun to have those items. You can avoid critical shortages by making a list well before the start of your trip and having all members of the camping trip add their special interests.

Also, check all your permanent stocks--cookware, linens, tools, outdoor equipment, etc. in the RV. Did the person who used the last roll of paper towels tell you? Is there just a drop or two left in the can of Pam spray? And don’t forget items like extra garbage bags, the large black 30-gallon bags, since you will likely be collecting your trash to haul out after your trip. What about a back-up barbecue and campfire lighter, Band-aids and antiseptic, fully charged batteries for your reading-in-bed lights, and an extra fleece for those chilly mountain evenings?

Make a master check list and print it out and check each item before every boondocking trip. It will take you less time than having to make a run to the market, which could be miles away.

Learn more about boondocking with my new eBook, BOONDOCKING: Finding the Perfect Campsite on America’s Public Lands.

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