Boondocking Basics

Learn the core concepts of off-grid camping, boondocking, and overnight parking

Can I Still Shower Everyday When Boondocking?

Can I Still Shower Everyday When Boondocking?


Yes, you can still shower everyday when boondocking. However, most full time boondockers don’t. It’s really more a matter of water conservation. How often you shower when boondocking depends on your comfort, how much water you have, and how much gray water your RV can hold.

can i still shower everyday when boondocking
Boondocking on Lake Mead, NV

Can I Still Shower Everyday When Boondocking?

Most full time boondockers shower anywhere from 3-4 times a week, to just once every two weeks. Some may even go longer. It just depends on your comfort level and how self-conscious you are around others.

The reason why is because most boondockers want to save money. It’s not the cost of water, but rather the cost of fuel. Once their fresh water runs out, they are forced to pack up camp and drive their RV someplace to refill. The longer they can remain camped in the same site, the more money they save on fuel.

Showering at Gyms Instead

A lot of full time boondockers maintain memberships at nationwide gyms such as Planet Fitness or Anytime Fitness. This allows them to take showers at the gym instead of using their own fresh water tank.

This is a popular choice with boondockers in small vehicles like cars and vans where they enjoy higher fuel efficiency.

Taking Fewer Showers is More Healthful

Taking a shower removes the body’s natural oils. These oils keep the skin moist and pliable. Constantly removing these oils dries out the skin and creates tiny cracks. Bacteria, viruses, and fungus can enter the bloodstream through these cracks. Allowing the skin to retain its oils decreases the chance of infection. Recent research shows that people who take fewer showers each week are actually healthier.

Take a Navy Style Shower

If you still need to shower as often as possible, then practice taking “Navy Showers”. This is where you dowse your body with water, then shut it off. Do all of your body washing and hair shampooing. Then, turn the water back on and rinse everything off at once. You can often limit your water usage down to two gallons. Some can even do it with just one gallon.

Try the Water Jug Shower

Take two 1-gallon jugs and fill them with water. Set them under direct sunlight for a couple of hours, or until the water temperature feels warm. Take them into your RV’s shower, and use only that water to shower. This way you can limit your shower usage precisely.

If you don’t have a shower room in your vehicle, then stand outside in a plastic tub, or on a patio mat.

Don’t Worry You’ll Get Used to It.

Many people who transition from life in urban areas to a life of boondocking often take months and years to fully adjust. It’s not uncommon for some to spend the money for a night at an RV park, just to help with the transition. Eventually, the need to shower as a recreation slowly fades away, and people tend to discover a new set of joys and perspectives on living.

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