Boondocking Basics

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Will My RV Get Broken into While Boondocking?

Will My RV Get Broken into While Boondocking?


One of the biggest myths about boondocking is that you are more vulnerable to attacks from burglars, thieves, vandals, gangs, and other criminals. However, the truth is that you’re more vulnerable to these attacks at RV Parks and developed campgrounds simply because criminals go where there are more opportunities.

rockhouse campground boondocking
Boondocking on BLM Land in California

Will My RV Get Broken into While Boondocking?

It’s not likely.

Most of these crimes are crimes of opportunity, and happen because a robber noticed that you were gone and left the door open, or your storage bay unlocked. An RV is more likely to get robbed if your camp looks as if its been left unattended for weeks.

This is true anywhere you camp, even in RV Parks.

We’ve boondocked exclusively for many years and have never been victims of robbery, vandals, break-ins, or other crimes. That’s not to say that crimes don’t happen to boondockers, but criminals looking to make a score will go where there are more opportunities, and that would be RV parks and developed campgrounds.

In fact, one of the big reasons why RVers choose boondocking is because they feel safer camping further away from other people.

Criminals Target Abandoned Property

If you set up camp deep in the woods, or even at an RV Park, and you leave your RV unattended for several days or several weeks, in a row, you are more likely to get robbed. Meanwhile, a camp that looks active, with patio mat on the ground, chairs out, and a fresh bundle of firewood ready to go, will be left alone. If passers by actually see you at your camp, they’ll leave you alone.

Statistically speaking, the number one place where RVs get broken into and robbed are storage facilities. Even though they are fenced in with barbed wire and security cameras, more RVs become victims of theft at RV storage facilities than anywhere else. The reason why is because criminals know these RVs are being left unattended.

What if I’m Boondocking and Have to Make a Run into Town for Supplies?

Then go. But don’t be gone for several days in a row. It’s highly unlikely something bad will happen to your RV if you’re only gone for the day.

What if I Have to Be Gone for Several Days?

Then find a family member or friend to stay with your RV.

If you have to fly to Chicago for a week for some kind of business or family function, then try driving your RV to Chicago and finding an RV Park where you can at least come back to it each night. In those rare moments, you can afford to pay for camping.

How to Make Your RV Look Attended

  • If you have solar panels, then leave a light on inside.
  • Lay a patio mat outside your RV, set up a couple of cheap, fold up chairs, and leave a freshly bought bundle of firewood out.
  • Cut or remove any weeds touching the under-carriage of your RV.
  • Always clean off spider webs touching your RV.
  • Wipe off dust from your RV

But just because your RV looks attended is still not better than actually being at your RV. If there are people looking to steal from someone, and after passing by your RV a few times over a couple of weeks, they never see you there, your chances of getting robbed have gone up.

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