Boondocking Vs. Dispersed Tenting Vs. Dry Tenting

Generally these phrases are used interchangeably. Nonetheless, there’s a distinction between boondocking vs. dispersed tenting vs. dry tenting. Learn on to be taught extra…

Do you dream of discovering the right campsite away from all different civilizations? A spot the place you may take pleasure in nature and wild animals and really be alone within the quiet wilderness?

If that’s the case, you aren’t alone. Jennifer and I like to go “off the grid” to recharge at any time when we are able to.

If you’re comparatively new to any such tenting, you will have heard of boondocking, dispersed tenting, and dry tenting. However have you learnt what all of them imply?

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Boondocking vs. Dispersed Tenting vs. Dry Tenting: What’s the Distinction?

Let’s put first issues first. Boondocking, dispersed tenting, and dry tenting are very related phrases. They’re typically used interchangeably however not at all times appropriately.

To grasp the variations between boondocking vs. dispersed tenting vs. dry tenting, we have to outline every kind.

photo of a dispersed camping boondocking and rv dry camping spot
Our boondocking spot within the Pigeon River Nation State Forest in northern Michigan


The time period boondocking means tenting in a distant location with out utilizing utilities or different hookups. Boondocking could be performed in many alternative areas, like public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Administration (BLM). Along with BLM land, you’ll find some boondocking spots in nationwide and state parks and different wilderness areas.

The attraction of tenting in distant locations is to flee the hustle and bustle of crowded metropolis life really. You could be alone within the quiet, pure world and keep away from dangerous tenting neighbors. Nonetheless, you’ll not obtain the advantages of a developed campground.

When boondocking, you’ll not have entry to a dump station, trash services, conventional fireplace pits, picnic areas, or utilities. You’ll have to deliver your personal water as there isn’t a entry to potable water.

In the event you’re considering boondocking, I extremely advocate studying The Newbie’s Information to Boondocking.

Boondocking vs. Dispersed Tenting

Dispersed tenting, which I element within the subsequent part, happens in nationwide forests. When you find yourself doing dispersed tenting, you’re boondocking. Nonetheless, you aren’t at all times collaborating in dispersed tenting when boondocking.

Boondocking vs. Dispersed Camping vs. Dry Camping 1
Mike’s favourite hoodie and beanie in navy – excellent for these crisp RV Life-style days!

Dispersed Tenting

Dispersed tenting happens within the nationwide forests, managed by the U.S. Forest Service, exterior the U.S. Forest Service, exterior of a delegated campground or leisure space. When you can’t merely pull up and park anyplace you’d like, there are areas the place you may keep that aren’t in a delegated spot. These areas are sometimes marked with some fireplace ring or worn land that has a historical past of being parked on.

Dispersed tenting won’t have campsites with electrical hookups, potable water, picnic tables, or trash bins. It might have a hearth ring positioned by the nationwide park or created from a easy circle of rocks. You’ll have to pack in and pack out the whole lot it’s worthwhile to camp. As well as, these areas are often so distant that you’re genuinely “off the grid” with none cell service.

Whereas dispersed tenting is often free tenting, there are nonetheless rules you need to observe. You must observe the nationwide park’s guidelines, like not disturbing wildlife. It’s greatest to remain on trails and couldn’t take away vegetation or different pure components. You’ll want to take out all trash and another gadgets you deliver.

The fantastic thing about tenting off the grid is you could take away your self from every day life’s stress and stress. One draw back, nevertheless, is that you simply put your self in a weak place since you may not have entry to emergency providers or info. In the event you shouldn’t have cellphone service, you additionally lose your capacity to name for assist.

Boondocking Sites Outside Yellowstone

These causes are why it’s a good suggestion to make use of an intensive RV security guidelines to make sure that you’re leaving in a automobile that’s protected as attainable. It’s additionally a good suggestion to take an emergency radio since it’s one of the simplest ways to supply you a lifeline to climate and different occurrences occurring round you.

Many different nice survival devices can assist save your life in an emergency, particularly when doing dispersed tenting.

Lastly, one other good concept is to deliver photo voltaic panels to supply your power. That method, you’ll not drain your batteries.

Dry Tenting

Dry tenting is a time period that refers to tenting with none hookups. Which means you don’t use electrical energy or water sources. Boondocking and dispersed tenting are distant types of dry tenting.

You possibly can go dry tenting in a longtime campground or a primitive tenting website. Some established campgrounds shouldn’t have hookups and solely provide dry tenting.

moochdocking with family

What About Moochdocking?

Moochdocking is usually additionally known as driveway tenting. Usually, moochdocking is staying within the driveway or the property of a buddy or relative. It will get its identify from the time period “mooch,” or getting one thing with out paying for it, and “docking.” the second half of the now acquainted time period boondocking.

Boondocking means tenting within the “boondocks,” a slang time period which the dictionary defines as “tough, distant, or remoted nation.”

Moochdocking, might loosely be construed as RV dry tenting (if there aren’t any hookups),  nevertheless it positively is NOT boondocking.

How Do I Discover Dispersed Tenting Spots?

It might really feel overwhelming to search out dispersed or different distant tenting spots. However there are totally different assets you should utilize! The next are methods to search out distant tenting spots.

1. Campendium

Campendium is a well-liked web site that may provide help to find distant tenting spots. You need to use this web site to search out common campgrounds, BLM campgrounds, in addition to state forests or nationwide forest land areas that you should utilize.

One other web site that has dispersed tenting spots is, though it isn’t as “good” as Campendium, for my part.

2. Google Maps

Google maps is an effective way to search out free dispersed camp spots.

First, discover the nationwide forest or one other particular space you need to go to. Then zoom in as shut as you may utilizing the satellite tv for pc view. Search for promising United States Forest Service roads with pullouts large enough for a campsite.

One good start line is to find a developed campground or trailhead, then search for roads which may work effectively for you.

3. Ranger Station

One other good method to discover distant campsites is to go to a ranger station.

Many rural tenting areas are positioned down secluded filth roads. Whereas this anonymity is interesting in some ways, it may also be difficult to find. One of the best ways to entry a few of these areas is to cease and examine in on the ranger station.

The rangers have a wealth of data as a result of they work and keep in these areas every day. Additionally it is not a foul concept for a ranger to know that you’re on the market in case of an emergency.

Rangers also can assist direct you to remain off non-public land which will border these wild tenting spots.

You may additionally need to pop right into a customer middle in case you are close to one. The employees there could know of some nice, free campsites.

Boondocking & Dry Tenting Suggestions

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Come on together with us as we go boondocking within the 100,000-acre Pigeon River State Forest in Northern Michigan, a fantastic wilderness space dubbed “The Large Wild.” We hike, view the elk that make this space dwelling, and provide up a lot of dry tenting and boondocking suggestions. I’ve written a companion article with hyperlinks to the varied assets we discuss within the video.

I hope the above info serves as an excellent clarification of the variations between boondocking vs. dispersed tenting vs. dry tenting. In the event you’d prefer to be taught extra, I extremely advocate the next…

Boondocking vs. Dispersed Camping vs. Dry Camping 2

Newbies Information to Boondocking (one among our hottest ebooks) and one among our latest ebooks, The Final Information to Free and Low-cost RV Tenting!

book #1: Newbies Information to Boondocking

We created a 65+-page downloadable digital information that will help you perceive the nuances that include boondocking, the commonest boondocking issues, and what it’s worthwhile to do to get your rig “boondocking-ready.”

book #2: The Final Information to Free and Low-cost RV Tenting

Buckle up as a result of right here is the whole lot it’s worthwhile to know on how one can discover low-cost or free RV tenting websites within the 33-page EBOOK.


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