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 study extra…

Do you dream of discovering the proper campsite away from all different civilizations? A spot the place you’ll be able to take pleasure in nature and wild animals and actually be alone within the quiet wilderness?

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

In case you are comparatively new to this kind of tenting, you’ll 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 comparable phrases. They’re typically used interchangeably however not all the time accurately.

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

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 completed in many various areas, like public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Administration (BLM). Along with BLM land, yow will discover 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 actually. You could be alone within the quiet, pure world and keep away from unhealthy 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 amenities, conventional hearth pits, picnic areas, or utilities. You’ll have to convey your personal water as there is no such thing as a entry to potable water.

Should you’re curious about 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 all the time taking part in dispersed tenting when boondocking.

Boondocking vs. Dispersed Camping vs. Dry Camping 1
Mike’s favourite hoodie and beanie in navy – good 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. Whilst you can’t merely pull up and park anyplace you’d like, there are areas the place you’ll be able to keep that aren’t in a delegated spot. These areas are sometimes marked with some hearth ring or worn land that has a historical past of being parked on.

Dispersed tenting is not going to have campsites with electrical hookups, potable water, picnic tables, or trash bins. It could 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 all the pieces you’ll want 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 laws you could comply with. It’s important to comply with the nationwide park’s guidelines, like not disturbing wildlife. It’s finest to remain on trails and couldn’t take away vegetation or different pure components. It would be best to take out all trash and some other objects you convey.

The fantastic thing about tenting off the grid is that you could take away your self from day by day life’s stress and strain. One draw back, nevertheless, is that you simply put your self in a weak place since you won’t have entry to emergency companies or info. Should you should not have mobile phone service, you additionally lose your means to name for assist.

Boondocking Sites Outside Yellowstone

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

Many different nice survival devices may also help save your life in an emergency, particularly when doing dispersed tenting.

Lastly, one other good concept is to convey photo voltaic panels to supply your vitality. That manner, 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 may go dry tenting in a longtime campground or a primitive tenting web site. Some established campgrounds should not have hookups and solely supply dry tenting.

moochdocking with family

What About Moochdocking?

Moochdocking is typically additionally known as driveway tenting. Usually, moochdocking is staying within the driveway or the property of a good friend 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, may loosely be construed as RV dry tenting (if there are not any hookups),  nevertheless it positively is NOT boondocking.

How Do I Discover Dispersed Tenting Spots?

It could really feel overwhelming to search out dispersed or different distant tenting spots. However there are totally different assets you should use! 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 should utilize this web site to search out common campgrounds, BLM campgrounds, in addition to state forests or nationwide forest land areas that you should use.

One other web site that has dispersed tenting spots is, though it’s not 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’ll be able to utilizing the satellite tv for pc view. Search for promising United States Forest Service roads with pullouts large enough for a campsite.

One good place to begin is to find a developed campground or trailhead, then search for roads which may work nicely for you.

3. Ranger Station

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

Many rural tenting areas are positioned down secluded dust roads. Whereas this anonymity is interesting in some ways, it will also be difficult to find. One of the simplest 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 day by day. It is usually not a foul concept for a ranger to know that you’re on the market in case of an emergency.

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

You may additionally need to pop right into a customer middle if you’re 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 Huge Wild.” We hike, view the elk that make this space dwelling, and supply up numerous dry tenting and boondocking ideas. I’ve written a companion article with hyperlinks to the varied assets we speak about within the video.

I hope the above info serves as a superb rationalization of the variations between boondocking vs. dispersed tenting vs. dry tenting. Should you’d wish to study extra, I extremely advocate the next…

Boondocking vs. Dispersed Camping vs. Dry Camping 2

Inexperienced persons Information to Boondocking (certainly one of our hottest ebooks) and certainly one of our latest ebooks, The Final Information to Free and Low-cost RV Tenting!

book #1: Inexperienced persons 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 you’ll want 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 all the pieces you’ll want to know on methods to discover low-cost or free RV tenting websites within the 33-page EBOOK.


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