As camping popularity continues to surge, finding peaceful and affordable camping options becomes increasingly challenging. Boon-docking, or camping off the grid without access to hookups, offers a great alternative to crowded campgrounds and costly reservations. While finding boon-docking spots may seem daunting at first, fear not! In this blog post, we'll reveal our top tips for uncovering exceptional boon-docking locations that will leave you wanting to stay forever. Get ready to embark on an adventure and discover the secrets of finding the best spots for your camping escapades.
What is Boon-Docking?
Boon-docking, also known as camping "off the grid," involves camping without access to amenities like water or electricity. These camping experiences often take place on public lands managed by entities such as the National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, or the Bureau of Land Management. Boon-docking sites are not official campsites, so you won't have access to services or group facilities like bathrooms. It's important to note that boon-docking differs from "dry camping," where you stay at a campsite without hookups but still have access to other resources.
What Makes a Great Boon-Docking Spot?
The definition of an ideal boon-docking spot varies depending on your preferences and goals. Factors to consider include:
- Solitude vs. Socializing: Decide whether you prefer seclusion or a sense of community in your camping experience.
- Accessibility: Assess how far your vehicle and rig can travel, considering road conditions and any necessary 4-wheel drive.
- Duration: Determine how long you plan to stay at a particular location, as some spots may have time restrictions.
How Do You Find Boon-Docking Locations?
Finding boon-docking locations can initially feel overwhelming, but there are valuable resources to assist you in your search. Here are a few platforms to help you discover your next spot:
- Campendium: Considered one of the best campground review sites, Campendium provides helpful reviews, photos, and tips from other users. Their website and app are user-friendly, allowing you to filter results for accessible, free boon-docking spots.
- FreeCampsites: While a no-frills site, FreeCampsites offers excellent value for campers. It provides a map view showcasing both free and paid campsites, along with user reviews. The platform focuses more on free camping options and offers a trip planner feature.
- iOverlander: This site provides detailed information on individual campgrounds and camping areas, similar to Campendium. You'll find descriptions, reviews, amenities, and coordinates, making it easy to navigate and find suitable locations.
- Boondockers Welcome: For a unique boon-docking experience, consider Boondockers Welcome. This subscription-based website grants campers access to private properties of hosts who welcome RVers. Each property differs in amenities and potential fees, but they are generally more affordable than standard campgrounds.
- Free Roam: Another valuable resource, Free Roam allows users to search for boon-docking spots by location, providing possibilities within the desired area.
While exploring these resources, keep in mind that the "hidden gems" of boon-docking sites are often characterized by a moderate number of reviews. If a location has pages and pages of reviews, it is likely to be crowded. Conversely, if a spot has no reviews, it may indicate limited camping history. Strive to strike a balance between the two extremes to uncover that fortunate find.
Escape the crowded campgrounds and costly reservations by embracing the world of boon-docking. With our guide to finding incredible boon-docking spots, you'll discover hidden gems that offer serenity, adventure, and memorable camping experiences. Unveil the secrets of off-the-grid camping and unlock unforgettable journeys in nature's embrace. Happy boon-docking!
See you on the road!