Boondocking: How And Where To Go Dispersed Camping

One thing to love about boondocking  … You can’t get any cheaper than FREE! You can find awesome remote camping locations that allow you to save money while dry camping on stunningly beautiful public lands.

Boondocking How And Where To Go Dispersed Camping by CampingForFoodies

Some of our favorite RV tips and hacks are the ones that save money! We’ll show you how to camp in the wild just like a seasoned boondocker while keeping camping safety a top priority!

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How And Where To Go

You just need a few tips on how to go boondocking and how to find boondocking sites before you head out to the wilderness! Dispersed camping is probably easier than you think!

Because we choose boondocking over any other type of camping, we have written lots of posts based on our years of experience and the nuances related to boondocking (like lack of power, water and services.) So, this list includes posts on EVERYTHING you need to know for a successful and safe boondocking camping trip!

Psst we’re compensated…see our disclosures.

Cell Phone & TV Service

How And Where To Go RV Boondocking by CampingForFoodies

We spend most of our camping trips unplugging but on extended trips we like having the creature comforts of home. Currently, we are using the Starlink roaming plan to stay connected. It’s expensive (about $150/month with a startup cost of about $600) but we decided to invest because we needed it to be able to work from anywhere. It works great!

If you can’t justify the cost, you may want to try another option. Prior to our current setup we were using Hulu for TV with a Verizon unlimited data plan BUT if there is no cell phone signal, we were out of luck so we purchased a booster.

weBoost Drive X RV (471410) Cell Phone Signal Booster | U.S. Company | All U.S. Carriers - Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint & More | FCC ApprovedweBoost Drive X RV (471410) Cell Phone Signal Booster | U.S. Company | All U.S. Carriers – Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint & More | FCC ApprovedweBoost Drive X RV (471410) Cell Phone Signal Booster | U.S. Company | All U.S. Carriers - Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint & More | FCC Approved


If there was a weak cell phone signal we were golden … we turned on our weBoost Cell Phone Signal Booster and were back in business for phone calls, internet service and TV streaming. But, there were times the booster still was not able to give us connectivity.

  • NOTE: A signal booster can only boost a signal … it can’t create one that is not there. So you have to be in an area with some signal before a booster is a benefit to you.

Free Camping In USA

Free Camping In The USA by CampingForFoodies

Boondocking is NOT legal everywhere so you need to know where boondocking is allowed. The good news is that there are tons of free camp sites in the United States and this post shows you how to find them including areas in National Forests, on BLM Land (Bureau of Land Management), US Army Corps of Engineers, State Owned Land, Wildlife Management Areas as well as links to books, apps and websites to find free camping!

Some of our favorite destinations include:

National Forests

Camping In National Forests - Camping For Foodies .com

We live in Arizona and have an abundance of free camping areas located in several National Forests throughout the state. If you have never been boondocking in National Forests, you’ll see how easy it is in our post.

Some of our favorite destinations are in:

  • Coconino National Forest, Arizona
  • Apache Sitgreaves National Forest, Arizona
  • Tonto National Forest, Arizona
  • Inyo National Forest, California
  • Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, California
  • Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison (GMUG) National Forests, Colorado
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Best Camping Apps

The Best Camping Apps For RV And Tent Camping by CampingForFoodies is a photo of an iphone sitting on a wooden board with various camping app icons lit up on the screen.

We like to unplug when we are camping BUT we still use our phones in the wilderness because the best apps are not just for trip planning and navigation!

Our favorite apps that help us find and navigate to boondocking destinations:

  • Campendium (this is our #1 favorite)
  • iOverlander (this is our #2 favorite)
  • The Dyrt (we only have the FREE version of this app so the boondocking information is limited)

Camping Without Fire

Camping With Fire Restrictions - Fire Restrictions Explained - Easy Tips - Propane Camping Stove Recipes - Approved Gear - Camping For Foodies .com

One of the most awesome things about boondocking is the feeling of being completely surrounded by nature in really remote areas. BUT, with that occasion comes the possibility of having fire restrictions placed on the area where you are camping. Did you ever try to grill a hamburger when you can’t start a campfire, light a grill or even strike a match? You can easily accommodate the rules with the tips in our post.

How To Charge Your Phone

How To Charge Your Phone Without Electricity While Camping - Camping For Foodies .com

Make sure you know how to charge phone while camping without electricity because when you are boondocking, your phone will run out of power faster than an ice cream cone melts in Phoenix in July!

How To Refill Fresh Water Tank

How To Refill Fresh Water RV Tanks During Camping Trips by CampingForFoodies features an RV with the fresh water connection port and city water connection port uncapped and ready for filling by a drinking water hose that is ready to connect for filling with text over the image that reads How To Refill Fresh Water RV Tanks.

Learn 4 different methods with step-by-step instructions to refill your fresh water tanks when you are out in the middle of nowhere! We’ve got tips on where to find water, how to haul it, how to conserve it, safety tips for you and your equipment as well as sanitizing your water system.

DIY Portable Water Tank

DIY Portable Water Tank For RV Boondocking Using Gravity Fill Camping Water Container by CampingForFoodies

Water when boondocking is one of the biggest challenges to camping out in the wild! We found solutions that work for us when it comes to where to get water and how to store it for our boondocking adventures.

  • We built our own portable water container which is really simple to build and use.
  • We have a VIDEO to show you how in our post.
  • We also discuss issues related to gray and black water when boondocking.

Portable Solar Panels

Portable Solar Panels For RV Camping by CampingForFoodies

The lack of power is another challenge when it comes to dispersed camping. We use portable solar panels to meet our needs. We started with smaller panels and as our boondocking trips became longer, we needed to increase production … so, we invested in panels that easily satisfy our increased demands. Check out our VIDEO and tips in our post.

How Much Solar Power Do I Need For My RV?

RV Solar Calculator How Much Solar Power Do I Need For My RV by CampingForFoodies

If you are thinking about the possibility of using solar power on your boondocking trips but are not sure if your demands can be met using solar, you can answer the question: How Much Solar Power Do I Need For My RV? This post includes a FREE printable RV Solar Calculator!

RV Batteries

Best RV battery, how to choose, use and maintain your deep cycle RV battery by CampingForFoodies

Your ability to generate power with solar panels is only half the challenge when you are boondocking. You need to store that power until you are ready to use it so your RV batteries are a critical component to have the power you need while camping in remote areas. Our post is full of tips that you need to know for your wild camping trips.

Best Quiet Generators

Best Quiet Camping Generators by CampingForFoodies features a small suitcase style inverter generator sitting in the grass in front of an RV that has an electrical cord plugged into one of the outlets on the generator with text over the image that reads Best Quiet Camping Generators.

If you are even thinking about using your AC when boondocking, you will either need an enormous bank of batteries to run your air conditioner using solar power … or … you will need to use a generator.

Personally, we like to camp in moderate weather so this is not an issue for us and we rarely even take our generator on our camping trips. But, we do have one and it meets our needs when we use it. We have a FREE calculator to determine what size generator you need in our post.


Protect Valuables From Theft With A Secure Campsite - Camping For Foodies .com

People who have never done it before always wonder “Is boondocking safe?” The answer is … it depends. Most of the factors that contribute to how safe boondocking is, actually depend on you.

Don’t let the peacefulness of a remote camping area take you off guard when it comes to everyday safety and security. Personally, we actually feel more safe when we are camping in the wild than when we are camping in a crowded campground or RV park. This is a post we wrote about how we safeguard our family and gear during our camping trips.

Easy Boondocking Recipes

Dispersed Camping - Boondocking Like A Pro - No Water - No Electricity - No Toilets - No Trash Pickup - No Reservations - No Problem - Camping For Foodies .com

You need easy recipes that don’t require a ton of water or power when your camped off the grid. Try some of these awesome meal ideas!

Solar Products

Capture The Power Of The Sun With Awesome Solar Products For Camping - Camping For Foodies .com

Solar panels are not the only pieces of solar equipment that contribute to an enjoyable boondocking experience. Our post has cool gear for charging your personal electronic devices, lighting your campsite, taking a warm shower surrounded by the trees and even cooking while boondocking!

What Are Walk-Up Only Campsites

How To Get Awesome Walk-Up Campsites by CampingForFoodies features an RV set up at a first come first serve campsite in a Bureau of Land Management walk-up only campground in Moab Utah with a red rock wall in the background with blue skies and white fluffy clouds with text over the image that reads how to get awesome walk-up campsites.

First come first serve camping sites are not always free and they are not always amenity-free … but sometimes they are so we’ve got information to help you understand what walk-up campsites are and how to find the best ones.

Camping Safety Tips For Families

Camping Safety Tips For Families Who RV And Tent Camp - Camping For Foodies .com

No matter where families decide to camp … at a full-service campground or in the middle of a remote area without another human being or building in sight … safety is always a top priority.

BUT, because dispersed camping areas may be out of cell phone range and can also be miles away from emergency services, you need to take extra precautions to keep your family safe while boondocking. Our post has information to consider before your next trip.

Ultimate RV And Tent Camping Checklist

Camping For Foodies Ultimate RV and Tent Camping Checklist - Camping For Foodies .com

Boondocking is called wild camping for a reason … partially because you are out in the wild! These are trips you really need to pack for because the nearest grocery and hardware stores are not conveniently accessible. Use our FREE printable checklist as you pack for your dispersed camping experience.

RV Tool Kit Checklist

RV Tool Kit Checklist - Items To Carry In Travel Tool Boxes - Camping For Foodies .com

Many roads leading to the best boondocking locations are unpaved and can be a bit rough. In addition to a normal tool set, we carry a few extra items we consider to be necessary for our dispersed camping trips … not necessarily for the rough roads … but more for our own peace of minds. Our FREE printable RV tool kit checklist will help you determine which tools you need for your individual style of remote camping.

Fun Camping Signs To Mark Your Campsite

Camping Signs Perfectly Designed Fun Temporary DIY Camping Sign by CampingForFoodies

In the old classic, The Wizard of Oz, Dorothy needed to find the Wizard of Oz who was hanging out in the Emerald City so he could help her get back home. But, Dorothy didn’t know how to find him so Glinda the Good Witch helped her by saying that she simply needed to follow the Yellow Brick Road.

We’re in similar situations when it comes to meeting friends when we are boondocking in a remote camp spot … we don’t know how to find them! So, when we decide a campground with numbered spots is not out in the wilderness enough, we’re faced with the question, “So where should we meet you?” And we create fun camping signs to lead the way!

Camping In Arizona

Insider Secrets From A Local Camping In Arizona by CampingForFoodies

As a family of boondockers, we could not think of a place we would rather live … Arizona has the “Boondockers Welcome” sign hanging in every area of the state!

  • See some of our favorite places to go camping in Arizona and let us know if you have a spot you’d like to share!
  • There are so many names for boondocking … free camping, off-grid-camping, dispersed camping, dry camping, wild camping etc.
  • No matter what you call it, boondocking has fantastic advantages beyond just saving you money … the scenery in some of the areas available for boondocking is POST CARD PERFECT!

FREE Printable Camping Trip Planner

Make your next trip stress-free with a little pre-planning. Get your copy of our FREE printable camping trip planner template!

Camping Trip Planner Template Free Printable by CampingForFoodies is a whimsical illustration of a cute old orange car towing a blue and white vintage camper trailer down a road in a landscape of green trees, light green grass and brown mountains with fluffy clouds in a blue sky; thumbnail images of multiple pages of a camping trip planner under the text that reads camping free trip planner.

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