Camping without hookups may seem a little difficult if you\u2019ve never done it before. Technically, anytime you are camping without any hookups is called dry camping, whether that's in the backcountry or a parking lot. But how long can you dry camp in an RV?\r\n\r\nHere's what I know from doing it in mine:\r\n\r\n14 days is typically the maximum amount of time most RVers can dry camp before needing to dump their tanks, charge their batteries, or add gas or oil to their generator.\r\n\r\nBut if you're brand new to RV life, you probably don't want to go more than a few days at first until you get more familiar with camping and your RV. After all, you don't want to find yourself stuck, or with an overflowing black water tank.\r\n\r\nThere\u2019s more to learn about this camping style, and we\u2019re going to go over it in this article. Let\u2019s dive into it.\r\n\r\nGetting the RV ready for some dry camping in the desert. \ud83d\ude0e pic.twitter.com\/G0CjrCeEZl\r\n\u2014 Lisa (@PhoenixRain618) April 3, 2020\r\n\r\nWhat does it mean to dry camp?\r\nDry camping is camping without any hookups; electrical, water, or sewer. This could be in a Walmart parking lot, or deep in a National Forest, and in all cases, outside of a designated campground.\r\n\r\nDry camping is another alternative to saying boondocking.\r\n\r\nHowever, these two things aren\u2019t identical and have one thing that is different about them. I\u2019ll talk about that later in this article. For now, let\u2019s focus on just dry camping.\r\n\r\nDry camping can be done with a tent or in an RV, and this is because it means you can\u2019t have any water or electric hookups.\r\n\r\nMost opt for an RV\u2019s comfort and safety nowadays, but that doesn\u2019t discredit dry camping in a tent. But all RVs aren't known for outstandingly comfortable beds.\r\n\r\nI have a recent article that goes over the comforts of RVs, and how to make the beds a LOT more comfortable. Just click on the link to read it on my site.\r\n\r\nAs I mentioned, dry camping can be done in both a campground or out in the wild.\r\n\r\nThe most important thing to remember is to start with empty black and gray water tanks and a full fresh water tank and a full gas tank for generators. If you don't have a generator, just make sure your house battery(ies) is fully charged.\r\n\r\nAnd if your RV has propane, make sure to fill up that tank too.\r\n\r\nA2. Other than complete boondocking, an option for campsites would be developed but primitive National Forest or BLM campsites. Tuttle Creek BLM Campground in Lone Pine, CA has designated dry camping sites and a host for $5\/night! #RVChat pic.twitter.com\/HYwTY8bQAo\r\n\u2014 MattsRoadTrip (@MattsRoadTrip) February 25, 2019\r\n\r\nWhat is the difference between dry camping and boondocking?\r\nDry camping is camping without any hookups which may or not be done in a campground. It could be a parking lot, or somewhere off the grid. Boondocking is dry camping without hookups but specifically on public lands such as a National Forest, outside of a designated campground.\r\n\r\nAs I mentioned before, there is a difference between dry camping and boondocking, even though they\u2019re very similar in meaning.\r\n\r\nThe main difference is the location of each of these actions.\u00a0\r\n\r\nFor the most part, the camping and RV community uses both these words interchangeably even when they\u2019re not exactly camping.\r\n\r\nA lot of the RV community will stop in Walmart parking lots for a night stop before driving again.\r\n\r\nAnd even though boondocking is technically supposed to be on public lands, most people do use the term Wallydocking to describe "camping" in a Walmart parking lot.\r\n\r\nMost RV\u2019s are self-sufficient, so you don\u2019t need hookups for short-term stays. Most will still consider this dry camping even though it\u2019s not actually camping.\r\n\r\nEven the most self-sufficient RV needs a source of power, so if you don\u2019t have hookups, how will your RV get power for a reasonable length of time?\r\n\r\n8\/5\/19-San Diego trip. Dry camping at Camp San Luis Obispo RV for the night. Leo is having a field day watching the ground squirrel around the RV. #SanDiego #SLO #travelingwithcat #olderandstronger #winnebago #winnebagoview #smartcar pic.twitter.com\/QwEQuWO59Q\r\n\u2014 Odette (@OdetteDunn) August 6, 2019\r\n\r\nHow long will the battery last dry camping?\r\nFully charged, a 12v battery will last about 2 to 3 days depending on what appliances are being run off of it. They can last significantly longer with multiple batteries and\/or a generator. Some RVs can charge the house batteries from the engine battery.\r\n\r\nSelf-sufficient RV\u2019s has several ways to power your little home on wheels. You can use batteries, solar panels, generators, or a combination of all three.\r\n\r\nLet\u2019s talk, solar! Solar panels are rising in popularity among campers.\r\n\r\nIt won\u2019t fully replace your batteries, but it\u2019s a great way to recharge and get extra power when needed. A solar panel could mean the difference between staying out another day or not.\r\n\r\nSolar panels are great for charging phones, lights, and heating elements.\r\n\r\nThese won\u2019t replace your batteries as getting a solar panel that holds energy is more expensive. When it comes to rainy days, covered forests, cloudy weekends, solar panels are not your friend.\r\n\r\nLet\u2019s talk about a few battery options you've got.\r\n\r\nThe type of battery you get will depend on your budget and your goal for the battery. A familiar type of battery is going to be the lithium battery.\r\n\r\nWhile this one is the most expensive, it\u2019s spill-proof, maintenance-free, and requires no ventilation. The best feature would be that these charge faster and weigh less.\r\n\r\nThe second best battery is going to be an absorbed glass mat battery.\r\n\r\nSounds weird? You might recognize it better as AGM batteries. Like lithium batteries, they are maintenance-free and spill-proof. This is an excellent medium budget buy as it can stand colder temperatures, but if you overcharge it or undercharge it, it can negatively impact the battery.\r\n\r\nThe cheapest option comes with more maintenance and no guarantee that it won\u2019t spill.\r\n\r\nThis would be the lead-acid battery. While sticking to a budget, remember that this battery doesn\u2019t do well under cold weather.\r\n\r\nThese types of batteries are meant to discharge and recharge power. It\u2019s essential to keep these on hand, and if you prefer quieter power, this is a great option to have.\r\n\r\nIt\u2019s also worth noting that a generator is an excellent option on its own or with both these options.\r\n\r\nA generator will give you consistent and reliable power, no matter what weather or terrain. The downside to this power option is the noise unless you invest a little more and get a quieter generator.\r\n\r\nA generator is great to have if you need heat or air conditioning.\r\n\r\nI have a recent article about how long you can run the AC in your RV. After all, they won't last indefinitely, but there's 1 thing you can do to really maximize how much time you get.\r\n\r\nJust click the link to read it on my site.\r\n\r\nView out the side of the RV at Salmon Harbor RV Park. Dry camping on a sort of a paved pier $17 a night $102 a week and $306 a month. Busy in the summer but right now barely anyone around.#rvlife #RVsnowbirds #fulltimeRVers pic.twitter.com\/SJnE4rU7h4\r\n\u2014 Love Your RV! (@LoveYourRV) April 22, 2019\r\n\r\nHow do you dry camp with a travel trailer?\r\nA travel trailer or pop-up camper is best used for dry camping for 2-3 days. Make sure to start with a full fresh water tank, and empty black and gray water tanks. Also, ensure batteries are fully charged, and propane tanks too if it has one.\r\n\r\nAny RV can go dry camping, but some travel trailers may be better suited for smaller spaces. You\u2019ll want something compact, so a pop-up, teardrop trailer, or even an A-frame travel trailer are better suited for dry camping.\r\n\r\nLet\u2019s go over a few tips that can improve your dry camping in these trailers.\r\n\r\nYou want to be very conservative when it comes to water and your grey and black tanks.\r\nFreshwater tank:\r\nConserving water should be an obvious tip as you won\u2019t have immediate access to water. Depending on your water tank\u2019s size, you can be more or less conservative with your water.\r\n\r\nAlways make sure you arrive at a dry camping site with a full tank of water.\r\nGreywater tank:\r\nThis is where your wastewater goes. Such as the waste from your shower or sink. This can fill up fast if you are frequently washing dishes, brushing your teeth, and anything else that may seem like a small task to do. Even washing your hands can fill this thing up. Ensure that you have an empty grey tank when starting your trip, and never dump it at a dry camping site.\r\nBlackwater tank:\r\nThis is reserved for strictly toilet water and can be dumped in the same place as the grey tank when you are dumping the tanks. Remember to keep your black tank empty at the start and end of your trip.\r\n\r\nMake sure you manage these, along with how much power your generator has. Like I mentioned before, a generator would be best suited for this type of dry camping.\r\n\r\nDry camping can be hard when starting off. It would be best to start with shorter trips that you know you can manage and work your way to longer trips.\r\n\r\nAs long as you manage your waste, time, and consumption of resources, you\u2019ll be set to dry camp anywhere and with anything.\r\n\r\nHere are more photos of last night's perfect (and free!) #campsite. Brown Springs #Campground on the outskirts of Farmington, #NewMexico. It's brand new, just built this year by the BLM. It's dry #camping but the facilities are first rate.#RV #travel #RVlife pic.twitter.com\/QrO5ogGdtN\r\n\u2014 Grand Adventure (@GrandAdventRV) September 15, 2019\r\n\r\nWhat are some RV dry camping essentials?\r\nAside from solar panels and batteries, there are other essentials that you should keep with you if you\u2019re going to be dry camping.\r\n\r\n \tTool Kit: This is important for any repairs needed on the go and just simple maintenance. If you aren\u2019t very handy, there are plenty of YouTube videos to watch and learn from.\r\n \tPropane: This is important for cooking or even your fridge. Suppose you choose a generator for power; some run off of propane. It\u2019s always good to have extra tanks on hand if you know you use them.\r\n \tLeveling blocks: These are important for keeping your RV in place in nature. You can get building leveling blocks that you can put together to make whatever size you need.\r\n \tFood: Food is as important as bringing water. Even if you\u2019re hunting, you\u2019ll still need prepackaged food. Granola bars and canned products are the best to get. Don\u2019t forget a little trail mix.\r\n \tFirst aid: This one is a little obvious, but it can be overlooked in the excitement\/stress of packing for a weekend adventure. If anything were to happen, it\u2019s best to keep on one hand. This applies to life as well. Keep one at home, in your, in your RV, etc.\r\n \tFlashlights\/Lanterns: This is great for scary nighttime stories. Lights are needed for cleaning up during the last few minutes before the sun goes down and to check up on the wildness around you.\r\n \tPortable heater: This is great for a colder night that needs a little more than just a fire. You probably won\u2019t need this in the summer, but this is a must if you plan on camping during the colder seasons. You never know how the weather is going to change.\r\n\r\nNeed some of those? Just CLICK HERE to go right to my Dry Camping Essentials Recommended Gear Page with all the Amazon links to the best options!\r\n\r\nThese are just a few basic things that you should consider packing when going on an adventure out into the woods. Obviously, every home has its own packing list, but sometimes we forgot the simplest of things.\r\n\r\n\r\nDid I cover everything you wanted to know about dry camping in an RV?\r\nDry camping can be a fantastic experience, and we don\u2019t want family trips to be more stressful than needed.\r\n\r\nMake sure you plan ahead of time to reduce stress from last-minute planning. Planning ahead of time makes sure you have everything you need in place to have an adventure with peace of mind.\r\n\r\nRemember to start with short trips of 2 to 4 days, and then you can work up to 10 to 14 days. Make sure your power is ready and that your water tank is full, and your waste bins are empty. You won\u2019t have hookups, but that doesn\u2019t mean dry camping won\u2019t be any fun. In fact, it may mean you have more fun.\r\n\r\nStay safe, and have fun camping!