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Dish Washing While Boondocking?

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This week I met up with a guy who has spent more time than me boondocking.  We were talking about dish washing and he mentioned an approach which sounded good. (But what do I know?!)

 

He uses the exterior shower for all dish washing.  He does try to scrap off most food particles before he begins.  He will filter the dish water through a piece of cheesecloth during dumping.  The cheesecloth goes into the trash bag. (I understand the importance of "Leave No Trace"!)

 

From his perspective, the grey water tank does not get filled and small food particles are kept out.  The kitchen stays cleaner and as long as we have access to fresh water from a spigot, we can use the EZ Winterize feature to replenish our fresh water tank.

 

I guess this approach had not occurred to me!  Does this sound like a viable option?  If not, what are the concerns?

 

Buzzy

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That is something we have not considered. At a glance it sounds like a great idea.


Grayson and Ann Cook


Northwest CT and Mid Coast Maine


2016 Oliver Elite II, Twin Bed FP


Toyota Tundra, Extra Cab, Long bed, 5.7 V8


Yippee-i-o-ki-yah

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Buzzy,

 

We use Clorox wipes on our paws, coffee cups, cookware, and cooking utensils. Paper plates could be used, too.

 

Edit: Paper plates and old Clorox wipes can go into the campfire. Just reading on the Clorox site and they state after using the wipe, water rinse is needed.

 

https://www.clorox.com/products/clorox-disinfecting-wipes/

 

 

 

 


Bill


LE2 Tundra

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Guest Guest

So far, I have been able to cook all my meals outside.  The curb side awning gives me great shelter from the rain.  For some reason I never thought about dish washing outside.  Since I have the street side awning, I see the opportunity to set up the dish washing station under an awning as well.  I also feel the shower nozzle and hot water would be perfect for the rinse.  I would be using an appropriate environmentally friendly dish detergent.

 

Anyone already doing this?

 

Buzzy

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Well, if you are seriously into Leave No Trace, then dumping even a small pan of filtered gray water violates that ethic.

 

If you believe that a few gallons of gray water under a bush or tree is just fine (depending on the local situation) then go for it. The places I like to camp do not present problems for gray water disposal.

 

Gray water dumping occurs all the time, if you plan to participate, please do be very cautious and caring about it. The folks that dump a hundred or more gallons at once from their big trailers are the bad guys.

 

If you think about it, even using the outdoor shower for a body or dog rinse is theoretically "gray water dumping". We need to use some common sense and keep a sense of perspective.

 

My pet peeve is folks dumping food particles right next to the campsite, for the bears and next campers to deal with. If they would put it in the fire pit, that would be better. At least, the next fire would consume and sterilize the remains.

 

I have dealt with this process for decades. When I get an Ollie I will do everything indoors, as designed. I want to take advantage of the wonderful indoor facilities, for a change!

 

John Davies

 

Spokane WA

 

 

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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

 

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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I highly recommend a german shepherd for the initial cleaning, then finishing up inside.  Having a sink inside is one of the main things that's driving us toward a trailer in the first place - I'm not about to spend $65k and then stand out in the wind and cold to do dishes.  We're a little odd though in that most of our traveling is done in the winter and spring.

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Snowball • LE2 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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All food is wiped off with a paper towel into a trash bag, which is then properly disposed of.  The "cleaned" dishes are then washed in the sink.  No food into the gray tank!


Mike and Carol Thompson | Fair Oaks Ranch, TX


The Lone Star Oliver #135 | 2016 Ram 1500 Crew Cab 4X4 5.7L Hemi


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Guest Guest

Thank you for all the great comments.  In my world of ocean kayak camping the guidelines are very clear.  Ocean-side dish washing period!

 

I am attempting to gather ideas to incorporate into an extending  boondocking trip out west on state and federal lands.  Want to follow best practice.

 

I understand the value of using the inside equipment.  Being a former tent camping, I am still getting use to the inside equipment.  I love the outdoors and in many ways Ollie is just a more comfortable bed.  Although I miss my "bag nights" and I am tempted to throw a bag in the bed of the truck.  I loved looking up at the stars at night.

 

Have not yet used the hot water heater, microwave, TV, stove, etc.  Over time I may begin to utilize all of the Ollie features.  For some reason I do not yet want to "lose" my tent camper mind-set, what ever that means.

 

Overland, some day I hope to own a German Shepard.  He would be great for helping clean the dishes at night!

 

Buzzy

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Buzzy,

 

I don't disagree with virtually anything written above.  In thinking about this I find that the method I use to clean the dishes actually depends on where I am, the type of campsite, lay of the land, how messy the dishes are, location of the nearest German Shepard, etc.  I admit that I use paper plates, but even here I will scrape off as much food as possible prior to either burning or placing in the dumpster.  This past summer I never had a problem getting rid of my grey water under a bush or tree.  There are usually a number of ground squirrel holes under nearby bushes/trees that make this process very easy.  Having said that, I still always check with the campground host (assuming that there is one) prior to dumping.  While boondocking I never had a problem either.  Unless you REALLY get way back in the country, most of the boondocking sites I have used have obviously been used before.  Again, while there are very few exceptions, I found these sites to be fairly clean and it was obvious as to where grey water could be dumped without causing visible or environmental damage.

 

As John states above, "We need to use some common sense and keep a sense of perspective."

 

Bill


2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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Have not yet used the hot water heater, microwave, TV, stove, etc. Over time I may begin to utilize all of the Ollie features.  

Buzzy, even if you don't want to, you need to exercise those appliances. You need to find any faults before the one year warranty is over, and that means using them regularly, so they can break, if they are going to. I think you have the Truma water heater, correct? That is an expensive thing to fix out of warranty, so you need to find and fix any bugs sooner than later. This is what a warranty period is for.

 

I wish all appliances had hour meters and were warranted for say 200 hours use, rather than an arbitrary and meaningless  calendar figure.

 

John Davies

 

Spokane WA

 

 


"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

 

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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It doesn't matter if we are boondocking or hooked to electric, we wash our dishes outside, and use 2 tubs that when not in use fit inside the kitchen sink for traveling.  When we are done with dishes we empty our water into our grey tank via the kitchen sink and yes we strain the small food partials out.

 

We have used every appliance in our trailer, but will do as much cooking outside as possible.  We just want to enjoy the outdoors and boondocking is truly the best way to enjoy nature.

 

 

 

 

 

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Tuxtercat

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I don't live out west, and most eastern campsites don't want grey water dumped.

But, I, too, love to cook and do dishes outside, in good weather.

I wipe all the plates and utensils with the leftover napkins, and keep everything for a once a day wash, when possible. I wash in a bit of cold water, with soap, and rinse with a teakettle of very hot water into the dishpan . Keeps water for dishes at about a quart a day.

Rinsewater, from the dishpan, goes in the grey tank, or black, whichever needs a contribution. If on our own cam ping property, I sometimes toss it on the hot fire...

Definitely, no food particles in the campsite. We don't have a lot of bear in our part of NC to worry about, but they are around.. but who wants to attract them or other varmints?

I've come across way too many dirty campsites to list, and campfire pits full of trash, including food trash. Really, folks. Think, and act responsibly.

Again, preaching to the choir...

Sorry

Sherry


2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4


2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

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Boondocking... Oliver Off the Grid camping requires a bit more flexibility in 'Leaving no Trace'.

 

-  ALL trash, paper, plastic, metals, glass, are disposed at a Service Station or nearest town trash.

 

-  Black Water.  Use dumps at Truck Stops, for pay Dumps...  or as the Boy Scouts do in the forests...  carry toilet paper back in a disposable bag.  The organics will be gone long before toilet paper...

 

-  Grey water in the west has never been an issue.  Tent campers... American Indian... Cowboys... Sheepherders... all understand.  When Off the Grid... you have to understand this is not a campground or established campsite used by hundreds of campers every week.  Bucket a few gallons at a time and find a spot to disperse away from camp.

 

-  If near a creek or water... take Grey Water to higher ground and disperse.

 

-  Bacon Grease, grease from meat preparation... pour into a plastic bottle with secure lid and drop into trash when in civilization's trash facilities where you top off your fuel, water and grocery needs.  This attracts carnivores that may be small, or larger than you.  Keep a five gallon plastic bucket, with lid, for grease smelling paper towels.  Same reasons as above.  Grease WILL attract Bear in the National Forest, and Coyotes on the Prairies of the Rocky Mountain Plains.  Toss rope over a tree branch and hoist bucket up high... if concerned about bear getting into your vehicle or trailer.

 

-  Common sense prevails when Off the Grid at remote locations.  City, town or organized campsites are NOT Off the Grid.  Established Campsites in remote areas are NOT Off the Grid, but if you take grey water away from a remote campsite to dispose, I would consider this 'Camp Friendly'.  If you find yourself dependent on your Oliver, yourselves and your wits... this is Off the Grid.

 

-   For Off the Grid grey water disposal... vacant gopher holes are convenient and will take this water, permeate the soil for those trees or bushes in the area.  This will not permeate the ground water table as it may be a hundred if in a basin to a thousand feet of sandstone, shale and limestone barriers.

 

-  If you do not shower ever day, Good For YOU!  Your natural odor will permeate the AIR and keep not only neighbors at a distance, but the wildlife that eat meat are more aware to keep out of your territory.  Clothes on a Scare Crow is not what works... it is the SMELL of the clothes freshly added!

 

Examples:

 

1st photo: Anywhere Utah OTG

 

2nd photo: Chaco Canyon, New Mexico NOT OTG

 

3rd photo:  Oregon Buttes, Wyoming OTG

 

4th Photo:  Missouri River, Montana OTG but use common sense for gray water disposal

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