Skills & Techniques

How to Take a Bath While Camping

Susy Alkaitis - February 11, 2020
camping shower bath

Ever smelled yourself after a long trip? Yeah, we have too! But the good news is that you don’t have to be stinky to love the outdoors. Check out our video for #LeaveNoTrace tips on how to take a bath while camping.

Three Steps to Less Stink:

  1. Grab your clean up kit and some water. You can use your water bottle, cook pot, hydration reservoir or any other container to carry the water.

    camp cooking hydration reservoir water bucket water bottle
    Use whatever container you have to carry your water.
  2. Walk 200 feet – about 70 big steps – away from the trail, campsites and any streams, rivers, lakes or other water sources. This will help with privacy and prevent water pollution.

    turtles in Florida spring
    Turtles enjoying clean, unpolluted water.
  3. Lather and rinse. (Repeat optional!) Add a few drops of soap to your hands or a small washcloth or bandana – the less you use, the easier it is to rinse. We like unscented soap because it’s less likely to attract animals to your shower site.

    camper soap bath
    It only takes a few drops of soap to wash up in the woods.

Choose your own adventure for the rinse part. You can splash, pour, or wring out and rinse your bandana or washcloth, then wipe. Did you know you can make your hydration reservoir into an outdoor shower? Hang it above your head and enjoy a shower with a view!

Now go out and teach your friends how to take a bath while camping!

Enjoy Your World. Leave No Trace.

Leave No Trace’s Jessie Johnson and Matt Schneider are part of the 2020 Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer Program that provides free, mobile education to communities across the country. Proud partners of this program include Subaru of AmericaREIEagles Nest OutfittersDeuterThuleFjällräven and Klean Kanteen.



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