As a child, I can remember attending Wally Byam Caravan rallies with my parents in a shiny new Airstream travel trailer. Being a kid that liked to dig in the dirt, excavating the fox hole for the waste water was one of the most fascinating parts of the outing. At some larger rallies a large motorized auger would be brought around to “drill” a hole in the ground. Then the sewer hose would be inserted into the hole and a plywood lid with a cut out for the sewer hose would be placed over the hole so no one would fall in. Finally, a little dirt from the hole would be placed around the edge of the lid to seal things up. You will have to remember in those days RVs (trailers back then) didn’t have gray holding tanks. If you rinsed a dish in the kitchen sink the waste water immediately came out the back end. Nowadays, it is generally not acceptable to dump gray water under any circumstances, or is it? While planning an upcoming backcountry adventure in Nevada, I came across the following statement on the Bureau of Land Management website, “While camping choices are almost limitless, camping stays in the same location are limited to 14 days. Primitive campsites must be located at least 200 feet from roads and water sources such as spring, ponds, creeks or waters provided for wildlife or livestock. Gray water may be dumped (emphasis added) at least 200 feet from any water source. Dumping sewage on public land is not legal.” You can check it out for yourself at:
As an avid boondoocker, I found that statement very interesting, I wonder how many of you out there were already aware of this fact and are just keeping it to yourselves to avoid controversy? Vigilantly watching the holding tank levels, is just part of the adventure!
Dave Helgeson’s many roles in the RV industry started before he even had a driver’s license. His grandparents and father owned an RV dealership before the term “RV” had been coined, and Dave played a pivotal role in nearly every position of an RV dealership. He and his wife Cheri launched their own RV dealership in the Pacific Northwest. The duo also spent 29 years overseeing regional RV shows. Dave has also served as President of a local chapter of the Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA), worked on the board of advisors for the RV Technician Program of a local technical college, and served as a board member of the Manufactured Home and RV Association. Dave’s reputation earned him the title of “The foremost expert on boondocking,” bestowed by RV industry icon, the late Gary Bunzer (The RV Doctor). When he’s not out boondocking, you’ll find Dave in the spotlight at RV shows across the country, giving seminars about all things RVing. He and Cheri currently roam in their fifth travel trailer, with Dave doing all the service, repair and modifications to his own unit.
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