Biggest Camping Secret

Camping has a few secrets that separate the eagle from the tenderfoot.  

Building a campfire, whittling, and making a camp kitchen are camping secrets people talk about.

The biggest camping secret is not discussed as much, but it’s just as important.  How do I make a campsite toilet?

It’s not hard but you need a few items.


To make this simple system work, you need a little bit of wilderness, preferably forest.  If there isn’t an existing privy, you are, by definition, in the wild.  

Find an isolated area.  Walk well away from camp.  Stay at least 100 feet from any stream or lake.  Scout troops and big groups will need a larger area or need to devise alternatives.  Use good judgement. 

Don’t use the plastic bags on the toilet seat.  You are not going to be carrying around waste, you are going to be burying it.

Dig a “cat hole” with the entrenching tool.  Scrape back the leaves and then dig a narrow hole just a little deeper than you first think is good enough.  A foot deep should be plenty.  

Set up the seat over the hole.  Proceed as usual.  

Don’t fool around with toilet paper, use wipes.

What’s the poncho for?  The poncho offers portable privacy.  If you have acres of woods, or a moonless night, you may well not need a poncho.  Unless it’s raining, in which case, yeah, you will need it.

There is a final step you must not forget.

When the cat hole has been filled in, replace the forest leaves and leave two crossed sticks over the spot.  This sign reminds you and other “cats” where not to dig.  The sticks will outlast the underground organic digestion process going on in the earth.

That’s it.  The biggest camping secret is no big deal once you have the system squared away.

Have you thought of more camping essentials?

5 thoughts on “Biggest Camping Secret”

  1. Brilliant – X marks the “sh*t” spot. I keep baby wipes in my purse all the time, even sans baby.

    My latest: Sousababy’s Iced Coffee Smoothie (but, ah . . you do need a source of electricity for this one).

    Thanks ever so much Astro G for visiting my older (and lengthier) articles. I’m striving for brevity nowadays (hope to be almost as good as your work).

    Rose (aka sousababy)

  2. I guess that wasn’t what came to mind when I click on the “biggest camping secret”. 🙂 I suppose that’s still valuable info if you happen to be camping out in the boonies. A a much better wiping solution than using poison ivy…

    1. Hey Rusty, just dropped by your fine article on family tents but not a Squidoo member so Tweeted it instead. In the boonies, or semi-boonies, it’s good to get this aspect of camping squared away. Here’s a camping tip that I don’t recommend but am told that if you boil poison ivy into a tea and drink it, you never get poison ivy again.
      Astro Gremlin recently posted..Camping Kitchen Plus: The Light My Fire Titanium SporkMy Profile

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