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How to Go to the Bathroom While Camping

Answering nature’s call when you’re in the great outdoors doesn’t have to be as scary as a bear attack. Follow these steps and learn how to go to the bathroom while camping.


  • Step 1: Pick a spot When it comes to doing your business while camping, finding the right spot is key. Choose a location at least 200 feet away from any trail, campsite, or body of water to avoid contaminating areas used for cooking, eating, or drinking.
  • TIP: If there's an outhouse available, use it.
  • Step 2: Dig a hole Dig a hole at least 6 inches deep and about 8 inches across in which to go.
  • Step 3: Use the facilities Squat above the hole, making sure your clothes are out of harm’s way, and go to the bathroom. When you finish, clean yourself with toilet paper or odorless baby wipes.
  • Step 4: Leave no trace Place used toilet paper or wipes in an airtight freezer bag you carry with you -- considerate camping means taking out any foreign objects you brought in.
  • TIP: Place any used feminine products in the freezer bag, too.
  • Step 5: Fill the hole Fill the hole with soil, pat down the top, and place a rock on the mound so future hikers won't dig in the same spot accidentally. Put the trowel and unused sanitary materials away. Then, sanitize your hands, and get back to your camping adventure.
  • FACT: In 2009, 562 people hiked the entire Appalachian trail, which covers over 2,100 miles between Maine and Georgia.

You Will Need

  • Trowel
  • Toilet paper or odorless baby wipes
  • Sealable freezer bags
  • Rock
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Outhouse (optional)

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