Water: The diminishing and vital resource for life and boondocking

ImageCalifornia is in the midst of one of the worst droughts since records have been taken. In fact, the rain fall in the beginning of this year is half what the previous worst year total was.

This loss of available water stores (snow pack, reservoirs, aquifers, etc.) will be disastrous for farmers, spawning salmon, and homeowners (who water lawns, wash cars, plant gardens, and follow several water wasting habits in their everyday lives.

States other than California are being affected also with water shortages, unlike those in the Midwest, South, and East Coast that are receiving too much of the wet stuff.

Normally dry areas, like the deserts of the Southwest, of which much of California qualifies as well as parts of Eastern Oregon, Southern Arizona and New Mexico, could suffer the most.

You can expect water conservation guidelines to ramp up as the situation continues to worsen. Some areas are already prohibiting watering lawns, cars, washing down driveways, operating sprinklers, and flushing toilets less (phew!)

But we boondockers have a leg up on everybody else (not to be smug, or anything) because as we pursued our love of boondock camping, we also learned how to conserve water to avoid filling our waste water tank or draining our fresh water tank, causing us to vacate our campsite discovery and drive off to find somewhere to dump and fill.

But these same skills we learned on how to conserve water while camping are also valuable skills to practice at home now that water conservation is looming over all of us by severely dwindling supplies. The following water saving tips will serve you both as a boondocker as well as a stick house dweller.

  • Wash dishes in a dish tub and discard the dishwater onto a thirsty bush or to water your plants or garden.
  • When washing or showering, turn the water on to wet down, then turn off. Soap up, then turn water on to rinse.
  • Turn the water off when brushing teeth. Turn on only to rinse.
  • When running water while letting it heat up for showers or washing, save the running water in a plastic tub to use for watering plants, cooking spaghetti, or other high water uses.
  • If you must wash your car or truck, consider one of the waterless car wash products.
  • Install drip waterers for the plants at your house.
  • Maintain the right mindset: Always be conscious of wasting water, and what you can do about it.
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