How to Wash Clothes Camping: A Father of Three’s Guide
With three children in tow, washing clothes can feel like a daunting task. However, if you are a camper and are headed out on a camping trip, you may be wondering how you will manage to keep the kids clothed and clean. The good news is that washing clothes while camping can be quite easy—with a few tips and tricks, ultimately saving you time, energy, and money.
As a father of three children (two boys and one girl) and an experienced camper, I have combined my expertise in camping and parenting to share with you my tips for how to wash clothes camping.
One of the best pieces of advice I can offer when it comes to washing clothes camping is to pack light and choose the right type of garments. Waterproof and windproof breathable jackets and base layers are always a smart choice for camping. Avoid cotton and denim as they can take a long time to dry and are not that ideal for camping trips. Stick to lightweight tops, bottoms, and dresses made from fabrics that are quick drying and easy to clean.
When washing your clothes camping, the first thing you will need is a sturdy washing basin. You may find it useful to use a floating basin like this one, which has a strainer on the bottom to keep out large dirt and debris.
Once you’ve filled up the washing basin with water, add in a camping-friendly detergent like Eco Trekker or Nimble for extra cleaning power. For a more natural approach, try a detergent alternative like soap nuts, baking soda, or Borax. Place the clothes into the basin and let them soak for at least fifteen minutes.
Next, use a hand-held scrub brush to agitate the clothes and loosen the dirt. If you are camping in an area with no water pump, a foot-operated washing board can come in handy for scrubbing clothes by hand. After scrubbing the clothes, rinse them in a bucket and hang them out to dry.
Using a towel-dryer rack can make hanging clothes quick and easy. The rack conveniently folds up flat when you are done using it. Alternatively, you can use a long-handled clothes hanger and hang the clothes on a tree or clothes line you’ve strung up yourself.
If you are camping in cold climates, you may find that clothing takes longer to dry. To speed up the process, you can spread out the clothes around your campsite for maximum exposure to the sun and breeze. You could even set up a portable drying rack for added convenience.
Finally, it is important to clean your camping gear after each trip. Washing your tents, sleeping bags, mats, and backpacks will help to prevent the accumulation of bacteria and odors that build up over time. Set up a portable cleaning station in your campsite and fill up a basin with a gentle soap and warm water. Give all your camping gear an initial rinse and let them soak for several hours. After that, scrub them gently with a soft brush and hang them up to dry.
Keeping your clothing and camping gear clean and in good condition is essential for a successful camping trip. With a few tips and the right supplies, you can easily manage washing clothes while camping. Using lightweight fabrics, the right soaps, and a few other tricks can make the task of laundering easier and faster, ultimately saving energy, time, and money.