- How do you shower outside?
- We don’t go Hiking to clean ourselves!
That’s a joke, but not necessarily. We show you how not to fall victim to “dirty and smelly” Hikers: how to wash your clothes while Hiking, how to organize an outdoor toilet, and how you should bring a few packs of wet wipes. A must-read for all new Hikers and sympathizers, even the most impressionable ones. You will learn more about Hiking Hygiene for How to Take a Shower, Wash Clothes Etc by LCNOutdoors article.
How To Shower While Hiking
Experience has proven that one bottle of 0.4 gals (1.5 liters) of water is enough to clean the whole person and another bottle can clean the head of a girl with medium-length hair. So the secret to Hiking showers is simple: fill the bottle with water from the nearest creek, add a cup of boiling water, retreat to a secluded spot, and wash off. Or you can boil a large pot full of water and wash all the girls in your group at once. For this, you’ll need another pot or a bucket – you fill it with cold water and dilute it with boiling water.
If you have problems with fuel, or if the harsh leaders do not allow you to burn gas for washing, you can fill a bottle of water and leave it in the sun on a hot day, or hang it on your backpack in the sun, where it will soon heat itself.
When Hiking in the mountains, avoid early mornings and sunsets because it is cold and easy to catch a cold. The best time is when the group arrives early, the sun is still high and the air is warm. A second good option is a long lunch break when the sun is at the zenith and burners and frying pans don’t need to be pulled out especially.
In the heat, even a quick dip in a cold mountain river was possible, and brave girls managed to wash their hair in the river. This method is quite extreme, but it works. The main thing is to do it in warm sunlight, dry immediately after the bath, and do not stand in the wind with a wet head.
When you can’t wash your hair, but want to stay beautiful, you can bring dry shampoo to help. It’s a special powder that absorbs sebum, dirt, and grime, making your hair visually look clean for days.
The best way to wash up while Hiking is to have a real Hiking sauna. You can do this in the woods by the river: for example, on a Hiking day or at the end of a Hike. You will need to make frames for poles, polyethylene sheets, firewood, and rocks. You cover the stones with firewood and make a fire: the stones become red, then you can pour water or even decoction of herbs on them – the steam will build up and become hot and humid, just like in a real bathhouse.
Before you leave the camp, remove the sauna and take the plastic sheeting with you. Stack poles and firewood carefully – they may be useful to other groups, but don’t leave them scattered across the field. Leave a few traces of your life in the field as possible.
In the mountains, where there is snow, you can risk rubbing it in. The temperature in the sun can rise to 68 °F (20 °C) during the day, so it’s perfectly safe – as long as you wipe off and get dressed after your snow bath.
It’s hard to imagine a winter water routine. Unless you’re a walrus, a wet towel or damp washcloth will suffice. Hydrogen peroxide or chlorhexidine cleans better than wet wipes – pour the liquid on a simple cloth made from bandages to remove the smell. These products are economical and can also be used in the highlands, even in summer when there is no desire to clean and sometimes no opportunity.
And do not forget to shower and wash your hair before any trip. Girls should braid their hair in a dragon braid for a few days to keep it clean and neat.
How to Wash Clothes In The Field
To check if it’s time to wash your socks in Hiking, throw them at a tree or a rock. If they bounce off, it’s time to wash them; if they stick, it’s time to burn them. hiking wisdom.
To keep your tenants from kicking you out of the house, you need to wash not only yourself but also your clothes occasionally. The first and most important thing is your socks. Doing this every other day is enough, and it’s best to dry them on the move and secure them to the outside of your backpack – that way they’ll be dry within a day even without the sun.
It is often recommended to put wet socks on top of them in your sleeping bag or put them on your feet over dry socks so they can dry out. This works to a certain extent – the socks will only be slightly damp in the morning, but sleeping with wet socks on your stomach is far from pleasant. You can only do this in one situation: if you’ve forgotten your spare socks and you only have one pair. And under no circumstances should you use a down sleeping bag for this.
Washing T-shirts and thermal underwear make sense on very long Hikes – on shorter Hikes, it’s easier to bring a couple of T-shirts and a change of underwear. Washing is best done on day hikes when there is plenty of time and a river nearby.
Here’s an easy and convenient way to wash your clothes on a Hiking trip without fiddling in cold water. Put your dirty clothes in a garbage bag, wash them properly with soap, or add liquid soap, pour the water into the bag, and tie it off. Put the bag in the sun – during the day, the water will warm up quickly and you’ll just have to scrub and rinse.
Wool is not just for winter travel; it is also used for underwear and has a density of up to 150 grams per 40 inches (1 meter), making it ideal for summer use. It is very light and comfortable to wear, even when the weather is hot.
How to Go to The Bathroom While Camping
Imagine this: You and your group have planned to spend the night in a beautiful place. You have been walking there all day and finally, you get there, and there …… Instead of pristine nature and cozy parking lots, there are scraps of toilet paper and dirty napkins scattered everywhere, and it’s best not to go into the nearest bush at all.
Organic matter decomposes in 1-2 weeks – it depends on weather conditions and time of the year (in winter, the decomposition process stops). It is much faster than polyethylene, but in such a period of time, dozens or even hundreds of people may visit the camp. They are unlikely to be pleased by the traces of previous groups. Therefore, when Hiking, it is important to consider not only your own comfort level but also those who will come after you and set the right example.
To leave a clean, violet-smelling environment, discuss with your group how and where to use the restroom before the Hiking. Camp toilets are organized in different ways – it all depends on how long you plan to Hike and what level of comfort you prefer.
If the group is small, staying only one night, or a day Hiking without an overnight stay, each person will have to take care of their own needs. Arm yourself with a shovel and find a suitable place at least 164 feet (50 meters) away from camp. Dig a shallow hole – the topsoil is rich in microorganisms and will quickly recycle the contents. After use, bury the hole along with toilet paper. Mark the area with a branch or rock so that no one accidentally starts digging in the same place.
If the group is large, it makes sense to take some time and dig two separate toilets (e.g., boys on the left, girls on the right). The pit here should be larger, 12-20 inches (30-50 cm) deep. To prevent odors from spreading around, gently cover the pit with leaves, grass, and twigs after each visit. When dismantling the camp, be sure to bury everything and mark it well.
In winter and snowy areas, the principle is the same: dig a hole in the snow and bury it along with the used paper. If the snow layer is very small, it’s best to dig a hole in the ground so that in the spring there will be no trace of your stay.
Of course, you don’t need a big shovel. A trench shovel will do – it can be used to level tent sites and bury trash. You can also buy a lighter shovel, such as a small garden trowel, available at home improvement stores and garden supply stores. As a last resort, a child’s plastic trowel with a conical bucket may take longer to dig a hole, but it’s not as heavy. One of these tools is more than enough for a group.
If you live in an open area with no bushes or trees nearby, use hiking foam. You can wrap it around yourself and “hide” in this way. Just warn your group not to look in your direction – Hiking is no longer a matter of shyness.
If you plan on Hiking in one place for several days and doing radio-cross country trips, it makes sense to make one large, comfortable toilet per group. To do this, dig holes away from campsites, trails, and bodies of water, and not on slopes. It is recommended to choose a place at a slightly higher elevation to avoid water logging during heavy rains. The simplest construction of a permanent latrine is a board or small wooden deck and walls made of opaque polyethylene (such as a shower curtain or large garbage bag).
If it’s not too far from camp and you’re not too constrained by the weight of your equipment, you can bring a special Hiking toilet. There are pockets inside for toilet paper and other small items. And you can hang a “busy” sign on the outside.
Try to cover the pit with something after each toilet visit. Ashes are a great deodorizer: You can collect the ashes from the fire in a bucket or bag and leave it near the toilet so no one forgets to use it. When you leave, bury the toilet and mark it so other campers can see that it has been used.
If you use wet wipes, don’t bury them – they are synthetic and will not decompose in the ground. Put them in a sealed bag and burn them with the rest of your trash.
Where not to go to the bathroom
- near trails – don’t create barriers for other travelers
- Near ant hills – don’t anger the forest inhabitants and don’t destroy their habitat.
- Near streams and reservoirs – these are sources of water, into which all substances released during decomposition are bound to enter.
- On slopes – do not test the strength of the ground: after heavy rains, the ground may be washed away and the contents of the pit will slide down.
- On the stony ground – This can damage the shovel. If there is no soft ground around at all, you can cover the area with rocks.
Girls: What to do on The “Red” (Menstrual) Days
While Hiking, the “red” days can come suddenly due to stress and change of scenery. In any case, you need to be prepared in advance. Here are a few rules.
- Bring tampons, even if you are not expecting a “guest” on your Hiking date. They won’t take up much space, but they can be very helpful, if not to you, then to some of your friends in the group. Don’t use pads – tampons are more comfortable and can be used to move around.
- You can use a menstrual cup instead of a tampon. It is reusable (empty it every 12 hours, wash it and use it again) and safe to use, but you need to learn how to use it properly. If you have a cup, you won’t need to carry around a lot of sanitary products and you won’t have to worry about handling them carefully.
- Be careful with intimate hygiene: wipe with a wet towel when you rest, and use a cup with soap and warm water when you are at camp.
- wear comfortable underwear, preferably sports underwear – it breathes and wicks away moisture quickly and is comfortable while you are exercising.
- Don’t get too cold – don’t sit on wet ground, put some foam underneath, and keep your lower back warm at night.
- Put used toiletries and wet wipes in a Ziploc bag and burn them in the parking lot – never leave them in the bushes nearby, synthetics take a long time to break down.
What to Put in Your Travel Bag
For men, it’s simple: soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, and tissues will suffice. The more adventurous will also bring razors. Girls may be tempted to bring lots of toiletries that they won’t use on their trip. Try to cut down on everything and take only what you really need, because you will have to carry them all on your back.
To save you from wasting time thinking about your hygiene basics, we’ve put together a handy checklist. With it, you can quickly assemble your travel bag without forgetting anything.
Toothpaste and brushes
Everything is necessarily small. Toothbrushes can be folded more easily, and toothpaste tubes are either miniature (25-40 ml) or almost used up.” You can find travel-sized toothpaste and collapsible toothbrushes in small tubes at large supermarkets. You can also ask your dentist (who you should visit before you go) for a mini-tube, as they come with a variety of small samples. This is enough for 10 days and with the right skills, you can refill the tube at home and use it next time.
Those who like the “quick and light” style will love the outdoor recipe for toothpaste balls. It’s easy to make: squeeze a “track” out of the tube, wait for it to dry, and then cut it into 0.4 inches (1 cm) pieces. Sprinkle them with baking soda so they don’t stick together, then put them in a bag. If the air is dry, dry them in a dryer or simply air dry them at home. Chew the balls before use and the rest of the brushing process is normal.
Preferably natural and free of preservatives to avoid contaminating nature. And to avoid excessive wear, a regular bar of soap should be cut into 2 or even 4 parts. Small soaps are often given out in hotels – take them with you and store them for the future, they are exactly what you need when Hiking.
For Hiking, it’s handy to carry lightweight leaf soap. It’s an airtight container with 20-50 bars of soap inside. This packaging and dosage solve the problem of perpetually soggy bars of soap that you don’t always have time to dry before storing in your pack.
Wet paper towels
Small packets of wipes, 15-20 will do. Don’t bring a big pack of 50-100 wipes – they’re heavy, they dry quickly, and you can’t carry them in your pocket. If you are economical, having 3-4 wipes per day is enough – 1-2 packs of 20 wipes for a week’s worth of activities.
One roll will last about 10 days of Hiking. be sure to keep it in an airtight bag to prevent it from drying out.
A mini version of roller antiperspirant that you can buy at large supermarkets and cosmetic stores will do the trick. If you can’t find it, you can buy a small tube of the cream at the drugstore – it disinfects the skin and reduces sweating so there’s no smell or discomfort. You can apply it to your armpits and feet before you go out, and again after your shower. Don’t bring a full tube, but be careful with the weight.
Special microfiber hiking towels absorb water well. 15.7 x 5.7 inches (40 x 40 cm) is large enough to wipe clean – just wring it out and it’s almost dry. Store your hiking towel in a mesh bag and don’t forget to keep it out of the sun – it will dry quickly.
It should be economical to use and has a soapy smell. Use small bottles or “bulk” sachets – these are easy to find at any cosmetic store. A good option is to buy a bottle of concentrated soap, which is good for both body and hair. You can try dry shampoo, but it’s much more visually appealing.
When Hiking, this balm can be used not only for its intended purpose but also for softening cuticles and elbow skin. Small tubes can weigh up to 5-20 grams.
When Hiking, your hands, and face will be very dry, so you can’t do without a face cream. Universal creams for hands, face, body, and feet. You can use tea tree oil or special ointments to nourish your skin and heal scratches, cuts, and bites.
The smallest, collapsible, preferably in a plastic case rather than a metal one.
Tweezers, nail files, scissors
Alternatively, you can buy a small multi-tool with a file, scissors and a knife. It can also be used to clean dirt from your nails and remove splinters and burrs.
An unnecessary item, but one you can take with you on a multi-day Hiking trip to organize – for both men and women. A regular plastic loom will do – it’s the lightest.
What else is good for
The list can also include antibacterial hand spray (preferably a spray, not a gel spray – some gels leave a sticky residue on your hands), cotton swabs, chlorhexidine or hydrogen peroxide, cleanser or micellar water for girls (helps if there is snow and nothing to wash your face with), daily pads and tampons. All of these things can also go in your makeup bag, but the final weight and volume must be taken into account.
No makeup – you don’t even need makeup when you’re on the road. The same goes for scrubs, conditioners, and perfumes.
Hygiene products can be stored in a travel bag or messenger bag (a bag with many compartments). It should be compact: no bigger than 1.5 palms.
It is easy to see the difference between a man’s and a woman’s makeup bag. By removing bulky bottles and some beauty products, the women’s version can be significantly reduced.