Shutdown Sending RVers to Boondocker Sites
Editor's Note: The following blog appeared on AUTO-MOBI.info offering information on popular boondocking sites in response to the government's closure of federal campgrounds.
There are simply not enough privately-owned or state-run campsites to handle the shortfall created by the sudden closing of all federal campgrounds in the U.S. Now two Canadian-owned web sites offer two unique and immediate solutions. Through www.boondockerswelcome.com, more than 700 individuals across America welcome fellow RVers to camp on their private property for free. A second web site, www.frugal-rv-travel.com, offers six travel guides with explicit directions to free, dispersed camping locations on public land near the nation's most popular National Parks – a place to wait it out until the parks reopen.
Marianne Edwards and her daughter, Anna Maste, started the membership web site, www.boondockerswelcome.com in 2012 to fill the needs of RVers looking for an option when all campgrounds are full or closed for the season. In their opinion, "It also provides free, enroute, parking alternatives that are more appealing than Walmarts, casinos and truck stops."
Since the government shutdown was announced, Edwards and Maste have received messages from their members expressing a sincere desire to help RVers whose travel plans have been interrupted. Along with free overnight parking, water and electric hookups are often available, and, of course, suggestions on what to see and do in the area (especially helpful for those who are biding time until the parks reopen). As an avid RVer herself for more than 13 years, Edwards is not surprised, noting, “Hospitality is just second nature to most RVers.”
Various news sources this week have reported that free dispersed camping is still available where permitted on most federal lands. However, according to Edwards, "It fails to take into account that finding information on the exact locations (something that was always difficult) is now nearly impossible since visitor centers and federal web sites are all closed."
That's where the second solution, www.frugal-rv-travel.com, comes in. On Edwards' original website, she offers advice on finding free camping and her Frugal Shunpiker's Guides. Written for tent campers as well as RVers, they give exact directions, GPS coordinates, and descriptions for hundreds of free camping locations in Utah, California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas.
The membership site, www.boondockerswelcome.com is operated by Boondockers Welcome Inc. The company officers, Marianne Edwards and Anna Maste, are also the site administrators. Edwards has been an active member of the online RV community since 2007, has contributed articles to various RV publications in Canada and U.S.A., and is available as a speaker on topics related to budget RV travel.