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A lot of people hate camping for one reason and one reason only. Pooping or peeing in the woods. A lot of women wont admit that’s the reason they hate the outdoors, but it is. They’ll tell you something like, “I’m just a city girl” or “ew bugs,” in reality they just hate having to lean over a branch every time nature calls. Guys try to play tough, but they don’t like pooping in the woods either, but they do have the benefit of being able to stand while they pee. That’s why we built this DIY camping toilet (I think we found it on Pinterest somewhere).
We like to vehicle camp at back country sites in the desert and really get out there. Unfortunately, in the desert, there aren’t any logs or trees to lean over, only thorny brush. So I have been on the lookout for an alternative to the pee balancing act. I can now say I found it, built it, tested it, and am happy with the results.
- Five gallon bucket – find it at any hardware store
- Swim Noodle – the kind with the hole in the middle (you can get these at Walmart or similar places)
- Pocket knife
- Double Doodie Waste Bags (recommended by the BLM)
Got the visual going yet? You will cut the fun noodle lengthwise to open into a U shape. Place onto the top of the bucket and start bending the fun noodle to lock over the lip of the bucket. You do not want to go all the way around (think of a normal toilet seat) so cut the fun noodle at the desired length.
The fun noodle has a tendency to pop off because of being bent so tightly around the bucket. Make an upside down V cut into the interior side of the fun noodle, and some straight cuts on the exterior to allow the fun noodle to bend a little better. Just don’t cut too much or it could end up tearing.
If you don’t plan on taking it apart for travel, you can just use some duct tape to secure it in place. That’ll keep it from falling off, but it’ll be hard to take it apart and stack your buckets if you’re using more than one.
Take one of your Double Doodie Waste Bags and place it into the bucket and fold over the sides and over the fun noodle. Ta da!
Repeat again and each person has their own camping toilet. The buckets stack and the fun noodle comes off for transport. And it works. The bucket height and cushioned seat mean I can sit comfortably and it is portable for privacy. The trash bags cover everything so the bucket and fun noodle can be used repeatedly. Don’t forget the toilet paper!
If you don’t feel like making it yourself, Amazon sells the Lugabble Loo Portable Toilet. But I don’t see any reason to spend thirty five dollars on something that should only cost you about five dollars and only five minutes of work.
Just remember, when you head out to the woods, call your spot to put your DIY camping toilet before somebody else calls dibs. The key to comfortably pooping in the woods is having a combination of both privacy and view. And, if you want your girlfriend, or wife, to go camping with you more often, make sure she has a great place to poo and she’ll be ready go back again.
Rebecca J Hoffman says
Do you use kitty litter or something in the bottom of the bag to control odor? What do you do with the bag at the end of your trip?
The Double Doodie waste bags have a bio gel that helps control odor. You can also buy additional bio gel to sprinkle on top if you choose (https://amzn.to/2PIUfbU).
You can read about the designated spots to dispose of waste at Big Bend here: https://www.nps.gov/rigr/planyourvisit/humanwaste.htm. Not sure if you are visiting Big Bend or somewhere else, but all national parks and a large portion of state parks have designated spots to dispose of human waste. Just Google “human waste disposal [your park]” and you ought to find it if you’re headed somewhere else.