We’ve been camping on America’s public lands for many years now, enjoying all the blessings and benefits that this beautiful lifestyle offers — multi-million dollar views out our windows, incredible wildlife sightings on a regular basis, and the delicious peace and quiet that go with living in nature.
What’s a painless and useful way to say “thanks” for the privilege of being able to live this way? Whenever we set up camp in a new boondocking spot, we take a moment to clean up our site before we settle in. It takes just a few minutes, and it makes our new front and backyard so much more attractive.
Lots of people volunteer their time to help out the various government agencies that manage America’s public lands, and they usually receive either a free RV campsite and/or a small stipend for their work. This is a fantastic exchange, however, it doesn’t need to be so formal and there doesn’t even need to be a tit-for-tat trade. Besides, in places like Arizona’s Roosevelt Lake where camping costs seniors just $3 a night, the volunteer host is hardly making a killing!
We recently arrived at a campsite to find it very overgrown with weeds, so Mark grabbed his rake and hedge trimmer and began doing a little groundskeeping to trim back the thorny mesquite and palo verde trees and to get rid of the piles of tumbleweeds.
Folks kept driving by and asking Mark if he were the campground host. When he said, “No, I’m just cleaning up a little,” they looked puzzled and asked him why he was raking. The answer is easy: We love our lifestyle and want the privilege of camping on public land to be available to us and others in the future!
Besides, sometimes it makes Mark feel happy and goofy enough that he whips out his rake and starts playing air guitar!
More info: Camping at Roosevelt Lake