How to keep clean in the back of a truck? I have been known to bathe out of a bowl with a washcloth. That can work. After 14 days of this I would love a hot water shower. National park campgrounds sometimes offer showers. Because of my age I can pay 1/2 of the rate to camp. I figure that doing that twice a month would keep me happy. Truck stops have showers, too. They cost about $10-$15 dollars.  That would be the extent of the monthly budget, but so worth it. Also there is a possibility that they could be free .I found this quote on the internet: “God Bless the Flying J and Pilot truck stops that give us a free shower with every 14 gallon fill up.”  The toyota has a 21 gallon tank. Just a little planning and keep fingers crossed that the policy is the same.  (Found out it was 50 gallons now.) I will have to remember to have flip flops with me. As an aside confession … I used to park outside of cheapy motels early in the morning. Often people will leave their rooms with the doors open. I would take my stuff to the room, shower and leave the room. Then drive away. Used to use the pools of motels in the same way. Shh. Don’t tell.

Hair cleaning on a daily basis is harder, but all kinds of advice from people who do this traveling full time. Here is one solution:

2 T oatmeal
1 t corn starch
1 t baking soda
1 T grits
Just pour on your head, rub it in, and brush it out!

Then there is the cleaning of the truck innards. Broom/brush and Windex and a product called 303 aerospace protectant. A few cloths. Paper towels?

And of course there is pooping. Most of the people in vans have a porta-potty. The people in trailers have a full fledged bathroom. The folks in humbler vehicles have a 5 gallon bucket, some trash bags and a lid to sit on. Swankie-Wheels says “Some people invest in the Luggable Loo toilet seats covers, but I didn’t like the idea of a loose toilet seat rattling around.” She may have a point. She put “sections of a pink pool noodle and taped them on [to the 5 gallon bucket], you have to cut them in sections or notch them or they won’t bend. That is holding up pretty well.”


I have been known to poop in the woods … burying the feces in an ecologically approved spot . I will do this if no one is camped nearby.

I think I will be doing both woods and bucket, with a bit of kitty litter in the bottom of each poop bucket bag. Makes me realize that finding a place to throw away trash (and poop) is a place to look out for. Gas stations usually have something.

Clothes washing is a trick I learned in South America. A 5 gallon plastic bucket with a lid. Throw your dirty clothes in there. When you are ready to travel fill the bucket with soap and water. Drive over rough roads. Voila! Then all you have to do is rinse (by this time you are in town and can get water), wring out and line dry. Of course there are laundromats in most towns, so this bucket method may not be so necessary in the USA. So I will need laundry detergent. Another thing to find storage for. And storage for the dirty clothes. And clean clothes. And …

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