Category Archives for "CAMPING"

All you need to know about South Carlsbad State Beach Campground

For someone who loves to camp, to surf, and like anything with the beach, I think the South Carlsbad State Beach Campground is perfect. The city of Carlsbad is known as "The Village by the Sea." Because of its pretty incredible beaches, it does attract many tourists. The South Carlsbad State Beach Campground, in particular, is one of the most popular campgrounds in the area, especially during summer.

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How Much Firewood Do I Need? The Cold will not Bother You Now

How much firewood do I need? The answer to such question will depend on the dimension of your house, the frequency of your utilizing the fireplace, and other significant factors. In an area with mild winters, you may need to use your heating tool once in a while. On the other hand, in cold places, you need to have enough heat for everyday use.
If you are like me, you may want to store more firewood before the winter season comes. Other people even harvest their wood, while some start purchasing them from local stores. Either way, you have to compute the right amount of wood you'll need to fight the cold winter nights. This article will bring everything you should know about stocking up firewood. 

Wood Levels and Measurements

If you want to know the dimensions of the wood you need, you need to know all about cords. Just like many other things, firewood has its unique system to follow when it comes to measurement. In areas outside North America, people use the metric unit known as stere, which is equal to one cubic meter.

In the U.S., the measurement varies significantly. Just like other imperial measurements, it is not as easy as the metric system. The wood can be available in face cords and full cords. You cannot pinpoint the real logic behind the sizes of the wood. In most states in the U.S., the cord can have a definition of a state statute. But still, this varies from one place to another.

A full cord or bush cord may have a volume of exactly 128 cubic feet. The amount can also include the air, bark when you pile the firewood neatly, and even the wood itself. With that, the volume of the real wood in a bush cord may differ. But it can usually start from 80 cubic feet to 100 cubic feet. In some cases, each piece of wood maybe around 16 inches.

But, take note that a face cord is just equivalent to one-third of the full measurement. The stack is four by eight feet and comes with a volume of about 42.5 cubic feet. 

That’s why it’s hard to tell how much wood you’ll need to stock up to combat the winter season. It is true when you have to use the measurements that are arbitrary. Also, there’s the presence of bark and air that makes it challenging to predict how much firewood you are using. In spite of that, you can still utilize the cords to make estimations.

Basic Explanation of a Cord of Firewood

Someone has asked me: what is the equivalent of a cord of wood? Well, I am glad you have raised such question! A cord of firewood is about 128 cubic feet, which measures nearly measure to stacked wood. It also includes the air space between the fire log. So, a pile of timber may have a dimension of 4-feet tall, 4-feet wide, and 8-feet long of a cord. Then, the stack is 4-feet tall, 2-feet wide, and 16-feet long.
When you decide that you have purchase firewood, you have to negotiate with your supplier using the real cords. You may also use the percentage of true cords. But, of course, you can make the estimations using the examples indicated above and observe if it is worth the price. 

How Much Firewood Should You Burn During the Winter Season?

How Much Firewood Should You Burn During the Winter Season

The amount of wood you need for winter and the computation will naturally be dependent on the how often you use your heat source. For other homeowners on rural places, they need it almost every single day. That’s why it is crucial that they gather an adequate amount of firewood than people with indoor fireplaces that they use for heating and decorative purposes. But, remember that it is better to stock up too much firewood than having too little supply later on.

How Much Firewood do I Need?

While there's no assurance on methods to find out how much wood you should use to keep yourself warm during cold winters, you will use more than the usual. So, here are some guidelines you will need to have almost the right estimations:

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    Those who use wood primarily as a heat source can burn approximately 5 cords of firewood.
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    For homeowners who burned fuel as supplementation to other heating methods, they may use only over 2 cords of wood.
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    Lastly, for those who used wood only as they desire, they can gather up to less than a half of a cord

When to Gather or Purchase Firewood?

The wood may require about six months to season. So, during early spring, this is an excellent time to pile up and buy your wood. The insects you may notice beneath the bark are dormant, and they will most likely die before the fall season. The cost may go down, and the supplies are also high. That’s why you have to try purchasing the portion you can use for the rest of the year.

In fact, you may still have them for the next year. But, these wood may give off more smoke that the newly purchased wood. Also, it can most likely gather up insects.

Other landowners who log their properties may even welcome you if you ask them if you can keep the firewood. These loggers can leave up to 50 percent of wood for every tree. It may clutter your landscape, but it can provide you with enough wood. Moreover, with just using a firewood splitter, protective goggles, and chainsaw, you can cut your wood to any dimension you like to save more cash.

Final Thought

It doesn’t matter if you are using your fireplace for relaxation, romance, or warmth, you have to buy the right amount of firewood every spring while it is still season. If you have to supplement your heating system, you still need to gather enough wood to provide adequate heat in your house. If you want to keep your home cozy and warm during the winter, the amount of firewood may depend on the severity of the winter coldness.
So, don’t wait up until the cold season comes, stock up enough wood! Stay warm!

How to Quiet a Generator: 3 Simple Tips to Follow

For some people, it is entirely unreasonable to quiet a generator. After all, it is made to operate that way. But there are some instances that you have to do this. One of this is when you are living in a residential area, and you are afraid to disturb other people's sleep. Of course, some individuals are living off the grid that doesn't want to get noticed.

Learning how to quiet a generator is a useful skill in any aspect. If you have no good tolerance against high sound volumes, then you need to tone down your generator for a bit. A generator, especially those that have powerful motors and high RPMs can produce voluminous noises. If your generator doesn't have an idle control, then you have to endure the sound of the generator until the power from the grid comes back.

Of course, there are still some ways that you can upend this problem. The first solution is by investing on high-end generators. Though they are expensive, they will certainly guarantee that they can operate with minimal or controlled volumes. On the other hand, you can expect that inexpensive or entry-grade generators will never give you such kind of comfort.

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How to Charge 18650 Battery: All Important Details You Must Know

The process of charging batteries is a matter of chemical reaction. But that is not the case for lithium ion batteries like the 18650. Specifically, learning how to charge 18650 battery is quite important, as some hazards may come in your way when you do it inappropriately.

Typically, the lithium ion charger is a form of a voltage-inhibiting device. It is quite similar to those lead-acid systems. The difference that a Li-ion charger lies on its voltage tolerance and significant energy amount per battery.

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18650 Battery Vs. AA: Are There Any Difference?

There are different batteries that you can see on the market today. Obviously, each of them has their intended applications and usages. But currently, you can notice that there is a withstanding notion between 18650 batteries and AA batteries.

The bout of 18650 battery vs. AA battery has been going for quite some time already. People are seemingly undecided which one of them works best. But on this article, we will be clarifying this matter. We will give important points to each of these battery types. In this way, you can decide which one of them will suit your needs and intended applications. Let's get started.

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What Size of Generator for RV? Tips for Getting the Right Generator

It is common to find most people feeling comfortable when they get to camp in their RVs. The reason is that you get to feel the comfort as if you are still home enjoying some of the important amenities that the vehicle can provide. It is crucial that you get to understand about the different sizes of generators when it comes to RV camping. Not all the sizes would be great based on the equipment and appliances that you will be using. So, what size of generator for RV?

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5 of the Best Free Camping near Zion National Park

Zion National Park is one of Utah’s most famous landmark and is one of the favorite national parks in the US. Camping is very popular here, so usually, the low-cost campgrounds are full. Fortunately, there are still some places near Zion, which the Bureau of Land Management manages. Utah’s BLM is very diverse, offering incredible views, wildlife, and recreational opportunities. Most, if not all, of the best free camping near Zion, is under BLM.

Many are less than an hour drive from Zion, so if you want to head there for a day trip, it's no problem. But even if you don't, these places are still beautiful on their own and are worth exploring. Just keep in mind that BLM’s typically don’t have the facilities like running water, toilets, and others. Anyways, here’s 5 of the best free camping near Zion National Park:

#1 Virgin Dam Area

5 of the Best Free Camping near Zion National Park

Virgin Dam is just around 30 minutes west of Zion. It is a BLM area that is surrounded by desert and has a view of the Virgin river and dam. Though it is not easily accessible, I would say that it's still worth the trip. In addition to being free, the location is peaceful, clean, beautiful, and overall a great camping destination.

Camping in the Virgin Dam area requires more sense of adventure than many campgrounds. First of all, the road is rocky and bumpy, so it is not very easy to get in and out of the area. Secondly, it's even worse when it rains because it gets very muddy and difficult to drive on. RVs and 2-wheel drives will have a hard time or will get stuck. Finally, the only thing the site provides are fire rings, but even some areas won’t have them.

Since there are no facilities like bathrooms or drinking water, you have to plan for that. Make use of the nearest public restroom or buy some poo bags - just don’t leave your poop behind! The nearest grocery store and other conveniences are probably around 20 minutes away which is a city called Hurricane.


#2 Sheep Bridge Road

Sheep Bridge Road in La Verkin, Utah is very near to both Zion and the Virgin Dam. Getting to the Springfield entrance to Zion is only about a 25-minute drive. It's quite a popular site especially to boon dockers visiting Zion. That said, you might want to start your day early if you want to secure a good spot. Though there's plenty of room to spread out, you still want to be early, so you won't end up settling for a dusty place.

One great thing about this area is that there are plenty of hiking and biking trails. You also have breathtaking views of the Virgin River and Zion. Getting to the area is a little bumpy, but if you take it slow, you should be alright.

Like most BLM sites, there aren't much amenities. You may find some fire rings, but no water or hookups. However, you can drive to Hurricane or Springfield which has plenty of conveniences.


#3 Flying Monkey Mesa

5 of the Best Free Camping near Zion National Park

Another one that is in Virgin, Utah, is Flying Monkey Mesa. It's also known as Hurricane Mesa. But Flying Monkey sounds more interesting, I think. Anyways, this area is just around Virgin and La Verkin Utah. It's a little over half an hour from the closest Zion entrance, which is in Springdale.

This campsite is quite difficult to get to and locate. Many campers have said their vehicles have gotten stuck. I recommend you check out the road by foot first, if possible. Also, try to avoid driving after rain because the road will be tougher to drive on. I think that is what hinders most people from camping on this site. Flying Monkey Mesa has two locations: one is right after the turn from Mesa Road, and the other one is further down a dirt track.

If you do want to feel isolated and away from people, then this campsite is perfect. You have higher chances of being the only one/group. Even if there are other campers in the area, the vastness of the area will still give you some peace and isolation.

Flying Monkey Mesa has mountain bike trails for daredevils. The trail is very narrow, with steep falls on both sides. It's also rocky with some unpredictable jumps. Aside from mountain biking, you can also go hiking.


#4 Smithsonian Butte

5 of the Best Free Camping near Zion National Park

The Smithsonian Butte is probably one of the closest free camping sites to Zion National Park. It is a BLM type, about 7 miles to the Springdale entrance to Zion, which is less than 20 minutes. It's a little over 20 miles to Hurricane, Utah.

This camping area is pleasant and away from the crowds of Zion. The sunrise and sunset views are pretty spectacular from the area. It’s also one of the greener sites, compared to the others which are mostly desert. However, it’s hard to get to from Rockville. You’ll need a high ground clearance and four-wheel drive to get through the rocky road.

If you go camping here, make sure it is not on federally managed lands. You need to be at least half a mile distance from the either side of the main byway. Also, the dirt road gets muddier after a heavy rain. You should call the local BLM office before you go, to ask about any road updates.


#5 Canaan Mountain Wilderness

5 of the Best Free Camping near Zion National Park

Canaan Mountain Wilderness is right next to the southeast border of Zion. Though they are right next to each other, the drive from one place to the other is almost an hour. There is also a trail that connects both areas, from the mountain to Springdale and Zion Canyon Visitor Center. It's about 20 miles and will take at least 7 hours on foot. The highway is around 44 miles and passes through Hurricane, La Verkin, and Virgin.

The Canaan Mountain Wilderness is managed by BLM and is over 44,000 acres. It offers views of Zion, the Virgin River Valley, and Eagle Crags. There aren't as many hikers here than there are in Zion, but it is no less beautiful. There are many trails ready for exploration, for hiking, biking, and even horseback riding.

For camping, make sure you are over at least 200 feet from roads, water sources, and any trail. The sites are very primitive and have no amenities. You may find some fire rings in some locations. If you need anything, keep in mind that the closest city to Canaan is Hilldale. It's on the southern part of the mountain, but there are not many amenities in the area. You'll find more amenities in Hurricane City or the others in the north.


Tips for camping/boondocking in these places

5 of the Best Free Camping near Zion National Park

As you may have noticed, these campsites are very primitive. That said, you need to prepare a lot of things for camping in these dry camping sites.

  • Plan your stops - bathroom, grocery, laundry, refill/restock of supplies, gassing up, etc.
  • For emergencies, I highly recommend you have a stock of Augoson Farms products. Considering how rough the roads are, you could get stuck (though I hope not!). But at least, you’ll have food and tools to help you survive until help comes along. Here’s an Auguson Farms Review for your reference.
  • Check with the BLM offices about the road conditions. You don’t want to be driving right after rain but even a day or two after rain, the road conditions could still be dangerous. Save yourself from disaster and call before you go. Also, check with them what kind of vehicles are suitable for the road.
  • Bring poop bags and trash bags. Let’s follow the leave no trace policy.Bring water purification tablets or a water filter.
  • Get your vehicle checked before you hit the road. Bring spare tires and tools in case of emergencies.
  • Let someone know when and where you are going, especially if the place is known to have no cell service.


Camping near Zion doesn’t have to cost a thing - except of course the things you will need to provide yourself. But at least you don’t need to pay for the campsite itself. Thanks to the Bureau of Land Management, you can camp at multiple places for free. These sites may not offer a lot of amenities, but I that’s also the real beauty of camping and boondocking.

Have you camped in any of these places before? Or do you know where else we can camp for free near Zion? Tell us about it using the comment section below!

The Ultimate Guide for Finding the Best Trailer to Live In

The idea of people in a trailer is not something that has started recently. This is something that people have enjoyed for years now. The different manufacturers of the trailers would take their time to make great trailers that people can live in for days just as if it was home. This meant that camping was no longer boring when you could have some of your favorite equipment accompanying you to the campsite.

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