Trail and Camp Sanitation
The principal elements of camp sanitation are personal cleanliness; safe drinking water; food care and
preparation; dishwashing; disposal of wastewater, garbage, and trash; and latrines.

Personal Cleanliness
- Soap and water scrubbing is important before cooking, handling of eating utensils, eating, and after using toilets.
- A lightweight plastic washbasin should be standard personal equipment.
- Streams and lakes should never be used for soap washing.
- Dry aired-out sleeping gear aids a warm night's sleep. Turn bedding inside out and air daily weather permitting.

Safe Drinking Water
- You must know the water to be safe or take necessary steps to make it safe to drink.
- All water should be considered unsafe for drinking, unless it comes from a recognized or tested water system.
- If there is any question, boil or treat it with water purification tablets to be sure.
BOILING - bring water to a rolling boil and maintain the boil for five minutes and aerate to improve taste
PURIFYING - tablets should be fresh, follow directions on container.

Food Handlers and Storage
- Cooks must always wash hands before starting meal preparation and during cooking if hands get soiled.
- Always wash hands after using the latrine.
- Prevent food contamination. Protect foods from dirt, water, tainting from soap, oils, and odoriferous foods.
- Never save leftovers, eat it up when served or throw it away.
- Avoid using foods needing refrigeration. If perishables are used; buy as late as possible and use them up quickly.
- Animal and insect foragers can be problems. Avoid feeding them intentionally or accidentally. Maintain clean camp.
- Keep all foodstuffs out of tents and packs. Even if packed in original wrappers.

- Dishwashing is a four-part operation.
SCRAPING - scrape dishes thoroughly. Use napkin from meal to wipe plate and utensils after scraping.
WASH - wash with good detergent in clean hot water (112° F). Hot water is needed to break down the grease.
RINSE - in clean warm water. Main purpose is to remove the soap or detergent.
SANITIZE - Immerse utensils for several seconds in boiling water or for 30 seconds in hot water (180° F)
- Allow dishes and utensils to air-dry. If sanitized at prescribed temperature they will dry in about a minute.
- Dishwashing sanitizing tablets may be used, follow package directions.
- If cooking on open fire, soap outside of pots prior to use; it makes the clean up easier.
- Store all cooking and eating gear in a fly proof place; bag, box or plastic bags after each use.
- Clean up fireplaces, stoves, and police the area.
- Clean and put away all dishwashing equipment in a place where it will dry out thoroughly.

Garbage and Trash Disposal
- In developed camps use disposal systems provided after every meal.
- In back woods camps you have to haul it out. DO NOT BURY any trash.
- You can burn everything that will burn to reduce the hauling.

Waste Water Disposal
- Carefully screen out all food particles before disposing of the dishwater.
- Use trash disposal system provided or in the backwoods burn or haul out these particles.
- After the screening, wash water should be scattered evenly across the ground.
- Never pour wash water in streams or lakes

- In developed camps use the facilities provided
- Latrines should be the only hole you make at a campsite. They should be limited to long-term camps.
- Should be at least 100 feet from campsite away from streams, springs, or lakes to avoid drainage pollution.
- When breaking camp, close with subsoil from fireplace hearth and also ashes and charred wood to fill trench.
- Replace original topsoil and leave trench slightly mounded.
Archery, Indoor Range
Winter Camping
Bird Identification
Planning Your Winter Trip
Camping Trip Checklist
Your Body and the Cold
Fire Building Checklist
Personal Equipment
Sleeping Systems
Map Symbols
Orienteering Club Links
Orienteering Event
Camp Sanitation
Orienteering Training Outline
Safe Hiking
Tree Identification
Aquehonga Tree Trail
Snow Blindness
Back To Skills and Training Aids
Trench Foot

Boy Scout Handbook Copyright 1998 by the Boy Scouts of America
Field Book Copyright 1967, 1984 by the Boy Scouts of America
Okpik: Cold-Weather Camping Copyright 1990 by the Boy Scouts of America
OA Guide to Winter Camping Copyright 1995 Rick Curtis, Outdoor Action Program, Princeton University