Many survival skills are exciting to learn about, and fun to show off to your friends when you go camping or backpacking. It's always good to know where to find wild edibles, how to gather natural tinder materials, and which knot to use to secure gear. But there are some aspects of survival that are less glamorous — some may even be downright unpleasant to consider, such as eating roadkill or performing an emergency tooth extraction. A true survivalist must pursue well-rounded preparedness, and not just focus on the skills that seem “cool”.

Poop in the woods latrine toilet camping bushcraft hygiene sanitation 3

It took us thousands of years to develop modern plumbing. Don't take that for granted.

One skill that falls into this necessary-but-unpleasant category is solid waste disposal. Sooner or later you're going to need to go #2, and just walking a ways from your campsite and going on the ground isn't ideal. First of all, that's not hygienic, especially once waste starts building up over time. The smell may also alert game animals to your presence, and attract flies or other pests. Secondly, it's not exactly comfortable — humans invented the toilet seat for a reason.

Fortunately, building a simple camp latrine isn't too difficult. With a little digging and chopping of wood, you can build a seated backwoods toilet that will be usable for long-term camping. In the following video, Dan of Coalcracker Bushcraft approaches the subject of how to poop in the woods:

It doesn't have a computerized bidet and you still need to supply your own toilet paper (or leaves), but it's a big step up from squatting behind a tree like an animal.

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