Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Brands

Gear

You Should Be Pooping in a German-Engineered Camping Toilet

For van life, car camping, or camping at dispersed sites away from the crowds, it’s a great piece of gear.

Get full access to Outside Learn, our online education hub featuring in-depth fitness, nutrition, and adventure courses and more than 2,000 instructional videos when you sign up for Outside+ Sign up for Outside+ today.

Pooping while camping is a hot topic right now because there are so many people out in the woods these days. In fact, our sister magazine Outside recently released a podcast where they suggested that thanks to those high numbers of campers, we’ve come to a point where folks should start packing out their poop instead of burying it in the ground.

Whether you agree or not, I still want to point you toward a new toilet that not only helps you keep the environment more poop-free but ultimately elevates the backcountry pooping experience. It’s made by a German company called Trelino, and there are two principal reasons I’m a big fan. 

First, thanks to some smart engineering, the folks at Trelino divided their toilet into two sections: a catchment for liquids and a catchment for solids. Many other camping toilets just have one, and by combining the two you increase the overall stink as the toilet sits there marinating. And second, the toilet is highly aesthetically pleasing. Thanks to a wooden lid and small build, it’s not so ugly that you have to hide it completely out of sight. 

To make the toilet work properly you line the solids section with compostable bags (which come included) and then bring along sawdust, fire ashes, or some other litter that you scoop on top when you’re done pooping. By leaving the solids by themselves and adding litter, they dry out and don’t stink nearly as much. The liquids, meanwhile, go into a water-tight catchment.

If you’re camped in a regular campground you won’t need the toilet of course. But for those of you who like dispersed sites away from the crowds, it’s a great piece of gear. Put the toilet in a beautiful and secluded spot and enjoy your morning bathroom break. 

During the winter skiers camped in parking lots will still pee in a bottle during the middle of the night. But if you hate peeing in a bottle, the toilet could be your best, if not slightly cold, friend. And if you’re camped fairly far from a working toilet, it will be nice to have the Trellino so you can poop when you need to. To create privacy, you can bring along a privacy tent like this. RV and van owners can easily use the Trelino inside their rigs. 

The disposal is fairly straightforward. The liquids can be kept in their container and disposed of at a dump station, in a vault toilet, or into your toilet at home. Some cities allow you to put the dried and bagged solids in the garbage, while others, including Moab, Utah, do not (you can usually bring them directly to transfer stations, though). 

Like other pieces of German engineering, the Trelino is unfortunately not cheap. At $500, you’re paying nearly half of what your Icon pass will cost. That’s likely too much for folks who only camp occasionally and might never sleep in the parking lot. But for those of you who spend as much time outside as possible, it’s a worthy investment.