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As much as we love going off-grid, a quality camping shower makes it much more enjoyable. And even though I don’t mind getting dirty and grimy on my outdoor adventures, being smelly for days isn’t fun. For years, there wasn’t much more you could do other than wait until you got home to clean up. The only other alternatives were to pay extra to stay at a modern campground with amenities or shell at cash to shower at a motel. But those days are over due to new and improved camping showers.

Now campers can have lightweight, portable showering options that will keep them refreshed out in the woods. Some of these units can even offer hot water without using up too much power. We rounded up a variety of showers with different features, like heated and pressurized systems, and those better fitted for the backcountry. I tested all of the models on this list so you don’t have to. Here are the best camping showers you can buy.

How We Chose the Best Camping Showers

I’ve been camping most of my life and have had the chance to test a few different forms of portable showers while roughing it. Some of the showers on this list I tested in the past, and the others I tested specifically for this review. My testing process consisted of sampling the water pressure, temperature, and how much time the shower offers for cleaning. Some of my other criteria included:

  • Shower Head: Does the shower head provide any sort of pressure? Are there different water flow settings?
  • Heating: Does the shower include a water heater? How much power does it take to run?
  • Tank/Bag Size: How many gallons of water can the shower hold? Does it take up a lot of excessive space?
  • Value: Do the features of the shower match the price point?

Best Camping Showers: Reviews and Recommendations

Best Overall: Klymit WaterPORT Hydro Spray System

Best Overall


  • Weight: 11 Pounds
  • Water Capacity: Unlimited
  • Heating System: None


  • Great water pressure
  • Highly versatile and compact
  • Low draw on power


  • Can drain a water tank fast

The HydroSpray is rather unassuming in looks, but it blew me away in terms of versatility and performance. This system utilizes an inline filter and water pump to pull water from practically any source. That means you can pressurize the water from rivers and lakes instantly with a battery terminal or 12-volt source of power. I tested this shower using one of my portable power stations and was shocked by how little battery it used. It only pulled about 70 watts at the top end when running on full power. And didn’t even make a dent in the station’s battery after running for 10 minutes.

The black Klymit WaterPod shower system case sitting in the back of a tiny van build with a hose running into a blue water tank.
The compact nature of this system makes it perfect for the author’s small van build. Travis Smola

At 35 PSI, I found the different settings on the nozzle offered different amounts of pressure that are often lacking in other outdoor showers. I was able to knock some mud off the side of my van with one of the more pressurized settings. I ran this shower utilizing one of the seven-gallon water tanks I have for my sink. Using that, it gave me a shower of about 10 minutes, which is more than enough. But if you throw the filter in a stream or lake, the length of your shower will only be limited by your power source. This makes this system versatile for a variety of scenarios.

The only downside is that you’ll need to watch your tank levels closely if you aren’t using a natural water source. It didn’t take long for the pump to drain my seven-gallon tank. It also isn’t heated. But I love that this entire system packs into a small case that neatly tucks away. This makes it an ideal shower solution for van life or overlanding enthusiasts who are strapped for space.

The red and black nozzle of the Klymit WaterPod shower system spraying water in front of a green grass background.
The water pressure from the Klymit system is exceptional for a camp shower. Travis Smola

Best Hand Pressurized: Leitner HydroPod Portable Shower Kit

Best Hand Pressurized


  • Weight: N/A
  • Water Capacity: 4.8 Gallons
  • Heating System: None


  • Entirely self-contained
  • Extremely rugged and durable
  • Made in the USA


  • Pressure is decent, but not great

The Leitner HydroPod was designed mainly with hardcore off-roaders and overlanders in mind, and it shows. This is the most rugged and durable camping shower I’ve ever encountered. The water reservoir is extremely beefy and handled all the abuse I threw at it.

If your shower goal is something self-contained that can go off-grid, this is the answer. Think of it like a big super soaker water gun. Just pump the handle and lock it down, and it’s ready to go. I found it will run for about three minutes after being fully pressurized.

The round pressurizing cap of the Leitner HydroPod portable shower on a green grass background.
The cap also serves as the pressurizing system for this self-contained shower. Travis Smola

I used the HydroPod several times this summer during a two-week road trip. I was also able to rinse a fine layer of dust off of my van after a day of driving down some dusty Iowa back roads. It doesn’t have quite as much pressure as I had hoped, but it’s vastly better than the pressure a solar shower provides.  

This is my pick for the serious off-roader who wants something that’s simple and won’t clutter up the storage areas of a vehicle. Additionally, the 20-foot removable hose is one of the longest I could find, which increases versatility. The HydroPod is also made in the U.S.A., and the quality shows.

The red and black nozzle of a hydropod shower being held in front of a green grass background.
The nozzle of the HydroPod offers several variable settings. Travis Smola

Best Budget: SOL Outdoors Solar Shower


  • Weight: 1 Pound
  • Water Capacity: 5.3 Gallons
  • Heating System: Solar


  • Affordable
  • Simple to operate
  • Easy storage


  • No water pressure
  • Difficult to fill

I’ve owned a few budget solar showers over the years, and the SOL is one of the better ones. It is a simple design that heats up rather nicely on warm summer days. When not in use, it folds up nicely and is easy to stow away. Because it is gravity-fed, there’s basically no water pressure from the tiny screw-operated head. But it will get the job done in a pinch. I’ve been able to go to bed without feeling sticky and nasty many times while using this shower.

The SOL Solar Shower is a bit difficult to fill, which is one of the drawbacks. But I’ve found the 5.3 gallons of water it holds is good for about three to five minutes of shower time. And that’s more than enough for most instances.

A blue and white SOL solar shower hanging from a tree against a green grass background.
The SOL shower is a simple but effective solution for budget-minded campers. Travis Smola

Best Heated: Hike Crew Portable Propane Heater and Shower

Best Heated


  • Weight: 13.2 Pounds
  • Water Capacity: Unlimited
  • Heating System: Propane


  • Fast heating water
  • Versatile power sources
  • Carrying bag included


  • Heavy
  • Requires propane

Some people just don’t want to deal with cold showers, and we get that. Conditions are not always prime for a solar shower, either. That’s where a propane-heated system like this option from Hike Crew comes into play. We chose this shower over some other propane-heated options because it includes a pump to move the water from a container of your choice. Another nice feature is the inclusion of a small faucet system that can be useful for quick washing or food prep.

The biggest downside to this system is the weight (13.2 pounds). Thus, this is optimal for overlanders, car campers, and RV enthusiasts who might be boondocking. Propane is also essential, which means once you run out, the hot water does too. However, I do like the fact that Hike Crew made this shower compatible with either a regular AC/DC adapter or a 12-volt plug. That means it’ll integrate rather seamlessly with a car outlet or portable power station while far from a normal power source. This one also has one of the nicest shower heads available for this kind of system.

Best Backpacking Shower: Nemo Helio Pressure Shower

Best Backpacking Shower


  • Weight: 1 Pound, 5 Ounces
  • Water Capacity: 2.9 Gallons
  • Heating System: Solar


  • Unbelievably portable
  • Pressurizes easily with foot pump
  • Can be used anywhere


  • Difficult to dry

Taking a shower deep in the backcountry where there are zero facilities seems like a pipe dream. But Nemo made it possible thanks to this compact pressurized shower that only weighs just over a pound. That means you can still wash off, even when you are miles from civilization. And it does it without relying on a gravity feed system. The clever design of this shower allows campers to pressurize it via a foot pump. This is brilliant because you don’t need to stop to re-pressurize it mid-shower. Just give the foot pad a few more pumps, and the pressure will return.

Due to the compressive, polyester fabric nature of the tank, it’s hard to dry out the Helio. This isn’t a big deal if you’re using it every day on a trip. However, campers should let it air out for an extended time before putting it back in storage. Still, there are few camp showers out there that are this portable while simultaneously providing this much pressure.

What to Consider When Choosing a Camping Shower

With camp showers, the decision usually boils down to heated vs. unheated. I’ve used a simple solar shower with great success in the past. However, it’s much easier to get and stay clean with something that heats the water for you. Of course, this necessitates having a power source and possibly fuel to run the water heater.

Alternatively, if you do not have a power source handy, there are plenty of systems that run purely on gravity or pressure, like an oversized water gun. These systems are more than capable of cleanup at the end of a long day. The downside is that unless it’s a solar shower system, the water is not likely to be very warm.

Heating Systems

Having a shower while camping is easy. Having a hot shower while camping is not. There are a few ways to get hot water off the grid. The simplest solution is to go with a solar shower bag that uses natural heat from the sun to warm the water. The benefits of this style of shower are portability and no need for electricity. While I’ve found these work well on a hot day, campers need to shower before the sun sets so the water temperature remains warm.

The other option is to buy a shower with a heating system. These units require either electricity or propane to heat up the water instantly. This also means having an off-grid power system, which can take up valuable storage space. Also, once you run out of propane, your hot showers are over. The propane-style systems are best suited for overland or van life enthusiasts who are building custom campers. If you start planning early enough, it’s rather easy to incorporate these showers into the living space.

Ease of Setup

While a piping hot shower sounds great, a propane-heated water system with a pump is extremely large and heavy. It makes this type of system rather impractical for anything but car camping. I personally like as few moving parts as possible on my shower builds. Especially since my van build is an extremely small Ram Promaster City. Think about where you will store and haul all the various components, including propane tanks for the heating systems.

Another thing some campers don’t consider is the hauling of water. At least a couple gallons of water are needed for most shower systems. That’s usually the bare minimum for a three to five-minute shower. Think about the water container needed to haul it and where you will keep that in your vehicle or RV.

Environmental Concerns

Because most of the water from a camp shower ends up seeping into the ground, so too will the runoff from soap and shampoos. I have seen campgrounds here in Michigan that prohibit the use of some types of portable showers for this reason. Runoff could potentially reach sensitive rivers and streams and cause environmental issues. Consider adding a bottle or bar of biodegradable camp soap to your camping checklist. As a bonus, many of these specialty camp soaps come infused with insect deterrents like citronella for those especially buggy camping trips.


Q: How long does a camping shower last?

Most campers can expect two to three minutes of shower time depending on the type of shower head that’s attached. Some have a stronger flow than others. Either way, with most camping showers being on the small side, campers need to be prepared to wash up quickly.

Q: How long does it take to heat up a solar shower for camping?

In my experience, it can take several hours to heat up a solar shower. On other days, it may only take a couple of hours. It depends on how much sunlight the shower gets and how warm the ambient air temperatures are. If you wait until a few hours after dark to shower, odds are it’s not going to be warm anymore.

Q: What do you stand on in a camping shower?

A simple rubber bathmat will usually do the job. Another option is to buy a small shelter built specifically for camping showers. It will usually have a floor like a standard tent, just with drain vents built in for the water to flow out.

Best Camping Showers: Final Thoughts

While all these showers are quite capable of getting campers clean in a pinch, the Klymit was my favorite purely from a versatility and space savings perspective. There is no other shower offering this much water pressure in this compact of a design. Add in the fact it uses only a tiny amount of power, and this shower is a winner all around.

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For more than 125 years, Field & Stream has been providing readers with honest and authentic coverage of outdoor gear. Our writers and editors eat, sleep, and breathe the outdoors, and that passion comes through in our product reviews. You can count on F&S to keep you up to date on the best new gear. And when we write about a product—whether it’s a bass lure or a backpack—we cover the good and the bad, so you know exactly what to expect before you decide to make a purchase.