This weekend we camped beside the Wonnangatta River in the Dargo High Plains with a friend and his family. It’s a beautiful part of Gippsland and it was hot enough to spend plenty of time in the river cooling off and searching for creatures.  We played games like Klop, Elastics, Kendama, and story telling One Word At A Time around the fire. The kids also spent time devising ways to make music from nature and the things in our camp. I was impressed with how many different instruments they came up with! They used their instruments to put on a show for us later in the evening which was cute.


To stay waste free, we did things mostly the same as our last camping trip, which I can’t believe was two years ago, but with a couple of differences. This time we borrowed a camper trailer rather than use a tent to see if we like it, took a portable fridge-freezer which I think was one of the reasons we had zero food waste, and cooked on a Weber Q. Hubby got the Weber for his 40th birthday and he loves it.


Equipment List

Here’s the break down of what we took for four people:

  • Camper trailer which includes sleeping mattress for two
  • 2 extra camping mattresses
  • Four sleeping bags and pillows
  • Four towels
  • Four fold up camping chairs
  • Small brush and pan to sweep out camper trailer
  • Lantern with rechargeable battery
  • Two rolls of toilet paper
  • Shovel for digging toilet holes
  • Toothbrushes and toothpaste
  • One bar of unpackaged soap and a face washer
  • Sunscreen bought in a bulk size container from a supermarket
  • Games as mentioned above, and paper and pencils
  • The kids brought their pocket knives to whittle sticks
  • Matches and axe for fire lighting. A fire was lit in accordance with the fire restriction rules and used for warmth at night while socialising and relaxing
  • Weber Q and gas bottle for cooking
  • Four mugs, plates, spoons, knives and forks; a small chopping board, sharp knife, tongs, and egg flip
  • We used our friend’s camp kettle
  • Tea towel, dish cloth and bar of soap for washing dishes
  • We organised with our friend to use his 40 litre container of water for drinking, washing hands and washing dishes
  • Tub for washing up
  • Small fold up table
  • Minimal clothing, and
  • Esky. This time hubby filled the esky with bought ice, so I have to REDcycle the plastic bags.


Meal Plan

Here is what we took to eat whilst away for the weekend. There are a couple of things I had intended to do which I forgot about or just ran out of time to do, even though I started preparing the food a couple of days in advance. So, this trip is a good example of how we can have the best laid plans to be zero waste, but then life happens and things aren’t as perfect as we’d like.


  • Bread bought in cloth bag
  • Eggs from our chickens
  • Bacon. We ran out of time to get bacon in our own container, so our friend kindly bought a large amount of bacon for us to share between our families.

Morning and afternoon tea/ snacks:

  • Homemade slices in air tight containers
  • Fruit. The pips and cores were burnt in the fire to prevent any spread of wild fruit which attracts wasps in the area

Lunches and dinners:

  • Baked potatoes
  • Pork chops bought in my container
  • Homemade sausages
  • Homemade tomato sauce
  • Homemade salads in containers


  • Water in reusable 40L container
  • Coffee and sugar decanted into small glass jars
  • Milk. I had planned to put our raw milk in a small glass bottle but I forgot it, so I used a bit of our friend’s milk for my morning coffee
  • Wine, beer and soft drink. The packaging was taken home for recycling

Waste free camping really isn’t that hard to do if you think ahead a little bit, but my challenge for this week is to come up with a waste free meal plan for my daughter and I for our overnight hike next weekend. She is almost seven and this will be her first hike and the first one I have done in a few years. We’re going with two friends and their daughters. I’m really looking forward to our mother-daughter date and catching up with my friends who I don’t see often, but I have developed a problem with my knee and my MRI results won’t be back until two days before we leave! Fingers crossed all will be well.

Please send through your suggestions for zero waste hiking food if you have any ideas!

4 thoughts

  1. Hi Tammy Thankyou for your email and lots of wonderful ideas. I have been doing many things for years. I was one of the people who invented The Heyfield Smart Flag town program 13 odd years ago. Heyfield Community Resource Centre produce s our local paper every week and I was wondering if we could take some of your ideas and include them in our paper. My daughter in Yarraville is not buying anything in plastic and is doing really well with her purchases. One issue was dry biscuits but she has found a great receipt and makes her own. She is lucky as there is organic/bulk buy shop in Sedden which makes it a lot easier. Any could you let me know if this would be ok or would we be breaching copyright. Thank you for your good work. Kind regards Julie

    Julie Bryer


    Heyfield Community Resource Centre

    Ph: (03) 5148 2100

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey thanks for sharing! Sounds like an awesome zero waste camping trip! If I’m not backpacking I like to bring hummus or other selfmade veggie dips and always bringing my homemade energy balls 🙂 I also like porridge with fruits in the morning and make some veggie patties with oats and some grated carrots if I have a pan to use … I will also
    Share more recipes etc on my blog soon:)

    Liked by 1 person

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