Surf Shower

Surf Shower

Posted by phil kelly on

Portable Showers

AHHH…Hot Water
It’s something most of us take for granted every day. From the earliest days of the fire, humans have been heating water for all sorts of applications. But, we’re not here to talk about steam engines or hard-boiled eggs. We are outdoor enthusiasts who, upon occasion, would really enjoy hot water for a shower.


The other morning I got out of the water after my dawn patrol session and it was 39°. Yes, 39°! Standing in a soaked wetsuit with a slight breeze, my feet curled with hands not able to grasp my chest zip zipper. Do you think I was dreaming of a hot portable shower? I was one of the lucky few in the parking lot that morning that had a solution. The Malo’o Hot Water Rinse Jug had piping hot water in it. I filled the jug at home before I left, placed it in the Hot/Cold backpack bag, and loaded it in the van with my other gear.


The cooler bag is so efficient, I only lost 1° after 2 hours of it being in there. Actually, I needed to be careful as it keeps the water so hot, it could burn. Anyway, my hands, feet, and head loved the de-thawing it provided and the steam pouring off my head brought a few new friends around to see what I had. This produced 2 new orders for others that wanted hot water. Now, this is a great solution if you have access to hot water in order to fill the jug and bag, but what if you are remote and need to heat it yourself?


There is the pioneer way in which you boil water over an open flame and eventually will be able to get some hot water on you and there are other options too.


If you have a Motorhome or Trailer equipped with a hot water system, then you are all set. My RV had an Oasis Heating System and it performed flawlessly for years. If you have a van you might have integrated a tank or tankless model that will provide you hot water and you’ll be set. But what if you cannot bring hot water with you like the Malo’o Hot Water Jug Bag and don’t have a vehicle equipped with a hot water system? There are a few options here.


- Solar Shower Bag – These are 3-5 gallon portable shower bags that you hang in the sun to heat the water inside. Pretty inexpensive, and they will take a while to heat the water and you’ll need to use the water right away.


- Electric Surf Portable Showers – These are usually 2-5 gallons and heat the water through an electric heater you plug into your car. They get pretty pricey, take a while to heat the water, and can drain your battery if you are not careful but they produce great hot water surf showers.


-Propane Portable Camping Shower - I doubt many would use this for surfing but it works well for camping, especially if you are going to be at one location for a while. Models like HOT TAP require propane and provide the burner for hot water and the pressure to deliver it.


-Warm Water Surf Shower - The last option is what most surfers start out with. It's a 1.5-2 gallon used laundry detergent jug. Simple and cheap and will provide lukewarm water from hot water after about 1.5 hours because of the rapid heat loss, but it works perfectly well on warmer days.


Bottom line, for surf showers you can go three ways. The cheap used laundry detergent jug way or the expensive plug-in electric shower way or the insulated hot water jug bag which doubles as a cooler way. Whichever your choice, we hope you and your family stay safe and have a very Happy Holiday Season!

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