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  #16  
Old 11-01-2019, 03:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OldWolf View Post
If I do it, I'm going the mini-van route. Looking at Toyota Sienna, not sure if I want FWD or AWD, and might install a Journeys Off Road lift kit. To start out, I'll keep the inside mods simple until I figure out what I really need. I am used to tent camping, so already have an idea of the minimalist items I might need.
Well in my son's case, the is a wife. No way in you know what is she going to travel the country living in a mini van.
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  #17  
Old 11-01-2019, 04:11 PM
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Currently I use my little Prius to camp. Takes a lot planning to pack. For longer trips though, I need something bigger.

I always bring a handgun with me. Last trip was my handy .380 Remington. Today I picked up a used Ruger chambered in 45 Colt that I will bring along sometimes.
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Last edited by OldWolf; 11-03-2019 at 07:04 PM.
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  #18  
Old 11-01-2019, 04:13 PM
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Well in my son's case, the is a wife. No way in you know what is she going to travel the country living in a mini van.
My wife is a-okay with me traveling without her. She will go on a trip now and then she says, and maybe fly out to meet me somewhere interesting.
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  #19  
Old 11-01-2019, 04:17 PM
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Friend of mine is in a Honda Element club. Guy in their group lives in his Element most of the time and drives all over N. America. He owns an apartment building, and I guess the income from that allows him a lot of time to do what he wants.

Seems like a good choice of vehicle...




Just today my buddy at work brought in his Element with the same tent rig on top. Great rig, just a tad small for me I think. We were joking that at our age climbing out of the tent at night to pee is troublesome. Think he is going to get bottle for that purpose.
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  #20  
Old 11-01-2019, 05:54 PM
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Isnt that a jack-up roof rather than a top-tent? Extra standup room inside once like the old VW Vanagon campers.
In my mis-spent youth I was an on/off again motorcycle nomad. I found that after being in one spot just so long I dreamed of traveling, then when traveling I found after about 3mo. I would be camped out in some nice place and be dreaming of 'home basing' it..... I called it 'the grass is always greener syndrome'.
Later on we did a fullsize Ford conversion van that I morphed further into a camper. It wasnt bad, way better than the Ford Aerostar I tried later. That was Ok for me but not for two of us! Even so it didnt really have enough space for 'living', it was a sleeping/storage container and living was best done out of it. A well done fly required. The new-gen tall van would be dandy.
Btw, we also had a camper made from an alum bodied potato chip van. The full size van was my best of the van-campers in terms of over all user friendliness. But iffn ya gotta live in something for any length of time or weather, bigger is always better.
That said, we often found that we would be set up somewhere and comfy, then want to go someplace; that means breaking camp. Do Not leave yer goods unless there is going to be someone trustworthy to keep an eye on.
We have had an Aliner pop-up (no canvas, it has 'hard sides') for 11 years now, it goes up in 30sec. Yes, 30 sec. and step inside. Sure, it takes longer to put down the stabilizer jacks, etc, but to stop walk back, unlatch each side of the top, throw it up and lift the two triangle sides up into the roof and latch (that is done inside) you are in, out of the rain and ready to use for a lunch or nap. Tows and backs up like a dream. We can change tow vehicles or even living units at will by going 'two piece'. If your camper van or motorhome dies mechanically so does your house.
Imo, don't bother with solar electric, do have hd longgg extension cords for when you do have shore power but mostly learn to live on the deep cycle battery(s) led lights and a low elec power lifestyle. Ie, you cant run even a small air conditioner off batteries! But it is nice to have one for when you can plug in.
A lot of places dont allow 'overnight camping' anymore, and campgrounds are the pits, but many places you can set-up/hang out during the day, so 'camp' during the day and travel at night.

Last edited by gcrank1; 11-01-2019 at 06:45 PM.
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  #21  
Old 11-01-2019, 07:19 PM
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My wife and I once had a 10' slide-in camper in the bed of our F250. Worked out pretty well for short trips or overnighters . We found we could pull in to the parking lot of the local hospital, park in a back corner, do our thing and nobody ever asked what we were doing there, beat Walmart parking lot by quite a bit.
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  #22  
Old 11-02-2019, 12:44 PM
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If I could find a standard van with 4 wheel drive I'd consider it, I don't like mini vans. I don't especially like to camp or sleep where most anyone with a standard vehicle can get to. Yeah there would be firearms on board.
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  #23  
Old 11-02-2019, 02:54 PM
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My second full size was the Chevy with AWD. lt was great for traction but they say you must replace all four tires at the same time, something about the computerized traction control. Im sure it is the same with all the AWD's. The Chevy/GMC (Safari?) were pretty well regarded for longevity, iirc.
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  #24  
Old 11-02-2019, 06:45 PM
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WE have camped, van conversion, bumper drag no slide outs, 5th wheel with slide outs, and 40 foot motor coach winnebago with trailer for smart car.

If I was to semi rough it as a single dude exploring and having a grand adventure:

Competent reasonable cost tow vehicle. I am partial to Jeep Cherokee...not high cost Grand version...BUT whatever brand you like small SUV with AWD is good

Used teardrop camper....Go to a RV place and look at these very cool campers with very cool creature comforts the styles and features are astonishing

Everyone who buys one new, trades in within 2 years for bigger....They have families and wife does not like semi roughing it
Used are 1/3 new cost and they have literally no mileage on them

KOA membership
Good Sam membership

If Military Free pass for national and many state parks
If not get the Fed and state park pases any way they are Not very expensive

Mentioned above...Amazon a copy of Blue Highways and read it while dreaming...the inspiration will make you wanderlust for back road adventures
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  #25  
Old 11-02-2019, 08:19 PM
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A friend had a teardrop for 10yrs for his solo camping, he had a pop-up vendor type canopy to set at the door so his living rm/kitchen and dining room was there, the TD was just the bedroom. Still, he tired of it, at about 6' tall when he was pretty much stuck in it for a rainy weekend it was too small and cramped. He said one must be 'limber' to get dressed in one and stepping out to put on raingear, or taking it and muddy boots off while going in was not so easy. He sold it (and after 10years got what he paid for it but he is a perfectionist so it was Nice), tried tent camping for 1 short season and now has had the small (discontinued) solo sized Aliner this past year.
My wife isnt going with me anymore so I thought about downsizing to a TD but he convinced me not to. I do have a mid-sized SUV and it has actually more usable room with the back seats down that Mark's TD did. With some creative window screening/blinds, 12vdc fans, etc. and a small enclosed utility/'adventure trailer' for other gear I have a pretty decent low-vis, inexpensive solo travel rig. Getting in/out of the side passenger door efficiently takes some planning on 'interior positioning' and takes some forethought/practice when a 'camper'. After all, the passenger seats are made to be going into sitting or out from sitting. With the full-size vans it was open the door, and step out, or duck and step in.
Look up 'adventure trailers' and get blown away, not just by features but price! A handy guy can do one on the cheap (mine is a utility trailer with a couple of Craiglist pickup aux. tool boxes bolted in).
Ya still need a rain/sun fly. There are units that bolt onto the roof-rack and open to the side. Mine is a truckers tarp laced onto a side rack-rail with a couple of poles, ropes and stakes to stretch it out.
Hot utility water is a joy. My low-buck water heater is an old 30cup coffee percolator from GoodWill for $3. If I can plug in somewhere I have hot water on demand. A horse water bucket for a dip-bath (in my swim-suit if in 'view') works well. Dilute some very hot from the perc or, if staying in one place and the sun shines, set the dark water bucket out in the sun all day and you will have a warm bath in the afternoon.
Carry a good sized 'thermos' bottle to fill with the very hot before heading out, its nice to have hot though the day for whatever.

Last edited by gcrank1; 11-04-2019 at 09:56 AM.
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  #26  
Old 11-03-2019, 07:55 PM
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Lot's of good ideas and and shared experiences, I appreciate them all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fredvon4 View Post
Mentioned above...Amazon a copy of Blue Highways and read it while dreaming...the inspiration will make you wanderlust for back road adventures
I've heard of this book but never got round to reading it. It's on my must read list now. Thanks!
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  #27  
Old 11-04-2019, 12:05 AM
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Originally Posted by OldWolf View Post
Just today my buddy at work brought in his Element with the same tent rig on top. Great rig, just a tad small for me I think. We were joking that at our age climbing out of the tent at night to pee is troublesome. Think he is going to get bottle for that purpose.
I'm prescribed this. Pee before bedtime.

https://www.drugs.com/tamsulosin.html
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  #28  
Old 11-04-2019, 08:38 AM
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My Doc has prescribed this to me, but my symptoms are not so bad yet. Some day, for sure. Also the"retrograde" thing is something not to look forward to.
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  #29  
Old 11-04-2019, 09:06 AM
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Living the #vanlife

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldWolf View Post
If I do it, I'm going the mini-van route. Looking at Toyota Sienna, not sure if I want FWD or AWD, and might install a Journeys Off Road lift kit. To start out, I'll keep the inside mods simple until I figure out what I really need. I am used to tent camping, so already have an idea of the minimalist items I might need.

If so, just get a normal 35cwt van & put your kit in it when you want to camp; then itíll also be useful for transporting other loads. I used to use a Ford Transit (with side loading-door) for just this reason! Much easier than putting up a tent!


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  #30  
Old 11-04-2019, 09:20 AM
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I've looked at the Transit Connect (the small Ford van). Were you satisfied with it's reliability?
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