Camper Prep and Outfitting

Overland Camping Roadtrip Blog

First thing I wanted was an outside table to do my bbqing and cooking outside (I am heading to the desert in the middle of the summer after all!) I have a 4’x2′ Rubbermaid table that happens to be the exact size to fit beside the door on the back wall of the camper so I fabricated some brackets so it can hinge down and mount to the wall when not in use. I also added another bbq hose so I can easily use the bbq and fridge/stove without switching back and forth. While I was mounting the table I decided I needed a better solution for the door security considering a camper door is simple to break open and I have a lot of expensive camera gear. Some quick brackets and a bar across the door with a padlock and I can rest a little easier knowing that my camper will hopefully not be broken into when Im not around. That said I was still not completely comfortable with my camera gear in the camper or truck so I built a metal box that I bolted to the frame that I could put my gear in if Im off on a long hike and didnt want to bring everything with me…….is it perfect, no, but its the best I could come up with. Bedframe for the win! I also fabbed up some little doors for either side of the camper so I could store stuff in the useable space in the box of the truck. Last metal working project was a hitch receiver step that could also work as a halfass back bumper in case of a rear-ender.

Climbing up onto the bed and laying on the 3″ thick plaid corduroy mattress I realized I need to come up with a better solution for sleeping. After a quick measurement I realized the twin mattress I have in my spare bedroom will fit….if I take a saw to the cabinet and make a bit of extra space since it is 5″ wider than the stock mattress. A few quick cuts and woodwork and I now have a nice 6″ thick mattress, one of the best mods yet!

Almost ready to go, just a bit of re-wiring (which turned into damn near re-wiring the whole camper) so I could upgrade to some nice LED interior lights and a brushless fan (I hear its hot in the Mojave desert in July?). I found out that my truck had a dual battery in it at one point and already had the solenoid installed so I put my Redtop Optima from my rig in it and its as good as its ever going to be.

Departure date is fast approaching so I decided on a one night test run to make sure everything worked and I wasnt forgetting something major. I went up to Shawnigan at 8:30 on friday night and amazingly the gate was open at the top of Kupoor Hill, I drove thru and spent the night at the base of the old Union Labour trail. Everything worked well, no real major changes I need to make so Axel and I had an enjoyable night out in the woods. After a casual morning we headed out and quickly found that someone had decided to lock the gate on us……….and we were on the wrong side! After standing around and realizing I couldnt drive around the gate at all and knowing I did not have enough food to wait until Monday morning I made the hard decision to turn around and head further into the backcountry. With a general idea of where I wanted to get to and a lot of luck I started heading towards the gate on Miller Rd in Duncan. There is a guard shack at that gate but I figured I could beg my way thru the gate if I could actually find it! After a nice 45min drive thru the woods and one wrong turn down the Deer Lake line I actually found my way out of the bush, and even better the gate was open and no one was in the guard shack!! Couldnt have hoped for a better end to that adventure. 

 

The Adventure Begins
Day 1 - Victoria to Spokane

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