The Adventure Begins

Overland Camping Roadtrip Blog

The decision has been made, to stop saying “next year” and to make it happen this year. What Im speaking about is my goal to do photography full time and as they say, follow the dream. In late April 2015 I decided the only way I was going to be able to do that was to just take a leap, step away from the easy and safe and plunge into the unknown. The plan began to formulate, summer 2015, the race circuit is busy, tons or races to cover, countless amazing locations to photograph. Knowing I needed to be back in Victoria for the Island Cup at the beginning of October I started to plan a route and research which races and where. Looking online I discovered I could hit 3 WeRock, 3 Ultra 4, 1 Best in the Desert Race and the first ever Punisher 4×4 race, spread out over the Western United States and Canada.

                With a small budget I decided that the best way to do that was to get a truck and a camper, nothing elaborate and plan to be on the road for 4 months. After realizing my Dad had the exact truck I should use for my trip I caught a quick ride up to Gabriola Island from Alex where I proceeded to miss the ferry by 3 minutes…..ahh island living. Of course in typical fashion I go for a walk with Axel, my faithful 7 year old Rotti German Shepard cross and walk so far I almost miss the next ferry…key work “almost”. Off to Gabe to pick up the truck, its a 1997 Chevy, 1500 4×4 with a 5.7L V8 and a sweet oldman look to it with matching canopy, full length aluminum steps and a cherry maroon paintjob. It will do the trick nicely.

               First up I needed to get the truck ready to put a camper in the back, so it was time to build some camper tiedowns. Thankfully I have enough assorted scrap at my house that I came up with everything I needed without spending a dime. Welded the rear ones onto the hitch and bolted the front ones onto the frame. With that project done it was time to build a hitch receiver for the front of the truck for my bike rack so I could bring my mountain bike on the road. Once again thankfully I had enough scrap that I was able to make it work with what I had laying around.

I also needed a console inside the truck to hold my camera, my inverter and assorted things I need to charge while on the road. I also like to have my camera ready to go at any time because you never know when you’ll see something exciting on the side of the road….wildlife moves fast!

                Ah how I loath thee, buying used things online is one of my least favourite activities.  The search is on for the perfect camper to fit in the back of the half-ton truck. Good thing its the exact time of year that every single person in Victoria is looking for a damn camper….such is life, must find the right rig for me and Axel to take on the road. After numerous phone calls and hours of searching I seemed to find something that checked all my boxes. A beauty 1975 Dynasty pop-top camper. Unfortunately it doesnt have a washroom but the fuel savings on a pop-top will pay for itself quickly. Only 900lbs fully loaded it wont cause the half-ton truck to struggle (too much). It does have a fridge, a furnace, 2 burner stove and a sink. It might not be luxury but its far from roughing it. I pick the thing up and my mind begins to think of all the things I want to change and upgrade to raise my comfort level while on the road. 

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