Truck Camping Tips For Beginners
Find the Right Mechanic
The number one rule of truck camping is that you’re not going to camp anywhere if your truck can’t get you there. That’s why my first piece of advice is to find not just any mechanic, but one who understands the kind of driving and off-roading he’ll be doing with your truck.
You don’t want a mechanic who just does regular oil changes and tire rotations. Instead, you want to find someone who can help you make upgrade decisions and give you ideas on how to set up your maintenance schedule. More importantly, a good mechanic will build a relationship with you and your vehicle over time and learn to take care of it while he does.
Unlike other vehicles, investing in an adventure vehicle is more than just a financial investment. It is also emotional. The vehicles that you will take inside will become part of the most memorable experiences that will make your life so special. Find a mechanic who really wants to be a part of this.
Pick a Durable Truck Camper Canopy
I’m now on my fourth iteration of truck camping, and after two trucks and four sheds, I’ve learned that your shed is actually more important than your truck. Your glider determines how much space you have, where you can go, and how warm and dry you’ll be.
Truck awnings come in all shapes and sizes and are designed with a variety of purposes in mind. Some are designed for simple storage, while others are designed to be a bit more utilitarian.
The two basic materials that truck covers are made of are fiberglass and aluminum. GRP helmets tend to be tighter. They are more aerodynamic and reduce wind resistance, providing better fuel consumption. Aluminum awnings, on the other hand, may not be as streamlined, but they are easier to find and may be easier to work with if you plan to make changes when designing your build.
You will need a truck trailer tarpaulin that is:
SLIM FIT: you don’t want spaces through which water or cold wind can pass.
Ventilated: RVs get hot and stink… You’ll need a way to keep the air moving.
It can be insulated, that’s great. It can get cold when you sleep in a truck, so make sure your RV can be insulated.
Plan Your Build Around Your Gear
Asking questions like these will save you a lot of pain in the future if you start building and realize something important isn’t adding up. It will also give you a chance to check out your equipment and replace things that may serve you better.
For example, over the years I have purchased or accidentally found myself in possession of water jugs of all shapes and sizes. Once upon a time, when I went camping in a Subaru, I kept my water in these 4 gallon buckets. When I was thinking about putting together my first truck build, I thought about my water situation and decided those jugs really weren’t working, so I designed my build around two 7-gallon Reliance Jumbo-Tainers. If I had designed my build for the water jugs I had at the time, I would not have been able to fit the jumbos that have now become my favorite water jugs.
Now, I’m not suggesting that you upgrade all of your equipment before you build anything on your truck. Instead, I suggest doing a full audit of your equipment and thinking about what works for you and what doesn’t. If a certain piece of equipment is absolutely perfect for your needs, great! Plan to have something of that size and shape in the final design of the building.
On the other hand, if something really doesn’t do the job and you know you’re going to replace it sooner or later, do some research and have an idea of what you might replace in the future so you can consider it. upon completion of your design.
Get a Full-Sized Spare Tire
Get rid of the donut… Just do it. Standard spare wheels are not made for the adventurous. Instead, they’re designed to help you hobble home on the pavement. I’ve seen more than my fair share of spare tires go off while trying to get back to civilization, and have since lost all faith in the donut.
Most mechanics in the country have a few old tires, so make a few calls and buy something cheap but reliable so you’ll be covered in case of an emergency. It doesn’t have to be fancy, new, or even match the make and model of your other tires. It just has to be the same size.
Once you unwrap the donut and have a full-size spare, check on it often. The only thing worse than having to drive through the woods in a donut is swapping your car in the middle of nowhere to find your spare is empty too.
Carry Communication Device
When it comes to camping with logs, or really any wilderness experience, peace of mind goes a long way. That’s why I believe that everyone who spends time outdoors should have an S.O.S button and an emergency communication device.
Having some way to communicate with the outside world is always a good idea, but it’s an especially good idea when you’re in a remote location, like 15 miles from the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, the only place I’ve actually stayed. . in my truck
There are many indoor communication solutions out there, but I choose the Garmin InReach Mini, which is also Kristen’s first choice.