Sunday, February 18, 2018

Camping Like Howard

When my wife and I met 21 years ago, one of the first trips we took was a camping trip to a place called (yes you've heard it before) Silver Fork of the American River. Because my Assistant Supervisor was being a bitch and wouldn't let me leave work early, we didn't get going until after 8:00 pm. The other error we made was camping on a 3 day holiday weekend. By the time we got up there, there wasn't a camp site to be found. We ended up pitching our tent in a little spot next to a side road, drank a bunch a wine and crashed. 5:00 am the next morning the dirt bikes started. We packed up and went home.

The next time we actually went camping was in August 2013 at Hope Valley Campground.

Hope Valley Space 9

So Much To Bring

There were two things we found about tent camping. One, somebody has to sleep against the tent and the other is crawling out in the middle of the night to take a wizz is just a pain in the ass. It was at that point we decided to look into trailers. 

Enter the Coachman Clipper. 

Note Single Axle

Short Queen Bed

No Oven

Little Table
Good little trailer, was a learning experience AND no one had to sleep against the wall.

Well, you all know the story of the blown tire on the way to Hendy Woods and subsequent purchase of the Freedom Express. Click on the "blown tire" link to see what happened. 

This morning Howard (Windknots And Tangledl Lnes) wanted to see the inside of the Freedom Express, so here you are Howard. 

TV & Stereo

Kitchen Sink

Stove & Oven

Full Sized Queen Bed

From The Other Side

Bath Room With Shower

Wrap Around Table
Here is a little explanation of why the trailer. In the picture from Hope Valley you could see all that was needed for a camping trip. Filled the bed of the truck. In between that trip and the Clipper purchase we did a trip down Highway 395 on the Eastern Side of the Sierra's staying in motels. One of the two things we didn't like moteling it was carrying in and out clothes bags every day at every stop for the 5 nights we were on the road. The second was going from one place to the next place each day. 

So when we started in the trailers, it was a necessity to stay at least two nights everywhere we went. It has progressed to every place is now at least three nights and our trip to Upper Lake this coming August will be 4 nights. 

Take it, park it, and enjoy...........     


  1. Thank you for the tour Mark. I never really had much thought about getting a 5th wheel or motorhome but that sure looks nice. But...I've never had a blowout on any of the cabins I've stayed in.

  2. Mark
    I have a couple buddies that started their camping experience the way you guys did. Stated with the tent and gradually went to a nice trailer camper.
    I envy you guys my wife is a hotel customer for life, gave up long time ago on the camper thing.

  3. What fun! I'm jealous. But, camper life is not in the cards in this lifetime. Looks like you have everything one would need to stay 5 nights. Hahahaha

  4. We were embarrassed when we transitioned from tent to camper, but would never go back now. At a certain point, unless you're backpacking sleeping on the ground and in the rain/snow/cold gets really old. We do rough it in a way; we don't have any type of bathroom facilities save for a coffee can for emergencies. Works for us but I can see a day when we'll prefer a bit more luxury. Now to find that Blown Tire story...

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