Four Wheel Camping
Wednesday, November 18, 2020
I purchased my first Four Wheel Camper pop-up, the Eagle, around the year 2001, along with a new Toyota Tacoma, and have been enamored with this combination ever since. The rig was fully capable of going anywhere the four wheel drive system would allow, and provided a handy full-size bed, mini-kitchen with two burner stove, a small refrigerator that could run off of AC, DC, or propane, and a forced air heater very capable of maintaining a comfortable temperature when it was below freezing outdoors. There were plenty of indoor and exterior lights, a 12 volt DC power supply, 20 gallons of fresh water that aided by a small pump would deliver water to an indoor sink, or the outdoor shower. A four gallon hot water heater was luxurious! I added a solar panel on the roof, and an additional battery system that often allowed me to go for at least 3 days without running the truck in cloudy or overcast weather. In full sun camper power was sustainable.
In 2014 I upgraded to a slightly larger and more tricked out camper called the Fleet, also made by Four Wheel Camper, and bought a new Tacoma. This was a floor model, but the FWC owner had the identical unit, and he had also tricked out his truck with special aluminum bumpers, front and rear, super bright running lights, a 9,000 lb Warn winch, and plenty of places to attach tow straps or recovery equipment. There were two lightweight waterproof storage boxes, and rock sliders. Suspension was upgraded with extra leaf springs and Firestone airbags, and beefier gas filled shocks. So I equipped my new camper and truck with nearly the identical equipment. My roof mounted solar panel was larger, the camper has an indoor and outdoor hot water shower, an inside cassette toilet, and those extra cubic inches of space feel luxurious!
Today I call this my “bug out” escape pod, and although my travels in 2020 have been drastically reduced due to Covid-19, I’m planning future adventures with this highly capable addition to a serious field naturalist and outdoor photographers essential gear. I tow a small trailer which holds a light-weight kayak, a mountain bike, and additional gear and fluids.
I’ve included a few shots of my rig in the field -- boon-docking in Death Valley, the “Lost Sierras,” Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, a trip to Colorado, and I’ll add more to come as I mine my photgraphy database to add to this blog.