We’re stepping outside our comfort zone and leaving the truck camper behind

This time of year is when our work season begins ramping up and traveling & exploring slows down.  While we’re free to roam wherever the road takes us for the cooler half of the year, June-October is when our work keeps us tied to Colorado.  Sometimes I catch myself dreaming of one day having the freedom to spend a summer traveling to Canada, Alaska, and every mountain state in-between…but I quickly remind myself that if we’re going to be obligated to be anywhere, the Colorado Rockies are a damn fine place to be.

With contracted work not kicking off until late June this year, we planned to use that time to work on projects.  However, when your friends call and ask if you be interested in helping them move to Alaska, and you look at your calendar and see that the window of time they’re asking about is open, you don’t think about it, you just say yes.

And so, in a few days time we’ll be meeting up with our friends in Boise and spending the following two weeks making the 3,000 mile journey to their new home in Talkeetna (near Denali National Park), camping along the way.  We’ll be driving one of their trucks and then catching a return flight out of Anchorage.  

This means we’re about to spend two weeks camping without our Four Wheel Camper and all the amenities we’ve become accustomed to always having with us.  No furnace, no queen size bed, no refrigerator, no toilet.  And since we’re flying back, we can only take what can fit in a suitcase to bring home with us.  We’ll be sleeping in the bed of a truck, relying on our sleeping bags to keep us warm, relying on our friend’s camping gear for cooking meals, and pooping in holes in the woods.  

Our camping experience prior to the FWC

I’ve never shared this here before and hope it incites a good laugh.  Prior to purchasing our truck camper in 2012, Mark and I had gone camping together…drum roll….twice.  Both trips were a hilarious display of our lack of experience.  We’re far better informed and outfitted these days, but the comforts that the FWC provides, I’m not afraid to admit, make “glamping” a more appropriate term for the kind of camping we’re used to.  

Embracing the unknown

  • We said yes to the invitation. 
  • We requested a topper on the truck we’d be driving & sleeping in so that we don’t get eaten by a Grizzly.
  • We glanced at a map and learned that the distance we’re driving, if we were to point south instead of north, would take us all the way to Panama.

And that is about the extent of the planning that has gone into this trip.  Not because we’re lazy or willfully ignorant, but because our role in this trip is that of support crew.  Our friends are at the helm of this adventure and we’re ready to follow their lead.  

We believe the best trips leave lots of room for spontaneity, that no amount of planning can prepare for every possibility, that highs and lows are always a part of the deal, and that having few expectations paves the way for endless unexpected delights.  

We can’t wait to see what we see, learn what we learn, and undoubtedly make some unforgettable memories along the way.

Stay tuned for a mini-series of posts, starting in June, all about the ultimate American road-trip…driving to Alaska.


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  • Be prepared for flies. My wife and I camped in a *tent* in Alaska for about 2 months. If we didn’t have a face net and a little net room which we hung off the side of the rack on top of our Landrover, we would have had a very difficult time eating a meal or taking a hike. Cannot wait to hear your adventure.

    • We’ve heard the flies and mosquitoes can be pretty horrendous and have made sure to pack our headnets!

  • I’m so happy you’ve started your blog! Can’t wait to see pictures and hear stories about this adventure your on!

  • Hey what a great time you’re going to have! Just stay current on wildfires, there’s some happening in BC and closing the Alcan in various spots. Grab the Milepost too. And if you don’t have ATT you may want to consider getting it, as Verizon is worthless here. We are in Willow, 40 miles south of Talkeetna (was just up there yesterday, fun town!), so if you need anything just holler. Have a great trip!


We’re Mark & Michele, modern-day nomads perfecting the art of slow, full-time travel.  Our tiny home on wheels and slow-paced travel style allows us to minimize our expenses while maximizing our freedom.  May our unconventional way of life inspire you to design a life that you love.


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