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    • DanSolarMan
      Dan

      My wife and I are one of the these crazy business people that have an idea they want to share with the world.

      We are poor! We have a dream! There is seemingly no quit in us. Sometime around the first of June we intend to hit most of the western states pitching our wares. Problem is we cannot afford motels every night, we have been avid campers, hikers, backpackers, with hundreds and hundreds of nights spent on the hard ground over our lives.

      The plan is to spontaneously camp for a few days and get a room every third or fourth day for catch up and clean up. While this sounds like a good idea as far as saving money, logistically I think we’re nuts! We also have a dachshund who thinks she runs the show.

      I picture the traveling salespeople of the past. The shirts all hung on the rack in the backseat roaming from town to town. This is going to be a great adventure!

      Are we nuts?

    • Chris

      Hahaha, you are nuts! In the best kind of way. 😎 And I bet most of us reading this post are jealous.

      In the first few years of our marriage, we were dirt poor, barely enough monies for granola and gas. But we had an old pickup truck someone gave us with bad ball joints and an old camper shell. We would take it for a month at a time up through Yellowstone, Glacier, Banff, Jasper, back down the coast and across the desert, to the basement of our parent's homes in Salt Lake where we lived.

      Those were the best of times.

    • Vilen

      As challenging as it sounds, I think it is worth it. I bet years from now you both will look at this experience as one of the highlights. Even though you'll have hard and painful moments while you are on the road, you'll forget those and will remember the good parts. That is the nature of our human memory.

      Just imagine the stories you'd tell of your journey!

    • Chris

      Dan, have you seen the movie Founder? Your description of driving and pitching your wares reminded me of the way Ray Croc was portrayed by Michael Keaton. Except he could afford hotels. By the end, he could afford sports teams. I loved the movie.

    • gorudy

      amazing. How will you decide which towns are right for you to visit to pitch the idea?

    • DanSolarMan

      Yes! Good times. The granola sounds great but the teeth! Maybe peaches and something soft. lol

      Preparing is half the fun.

    • DanSolarMan

      Thank you for the good advise and yes this one has the chance to be life changing for her and I and us. The added benefit of it being a business trip gives a new sense of challenge. We will have some rules for fun. We will be spontaneous with our camping. We will not setup after dark. Working on setup now. Coffee press or instant?

      Big decisions!

    • DanSolarMan

      OK we’re going to watch it. Thanks!

      This trip should combine a lifetime of camping experience with a lifetime of sales experience. Along with a 35th marriage anniversary on the road.

      I’ve always had a romantic vision of the traveling salesman. Conjures up so many images of America past. Hopefully we can mix the old with the new and create some fun and enough to buy a softer substitute for granola.

      Luxury minimalists!

    • DanSolarMan

      We have large towns as destinations.

      Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Denver, Salt Lake City, Boise, Spokane, Seattle, Portland, Eugene then south back to homebase Fountain Hills AZ.

      We will not be stuck on the freeway. The beauty of what we do is that almost every town large and small has locations that we can stop in. The are always glad to see us and our sparkling shiny faces. lol

      We just got back from Pahrump Nevada where we were well received.

    • vegasphotog

      If you aske the right audience you will get the right answer. I would offer up you have asked the right audience. If you have any questions, read all about recently passed Larry Harvey and your answers will be obvious grasshopper. LOL

    • vegasphotog

      I agree....this is a movie they should show Wharton business school students. I have a client that is part of a 60 year family restauraunt and they DO NOT OWN THEIR BUILDING. I told them to watch this movie but they prefer denial. Their business is worth nothing and sweat equity rarely pays the bills.

    • I have friends who do this now and would t have if any other way. Life on the road is not easy (though it looks like fun and relaxation). There are obligations and a lot of work that happens outside what the rest of us see. But they’ve figured out how to prosper and how to make it work.

      If you can do it, it sure seems like it would be worth it.

    • DanSolarMan

      Exactly my thoughts. It’s one thing to camp out for the weekend then run home to a hot shower. We are going to have to look and feel sharp keep the wheels running and be ready for what the day brings. We are hauling product (samples and sell) so we can’t bring the kitchen sink.

      I’m looking forward to seeing how the gear shakes out and how it gets organized. Keep it simple!

    • Us

      Vanlife approach? Boon-docking is becoming a staple in many areas, and has an etiquette which can make life easier for you and those you camp near.
      Perhaps an opportunity for driveway surfing instead of coach surfing?
      The tent thread on ADVrider is a great example of folks willing to host for a day or so in not your normal camp type locations.

    • DanSolarMan

      All great advise, thanks!

      We have an small GMC Safari. So yes we will be luxury camping (yipes) but camping for sure. Hopefully we manage decent internet because we are/will be literally running a business from the road.

      There will be no schedule so if we see a spot we stop. If an opportunity comes on our route to meet folks and tent cool. If we meet folks in the campsites, great. As the road will be our house for up to a couple months this summer I want to make it comfortable. That means a little more gear than I would like to bring. I’m picturing the van 2/3 full of product and 1/3 full of living quarters.

      We also want to be able to take advantage of the FREE camping that's going to require just a tad more gear.

    • The free camping thing just means you gotta take it all. Dispersed camping sites are pretty easy to find-and they're pretty nice most of the time too.

    • Us

      roof top tent? Or stealth inside the van. Sounds with the amount of biz stuff the room inside for living is small. If camping/camping the roof top tent would be good to keep the main sleeping area not included in the storage inside. May have to lift the dog in. That would give you an awning as well to be under so a table and wifi box and office is done.
      They have some great strong sliding drawer hardware so the whole inside of the van could pull out for access, allowing for less used items in the end or middle. Small lip on the outside of the van will allow for a table setup for cooking or work...oh the list goes on. Have fun, sounds like a good adventure.

    • DanSolarMan

      I’m thinking of two tents right now. The big stand up truck tent that vestibules on to the van. It’s big enough to put a table inside if it were real buggy. Then the Stevenson 3 person for the quick setup wind and rain. The whole pee thing ain’t gonna work on the roof. lol I’ve got some old wooden boxes with sturdy handles that can double as seats. I think I will compartmentalize stuff into them.

      A work in progress right now and I’ve got a whole month to go. I bought a jumper battery that has a flashlight and the ability to charge I pad phones and Computor. Amazing what they do with battery’s.

      Talked to a buddy on the phone today. Told him I was packing. He says “already?”

      I said when did we start packing for the next bike trip? He said “the day we got back from the last one.”

      Touche’

    • DanSolarMan

      Those are cool! Lightweight. Our van could pull that! But we could also motel it for cheaper. Lol

      $165 per night rental. Yipes! Really nice design.

    • Us

      Buy it and finance as part of the business aka write off. Get a wrap with the company logo etc.
      The side window makes a great show booth look.

    • DanSolarMan

      Bought this guy today. Was $72. Always afraid of a dead battery while free camping. Plus it will charge just about everything including phone, I pad, music, beard trimmer, lol. Has a flashlight. Charges off of 110 or the 12 volt socket.

      What’s a little peace of mind worth?

    • DanSolarMan

      There’s always that first pack.

      I guess we’re gonna do this. 30 day Camping for Business trip.

      Yipes!

    • DanSolarMan

      She tells me there’s a cute little state park for $8 bucks right out side of El Paso.

      I tell her it will be over a 100 degrees by then. 9 states. Trying for 5 stops per day. 35 days.

      One man, One woman. One dog. And no shirt rack in the back. It looks like mostly an interstate hiway route. We will try to fun it up if we can.

    • Chris
      Chris MacAskill

      We have one! We use it all the time.

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