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Old 07-17-2020, 07:17 AM   #1
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From Motorcycling to Camping

My wife and I have spent the past 17 years riding our Harley Davidson around America. We’ve enjoyed it thoroughly and have been to many places around the country.

We’ve been to KS, IA, NE, CO, WY, MT, ND, SD, MN, WI, IL, IN, OH, VA, WV, PA, NC, SC, TN, KY, MS, AL, GA, FL, LA and AR.

We’ve really had some great adventures and have learned how to live minimally on a motorcycle. Now as we sell of our motorcycle to try a new adventure in camping we are questioning many things. How much do we need to travel with? How much camper do we need? Where do we go? Etc..Etc...

Have any of you made the transition?

My wife is a brave soul. Here she is ready to start our trip from The Tetons to Yellowstone on a nice 27F morning.
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Old 07-17-2020, 09:22 AM   #2
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Bill,
I have been riding motorized vehicles for at least 65 years, from go carts to mtororized bikes, to the first Hondas and got my first Harley back in 92. Now being close to York, Pa where they are assembled, we see them all the time. Eventually we found camping to be more enjoyable and I traded my last Harley in on my 2009 Ram for towing. Four wheels are more comfortable as you age........
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Old 07-17-2020, 10:11 AM   #3
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Well, the first question I would ask is what do you see for adventures looking forward? For instance, if you see yourself stealth camping, a camper van or Sprinter van have an advantage over a trailer which screams out "we are camping here." On the other hand, if you want to explore rough back roads on the BLM land a 4wd truck towing a trailer allows you to drop the trailer in the front country and go 4 wheeling without your house.

What toys do you want to take with you? You could cram skis, bikes and canoes on a pick up with a cap; carrying that gear in a camper van, probably not. Want to camp in the BLM backcountry? A truck camper provides more flexibility than other options.

How important is cost? You can get into this world cheaply with a used camper van or used trailer/tug combination. Or you can spend upwards of $150,000 on a tricked out Sprinter van.

Bottom line, start with your travel goals and that will lead you to the equipment you need, not the other way around.
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Old 07-17-2020, 10:29 AM   #4
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I combined my love of camping with motorcycling for 40+ years on two bikes that'd probably fall in the 'sport touring' category ('81 BMW R100RS > '04 Concours); yeah, I keep bikes a long time, between those two ~200k miles. With age I transitioned down to a Suzuki V-Strom 650 for its easier to manage weight on unpaved roads, but still taking plenty of long trips for camping (2nd pic below was on a trip from Austin to Key West on the little V-Strom).

My bike riding overlapped with my RV camping for many years, but yes I've now 'retired my leathers' and am only trailer camping. Many years as a race official with the Central Motorcycling Roadracing Association in there, too.

I never combined trailering with big-bike hauling, though often carried a 'paddock bike' (XR100 or Ruckus) in the bed of the truck when towing my Casita to race events.




Yardsale has asked the pertinent questions .... just like with motorcycle touring, RV travel and the gear associated is guided by your specific interests.
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Old 07-17-2020, 10:40 AM   #5
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I agree with yardsale, decide what you want to take and what comfort level you desire. If you want to keep 'roughing it' with minimal equipment but get into 4 wheels, you might be happy with a small economy car and a teardrop, or with a home-brew conversion of a van or minivan. Escapes are a step up from that; they provide a cozy place where you can potentially have a permanently made-up bed, a dedicated place to sit, ability to stand up and move around, a bathroom with shower, and a good bit of storage... all of which allow you to stay comfortable out of bad weather when (not if) it strikes. The Escape also holds up well, resists water damage far better than most other trailers, and keeps its resale value.
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Old 07-17-2020, 11:46 AM   #6
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Here are a couple of pictures from our motorcycle trip to Sturgis in 2005 and then 3 years later we got our first camper, a small hauler but we never did load the bike, by then we wanted to camp more and ride less.
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Old 07-17-2020, 12:23 PM   #7
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I agree with yardsale, decide what you want to take and what comfort level you desire. If you want to keep 'roughing it' with minimal equipment but get into 4 wheels, you might be happy with a small economy car and a teardrop, or with a home-brew conversion of a van or minivan. Escapes are a step up from that; they provide a cozy place where you can potentially have a permanently made-up bed, a dedicated place to sit, ability to stand up and move around, a bathroom with shower, and a good bit of storage... all of which allow you to stay comfortable out of bad weather when (not if) it strikes. The Escape also holds up well, resists water damage far better than most other trailers, and keeps its resale value.
I think we’ve settled on the 5.0 being pulled by our existing F150 Supercrew 3.5 Ecoboost. It just seem to check all our boxes.

Having pitched tents from campgrounds to the side of the rode on our scooter Escape camping will just be an upgraded version of that. Honestly, the conversation of buying a camper came up last year when we were sitting under an overpass in the pouring rain wishing we had a cup of coffee. That and a softer bed. : )

Can’t wait to sell the bike and order the 5.0.
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Old 07-26-2020, 07:21 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by WillyB View Post
I think we’ve settled on the 5.0 being pulled by our existing F150 Supercrew 3.5 Ecoboost. It just seem to check all our boxes.

Having pitched tents from campgrounds to the side of the rode on our scooter Escape camping will just be an upgraded version of that. Honestly, the conversation of buying a camper came up last year when we were sitting under an overpass in the pouring rain wishing we had a cup of coffee. That and a softer bed. : )

Can’t wait to sell the bike and order the 5.0.
That will be a HUGE increase in space and an equally huge reduction in the number of places you can stay.
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Old 07-26-2020, 08:41 AM   #9
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That will be a HUGE increase in space and an equally huge reduction in the number of places you can stay.
Hi: yardsale... We took our rig to Newfoundland a year ago and the bonus is Marine Atlantic charges by the foot and with the overlap of 5th wh. and truck we measured on his wheel only 36'. We have fit in smaller camp spaces the big guys couldn't!!!
The site pictured was short enough we couldn't stay hooked up. Alf
escape artist N.S. of Lake Erie
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Old 07-27-2020, 11:08 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
Here are a couple of pictures from our motorcycle trip to Sturgis in 2005 and then 3 years later we got our first camper, a small hauler but we never did load the bike, by then we wanted to camp more and ride less.
And best of all your 4 legged friend gets to come along😁
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Old 07-27-2020, 11:16 AM   #11
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That will be a HUGE increase in space and an equally huge reduction in the number of places you can stay.
Granted you can park a sleeping bag anywhere, I’ve slept on a picnic table. But since getting our 5.0TA we have stayed at several “tent only” sites and don’t think I ever would have overnight at a Walmart or Cracker Barrel on my bike. And a warm, dry, secure and comfy bed every night is much appreciated on the north side of 70. 😎
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