Countdown To VanLife

Counting the days remaining, before I move into my van to explore and discover America’s beauty.

Zion National Park 1982

It all started some forty years ago. Made my first cross-country trip; wasn’t a car dweller yet, but carried my backpack and hiking shoes. This was still a time when National Parks were quiet and undiscovered. The natural beauty that I found would change my life.

Once I took my first steps, I was hooked and many more years of traveling the country would follow. First alone in a passenger car, later in comfortable travel trailers. My parents joined me and we lived out of the travel trailer for many years, visiting remote places, discovering ancient cultures and getting a taste of the American pastime.

San Francisco Giants game 1982

While my camping life had to come to an end, I continued the mobile lifestyle during many more shorter trips for most of my life. Approaching retirement, a new lifestyle was needed and mobile life was high on my list. I was single now, well… except for Joey, ready to sell my house and travel.

My 1980’s home

So a few years ago, I bought my Ford Transit van and started to convert it into a full-fledged recreational vehicle. I’m still working on it and you can follow my weekly progress on CargoVanConversion.com or watch my videos on YouTube. With a completion date scheduled sometime during 2020, it is time to prepare for my new adventures and that is where this website comes in.

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Like the van built, I want to document the subsequent vanlife with weekly updates from the road and that is the content you can expect here. There are some basics that I want to adhere to for my upcoming travels: 30mi average daily travel (about 200mi a week max.), five day average stays, primarily off-road/boondocking, limited or no city visits and a travel schedule that pursues a 70 degree lifestyle by changing elevation throughout the year.

Grand Gulch, UT 1982

On my wish list are major events like the Balloon festival in Albuquerque NM and minor local events throughout the country, attendance of an occasional Philharmonic rehearsal or ballet performance and highlighting the works of artists and local craftsmen. But the mainstay will be the adventures of me and my dog Joey, hiking hills and mountain tops, exploring Native American cultural sites and perhaps retrace some historic events.

So, what happens now? I’m writing this in the summer of 2019 and want to get permanently on the road in 2020. That is probably not going to happen; still have to sell my house and still do major work on the van. Most likely, I will leave Florida in the spring of 2020, when the temps start rising above the 80’s or 90’s. But rather move in the van permanently, next year will be monthly trips on the east coast, and returning home to check on the house. After the sale of my house, I will be heading to the west coast to make my plans a reality!

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