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Picture of ruger357
I’ve been camping several times. Thinking about a truck tent for my f150 or figuring out something for my 4 door Jeep wrangler. Anybody do much car camping? What’s on your checklist? What type of vehicle, tent, mattress...?


Roll Tide!

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Posts: 7208 | Location: Hoover, AL | Registered: November 06, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Truth Seeker
Picture of StorminNormin
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I am interested in this as well. I own a 2002 Chevy Silverado and have seen tents for the bed of the truck. I don’t camp often and my old tents need to be thrown away as they are so old. I like the idea of sleeping off the ground in my truck bed on a mattress under a tent.

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Posts: 7072 | Location: The Lone Star State | Registered: July 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Dances With
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I have been looking recently into truck camping long and hard but have ultimately decided to buy a small bumper pull trailer. I'm getting pretty close to official retirement and want to travel out West and see everything I can.

I recommend going to YouTube and search for Truck Camping, and you can also find videos on Stealth Camping. I did look at a lot of videos on YouTube, there are great ideas, advice, good things & bad things, pitfalls, etc there. It should be very helpful to you. I've seen dozens of them.

Best wish to you, have fun.
Posts: 9186 | Registered: October 26, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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You might want to do a search of "Wonderhussy". She camps in Nevada and had hundreds of youtube videos of her adventures. She'd pretty literate and does a good job. No skin because its youtube. For those of you who are sensitive about that kind of thing. She explores old towns, cabins and mine sites. She's non-political and isn't anti gun. All positive things. Just pretty enough to be watchable.

She doesn't sleep on the ground, but instead in her "rig". New adventures each week.

Unhappy ammo seeker
Posts: 17289 | Location: Kentucky, USA | Registered: February 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Telecom Ronin
Picture of dewhorse
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Check out "expedition portal"

Some awesome camping set ups

I do it occasionally...normally when we spend a weekend hunting.

One item is a good chuck box.....always want to build a cool one but in the end a large pelican box worked
Posts: 7747 | Location: WPA loving the weather..missing Texas | Registered: February 12, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Beancooker
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I don’t camp, but I have been following this guys adventures for a while. Makes me consider camping. If I did, I would run a rooftop tent setup. Probably a CVT.

Scroll past the mods and down to the “trips” section.

Balzé Halzé:
now I see that you're about as bright as a black hole, and twice as dense. Good lord.
The “lol” thread
Posts: 2166 | Location: Staring down at you with disdain, from the spooky mountaintop castle.  | Registered: November 20, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by dewhorse:
Check out "expedition portal"

I'd second this, great resource for info.

We've been car camping a lot. We have a 5th wheel too for when we want a little more comfort.

Always just pitched a tent and carry stuff in the vehicle (be it an Subaru, Grand Cherokee, or JK Wranglers). We recently decided to go the "overland" route and picked up a basic trailer with a roof top tent. Tried it in the backyard a few times, and are making it's maiden voyage (for us) this weekend. Towed behind 2 door JK, wife drives another 2 door JK.

So far the overland trailer is top for space, as well as comfort. Ours has a lower end roof top tent (Smittybilt) but still much more comfort than the ground.

Lot of info on youtube, one of our go to overland channels is Trailrecon. Tons of ways to set up a 4-door Wrangler for car camping (or overlanding, whatever you want to call it), be it sleeping in the back, roof top tent, or trailer.
Posts: 688 | Location: Dayton, OH | Registered: October 07, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Little ray
of sunshine
Picture of jhe888
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Yes. I have a couple of tents - a Mountain Hardware and a larger REI tent. A Kelty bag and Thermarest pads. The standard Coleman gas stove, a dutch oven to cook in the fire. I just use my car to get there. I don't go enough to have a lot of gear. If I went a lot more, I'd look for a cot (although the feet are tough on the floor of a tent), but for the two or three trips I make a year, a Thermarest on the ground suits me.

The fish is mute, expressionless. The fish doesn't think because the fish knows everything.
Posts: 49025 | Location: Texas | Registered: February 10, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
If you see me running
try to keep up
Picture of mrvmax
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The first scan of this thread title my mind read "who uses car ramps". I need to calibrate my scanner. Living in vans, cars and rvs is getting popular, I've followed numerous channels on YouTube. I wish I could recall the one lady who broke down the non glamorous and portions that the tubers do not tell you. Most of the ones I saw make it all look glamorous and perfect but that life is far from it. Maybe in my younger years but I'm too old for that now.
Posts: 3222 | Location: Friendswood Texas | Registered: August 24, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of UTsig
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I don't but my best friends do it quite a bit. For the last few years they've used a tent set up in the bed of they're Ram. It's them and two smaller dogs and that works well. This year they bought a free standing tent, large enough for cots. They've used this recently, taking there Wrangler. The Wrangler can get a little further off the beaten path, away from people.


"Nature scares me" a quote by my friend Bob after a rough day at sea.
Posts: 2830 | Location: Utah's Dixie | Registered: January 29, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Expert308
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I had a camping setup in the back of my old F-250. I built a 6' long rectangular box to match the height of the wheel wells and set it down the middle of the bed attached to the front wall of the bed. Then I laid a piece of 1/2" plywood on top of that, a foam mattress and a sleeping bag. I built a "kitchen box" with a hinged drop front from 1/4" plywood and 2x2's to contain cooking and dining stuff, that just fit between the sleeping platform and the tailgate.

I lost that truck 3 years ago when I loaned it to a friend and she totaled it. The insurance settlement paid for a just slightly newer Tundra, but it only has a 6 1/2" bed so the kitchen box won't fit, but the rest of the setup should (haven't actually tried it yet).
Posts: 6053 | Location: Portland, OR | Registered: February 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of SR
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Years ago a guy told me you'll camp more if you sleep well and than means a really good air mattress. (We were talking car camping not backpacking.)

We haven't camped in years and our 50s are in the rear view mirror. My wive said if we go again, she wants a tent she can stand up in and a cot - thinking that will be even better than our high end, comfy air mattress.

Our set up was always basic - similar to jhe888 except we never really got into dutch oven cooking. We always took these: 1) large pot - cook stuff and heat water for doing dishes. 2) griddle for the Coleman stove - love pancakes in the morning.

Oh, make sure to get a ThermaCell. They are amazing at keeping mosquitoes away. I use one when hunting. I'd probably take two if I was camping.

Speak softly and carry a big stick loaded Sig
Posts: 4496 | Location: Raleigh, North Carolina | Registered: September 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
A teetotaling
beer aficionado
Picture of NavyGuy
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Haven't done it in quite a few years, but I used do overnights in my old Bronco. Did this solo (if others where along they slept in their own accommodations). I simply folded the back seats forward and inflated an air mattress and climbed into a light sleeping bag or just pulled a light blanket over. This was mostly in warm weather so it was comfortable comparatively speaking. No insects or other critters to be concerned with. I sure this would work in a pick up with a cap. You might even be able to get another person in there with you if your not opposed to sleeping close, as with a wife or girl friend.

Men fight for liberty and win it with hard knocks. Their children, brought up easy, let it slip away again, poor fools. And their grandchildren are once more slaves.

-D.H. Lawrence
Posts: 9944 | Location: Fort Worth, Texas | Registered: February 07, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Just for the
hell of it
Picture of comet24
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I do some car camping but with a tent. Since I also backpack when I car camp I like some comfort.

I have an REI Kingdom 4 tent which I can stand up in. It sleeps 2 very comfortably with lots of room for gear. They make it in larger sizes. That tent goes on sale a few times a year. I use string LED lights inside along the top for lighting in the tent.


Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain. Jack Kerouac
Posts: 15809 | Registered: March 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of smlsig
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Been doing it for a couple of decades. It is now referred to as Overlanding for some reason.

We have two different rigs depending on where we’re going or what we’re doing. Our first rig is a Hallmark Expedition pop up camper on our slightly modified F-350. The second one is a new Jeep Gladiator with an Alu-Cab canopy that has a Roofnest RTT for more remote areas. I’m in the process of designing the drawer system etc in the bed. Hope to have it done by the end of the year...


Our Founding Fathers were men who understood that the right thing is not necessarily the written thing. -kkina
Posts: 4667 | Location: SML & OBX | Registered: February 19, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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15 years worth ,long ago.
we had an F-250 super cab with 8 ft. bd.

we put a queen bed platform , similar to this:
in the bed
and a Stockland shell over it. similar to this.

the bed was carpeted and had three inches of foam under it.

the front of the shell had a window , we took that out and the rear cab window came out as well,
we had a waterproof seal made between the cab and the shell.

We would get off work at 5:00on tuesday .
shower change cloths and pack the food. and we were on the road by 8:00 or 9:00 at the latest.

drive till midnight or 1:00 then crawl through the back window get comfy and off to slumber land.

no messing with tents ground covers, stakes, finding level ground BAM ! we're done.
( all the bedding ,sleeping bags stayed on the bed)

set up the stove on the pic nik table, break out the camp box that was under the bed and we had breakfast in an hour.

many national parks , state parks, national monuments, county parks and national forests later , we have five photo books full of the good pictures and another 6 picture books of the not great pictures.

1) footlocker for the the kitchen stuff
1) plastic tote ,dry food box
1) cooler for ice and drinks.
1) shower water bag.
2) 2 1/2 gal. water jugs
4) gal. distilled water

I think we used a tent four times in 12 years.

1) cooler for ice and cold food

1) stove and can of fuel
one big duffel for both our clean cloths.
1) duffel for dirty cloths and towels.
1) 18 inch camp bow saw

1)small duffel emergency med stuff.

2) qts. oil 1) jug antifreeze

hand axe, shoval, 2) 20 ft. tow chains.
some fire wood, camp chairs , cloths line,
good hand held med narrow beam ,12 v spot light
was very valuable for finding roads, camp spots, signs, animal sign , potties , dumpsters,

always a handgun or two .
a bear bag to hang up w/ rope.
trash bags

our truck was a 4x4, this was before cell phones.
we always ! checked in with the rangers.

from Douglas and Bisbee, AZ to Burlington,CO
to North Yellowstone, San Diego and Grants Pass Oregon and the four corners region.
Been there. . . . . done that.

much new stuff on the market that I'd take with now, that was not available then.

6 days was about our limit in the out back,
15 days in a improved camp ground w/showers potties and laundry

Safety, Situational Awareness and proficiency.

Neck Ties, Hats and ammo brass, Never ,ever touch'em w/o asking first
Posts: 50933 | Location: Henry County , Il | Registered: February 10, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Green grass and
high tides
Picture of old rugged cross
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Not to put a damper on this but something one should at least consider. When in High school my wife had a boyfriend. Shortly after high school he and his new girl friend went car camping and were both viciously murdered. He was killed first. She was raped and tortured horribly before finally being murdered. Went unsolved for decades. Finally figured out who did it. He was in prison for similar crimes.

He was just a horrible sob who happened to stumble on to a young couple out on a spontaneous camping trip.

Just be aware. There are tons of weirdo's (more now) out and about looking to satisfy their desire to assault and murder people. This I am convinced of.

So when you do go out. Be prepared. Surely you can do it and safely enjoy yourselves. But be prepared and never let your guard down.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: old rugged cross,

"Practice like you want to play in the game"
Posts: 14998 | Registered: September 21, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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GREAT point .
VERY ,VERY important

Had I known what went on in at least half of the places that we stayed ,( 20 or so ) over the years.

I would have NEVER ! gone there,by ourselves.

case in point,
the day we got back from Joshua tree Nat park, they found four people buried ( deader than hell)
in a car , next to the side of the park boundary.

I know for a fact that the four guys we passed by in two different parks were part of an illegal grow op. all for were well healed.
(rifles and pistols)

In this day and age we would be going with another couple

Two people back home would have our EXACT itinerary , and we would stick to it ,down to the three hour window.

Safety, Situational Awareness and proficiency.

Neck Ties, Hats and ammo brass, Never ,ever touch'em w/o asking first
Posts: 50933 | Location: Henry County , Il | Registered: February 10, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Caribou gorn
Picture of YellowJacket
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We take the family (wife and me, 2 sons under 6) camping a couple of times a year. Georgia has a boatload of state parks with a great reservation system. Depending on the park you might pitch your tent right next to your parking space or as much as 50 yards away.

We don't actually have any gear for converting the vehicle into sleeping quarters though.

I'm gonna vote for the funniest frog with the loudest croak on the highest log.
Posts: 9197 | Location: Marietta, GA | Registered: February 10, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
7.62mm Crusader
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You need to take a close look at a Turtleback trailer. Coolest damn tow behind I have ever seen. Made in America too by golly. I'd like to have one just for its cool factor.
Posts: 16176 | Registered: December 23, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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