#nature
... and the next adventure begins

this van will be my tiny home on wheels during my journeys, wherever they may take me

after a quick bite to eat and a little traffic, the first stop was one of my favorite local parks for some photos

special thanks to everyone at Ferman Ford in Clearwater, especially Nick and Rudy, for all the time they spent helping me as i decided what to order

thank you to @idletheorybus, @wheresmyofficenow, @exploringalternatives, @funforlouis, and many others, for sharing your stories and adventures

#nature #park #homeiswhereyouparkit #vanlife #campervan #ford #transit #van #fordtransit #tinyhome #lifeontheroad #homeonwheels #goldenhour #trees

(shot with ricoh theta s and lg 360 cam.. includes shots experimenting with the new interval composite model on the theta s)

somehow managed to get out and shoot some video while literally spending the whole month editing the old life on the road films..

,homeonwheels,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,water,liveyouradventure,journey,freedomvessel,blog,gulf,exploretocreate,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,adventuremobile,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,sand,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,beach,writing
four years ago today [2012.11.16]

in a parking lot near the gulf in florida, i woke up this morning before dawn and continued driving east along the coast.  i saw the beautiful colors of the dawn sky while driving over a bridge, and briefly stopped at a little beach further up before the road would turn inland.  i then drove most of the day and made it home in the middle of the afternoon.

life on the road was a 72 day long journey and i ended up back in florida when it was over.  it was a fun adventure though i really wanted to have a home base, and after having left a beautiful community that felt like home in the summer, i also had longed for one to partake in.  i felt i'd find this back in florida.

for a long time i had wanted to take a long trip out west and get an rv.  it was awesome to see it actually happen.  it feels good to live your dreams and change your life.  if you're not where you want to be in life, simply change.  you may have to face things you are resisting, though once you feel them and embrace them, you'll see they really are no big deal and you can let them go, freeing up room for whatever is next in your journey.

it feels good to be done with these videos and free up the space for whatever is next in life.  for a long time, i wanted to make these, though something always got in the way, even if it was my own self.  in life we often get in our own way.  the way to stop doing it is to face whatever it is that's really there with an open heart.  we can heal our own lives.. often so much of what's happening in life that's getting in the way is really something pretty simple that we don't want to experience.  all we need to do is feel it, own it, and let it go.  the world we experience is simply a mirror of our own thoughts and feelings.  as we learn to face and experience what we're resisting, we can change how we're feeling.  as we change our feelings, we transform.  as we transform, the world we see transforms.  this is how we create the world we want to see and experience.. by simply changing how we're feeling.  you too can create the life or world you've been waiting for.. it all starts by changing what you're feeling within.
,exploremore,adventuremobile,nature,truckcamper,journal,optoutside,rain,liveyouradventure,journey,homeonwheels,stayandwander,exploretocreate,rvlife,wanderlust,rv,hills,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,road,freedomvessel,writing
four years ago today [2012.11.11]

i woke up in the rain just west of the missouri border and headed in to explore a green spot on the map before heading south to the ozarks in arkansas on the not so direct route to oklahoma where i would spend the night.  i stopped briefly at a park in the green area in missouri where it was really windy before continuing along the drive.  i was surprised with steep hills in arkansas where i also encountered a lot of rain again.  south of the ozarks, i hopped on the interstate west toward oklahoma and took a road down to a couple of green spots on the map.  i found a wide area to the side of the road at one of the green spots where i decided to stop and spend the night.  just after i got settled into the camper, i saw flashing lights behind my truck.  i didn't really want to deal with being told i couldn't stay there or anything.. luckily they must've been pulling over another car as they left after a little while and didn't bother me.  this is one of the times where i would've preferred to be in a large white van as it'd be less obvious than a camper (and i wouldn't have had to go out in the wet or cold morning either), though i'm grateful for being able to sleep in so many places undisturbed on my journey.
,homeonwheels,timelapse,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,offroad,liveyouradventure,canyon,journey,freedomvessel,nationalpark,blog,exploretocreate,wanderlust,optoutside,adventuremobile,starlapse,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,stars,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.11.07]

i woke up in the middle of nowhere.  the night before i had driven into grand staircase-escalante national monument.  i wanted to check out an arch in the park and perhaps thought i could photograph the stars under it.  when mapping my route, i figured i'd go through the park and make my way to arizona.  after driving an hour down a long, bumpy, winding dirt road up, down, and around the park, sometimes right at the edge of steep cliffs, i came to a closed gate in the direction i wanted to go.  i decided to spend the night there and head back in the morning.  it was really cold this morning, in the 20's.  previously having thought i would only have 30 more miles to the highway from where i woke up, i had to back track hours out of the way to get on the route to my next destination.  i found cattle walking up a steep hill on my way out.  close to the entrance i found the arch i hadn't seen in the pitch dark night.

after making it out, i drove through the neighboring kodachrome state park, which was quite beautiful.. i found a huge rock formation that i parked my truck next to for a photo.  i decided to stop at bryce canyon to have another look as it was now on the way back.  after, i drove through the same road i had the day before, and ended up seeing one section three times as i had passed through that area both on my way in and out of the grand canyon.  had i known i couldn't make it through grand staircase-escalante, i probably would've changed the order of my itinerary or where i was going, though the experience was all part of the adventure and it was nice to get to see what i did.  in arizona, i had a quick look at glen canyon dam and i was pleasantly surprised with a really nice view and drive going down echo cliffs via antelope pass.  i made it to the south rim of the grand canyon in the afternoon with enough time to explore a little bit before the sun went down.  i found a spot at an overlook where i could photograph the stars over the canyon.  i remember waiting a little bit to pop the top as other cars were still in the parking lot, though finally did after a while and think others also spent the night there.
,homeonwheels,timelapse,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,liveyouradventure,journey,freedomvessel,nationalpark,blog,desert,exploretocreate,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,adventuremobile,starlapse,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,stars,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.11.04]

i woke up in the mojave desert this morning.  i had backed into a small area i had seen off the side of the road the night before.  after a little bumpiness getting out, i went further into the desert to explore.  i saw joshua trees and shot a 360 degree rotating video clip like i had experimented with the day before.

i then continued along past the mojave and entered nevada.  i was on my way out of california.  this was day 60 of my journey of life on the road, and i had spent the past 3.5 weeks exploring california.  at some point i decided i was going back to florida.  i'd been wanting to find some land and it was expensive in california.  and the truck camper was feeling too small for full time living.. i think it would've been a big help if i had a better shower that i didn't have to set up each time i used it and wasn't carrying as much gear with me.  i also wanted to be part of a community again and knew people back in florida, including an old friend in need of help.

i had planned out a path zig-zagging my way through all the remaining contiguous states west of the mississippi that i hadn't yet taken my truck camper to.  i had to make it quickly as i was going to be flying to chicago to help my friend with his business after i got home.. at some point on my journey home he ended up pushing back the date as he was moving.  had i known ahead of time, i would've taken a little longer to travel back east.. like the journey west, i did find myself rushing to make it across the country.  some days i drove pretty much all day.

in nevada, i drove down part of the las vegas strip and i think i stopped for a sub after.  i then headed to zion national park.  i'd never been to utah and was excited to check it out.  i briefly passed through arizona on the way there though would be back the next day to explore it.  i made it to zion in the afternoon and explored during the little daylight that remained.  it was really beautiful and definitely one of the places i could've stayed longer.  i found a spot where i had a great view of the stars over one of the rock formations towering above where i was in the canyon below.
,f150,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,roadtrippin,fourwheelcamper,liveyouradventure,journey,blog,cold,getoutside,exploretocreate,wanderlust,optoutside,adventuremobile,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,fourwheelcampers,adventurelife,vlog,snow,roadtrip,stayandwander,fordf150,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,travel,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.22]

i woke up covered in snow this morning.  the girl at the campground had said it wasn't going to stick.  i was laying in bed in the morning not feeling like getting up right away.. although i had the heat on, i think i was still cold.  it felt like i didn't have to rush, though i decided i ought to get up and go outside to see the little bit of snow that was there before it melted.

as i started to explore, i discovered at least several inches of snow covering everything, and it was still coming down.  the top of my camper was bowing down in the middle.  i opened the hatch to try to get some of the snow off the roof and some fell on my bed.  i didn't have a snow brush or anything so i was using my hands which were quickly freezing through my old gloves.  i had forgotten my folding bike outside the night before and had to get the snow off of it and pack it up.  waking up to this much snow certainly was an adventure i hadn't expected.  i couldn't get that much snow off the roof.. when i went to close it, i almost got smacked in the face with the piece that helps you put it up, as it quickly slammed down with all the weight on it.  usually bungee cords help pull the tent material together though the roof slammed down so quickly that they couldn't react and the tent material was hanging off the sides of the camper.  the roof wouldn't budge when i tried to lift it back up to put the tent back inside, so i had to drive with it like that until i got to lower elevation where the snow had melted.  i think i put the truck in 4x4 to help make the way through the snow, especially where it wasn't yet plowed.  the four wheel campers factory wasn't too far out of my way that day, so i stopped by and was told it was probably fine despite the bowing and driving with the tent material out.  gratefully, i never had any issues with leaks or anything after that.. i'm glad the camper was durable.

on my way to another campground, i saw some dark clouds all around.  i rode my bike around the lake at the campground and appreciated the warmer temperature.  it was a bit crazy.. in just a few days' time i had experienced summer, fall, and winter.
,bridge,exploremore,adventurelife,truckcamper,journal,trees,coast,freedomthinkers,journey,seashore,roadtrippin,roadtrip,wanderlust,exploretocreate,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,nature,vlog,ocean,blog,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,liveyouradventure,lifeontheroad,redwoods,nationalseashore,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.17]

i woke up in a parking lot on the point reyes peninsula and began exploring at dawn.  it was quite stunning to be somewhere so beautiful and experience the early morning light.  i wandered about the national seashore as the sun rose and discovered parts of it i never knew existed.  living life on the road was incredible when waking up in such magnificent places.. yes, there were challenges to living out of such a small space, though to get to stay in unique places and be right there during the most brilliant times of day was awesome and inspiring.  this world is really incredibly beautiful and filled with so many majestic places.. you only need to go wander and allow yourself to discover them.

after leaving point reyes, i followed california route 1's winding drive south on the cliffs.  i made some stops to take in the beautiful views on my way to muir woods.  while at muir woods national monument, i hiked a long trail past where all the tourists were and ended up at the panoramic highway before turning around.  on the way out of muir woods, i drove the panoramic highway the long way back to route 1, and then made my way toward sausalito and the marin headlands.  i barely fit the truck in the one parking spot i found on the street in sausalito and walked down to the shops and water for a bit.  at marin headlands, the golden hour light on the city and bridge was really nice as the sun was setting.

i then crossed the golden gate bridge and passed through san francisco on my way to meet a friend for dinner in alameda.  it was many years since i last saw him in college and he had grown and transformed quite a bit.  when it came up in the conversation, i liked how he described it as when he "found himself". it was great and inspiring to see him and learn of his success.  he'd been loving life in california and suggested places to check out.  after dinner, i drove to a nearby green spot on the map in hopes of finding a quiet place to park for the night.  it seemed to always be a challenge finding a spot when it was dark, especially in or near urban areas.  i ended up on the side of the road near homes and kept the top down.
,timelapse,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,roadtrippin,trees,coast,freedomthinkers,journey,blog,hyperlapse,wanderlust,optoutside,exploretocreate,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,talltrees,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,liveyouradventure,lifeontheroad,redwoods,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.14]

i explore the avenue of the giants when i woke up this morning.. it was really amazing and beautiful.  i felt a connection to the trees when i hugged one, and was sad as i neared the end of the avenue of the giants.  the giant redwood trees were so magnificent.. it's really sad that 96% of the trees that once stood are gone because of logging.  i'm grateful that more people are becoming aware of the negative impact humans have had on the planet.  as more of us learn of the harm that has been caused to nature because of society's need to continually consume more, we'll start to see great changes in how people are treating the environment.  it's already begun to happen as consciousness has increased and more of us have started to focus on sustainability, collaboration, and simplicity over consumption, competition, and greed.

i headed south and got on california route 1 where it began at u.s. highway 101.. i took the long, winding road up, down, and around the hills toward the coast.  somehow i made it the whole way when my truck was just about out of gas, and the gas station just before getting on route 1 had some issue.. either the pumps weren't working, they were out of gas, or i saw that it was a no name station and i didn't trust the quality of gas.  it was a bit nerve-racking driving to the coast.. i didn't know how many more changes there'd be in elevation on the way there, and the truck drank a lot of gas going uphill.  i don't recall how many miles the truck was saying were left on the tank.. it may have been in single digits or zero.  i stopped at the first gas station on the map, a little community mart that happened to have one pump.  it was the worst spot i ever got gas from with an ancient pump that was really dirty and may have been rusty.  it had handwritten signs on it with the price and instructions.  at $5 a gallon and 24.982 gallons, it was the most i ever spent on gas.  i know i didn't have to fill it up, though i either wanted to see how low it really was or didn't really worry once i started the pump.  on the coast, i saw nice views, explored a couple of spots, and spent the night at an overlook.
,mountain,exploremore,adventurelife,truckcamper,journal,roadtrippin,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,homeonwheels,blog,exploretocreate,wanderlust,optoutside,adventuremobile,starlapse,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,timelapse,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,stars,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,freedomthinkers,nature,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.11]

i woke up in california with the view of mount shasta out my window.  it was exciting to have made it there after five weeks of life on the road from chicagoland.  i got in my truck and headed towards mount shasta.. i took a road i saw on the map that looked like it went pretty well up the mountain.  i stopped on the way up at a spot with a great view of the top of the mountain, and then headed a little further to the parking lot at the end of the mountain road.  unlike some of my other mountain road experiences, this one was smooth and paved all the way to the top.. where it was wide open with a nice view.

i spent the day up there, just drinking in the silence and beauty.. at one point, i flew my kite for a bit but the wind died down so the flight was short (and it may have taken a while to clean up the mess of kite line if i recall). i moved my truck to the parking lot a few hundred feet down the road where i set up a time-lapse of the sun fading across mount shasta and the stars circling overnight.  it was nice that there were signs posted saying it was okay to camp for up to 72 hours.  a couple people in a vw van were also spending the night there.  it was really beautiful and serene being up on mount shasta.  it was a great first spot to visit in california.

this was another place that i hadn't heard of until a couple years before going on the trip.  it was there on the back burner or bucket list waiting for me to go on this journey across the country.  living life on the road or going on an extended road trip is a great way to see the country.  so many people go on short vacations and a lot of that time is wasted planning, packing, getting ready, waiting for flights, getting a rental car, going to a hotel, finding somewhere to eat, etc, etc.  traveling long term on the road can eliminate all of that and save a lot of money while allowing you to see so much more.  with today's technology, you could work online while traveling or find work on the road if you don't have enough saved up for the entire trip or want to continue longer (or permanently). it's totally doable and could be the adventure of a lifetime.
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,roadtrippin,water,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,waves,roadtrip,exploretocreate,wanderlust,optoutside,stayandwander,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,ocean,blog,dunes,sand,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,lifeontheroad,cliffs,beach,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.08]

it was another day exploring the oregon coast.  i took u.s. highway 101 south towards oregon dunes national recreational area and other spots that had sand dunes.  i stopped at some overlooks along the way to see more of the cliffs, rock formations, and coast.  one of the overlooks was near a lighthouse i'd seen during my first time to oregon though it was under construction this time.  the sand dunes were pretty nice.. i had seen some of them on a previous trip to oregon and got to see more this time.  it looks like i went to the campground a little earlier that afternoon.  perhaps i had to do some work or it started raining or something.  i went back to another spot in the dunes the following day before heading inland.
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,water,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,roadtrippin,fromabove,ocean,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,exploretocreate,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,stayandwander,sand,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,lifeontheroad,beach,kiteaerialphotography,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.05]

i made it to oregon this day.  i decided i wanted to make it to california by 10/10 as that would be a year since i had picked up my camper.  i know in the big picture, it really wouldn't be too big a deal if i made it that day or not, though it felt like it'd be a good milestone to have made it to california in the first year of having my camper.

before leaving washington, i took my kite for a test flight on the beach after getting a new spar, and then i went to check out the alaskan campers.  i had never seen them in person and was interested as the whole hard top would pop up (compared to my camper which had tent material around the top section when it popped-up).. it'd feel more secure when parking in the middle of unknown places overnight.  it's funny, i had just happened to be researching them the day before and saw that they were located not too far out of the way from my route this day.  it's awesome when the universe brings all the pieces perfectly together like that.  there are no such things as random 'coincidences'.. at some level, everything is always in perfect order, and when you're aligned with your purpose, you'll notice more things start to effortlessly fall into place for ya.

oregon was pretty nice.  i think it was on this day on my way to the coast in the afternoon.. that after going around a curve at one point, the temperature just dropped quite noticeably, by like ten degrees or something.  it was a little crazy how much and how quickly weather could vary and change on the west coast.  i checked into a campground at seaside and drove over to the beach before settling in for the evening.  the beach was developed though the sand area itself was pretty large, and there was a boardwalk between the buildings and beach.  it felt like it'd be nice to just hang around and explore the various beach towns and stay on the coast for a while.
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,water,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,freedomvessel,nationalpark,roadtrippin,ocean,adventuremobile,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,exploretocreate,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.02]

back in the united states after taking the ferry to canada the day before, i headed toward the coast.  i'd seen a sign somewhere pointing toward the northwesternmost point and decided to follow that.  when i got to the parking lot and started hiking toward the coast i saw a sign warning of bears or another potentially dangerous animal that could be wandering the area.  i felt a little concerned briefly as there was no one else there, though i invoked the divine and kept walking.  by the time i made it to the water i had forgotten about the sign.  it was quite spectacular to have made it to the pacific coast and neat to be at the northwesternmost point in the country.  it was pretty foggy and wet there and nearby.

i headed back inland a bit and then made my way to explore some other natural areas, some of which were part of olympic national park, and found a couple spots with nice views of the pacific ocean.  as it was getting dark i found a quiet spot to sleep off a small road that was part of the national park.  i think there were warnings of the possibility of bears in the area though i didn't have any issues.  it was good to find less traveled spots to sleep especially as the days were getting shorter and i'd be there longer during the night.  it was nice to stay in a unique spot and not have to check in or out of a campground nor book a reservation.
,mountains,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,park,journal,ontheroad,camper,optoutside,water,liveyouradventure,journey,nationalpark,stayandwander,exploretocreate,rvlife,wanderlust,rv,homeonwheels,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,getoutside,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.29]

my friend and i went to olympic national park after heading in to town for breakfast.  on the way up to hurricane ridge, we stopped at an overlook where a number of birds landed on my friend's arm and hand after she fed them pieces of a tortilla wrap.  there was a nice panoramic view when we got up to the top at hurricane ridge.  after taking it in for a little bit, we headed back to the nearby town and my friend showed me a spot by the water before we met one of her friend's.  we had planned to go to a full moon celebration or something that my friend wanted to go to though ended up at her friend's bar for too long, so we went with her friend to visit a couple of his friends and play games instead.  my friend offered to drive during our adventures that day.. it was a little weird to be in the passenger seat of my truck, but nice to have someone show me around the area (and get a little break from driving everywhere).
,exploretocreate,timelapse,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,park,journal,ontheroad,camper,optoutside,journey,nationalpark,cascades,stayandwander,hyperlapse,wanderlust,rv,starlapse,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,nationalforest,vlog,camping,roadtrip,blog,getoutside,liveoutdoors,stars,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.26]

after a couple nights camping by the bay, i decided to head back to the cascades.  the morning was really foggy.. on the way east i went to a park that had an overlook to check out the view of the landscape below.  i made a couple other stops to check out the river and mountain views on the way back toward the wilderness.  i took the road all the way to cascade pass in north cascades national park.  on my way in, i saw a nice overlook that had a view of some of the mountain range over the cascade river.  i thought perhaps i'd stay there for a time-lapse of the stars later.  when i got to cascade pass, i saw lots of snow or ice on parts of the mountains.

i don't recall if there was a sign at cascade pass saying no camping or if i didn't think the angle would be as good for a shot of the stars.. whatever the reason, i headed back to the spot i saw earlier in the forest and parked in the little area that was there on the side of the road shortly before it got dark.  it was a little cloudy at first, though the clouds passed by after a while and i got a nice shot of the stars and moonlit mountains that night.

it was nice to have the truck camper.. it was a landscape photographer's best tool.  i recall some of the times when i'd be all set up at spots like this for a shot of the stars overnight, i'd hear or see cars going by.. they'd still have to be making their way to wherever they were staying that evening and i was already set up for the night and didn't have to go anywhere.  having a comfortable bed and all the basics with me everywhere i went was really nice.. i recall times in the past when i would sleep in the front seat of my car shooting the stars and it was quite uncomfortable (and the only amenities i might have with me would be a drink or snack, if i happened to remember to pack something). i also remember times being pretty tired and making a long drive home at night when i'd rather just be sleeping (and briefly drifting into sleep while driving). some sort of rv or camper is definitely the way to go exploring.
,mountains,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,park,trees,liveyouradventure,journey,homeonwheels,nationalpark,blog,cascades,starlapse,getoutside,wanderlust,exploretocreate,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,timelapse,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,waterfall,liveoutdoors,stars,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,road,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.19]

sleeping under the stars, i woke up at ross lake national recreation area, and began exploring the area.  i found another nice overlook nearby and a waterfall further up the road.  this was a beautiful area that i never knew existed until i got there.  near the visitor center at north cascades national park, i went on a short walk to a spot where there was a view of the picket range.  i read the sign there that said the range was a number of miles away, a trek through complete wilderness.  i stood there in awe for a few moments as i felt a strong, chilling sense of the vast expanse of land and wilderness between where i was and the mountain range that looked like it was just right there.  the peaks didn't appear that far or large at first glance, and what looked like could've been small parts of one larger mountain were really the most rugged peaks in the contiguous united states, miles apart from each other.  this was another striking moment in realizing the vastness of nature and how small we are as humans.  i imagined what it must've been like just to get out to some place so remote without roads (and to the further peaks even deeper into the wilderness that i couldn't see).

afterwards, i headed west a bit and went up a dirt road to a trail.  i hoped to find a clear view of the mountain peaks to photograph, though from a girl i met who was working on the trail, it sounded like this wouldn't be the best spot for a clear shot.  going back down the windy dirt/rock road, my truck read slope angles of at least 11 degrees, or a 22% grade!  from the video clips, i may not have done it this time, though on some of these similar steep declines, i would put the truck in 4x4 low, which really helped to maintain a low speed without having to use or wear down the brakes on the descent.

this day marks a year of owning my truck.  it was nice to be on adventure out west with the truck and camper i had ordered the year before.  i had looked forward to this journey for some time.
#lifeontheroad #homeiswhereyouparkit #truckcamper #journey #travel #roadtrip #journal #vlog #blog #driving #nature #exploremore #getoutside #camper #camping #roadtrippin #stayandwander #camplife #homeonwheels #rv #rvlife #adventurelife #liveyouradventure #adventuremobile #campground #river #fourwheelcampers #fordf150 #ford #f150
four years ago today [2012.09.16]

i woke up on the side of the road in washington and took a short drive toward the campground i'd be staying at for a couple nights.  i got there early so i stopped at an overlook above the river where the campground was.  after checking in at the campground, picking a spot, and setting up my camper, i took out my folding bike and went for a ride to explore the area down the road.

back at the campground, i went for a walk down the trail to the river, and later in the afternoon i watched the sun set behind the nearby mountains or hills.  it was nice to take a little break from driving so much.. it'd been 3300 miles since i left my friend's place the first day.  after pretty much just cleaning myself with baby wipes the previous 9 days, it was also really nice to be able to take a shower and feel clean.  i don't recall what else i did that day.. i probably cooked soup or pasta for dinner, and most likely worked on the computer.
,camplife,nature,truckcamper,journal,ontheroad,park,liveyouradventure,journey,yellowstone,homeonwheels,nationalpark,blog,tetons,exploremore,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,exploretocreate,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrippin,roadtrip,stayandwander,getoutside,liveoutdoors,lifeontheroad,grandtetons,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.13]

having run out of propane in the middle of the night, with temperatures in the low 20’s, i worried about the water pipes freezing in the camper.  i got up at dawn and quickly headed down to a lower elevation where it'd be warmer.  there were no issues.. the inside temperature of the camper was probably over freezing from having had the heat on part of the night.  on my way out of yellowstone, i saw the sun rising and stopped to explore at a spot where i heard strange animal sounds/calls i had never heard before.  leaving yellowstone, i crossed the continental divide and was most of the way to the west coast.

i headed towards the grand tetons and saw it was pretty hazy due to recent fires.  i had breakfast when i got there, and went to the visitor center where i talked to a young park ranger about some of the areas to explore.  when she told me about one of the trails she’d recently been on, i remember her asking if i knew what to do if i saw a bear.. i think i said “don’t run?” and she gave me other suggestions.  i wandered about the park and found some nice lakes with views of the mountains.  it was nice to be in warmer temperatures than the night before.  it was crazy how much the temperature could change in the mountains.  it was in the low 20’s on this morning, when just 2-3 days prior it was 90 degrees, and the following day it’d be 85.  i saw more wildlife and on my way out of the park, went looking for the spot where ansel adams created his famous photograph from.  i met someone else there who said he thought it was just down a little bit from the overlook where we were.

after leaving the park, i crossed teton pass, a 10% grade climb up to a nearly 1.6 mile elevation.. i only got 5.1 mpg driving up it.  i dropped down to 2nd and then 1st gear on the descent, which my truck read as 6 degrees, or a 12% grade.. the engine was loud but i didn’t have to wear down the brakes nor experience the 4 tons of truck and camper quickly accelerating out of control down the winding road.  it was good to know my rig could handle the mountain roads, and fun to encounter drives i didn’t know would be part of the adventure.
blog,camper,camping,devilstower,driving,exploremore,f150,fields,fordf150,fourwheelcampers,getoutside,hike,homeiswhereyouparkit,instagram,journal,journey,land,lifeontheroad,nature,park,roadtrip,rocks,rv,starlapse,stars,timelapse,trail,travel,truckcamper,vlog,wanderlust,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.10]

on this day i woke up just outside of devil's tower national monument.  i think i had seen a photo or something of it not that long before this trip and thought it'd be neat to go out there.  it was awesome to be exploring and seeing these places i wanted to visit.  i went into the park and explored some of the trails in the morning and then headed back into south dakota on the not so direct route to montana via north dakota.  i stopped at a green spot on the map there, just outside of theodore roosevelt national park, where i saw some interesting landscapes.

in a lot of places i visited or drove through, i felt i could've stayed longer and explored more, though i wanted to keep on heading west to stay on track to make it to the west coast before it got colder (as i had begun the journey much later than i originally wanted to). in the future i'd eliminate as many constraints as possible to being open for spontaneity.  i faced a few limitations, like non-existent phone service when a web application client decided they want much more than they originally asked for, having paid a lot for a campground membership that was running out with locations only on the west coast states, and having left when it was already starting to get cold in some places in my journey.  next time, i wouldn't drive as much each day and would see how i feel during the journey rather than sticking to a pretty rigid plan.

i did this a little later for part of the trip and would enjoy doing it the whole time.  life is so much nicer when we're relaxed and in the present moment rather than thinking we need to follow a certain plan.

allowing ourselves to be more flexible and spontaneous opens us up to new opportunities.  the day before this when i was at the tour at wind’s cave national park (which going there wasn’t part of my plan), i recall i was in the elevator with the young park ranger who gave the tour, and i think after everyone else had gotten out, she said something about being hungry (wanting pizza or something).. had i been more flexible and spontaneous, i could’ve asked if she wanted to join me for dinner and perhaps made a new friend.

[from california to florida]

[from california to florida]

[from california to florida]

[from california to florida]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

 

this is a compilation of all 72 days of the journey i took from chicagoland to california and then to florida, from september 6th to november 16th in 2012. this is running at 5x the normal speed (otherwise it’d be around 19.5 hours long). it includes all of the following parts:

– from chicagoland to california [a five week adventure]
– life in california [three and a half weeks]
– from california to florida [just under two weeks]

[...]
,homeonwheels,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,water,liveyouradventure,journey,freedomvessel,blog,exploretocreate,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,adventuremobile,gulf,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,sand,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,beach,nationalseashore,writing
four years ago today [2012.11.15]

i woke up at a rest area in mississippi, less than 15 miles from the alabama border.  i headed east and stopped when i got to the florida welcome center.  i was going to be meeting a friend who lived in pensacola though was early so i waited a little while at the rest area.  a while back, another friend had told me they serve orange juice at the welcome center.. i may have gone in to see if they had any though i don't remember.  after meeting my friend for brunch at a local restaurant, i headed over to pensacola beach and the gulf islands national seashore.  it was really beautiful to explore the beach on the seashore.  after experiencing so much cold weather out west, i really appreciated the warm florida sunshine.  the water and bright sand was really nice, though it was a bit loud from the naval planes flying overhead.. they flew in formation like i'd seen them do at air shows.

i headed east from the national seashore to check out a really big monolithic dome home.  i had just discovered these domes for the first time a couple days earlier in texas when i spontaneously decided to check them out, and there happened to be one on my way home in florida.  this home survived hurricane ivan in 2004 while the adjoining houses on the beach were destroyed.  after seeing the dome, i was going to take the road on the island to the next exit or all the way to the next town if possible, though it was closed so i had to head back to the peninsula.  i made my way back and then headed east along the coast, taking u.s. highway 98 or the smaller local roads when they existed.  i passed through seaside as it was getting dark.. it would've been nice to stay there though there may have been signs with parking rules or i didn't want to draw attention to the camper.  i drove for almost two more hours and spent the night in a parking lot near the mouth of st joseph bay.  i still had a day's worth of driving ahead of me before i'd get home, though was glad to be back in florida.  my truck drank much less gas driving on the flat land compared to the mountainous terrain out west, and i enjoyed the beauty of the warm sun and gulf coast beaches.
,earthship,exploremore,adventurelife,truckcamper,journal,liveyouradventure,journey,freedomvessel,nationalpark,blog,gorge,exploretocreate,wanderlust,optoutside,adventuremobile,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,nature,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,dunes,sand,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,rainbow,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.11.09]

after waking up in a parking lot, i got on the interstate and headed towards taos.  i was excited to go check out the earthships there.  i had first seen one in a book a number of years ago, shortly after i had moved to chicago i believe.  i had a bit of a drive ahead of me as i was still west of albuquerque.

i stopped at the rio grande gorge bridge just a little west of the earthship visitor center.  there was a nice, unique feeling in the air.. perhaps it was due to being a pretty high elevation, near 7000 ft above sea level, or it was just the energy of the surrounding land.  i went to the earthship visitor center and explored for a little while.  the girl there was nice and offered to show me one of the smaller simple survival models had i been staying around, though i had to get on the road.  had i known i didn't have to go up to chicago until later, i would've been able to take my time on the journey back to florida.  it would've been nice to check out the other earthship and connect with the girl who worked there.  this is another time on the trip where needing to stick to a rigid plan prevented me from being spontaneous and making a new friend.

after leaving, i headed north and saw a couple of rainbows to the east before crossing the colorado border.  i was on my way over to the great sand dunes national park and preserve.. i never knew there were sand dunes in colorado until i found it on the map when i was looking for places to explore in the state.  there was an interesting, unique feeling to colorado.  perhaps it was the high elevation and the low angle of the sun.. i recall the light appearing quite unlike anything else i had seen (perhaps it was that it'd been a long time since i'd been up north in the winter, and this rapid change in light over just a couple days appeared more drastic).

i got to the park where i explored a little bit, got some photos of the dunes and clouds, and saw another rainbow as i was leaving.  i was going to meet a friend who was living in the middle of the state though he ended up being unavailable, so i headed east to continue the journey to florida.
,homeonwheels,timelapse,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,liveyouradventure,canyon,journey,freedomvessel,nationalpark,blog,exploretocreate,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,adventuremobile,starlapse,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,stars,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.11.06]

i woke up at the edge of the grand canyon before dawn.  i headed over to another nearby overlook to photograph the sun's rays lighting the canyon as it rose.  i then went over to point imperial where i discovered a beautiful view of the canyon.  it was filled with fog or smoke from recent fires, and the formations in the canyon seemed to go far off into the distance.  before leaving, i went to bright angel point, and found the whole canyon there filled with thick smoke from the fires.  i had to wait a little bit to leave the park as the rangers made sure the road out was clear.

on my way to bryce canyon, i headed back to utah and stopped at some rock formations i saw at the side of the road in the dixie national forest.  it was nice to find beautiful red rocks on my way to the national park.  the landscape of the west was so nice to drive through.. each little bit was unique in its own way.  i made it to bryce canyon in the afternoon and quickly explored all the overlooks before the end of the day.  there were lots of tourists at some of the spots.. i had seen professional photos of bryce canyon a long time ago and always thought the shots were taken somewhere remote or after a hike, and discovered most of the overlooks were very close to the parking lot with the spectacular views right there.  the light was really brilliant and soft after the sun went down.. the colors in the sky and canyon below were magnificent.

i remember thinking of photographing the stars at bryce canyon though i didn't think i would be able to get the angle or shot i wanted from where i would've been able to set up the camera on top of the camper.  i know i could've set up a shorter shot without plugging the camera into the camper, though it was getting pretty cold even at sunset, and i don't think i had a jacket or coat with me on the trip.  i headed over to grand staircase-escalante national monument instead.  it was a dark, bumpy, long, and winding dirt road, sometimes right at the edge of cliffs.  early in i encountered water on the road and almost wondered if i should keep going as i’d seen a warning about flooding at the entrance.
,exploremore,adventuremobile,nature,truckcamper,journal,optoutside,liveyouradventure,journey,freedomvessel,nationalpark,cactus,desert,exploretocreate,rvlife,wanderlust,rv,homeonwheels,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.11.03]

i woke up in palm desert at the campground by the interstate, and continued to explore the desert.  i took a short drive over to joshua tree national park where i spent most of the day.

on one of the roads i noticed an interesting little desert plant with bright yellow arms, the cholla cactus.  i wanted to get a photo or video clip of one.. i missed a couple of them i had seen while driving though didn't turn back, hoping i'd still see more.  not too much further up the road i discovered a spot with hundreds of them all around.  i set up my tall tripod / light stand with my camera and spun it around for a degree video clip of the whole area.  after doing so, i went back to the camper and grabbed the motor i had for 360x180 photos and put the camera on that to get a much smoother video clip.  i went through a few iterations of experimentation and finally ended up with the camera rotating on the motor all the way at the maximum height of the stand with the extension pole on there, 25 feet in the air.  it took an hour to do all the variations of the technique i tried, including a few still shots.  i hadn't really done too much experimentation during the trip.. i'd been so busy shooting video clips and time-lapses for these films that i barely took still photos, 360x180 degree little planet photos, or anything else.  it was good to get to play a little bit with the techniques.

afterwards, i continued driving further into the park and saw the joshua trees.  i explored both of the main roads in the park and left shortly before the sun set.  i then made my way up toward mojave national preserve and got there after it was dark.  i found a spot where it looked like there was an opening or narrow path, and backed the truck into there to spend the night.
,exploremore,stars,adventurelife,nature,truckcamper,exploretocreate,journal,liveyouradventure,journey,roadtrippin,stayandwander,adventuremobile,fallfoliage,wanderlust,optoutside,homeonwheels,starlapse,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,timelapse,vlog,lake,roadtrip,blog,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,tahoe,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.21]

sleeping under the stars at lake tahoe, i woke up in the morning to explore a little before making my way to a campground not that far away.  it was windy that day with small white crests on the lake’s water.  along the highway to the campground i saw more yellow-leaved trees.  it was nice to get to experience a bit of the fall weather after just having been in summer temperatures a couple or few days earlier.  when checking in at the campground, the girl said we'd be getting a little snow though it wasn't going to stick.  being that it'd be near or below freezing, i didn't leave my water hose hooked up overnight.  the spot i stayed at was interesting.. it was a big parking area next to large rocks.  i went for a bike ride to a pond at the campground and recall it being pretty cold.  i don't recall what else i did.. perhaps i worked on the computer or just stayed inside the camper for warmth.
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,roadtrippin,coast,water,liveyouradventure,journey,seashore,waves,ocean,exploretocreate,wanderlust,optoutside,stayandwander,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,freedomthinkers,nationalseashore,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.16]

i woke up at my first campground in california this day.  for lunch, i headed to town for a sub before making my way back toward the coast.  i remember it being nice and warm as i sat outside eating.  it was really great to get to experience some pleasant temperatures after all the cold days i'd been in earlier in the trip.

i made it over to point reyes national seashore late in the afternoon.  i remember visiting there when i first went to california nearly a decade earlier.. it was so amazing to experience what felt like thousands of miles of waves and wind hitting the coast.  i went back on this trip to explore and experience it again.  it was extremely windy near the lighthouse area and somewhere out there i lost the wind screen for my microphone.  when i realized it, i took a few steps back to look for it before deciding it was a lost cause with so much wind.  i drove to and explored parts of the seashore i hadn't seen the first time there.. it was all really beautiful.  it was getting dark so i spent the night in a parking lot and would explore more in the morning.
,exploremore,adventurelife,nature,truckcamper,exploretocreate,journal,trees,liveyouradventure,journey,nationalpark,roadtrippin,hyperlapse,wanderlust,optoutside,stayandwander,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,timelapse,vlog,roadtrip,blog,talltrees,freedomthinkers,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,redwoods,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.13]

i woke up in redwood national park today and went for a short drive up the road where i found a nice grove of trees.  i had seen the tall trees once before and was struck in awe by their beauty and presence.  i was excited to get to see them again, and at a new place i'd never been before (and one that wasn't crowded with tourists either). walking in the woods that morning was really nice.. the light, cool rain added to the experience of being in the forest of giant trees.  after exploring for a bit, i hopped in the truck and went to check out some of the neighboring park areas and then head south along the coast.  my truck got pretty dirty that day when wandering through one of the parks on a wet dirt road.  after finding some nice spots along the coast, i continued along u.s. highway 101 as it went further inland, and spent the night at a rest area just outside the avenue of giants.
,mountain,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,homeonwheels,nationalpark,roadtrippin,crater,wanderlust,optoutside,exploretocreate,starlapse,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,timelapse,vlog,lake,roadtrip,blog,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,stars,lifeontheroad,freedomthinkers,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.10]

i slept under the stars at crater lake and then went for another drive around the park to explore in the morning.  it was really amazing waking up at dawn and seeing the sun rise across the lake.  it was so serene and beautiful.  i drove all the way back out to the pinnacles overlook again, and then circled back around the lake before heading south toward ashland.  on my way to the pinnacles, i found a nice spot with a small waterfall.. a lot of the national parks have many beautiful areas waiting to be discovered.  many tourists might just go look at the main attractions, though there is often so much more to explore.  one could easily get lost for days or weeks in a single park.

i made it to ashland in the afternoon and had a look at the pacific domes manufactured there.  i was considering various options for living at the time.. i wanted to get my own land and have a home base between adventures.  these domes came in a lot of different sizes and material though weren't as permanent as other geodesic domes.  after seeing the factory and a dome that was used as a greenhouse, i went up the road to see a couple more at jackson wellsprings.  while walking there, i felt an amazing energy from a girl who i saw sitting in the distance.  i also felt a great energy standing at the doorway of one of the domes that was their goddess temple.  part of me wanted to stay for a bit to explore or meet others, though i got back on the road so i could make it to california.  i think this was one of the times when the divine was telling me to relax and be more spontaneous rather than stick to the exact plans i had.

i headed south and crossed the border to california.  it was exciting to get there.. a year ago this day i got my camper and had made it to california in the first year of owning it.  it was day 35 of life on the road and i finally had made it.  crossing the border, i saw a large mountain in the background, mount shasta.  it was a bit crazy.. it was nearly 50 miles from the border and appeared so big in the distance.  i made it close to mount shasta at dusk and spent the night on the side of a dirt road near the interstate.
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,offroad,water,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,roadtrippin,cape,ocean,exploretocreate,wanderlust,optoutside,stayandwander,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,dunes,sand,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,lifeontheroad,beach,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.07]

i took the path down onto the beach and drove up to the large dune at cape kiwanda state park this morning. i parked the truck a little bit aways and decided to go hike up it to have a look from there. this was one of those times where i wasn't really thinking or planning, but just continuing to explore while i was there experiencing the beauty of the place. the whole hike ended up being a couple hours and i probably didn't have any water with me. i just kept going further as i saw how much there was to explore. it was really amazing to see the views from the dunes and cape. after being gone for a while, i started to worry a little about my truck.. i had parked away from the water though didn't know if the tides would be rising and how much. i preferred the salt water stay far from it. i didn't have any issues but it was something that crossed my mind after realizing i was gone for a while and didn't know how much longer it'd be 'til i got back (especially as i couldn't see the truck most of the time i was up on the cape). afterwards, i drove north a bit on the beach to the next spot i could get on the road, and found someone stuck in the sand at the exit. i got out of my truck and helped give some direction as to which way to turn the wheel and whether to go forward or backwards, and they got out after a little bit. i then headed south and explored more of the coast on my way to the next campground. one of the parks i wandered through had some nice winding dirt roads through the hill or mountain.. some parts were pretty narrow and i decided to turn around (after having to drive backwards to the closest fork in the road) when i saw the path getting narrower with a log up on both sides of the road. from where i sat, it appeared like the log might rub against the truck and i had already heard some branches scratching against my truck or camper on the way in and didn’t want to risk any more.. luckily there was little to no damage from the branches.
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,water,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,roadtrippin,campground,ocean,adventuremobile,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,exploretocreate,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,stayandwander,sand,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,lifeontheroad,beach,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.04]

i spent this day at the campground by the beach.  i walked out to the beach a couple times and saw some vehicles in the distance.  the day before, i had seen plenty of tire tracks but no sign of anyone else there.  it was still amazing how wide and empty the beach and path to it was.  so many beaches i had been to before had been pretty narrow and were often filled with homes or some sort of development right there.  this was very different and quite beautiful to be wide open and natural.  it was almost like i was in a dream walking by myself a long way completely surrounded by nature.

the campground was pretty quiet.. there was only one other rv in the back part where i was staying.  i briefly chatted with the guy staying there who would often go to this campground.  he mentioned how it'd be really wet and unbearable in the winter.  i was glad to have discovered it before winter.. the walk in nature to explore the beach was the best part of being there.

looking back at what i had written in my journal/blog this day, it looks like i was almost done with the revisions for the web application i was working on at the time, so that would help free up attention and energy to be able to enjoy the exploration a bit more.  i was also feeling excited to be living the dream of traveling out west.  it was almost a month that i had been living life on the road.  yes, there were ups and downs, though it was great to be realizing a vision/dream i had previously chosen.  you can live the life you desire and follow your dreams, and it feels great to do so!
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,roadtrippin,park,water,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,freedomvessel,lifeontheroad,stayandwander,adventuremobile,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,exploretocreate,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,ferry,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.01]

this day i left my truck and camper behind as i boarded a ship to spend a day in canada.  my friend had told me about the ferry that went from the nearby town to victoria and i decided to check it out.  i got up at dawn and made it just in time to board before the first ship left.  i think i was a little worried leaving my truck and camper all day in the middle of a town i didn't know.  i literally was leaving the country and leaving everything (except one camera and my phone) behind in the truck camper.  i had all of my data with me as i had carried it to chicagoland for the summer.. pretty much my whole life was in there.

when i got to canada and handed them my passport, they pulled me off to the side for a minute to check it before stamping it.  perhaps i looked strange as a guy entering their country alone, carrying nothing, and being so far from home.  i walked a little around the downtown area in victoria and then made my way over to beacon hill park where i could see the olympic mountains back in the united states.  at this park i remember overhearing or speaking with a girl who worked there who had a nice canadian accent.  i then found a local restaurant and had lunch before going back to another park on the water.  i explored there and circled around along the water back to the port to wait for the next ferry to arrive.  after taking the long ferry ride back to the states, i got back in my truck and camper and headed a little west to find a spot in or near olympic park where i could park for the night before it got dark.
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,park,journal,ontheroad,camper,optoutside,water,liveyouradventure,journey,ferry,bay,exploretocreate,rvlife,wanderlust,rv,homeonwheels,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,stayandwander,getoutside,liveoutdoors,lifeontheroad,freedomthinkers,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.28]

i took my truck and camper on its first ferry ride and was on my way to the coast this day.  it was exciting to be heading further west and starting this next part of the voyage.  the ferry ride was nice and saved at least a couple hours of driving over going all the way around seattle and tacoma to the other side of the peninsula.

the town on the other side of the bay looked nice as i drove through.  i stopped at a local park and then made my way over to the dungeness national wildlife refuge before meeting a friend who lived nearby.  it was a really beautiful at the refuge.. i explored and stayed for a little while.  i remember the water making nice sounds as it washed onto and away from the rocks or shells on shore.

that evening i met my friend for dinner and then we went to a oneness meditation.  it was a little crazy that the oneness meditation was being held in such a remote area on the very day i happened to be going there.. just the day before i was curious if there'd be one somewhere along my journey, and i looked online to find out it was going to be practically right next door to where i was going the following day (and was something my friend would be interested in too). it's funny how the divine works like that.  afterwards, my friend and i gathered some firewood for a nice fire and chat back at her friend's place where she was housesitting.
,mountains,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,exploretocreate,journal,discovertheroad,park,trees,switchbacks,liveyouradventure,journey,offroad,stayandwander,dirtroad,hyperlapse,wanderlust,homeonwheels,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,timelapse,vlog,roadtrip,blog,getoutside,liveoutdoors,switchback,lifeontheroad,road,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.21]

i left the campground and filled up one of the containers of propane for the first time.  it'd be good to have it ready to go so i could easily switch it out if the current one ran out again when it was cold.  i then headed back east towards the north cascades to sauk mountain.  it was a bumpy, winding switchback dirt road up to the top.  i don't remember if the girl i had run into a couple days before told me about it or if i had found out from someone else or just seen it on the map.  it was pretty steep and a bit of journey to get up and down it.  on the way up, i got 4.1 mpg and on the way down 44.4 mpg.  on the way down, i had the truck in 2nd or 3rd gear in 4x4 low so i wouldn't have to brake most of the way.  at the parking lot up top, i could see the peaks of nearby mountains over the top of the low clouds.

i then headed back west and north toward the canadian border.  in the middle of the day i discovered that most of my electrical components were not received power.  it was a friday and i didn't know if i'd be able to get ahold of the camper manufacturer or dealer.  i had just bought a lot of refrigerated food, and ended up drinking a lot of carrot juice that day or the next.  i didn't know what was wrong and if i was going to have to find some place to get it fixed while on my trip.  luckily i heard back from the dealer the next day who said it might be the gfi switch that got bumped.  i didn't even know there was a switch at the bottom of the breaker box, though it did the trick.  something must've hit it on the way up or down the winding switchbacks.  i ended up staying at a rest area a little south of the border, and wrote about my frustrations of being on the road (and life) that evening.  there was certainly a bit of a learning experience to be had when traveling across the country in a camper.
#lifeontheroad #homeiswhereyouparkit #truckcamper #journey #travel #roadtrip #journal #vlog #blog #driving #road #nature #haze #smoke #mountains #cascades #trees #park #stars #starlapse #timelapse #exploremore #getoutside #wanderlust #exploretocreate #liveoutdoors #stayandwander #homeonwheels #liveyouradventure #discovertheroad
four years ago today [2012.09.18]

after spending a couple nights at the first campground on the trip, i was back on the road.  i stopped at a town up the road, wenatchee, and discovered a nice little local grocery store.  it had lots of healthy and specialty foods that i’d never seen before.  i ended up trying quite a bit and liked most, if not all, of what i had discovered.  there was a really nice girl who worked there that told me about a good hike to lake ann when i mentioned heading over to the north cascades national park.  i didn’t end up going to that part of the park though it was nice to meet friendly people along my journey.

on the way to the park, i saw lots of haze and smoke from recent fires.  when getting up into higher elevations, i began to find some breathtaking views of the mountains, some of which still had a little snow or ice on them.  after leaving an overlook, i kept heading down the road to see what else i would find.  i wanted to stop at a nice spot where i could photograph the stars over the mountains.  i almost regretted leaving the area where i was as i wasn’t seeing anything for a while.  a bit later, i found one spot along the side of the road a little later though it wasn’t quite what i was looking for.. less than ten minutes up the road, i found a nice spot overlooking ross lake just as the day was ending.  i spent the night here sleeping under the stars.
#lifeontheroad #homeiswhereyouparkit #truckcamper #journey #travel #roadtrip #journal #vlog #blog #driving #nature #exploremore #getoutside #wanderlust #ontheroad #optoutside #roadtrippin #exploretocreate #liveoutdoors #stayandwander #camplife #homeonwheels #park #rvlife #adventurelife #discovertheroad #hyperlapse #nomadiclife #nationalforest #trees
four years ago today [2012.09.15]

i woke up this day at the rest stop just over the oregon border and explored some of eastern oregon.  i had never been to this part of the state and it was very different than the northwestern part i'd previously seen.. it had a very dry feel to it like the states i had just been in.  perhaps it was due to the drought that year, though there still seemed to be a different feeling in the air.. i recall signs of or the feel of old western culture like i'd seen in some places on the way there.

i drove through a national forest or two, and made a couple short stops there on my way to washington.  the day before i had booked my first campground stay, and i made it almost all the way there after leaving oregon.  i slept on the side of the road a little over half an hour away.  after ten days on the road, it was going to be nice to take a little break the following day.
,camplife,nature,truckcamper,journal,ontheroad,park,liveyouradventure,waterfall,yellowstone,homeonwheels,nationalpark,blog,exploremore,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,geyser,exploretocreate,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,vlog,roadtrippin,roadtrip,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,lifeontheroad,journey,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.12]

i woke up at dawn and headed into yellowstone national park.  i think i was told it'd take eight hours to drive the whole loop though decided to do it anyway.  i think i stopped at most of the main locations around the loop for at least a little bit.  at one of the areas i decided to go on a hike down a trail where i only saw one other person.  part of me was a little concerned as there could be bears in the area, though i had no encounters or issues.  it ended up being nice exploring an area that felt pretty remote as most spots in the park had other tourists.

i made it around the loop and to old faithful around dusk.  someone had said it wasn't going to be that long for it to go off, so i walked around and waited a bit.  it was getting really cold and was pretty dark, though after having waited so long already, i figured i might as well stay as it couldn't be that much longer.  i ended up waiting over an hour for it to go off.  it was pretty neat and went really high in the air.

freezing after having waited so long for the old faithful geyser at yellowstone to off, i spent the night in the parking lot there.  i think there were signs saying no overnight parking or camping or something, and i had seen buffalo wandering in a nearby parking lot, so i kept the top down and slept on the roll over couch rather than the bed over the cab.  i was still on my first propane tank and had wondered how long it would last.  this night, the coldest night of life on the road so far, i found out what happened when it ran out.  in the middle of the night i woke up hearing the heater just clicking every so often like it was trying to start but not igniting.  most of my bedding was up under the closed pop up top.. i only had one small blanket and it was below freezing outside.  i didn't go outside to figure out how to switch out the tank and just tried to stay warm and make it through the night.  the next morning, the temperature was well below freezing, something like 21 or 23 degrees.
badlands,bison,blog,buffalo,camper,camping,cave,driving,f150,fordf150,fourwheelcampers,homeiswhereyouparkit,hyperlapse,instagram,journal,journey,lifeontheroad,nationalpark,nature,overlook,park,roadtrip,rockformations,rv,starlapse,stars,timelapse,travel,truckcamper,vlog,wildlife,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.09]

on this morning i woke up on sheep mountain table in the badlands.  i had spent the night sleeping under the stars with my camera photographing them all night.  i explored the area a little more before continuing on my journey west.  when planning the route toward washington, i decided to zig-zag my way across the map so i could visit all the northern states on the way there.  this day i took a slight detour out of south dakota into nebraska.  i would look for green spots on the map to go visit.  after either having lunch or a bathroom break at one of these green spots in nebraska, i headed back to south dakota on the way towards wyoming.

while in nebraska, i learned that the google maps app on my old phone might know better than me.  i had seen what looked like a shortcut that it wasn't telling me to take.  when i attempted to follow this road, the dirt path went up a pretty steep hill in the middle of what seemed to be a field.  i decided to try to follow it anyway as i had already started going that way.. i ended up having to put my truck into 4x4 low and then go up backwards back over the hill just to get out when i saw there wasn't a road or path on the other side.

i explored a couple places along my route in south dakota and decided to check out wind's cave national park when i saw it on the map.  i took a tour in one of the caves, and then drove up through one of the nearby state parks where i saw some more buffalo that were also right on the road like in the badlands.  i wanted to make my way towards devil's tower to photograph the stars over it, though i recall it being a bit of a drive and i think i was getting tired plus i didn't know if i was going to be able to find a spot with a good view that i could park at all night.  i'm glad i decided to keep going and made it there.. when i arrived, i found a spot along the side of the road just outside the national monument with a clear shot of the tower.

[from california to florida]

[from california to florida]

[from california to florida]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

 

these are all the star-lapses i shot on the journey i took from chicagoland to california and then to florida, between september and november of 2012

,homeonwheels,urban,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,optoutside,liveyouradventure,journey,freedomvessel,blog,exploretocreate,rvlife,wanderlust,rv,adventuremobile,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,domes,roadtrip,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,road,writing
four years ago today [2012.11.12]

i woke up on the side of the road in oklahoma.  it'd be another long day of driving.. i was going to meet friends and family who lived in austin.  driving south of dallas, i noticed a lot of domes on the other side of the interstate.  i thought of stopping to check them out but didn't decide quickly enough to take the exit that was right there.  still wanting to have a look, i got off at the next exit, less than two miles up the road.  i'd been thinking of building a geodesic dome or other unique or earth-friendly home, and it was awesome to see these monolithic domes right off the interstate.  i explored one of the little cabins they had and then went to the visitor center.  a girl there took me on a tour of one of the homes.. it had been built a while back and had older styling inside, though was great to learn how resilient the domes were (with a lifespan that was measured in centuries). and it was funny to see them as i was going to be meeting someone else the next day to look at concrete earth-sheltered homes he built.  the girl who gave me the tour had a really interesting energy.  it felt quite alien, unlike anyone else i'd met.. i'm not sure if it was a texan vibe.. it seemed to be more of something in her level of awareness.

i headed south and stopped for a short break at a rest stop before meeting a couple friends who had moved to austin.  it'd been a while since i'd seen them, and i didn't realize they had broken up when i had written a message to both of them together.  they were still friends so it was okay, and the way their schedules worked out, most of the time only one of them was at the restaurant at a time.  it was great to see them and catch up.  we had some great conversations, especially with one of my friends whom i connected with about consciousness, spirituality, and higher awareness.  it felt great to open up and connect with someone i had known before my spiritual journey who understood and got what i was talking about.  after leaving, i contacted my uncle and aunt who lived nearby.. they were still awake so i went over to their place and we chatted for a bit before getting to sleep.
,exploremore,adventurelife,nature,truckcamper,journal,offroad,liveyouradventure,canyon,journey,freedomvessel,nationalpark,stayandwander,exploretocreate,wanderlust,optoutside,homeonwheels,starlapse,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,timelapse,vlog,roadtrip,blog,getoutside,nomadiclife,adventuremobile,stars,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,liveoutdoors,writing
four years ago today [2012.11.08]

i awoke overlooking the grand canyon.  i recall it being a windy night as i photographed the stars over the moonlit canyon.  as dawn broke, i explored the overlooks and saw the park in the morning light.. i hadn't had much time to see it when i arrived the afternoon before.

i then headed south a bit to sedona, and drove down the very bumpy and winding schnebly hill road.  this rock road was the worst one on my trip.. i had driven it years before in a car (that was bottoming out) and an suv.  i went back to visit as it was such a beautiful area.. though it felt different this time, and was not as exciting as my earlier times there.  i had thought of photographing the stars off the rock road, though there were signs saying no camping and it was forecast to rain, so i headed to town for a meal with cactus fries and then kept going.  i had photographed the stars there on previous trips (while sleeping uncomfortably in a car) so it wasn't too bad to skip it this trip.  i drove north on arizona state route 89a and stopped at the oak creek vista to see the views of the canyon and winding roads below.  it was pretty windy up there and rained when i was back on the road.  i got on the interstate and made my way east to new mexico.  rather than look for a spot on the side of the small road somewhere, i spent the night in a parking lot at a walmart i'd seen right off the interstate.. if this is the time i'm thinking, it was loud with the sounds of noisy diesel truck engines running all night not too far off in the distance.  in the morning, i'd make my way over to taos to check out the earthships.
,homeonwheels,timelapse,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,liveyouradventure,canyon,journey,freedomvessel,nationalpark,blog,exploretocreate,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,adventuremobile,starlapse,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,stars,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.11.05]

i slept in zion canyon under the stars spinning overhead.  i explored more of the park as i hadn't had much time after arriving the afternoon before.  it was a really amazing and beautiful place.  i went on a couple of short hikes in the canyon area and saw trees with brilliant yellow, orange, and red leaves before taking the tunnel east out of the park.  past the tunnel, i was surrounded by nice rock formations on the road toward the east entrance.

i drove back to arizona to check out the north rim of the grand canyon and got there with not much daylight left.  i made it to cape royal and angel's window as the sun was going down.  when i walked out to the first overlook, i remember being struck in awe.  it was so inspiring and magnificent to be there.  it was really silent, the light was beautiful, and there was no one else there.  it was a breathtaking experience.  i took it all in quickly and ran to the next spot before the sun went down.  after i was at the first spot for a little bit, a park ranger came by to say they were closing the main road out in a little while due to the recent fires.

i remember reading one of the signs that really opened my eyes up to how enormous the canyon actually was.  i don't remember the exact numbers it said, though when i read how many miles away some of the features or other side of the canyon was and that the large rock formation that looked like it was right there was also a couple miles away, i was struck in awe just as much as i was (if not more than) by the beauty when i first got out to the angel's window overlook.  it was really amazing how i perceived the sense of scale before and after knowing how far it really was.  i knew the grand canyon was big but wasn't thinking of it when i was memorized by its beauty.  when what looked like was right there was really far away, it meant the canyon and formations were really much deeper and grander than it had first appeared from where i stood.

after it was getting dark, i drove up a little to a nearby overlook where the parking lot was right by the edge, and i set up a time-lapse shot of the stars over the canyon below.
,exploremore,camplife,nature,truckcamper,journal,optoutside,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,freedomvessel,nationalpark,campground,stayandwander,adventuremobile,rvlife,wanderlust,rv,exploretocreate,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.27]

i headed south to pinnacles national park and explored there before going to another campground near the park.  i remember it being warm, in the 80's, during my hiking and exploration of the park.  i went on a long trail around a lot of the park.. it was interesting to wander there and see its unique landscape.  near the end of my hike, i found a cave which was pitch black in some parts.  it was interesting to be walking through and not be able to see a thing, only hearing water running inside and feeling the cool air, as i found my way to the next room/area inside.  it must be an amazing experience to be exploring some of the really large, deep caves in the world and turn off your lights and just sit and experience the silence and darkness in such a remote place.

the campground i went to had a whole section that was empty.  i picked a spot out there and had the whole place to myself.  i'd be staying a couple nights and working on the computer most of the time so it was nice to be somewhere quiet.
,timelapse,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,exploretocreate,journal,roadtrippin,liveyouradventure,journey,homeonwheels,blog,fallfoliage,wanderlust,optoutside,tahoe,adventuremobile,starlapse,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,lake,roadtrip,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,stars,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.20]

after leaving san francisco the day before, i decided to go out to lake tahoe.  i was going to be checking out a custom truck camper manufacturer i had never seen before in person though it was the weekend so needed somewhere to hang around for a couple days.  a while back, a friend had shown me pictures of his trip to tahoe and told me how nice it was.. it was a bit of a spontaneous decision when i decided to head over there.  luckily, there were campgrounds near my route that were part of the network i had a membership to.  i woke up at the campground i stopped at the night before and headed east toward nevada.  the area near the campground i left had a nice feel to it if it's where i'm remembering.

lake tahoe and the nearby area was really beautiful.  i saw fall foliage at one of the spots i found.. the yellow-leaved trees across a field with mountain background were gorgeous.  they were so golden and a pleasant surprise this day.  i drove to the nevada side and explored a few spots by the lake.  while at one of them, a small beach if i recall, i got a call from an old friend who was really down, facing a break up and divorce.  i'd been wondering what i wanted to do on the road and had been missing a community.  i had left a really beautiful spiritual community i'd discovered that summer at the flowering heart center in chicagoland, and also missed some of the fun times hanging out or 'working' with the friend whose business i was help expand up there.  when my friend from florida called in need of help, i thought perhaps i'd head back there after exploring california.  i was also getting tired of driving so much and the camper was small for full time living, especially the times i didn't pop up the top.  i did see a lot of beautiful and stunning places along my journey, though i was a little lonely being by myself the whole time.  the few days i spent time with friends somewhere on the route were nice.

i drove around and explored the lake as dusk approached.  i went looking for a place i could photograph the stars over the water from.. i think i ended up driving far and backtracking, though found a nice spot.
,lifeontheroad,homeiswhereyouparkit,truckcamper,journey,travel,roadtrip,journal,vlog,blog,nature,coast,ocean,kiteaerialphotography,waves,timelapse,hyperlapse,exploremore,getoutside,wanderlust,optoutside,exploretocreate,liveoutdoors,stayandwander,homeonwheels,liveyouradventure,roadtrippin,nomadiclife,freedomthinkers,adventurelife,discovertheroad
four years ago today [2012.10.15]

waking to the sounds of the pacific ocean waves crashing into the rocks and cliff below was nice.  i had breakfast and took some shots of the waves before continuing south to explore the coast.  before stopping to explore a state park, i saw really beautiful rays of sunlight coming through the tunnel of trees that surrounded the pacific coast highway.  at the park, i attempted to fly a radio controlled powered parachute model though only got it in the air for a few seconds before it crashed.. i was having difficulty hand-launching it and when it actually took flight, i think i quickly cut back on the throttle so it wouldn't go too high or far, and it went right into a tree.  it was a bit disappointing that i had yet to have an actual flight (let alone get any photos with it) after having spent so long researching and building it.  i had hoped to have an alternate option to kite aerial photography for when there wasn't enough wind to fly (this was before quadcopter drones were readily available).

after leaving the park, i found more spots along the coast to check out and saw whales in the distance from one of the overlooks.  the coast was really beautiful.. i could've spent much more time there, though was going to my first campground in california that evening.  on the way inland, i took a long, winding road through the hills in sonoma county.  it was quite beautiful and desolate, yet also another fun drive with plenty of steep inclines and descents (and countless curves).. some of the slopes measured 7 or 8 degrees (a 14% or 16% grade). at times the truck was all of a sudden rapidly accelerating down the curves at near 60 mph.. the serene drive could quickly turn into one needing focused attention to keep the truck under control.  near the end, i found a park with a view of lake sonoma where there was a lot of wind, so i grabbed my kite for a quick aerial photography flight.. having launched from a small lookout tower with no room to walk down the kite, i recall it being difficult to bring down with winds pulling so hard.  afterwards, i drove a little further and spent the evening at a campground near cloverdale.
,mountain,exploremore,adventurelife,truckcamper,journal,roadtrippin,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,homeonwheels,blog,exploretocreate,wanderlust,optoutside,adventuremobile,starlapse,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,timelapse,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,stars,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,freedomthinkers,nature,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.12]

i awoke in the middle of the night on mount shasta.. i had a dream where it felt like someone was coming into my camper through the tent material and attacking me or something (or perhaps this was the dream that woke me a couple weeks earlier in an indian reservation.. whatever the exact dream on mount shasta was, i do recall it being strong and feeling like it was happening in real life and i woke up). i suppose the high energy of mount shasta was helping me work through my fears.. or i was picking up on the energy of those sleeping at the other side of the parking lot.  earlier, i had heard one of them talking about some fears or energies they were facing.  i got up, stopped my time-lapse, and drove to the spot i had seen just down the road on my way up.  i'd thought of photographing the stars there (and may have wanted to wake up to move) so it all worked out that i was able to do so.  in the morning, i shot a time-lapse of the sun revealing mount shasta before leaving.  on the way down to lower elevation, i drove into the clouds.  it was awesome to be sitting above the clouds while on the mountain.. it was sunny there and cloudy in the town and area below.

after stopping to check out some crystal bowls in town, i headed south and stopped at a trader joe's in redding.  i remember the cashier being nice.. i didn't have lots of interactions with others on the road and it was good to encounter nice people when i did.  i then headed west toward redwood national park.  it was a long winding drive toward the coast and part of it was under construction.. i took a short cut through a narrow, winding, bumpy dirt road over the hills in an indian reservation.  just outside there was the edge of the park.  i was going to go down a road to part of the backcountry i'd researched, though the gate at the entrance was locked.. it looked like i had to have called ahead to get a key or code, or the hours/days open had changed or something, so i went to a nearby overlook.  it was going to be dark soon so i parked on the side of the road a little further up and spent the night there.  i'd be seeing the tall trees in the morning.
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,nationalpark,roadtrippin,crater,exploretocreate,wanderlust,optoutside,homeonwheels,starlapse,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,timelapse,vlog,lake,roadtrip,blog,dunes,sand,getoutside,nomadiclife,stayandwander,stars,lifeontheroad,liveoutdoors,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.09]

i explored a little bit more of the dunes before heading inland.  i saw some vehicles driving up and over the dunes.. it looked like it would've been fun, though i'm not sure if taking my stock truck with the camper up on them would be the best idea (and i had a bit of a drive ahead of me that day).

i was on my way to crater lake national park, and then to california the next day.  i think i had first seen photos of crater lake not too long before taking this trip.. it may have been when i saw someone i knew from a long time ago post a picture on a social network.  it was one of those spots i never realized was there until i researched it after seeing what it looked like in the photo.. it then was on the back burner as a place to check out at some point.

i made it to crater lake with some daylight still left to explore.. at one of the first overlooks, i met a girl who had just decided to drive south from seattle or something with her dog.  we took pictures of each other with the lake in the background and chatted for a minute.. had i been more spontaneous, i could’ve asked if she wanted to explore together or join me for dinner, though i was thinking too much about seeing the park quickly before heading to california the following day.  after seeing some of the overlooks near the lake, i decided to drive all around the whole park and go all the way out to the pinnacles overlook.  it was dark by the time i made it back around.. i found an overlook where i could see a nice view of the lake and wizard island from my truck, and i set up a shot of the stars overnight.  i think it was here that i lost one of the ball heads for a tripod.. it was strange, there was no sign of it anywhere that night or the next morning.  luckily i had more than one and was still able to get a great shot.
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,water,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,roadtrippin,fromabove,ocean,exploretocreate,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,stayandwander,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,sand,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,lifeontheroad,beach,kiteaerialphotography,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.06]

i spent the day exploring the oregon coast.  i could've stayed here for weeks or months.. there were so many beautiful overlooks to be seen and places to wander on the coast.  i flew my kite at cannon beach and shortly after it was in the air, it went crashing into the ocean.  thankfully, i had the waterproof gopro on it and not another camera.  i fished the kite out of the waves and water (which was a good bit of effort if i recall), and i took it to a local kite shop to be sewn back up where the spar had poked through.  i remember the guy there told a story of how his car broke down at cannon beach and he took that as a sign of where he should stay (when he was wandering without destination). later in the afternoon, on my way toward the next campground, i found a spot where i decided to record the waves coming in for a while.  it was so nice to be by the water in someplace beautiful.  i got to the campground, and was able to walk across the road from there right to the beach.. i watched the sun set and saw a winding path that you could take to drive down to the beach.  either that evening or the next morning i decided i'd take it the next day.
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,water,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,roadtrippin,campground,ocean,adventuremobile,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,exploretocreate,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,stayandwander,sand,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,lifeontheroad,beach,writing
four years ago today [2012.10.03]

i noticed little bits of frost or ice on the ground when i woke up this morning in a quiet area that was part of olympic national park.  it was a little exciting to see it, though having lived in florida half my life, i greatly preferred warmer temperatures.  i headed back toward the coast and made it to the first campground by the ocean this day.

right behind the campground was a long path that led to the beach.  when stepping onto the sand and walking towards the ocean, the beach seemed to go on forever before getting to the water.  it was pretty amazing to experience walking a long way to the water (after a long walk to the sand) on a desolate beach with no one else around.  the tide came in pretty far too as the waves washed ashore.  i had never seen a beach so wide.  i went back to the water again when the sun was going down.  it was probably pretty chilly though nice to be surrounded by the ocean, beach, and wide open natural land.  somewhere natural and beautiful on the water was definitely a place i could stay for a while.  i had been looking forward to exploring the pacific coast on this journey and was glad to have discovered and experienced this spot.
,exploremore,nature,truckcamper,journal,camper,optoutside,trees,liveyouradventure,adventureculture,journey,freedomvessel,roadtrippin,stayandwander,camplife,rvlife,wanderlust,rv,exploretocreate,homeonwheels,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,blog,getoutside,nomadiclife,liveoutdoors,discovertheroad,lifeontheroad,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.30]

this was a slow day.  i went with my friend to town in the morning for breakfast.. we were gonna spend a while at a local coffee shop in town, though had to cut the trip short when we remembered that we had left the neighbor's water running to fill the tank where my friend was housesitting.  back there, i spent most of the day working on the computer and my friend ran a couple of errands.  it was nice to get to use a real shower where my friend was housesitting, though i had to keep it short since their well had run dry or something that they had to borrow the water from the neighbors.  it was a really beautiful area in this part of washington.. the mountain range was visible nearby and there was a rural feel to the homes that were just up the road from town.
#lifeontheroad #homeiswhereyouparkit #truckcamper #rv #camper #camping #journey #travel #roadtrip #journal #vlog #blog #driving #cascades #nature #park #stars #starlapse #timelapse #nationalforest #campground #rvlife #exploremore #getoutside #wanderlust #ontheroad #optoutside #exploretocreate #liveoutdoors #stayandwander
four years ago today [2012.09.27]

sleeping under the stars, i awoke in the forest to the sounds of the river below with a view of the cascades in the distance.  it was amazing to wake up in such beautiful places in the middle of nature.  this was definitely one of my favorite parts of living life on the road.

after leaving the forest, it was either pretty foggy or smoky.  i headed west and spent a night at another campground before i'd be taking the ferry toward the coast the following day.  i went for a walk and explored the path that went to a creek behind the campground while there.  i had a nice wooded spot in the back, though it was a little loud being right by the interstate.. just a little bit different than the nice morning in the forest.  if you live in a city or haven't been out to nature in a while, make some time to go soon.. it's so calming and healing, and just beautiful and amazing to be somewhere so peaceful, quiet, and natural.
#lifeontheroad #homeiswhereyouparkit #truckcamper #journey #travel #roadtrip #journal #vlog #blog #nature #exploremore #getoutside #camper #camping #roadtrippin #stayandwander #camplife #homeonwheels #rvlife #adventurelife #liveyouradventure #rv #campground #river #optoutside #freedomvessel #fourwheelcampers #fordf150 #ford #f150
four years ago today [2012.09.20]

i spent the day at a campground not too far from north cascades national park where i was exploring the day before.  i did some laundry there and probably worked on the computer most of the day.. around this time of the trip i unexpectedly had to do a lot of work for a client who decided they wanted much more than they had originally specified for the web application i had built for them.  it was quite frustrating to have this affect my trip and make me feel rushed while exploring places, though it was really nice to be able to work from almost anywhere i wanted.  i spent a couple nights at this campground.. it certainly was much easier to get work done without having to go looking for somewhere to park that had a usable phone or internet connection.  there were plenty of beautiful, quiet places i could've stayed for a while, though many, if not most, were without a signal.  at the campground, i stayed at a nice spot in the shade under tall, thick trees.  in the afternoon, i went for a walk and explored the creek that ran through the back.. i think this was the campground where i saw a yurt in person for the first time (i'd been told about them years earlier when i became interested in alternative homes or living options).
,f150,fordf150,camplife,nature,truckcamper,journal,camper,optoutside,ford,liveyouradventure,journey,freedomvessel,roadtrippin,campground,exploremore,rvlife,blog,rv,homeonwheels,camping,homeiswhereyouparkit,travel,adventurelife,vlog,roadtrip,stayandwander,getoutside,lifeontheroad,river,fourwheelcampers,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.17]

i spent this day at the campground i arrived at the day before.  i most likely worked on the computer or took it easy and rested in the camper.  around dusk, i went for a walk down the path to the river.  i probably cooked soup or pasta or something simple.  living life on the road, i often ate cereal for breakfast (or sometimes oatmeal), and veggie wraps for lunch.  as mini-meals, i would snack on bars, bean chips with salsa, apples with peanut butter, or something else i could easily eat between wanderings.  i occasionally would stop for a sub with eggs and veggies or a veggie taco somewhere.  i don't recall cooking too often, though it was nice to have the burners in the camper and be able to cook something simple when i did do so.

i'm looking back at what i wrote on this day, and it looks like i was realizing how much stuff i had brought with me.  i do recall this first journey of life on the road being a bit ridiculous in the amounts of stuff i had with me.  i honestly didn't know if i was coming back or for how long i'd be gone, so i had pretty much everything with me.  i remember having to step over things or move multiple things around just to find what i was looking for.  the journey the following year was much simpler as i didn't carry as much.  minimalism in life, especially life on the road, is an enormous help.  besides making it easier to find things, it frees up mental space of things you need to think about or take care of.

i know if i were to do life on the road again, it'd be much simpler this time around.. in the technological improvements alone, i'd need much less gear to be able to create the same kind of images and videos i did on this trip.  when thinking about acquiring something new or keeping something old, have a look at how much you'll actually use it and consider if you really need it.  if you're barely gonna use it, it's probably not worth getting or keeping around.  it's also helpful to only keep something that's versatile with multiple uses.  i used to have gear that was only for very specific types of shots that would take up so much space and just sit there for weeks, months, or longer.
,homeonwheels,camplife,nature,truckcamper,journal,ontheroad,park,trail,journey,freedomvessel,roadtrippin,stayandwander,exploremore,rvlife,wanderlust,optoutside,exploretocreate,driving,homeiswhereyouparkit,hike,travel,adventurelife,vlog,lava,roadtrip,blog,getoutside,liveoutdoors,lifeontheroad,hyperlapse,writing
four years ago today [2012.09.14]

i woke up on the side of the road somewhere in idaho.  i was on my way to the moon.. i would always joke with my mom and say i was going to the moon when she'd ask where i went or was going.  this time i could really say it on my way to craters of the moon national monument.  when planning the route west, i think as soon as i saw it on the map, i decided i had to go there just because of the name.  i didn't look up anything about the park.. it just sounded interesting so i picked it.  in fact, i think that's how i picked most of the places i went to.. they sounded interesting or were a green spot on the map somewhere in the general direction i was going, so i decided to check them out.  i'm sure many people do a lot of research, planning, and reading up on reviews or tour guides, though it's often more fun to just go with what sounds or feels good.. it's more spontaneous, and is trusting the divine guidance that's been taking us all along this journey we call life anyhow.

just outside the national monument and preserve, i started to see some of the dark landscapes and it was unlike anything i'd seen before.  it was neat to see how diverse the land is.  the main loop of the park was closed as they were paving it or something so i started exploring a path near one of the parking areas that was open.  it ended up being a couple hour hike by the time i made it up, down, and around the craters and back around the loop to the parking area.

i left and headed west toward oregon.  i stopped at a rest area just over the border about 45 minutes before the sun went down and decided to spend the evening there.  it was nice to just stay wherever i wanted rather than have to plan out or go looking for a campground or hotel.  there was no need to check in, check out, carry or unpack a suitcase, make sure nothing was forgotten when packing back up, etc.  at some points in my truck camper journeys it did take quite a while to get out to a rural area where i felt i wouldn't be disturbed, though it was a tradeoff for staying someplace free and being able to get up and go.  my home was always with me wherever i went (or just down a trail).
#lifeontheroad #homeiswhereyouparkit #truckcamper #journey #travel #roadtrip #journal #vlog #blog #driving #nature #park #land #rocks #canyon #river #exploremore #getoutside #wanderlust #ontheroad #optoutside #roadtrippin #exploretocreate #liveoutdoors #stayandwander #camplife #homeonwheels #liveyouradventure #rvlife #nomadiclife
four years ago today [2012.09.11]

i checked out bighorn canyon national recreation area on my way back into wyoming.  near one of the bends in the river, i tried to fly my kite to take some aerial photos, though the winds were too rough and threw the kite all around and onto the rocky ground.  stubbornly, thinking the wind would change, i kept trying and ended up breaking a spar.  i spent the night east of yellowstone near the buffalo bill dam.  i never knew there was a dam or reservoir there.. it was nice discovering interesting places and memorable people along the journey.  i remember the guy who worked at the visitor center being friendly and telling me about the buffalo in yellowstone when i said i was on my way there.

the detour to zig-zag from devil's tower to yellowstone via north dakota ended up taking an extra day and just about a whole tank of gas.  this trip was back when gas was hovering close to or well over $4 a gallon depending where you were.  some may wonder if it's worth spending a whole day driving and nearly $100 in gas just to briefly see an extra state when you don't know what you'll find, though it's all part of the adventure.. yes, perhaps some parts of the trip may not have been as exciting as others, though it's really how we're perceiving it.  one could find beauty anywhere should one allow oneself to.
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four years ago today [2012.09.08]

parked on the side of a road somewhere in a national grassland, i woke up in the middle of the pitch dark night hearing strange animal noises and feeling weird energy, and it looked like the rear window of my camper was broken.  it was pretty cold and i didn't want to get out of bed to look nor to write down the insights i felt.  at some point, i awoke with an understanding of perception.. early that morning i had written "I woke up a couple hours ago with an understanding about the reflection through which we see ourselves being the same transparent mirror through which we’re seeing the world, though can’t quite remember the exact words right now." when daylight came, i saw the rear window of my camper door was intact and the only signs of animals were some cattle up on a hill across the road.

i recall it appearing like a lot of the national grassland was fenced off or being used for agriculture rather than a park or preserve, so i headed west toward the badlands instead of explore longer.  after seeing a lot of the rock formations there, i drove down a dirt road surrounded by hundreds of bison.  i then headed over to another little part further out on the map, sheep mountain table.  it was a bumpy dirt road that led me to a much more desolate area where i only saw a couple other vehicles.  i got out to take some photos and was standing near the edge of the cliff when the wind stopped.  all of a sudden there was no sound at all, no sound of nature or man.. all that was left was complete, perfect silence, the voice of god.  it was a truly amazing and beautiful experience that words cannot begin to describe.  it was only my second full day on the trip and i had already discovered and felt the presence of god.  i looked forward to whatever other peaceful places i might find on this journey.

nearby there was a high clearance vehicle road that went further into the park.  i took it to the end where i set up a couple cameras for time-lapse shots of the sun fading across the badlands formations and the stars passing by.  it was nice to be able to spend the night sleeping under the stars in what felt like such a remote place.

[from california to florida]

[from california to florida]

[from california to florida]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[in california]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

[a.k.a. life on the road]