Monday, July 3, 2017

First Sprinter camping trip

Our new Sprinter - She needs a name
I ordered Sprinter 144 4x4 cargo van a year ago and just received it last week. I wanted a camper van to give Susan and me more freedom with our adventure runs and likewise my husband and I have a lot more freedom for all our hiking or weekend adventures. We are not planning quitting our jobs and living in the van, but we want to build it out as if we were. I plan on documenting the build out process on our blog, but I promise this is still a trail running blog.

When I first ordered the van I thought I would have Outside Van do the conversion, but the quote they gave me was way over my budget, so we started googling "Sprinter Van Conversions". After reading a lot of blogs and watching numerous youtube videos my husband John and I figured we could do most of the work ourselves. He built a brewery at our house, how much harder can converting a Sprinter be (heh)? I also thought I would have the van 6 months ago and have a lot of the build out done before the summer. 



Van BFFs

Well I didn't get the van 6 months ago, but instead a year later and the week before the long 4th of July weekend, which made me really want to go camp in it. At first I thought we would buy a mattress load up our camping gear and take off, but the more I thought about it the more I wanted to use part of the weekend to start insulating and sound deadening the van. 


Installing FatMat
We were able to get all the sound deadening (FatMat RattleTrap)  and half of the insulation (Thinsulate & Refletix) done before we took off (blog post on this coming soon). I also purchased a foam mattress from Ikea. 


View from Neahkahnie Mountain 

View from Neahkahnie Mountain hike


We decided to spend the night at the coast with our friend Chris, his dog Oscar and his VW Van. John and I hiked Neahkahnie Mountain in the morning and met Chris and Oscar at Cove Beach in the afternoon to geek out on van stuff. Before settling in for the evening we headed over to Manzanita to check out the new whiskey bar, MacGregor's. I can not recommend this place enough, the owner Chip MacGregor really knows his whisk(e)y and loves to chat about it. After we few drinks and cheese, we headed back to our camp area to sit by a campfire and actually camp.


Oscar living the #vanlife

He drinks a whiskey drink

Oscar showing John how to #vanlife


I have to admit I was a little apprehensive about sleeping in the van, I was afraid I might get too cold, since it wasn't fully insulated. Overall I was quite comfortable in the van overnight and never got cold, my sleeping bag probably helped with that. 


Cove Beach next to where we camped


The next morning I was able to sneak away for a few hours to run with Susan who also happened to be at the coast, I promise we didn't plan this. Then John and I went to Astoria for more van research over beer at Fort George



our quickie on the coast
It was a great first trial run with the van, I am excited for our #vanlife adventures. But first we need to spend more time building it out, which includes a lot more research. The rest of the summer will be a balance of playing and building the van. 


My first pint glass for the van

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