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4xForward by 4xFred - Bed & Breakfast in the Back Seat

Posted in Features on May 15, 2016
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I really enjoy overlanding. Also known as camping in your truck, van, or whatever. I am constantly thinking about why and what would be the best 4x4 to circle the world in. I believe my love of truck camping arises from my youth traveling in the family motorhome with my three older brothers and parents. There was something great about living out of the old camper and sleeping as Dad drove us to new and exciting destinations every summer during the family vacation.

Over the years I’ve learned that having a vehicle you can sleep in is pretty awesome. Whether it’s a dry spot to sleep when your tent gets blown over in a torrential downpour while camping, or when you’ve been at a wild party and really shouldn’t drive home. Having the room and supplies to grab some z’s in your 4x4 is optimal use of the vehicle. I have slept in everything from H1 hummers to Dodge truck to Jeep Cherokees (both new and old) to Suburbans to Samurais (did you know the Samurai front seats recline to almost horizontal?) and survived nights in all types of weather. Sure, a ground or rooftop tent is great if that’s what you have, but I’m quite fond of snoozing inside whatever I’m driving.

Here is the thing. Sometimes on a road trip you just can’t find a hotel, or a safe place to set up camp, but if you can sleep in the vehicle you can nap wherever you park, and often under the radar. It’s nice to just pull into a dark area, climb in the back, and snore (aka drool on a pillow). I remember one night a police officer awoke me in my locked truck asking why I was sleeping on a deserted dirt road and not at the well-lit rest area I had just passed. Groggily I explained that a well-lit area doesn’t make for the best sleeping in my experience. He thought about it, agreed, and let me catch a few more hours of shuteye before dawn.

So when you’re considering your next wheeling/camping project, think about just how you could sleep in it if need be. On that note, I’d really like to see a hammock that hangs from the rollcage above (or between) the seats in a Jeep or Land cruiser. I think it’s a possible inside-sleeping solution.

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