MIssion Overland Trailer Owners page

WU7X

Snow on the Roof
I should have some new pics up here tomorrow night or Sunday. Here are a couple my wifey took of our trailer in LaCombe. Similar to the first two, but still a bit better than nothing. They give a better idea of the trailer's size in comparison to my 5th gen 4Runner.

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WU7X

Snow on the Roof
We went up to Cranbrook today and met up with Mark and Marie and two of their children. Oh, and finally picked up the trailer and brought it home. Our original plan of getting it to Spokane two weeks ago dissolved in LaCombe. On the morning we planned on driving back home with trailer in tow we woke up to 1/2" of ice covering everything along with 2-3" of snow blowing across the landscape horizontally. Did I mention I was trying to hack up a lung with every breathe and running a nice fever? We decided the best plan was discretion and retreat, leaving said trailer with Mark as we slowly slithered our way south. For those of you from the Great White North, it took from LaCombe to Fernie before the last of the ice finally melted off the hood of my 4Runner. Mark, bless him, promised to bring the beastie down to the border for us as soon as possible. So today was the day! We only had mild showers and drizzle all the way up to Cranbrook to contend with. Nanc and I met up with Mark and clan in the local Walmart parking lot and switched the Overland trailer from their Jeep to our Toyota. Fortunately, the further south we traveled the nicer the weather became. Don't get me wrong, southern BC was beautiful in green. The rain only promised more summer vegetation in the future. BTW, our crossing back into the States was totally uneventful. All the Border Patrol agents we worked with were courteous and professional, and dare I say kind to an old grey beard and his wife and dog. I was totally impressed with their quick work on completing the paperwork that allowed bringing a new trailer across the border. Thank you Border Patrol!

So here's the deal; the trailer tows like a dream! After the first half-hour of getting using to having the beastie behind us and setting the brakes to work comfortably with the car, I almost forgot it was back there. Stopping in Sandpoint for a quick luncheon at the local Mac-D's and a refueling pitstop proved that our gas mileage was not taking the hit I had originally feared. With the 4.56 gearing and the 32" 255/75R17 TA KO2's I have been seeing 18-19 mph running 60mph/100kph without a tow. With the trailer in tow, at the same speeds, mileage dropped 2-3 mpg. Although we didn't cross over any significant mountain passes on the way home, we did do a lot of ascents/descents getting here. The trailer with the Darche awning is running around 2,400 lbs dry. Wet will probably add another 400 lbs with water, provisions, clothing, etc. I think I will be very happy with the final mileage results. The pop top works beautifully and gives a tall me someplace to stand and get dressed. Wifely loves the ease of ingress and exiting through the two part back entrance. Everything on the rig is working dang near perfectly. I keep using the term happy, and mean it.

So for two old retired folks, the trailer so far is proving to be much better than we planned. There are a couple minor issues that Mark and I will be clearing up. But that is to be expected in a prototype vehicle of any kind. All Mark's new builds will be the recipients of the labors that went into this first one.

We are planning our first major trip over Memorial weekend. A trip to some private property along the Lolo River where our newly learned fly fishing prowess will be tested. The trip in and out is over some interesting terrain so stay tuned for further analysis of the trailer's chops. Guess we need to come up with a name for it. Any suggestions?

Pics from the Beastie's first visit to home base.

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WU7X

Snow on the Roof
One final thing for the night. I forgot to add the incredible storage space found inside the trailer. You can hide momma grizzly and two cubs in there! Will try to get some pics up showing this in the future.
 
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WU7X

Snow on the Roof
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WU7X

Snow on the Roof
My Beastie is the first unit of the Overland model. Mark is already improving the next build. I love the different hinge setup he is using on that unit. Take a look here:

https://www.expeditionportal.com/fo...nit.202316/page-7#lg=attachment517250&slide=0

This will give additional head space at the front of the trailer, plus ensure a better weather seal in the front at the same time. I'll probably get this modification on the Beastie next fall after camping season is over.

If you look at that picture of the new trailer Mark is building, check out the top loading storage cabinets on each side. They are HUGE! Will get some measurements up soon. There are no hidden wheel wells in them. Some people like the idea of having a wider trailer by building over the wheelwells. I understand that, but like this design better for me personally. The big reason is that when towing, I can actually use the rearview mirrors on the 4Runner to see what is happening behind me. A wider trailer would inhibit that.
 
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WU7X

Snow on the Roof
The Memorial Day trip if off, unfortunately. A small issue with our paperwork precludes getting a license and stateside title. It will be taken care of early next week. This may be a hidden blessing as it gives me more time to properly outfit the Beastie. I've got a few pics I planned on popping up here but my iMac and iPhone aren't talking nicely for some reason. Maybe tomorrow.

I strapped my old Trasheroo to the spare tire and tried out the 180 watt portable solar panel Mark is selling. Wow! I'm getting 14.7 V in the sun. Mark was right; I doubt that for normal camping I'll ever have an issue with dead batteries. BTW, we went with dual 6 V batteries on Beastie. Gives us a lot more stored amps onboard. I'll put a pic up as soon as possible of the system.

As I have mentioned elsewhere, one of the reasons we went with this trailer is that after almost 15 years using a RTT (AutohomeUS Columbus Variant medium) we just got too old to climb up and down the ladder in the middle of the night. Our first trailer taught us that this was our future, if we wanted to keep "overlanding". I'll be 71 the end of this month (May) and wifey is a few years younger. Our 46th wedding anniversary is coming up in June. We've been camping and exploring the back roads for most of our time together. This trailer is much, much better than our original one in that it allows us to have a lot more comforts along for the ride. Just because one grows older doesn't mean you have to give up what you love. You just have to adapt to the realities of life. A comfortable bed, warm shower and portapotty, along with ease of cooking, washing, and keeping food fresh and accessible is wonderful. Toss in fly fishing along western mountain streams with no one else around, watching the sun rise and set at our leisure, and no longer being in a rush gives this time in our lives a special meaning. Each day is precious, enjoy them while you can.

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Wow that was amazing to read this morning as I get ready to head out for an MRI. I am knocking on the door of being 60 and this gives me hope that we can do the same very soon. The wife and I just want to pack up and hit the road and not look back.
 

WU7X

Snow on the Roof
Hey Hillbilly Heaven, Good luck with the MRI. Here's wishing that all ends well for you. My 6th decade was a wonderful time in our lives. I'm sure you'll find out that is true for you also.

The iPhone coughed up one pic. Here is a shot of the solar panel being tested out. I was running the FM radio and the 65 L Dometic frig/freezer to put a little draw on the batteries. The solar panel kept up like nothing was on. Woohoo! You can also see the trasheroo mounted up front on the spare tire. It was black when originally purchased but has bleached out to that grey color over the years. Still holds garbage though. :p

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WU7X

Snow on the Roof
If your on Facebook (I'm not) look up Mission Overland. Mark keeps that pretty up do date. He has a video of the new hinge system for the rooftop and one of the interior of my Beastie. The one with my interior also includes a brief walk around the trailer too. Good stuff!
 

WU7X

Snow on the Roof
Here is a shot of the solar panel sitting on the front box. It is braced by the spare tire in front. That 185 w panel is heavy! But it really puts out usable current. So there are three ways of charging the two 6 v batteries; first, while driving the alternator charges it via the 7 pin connector. Second, 110 v a.c. shore power; just plug it in. Third, via this, or a similar portable solar panel. this panel connects into the same 7 pin connector used to plug the trailer into the car. Just unplug it from the car when parked and plug it into the female 7 pin connector attached via cable to the panel. Instant juice! If you don't like the 7 pin idea, you can quickly disconnect that connector and match the cabling up with a two clamp setup for the positive and negative terminals of the matched 6 v batteries. Trust me, the 7 pin setup is much easier as the batteries are in individual boxes that preclude tampering with. But that option is still there.
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WU7X

Snow on the Roof
More pics of my Beastie. We are still working out how and what to pack in the trailer.There is so much room for storing "stuff" that I am being very careful not to bring everything possible. Here is a shot of the passenger outside showing the cooking area when the drawer is pulled out. Both dual burner stove and sink are Dometics.

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The drawer handle works great as a washcloth and towel holder too. BTW, found the cute little 2 qt pot at TJ Maxx. Notice it has a pour spout and mini-handles with silicon inserts. I was looking for something that would fit this stove and be big enough to boil enough water for spaghetti noodles, or soup, or whatever. I hate long handles on camping gear as they make storage a pain in the b*tt. The frying pan is a Jet Boil from REI. Got it during the 20% off sale. It is ceramic lined, not teflon. Folding handle too.
 
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WU7X

Snow on the Roof
The 65 L frig/freezer is also a Dometic. For a test I tossed some beer bottles in and found it works great. I had to set the freezer portion down to 14 deg. F to get the beer chilled and the Klondike bars frozen. :p If you are an ADV dual sport rider you may notice that I am using ROK Straps to hold the frig in place.

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WU7X

Snow on the Roof
Here is what it looks like inside at the moment.

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In the right lower corner you can see my PETT Portapotty. We asked Mark to modifiy the size of the cabinets on the right side so that it would fit in that corner. Once buttoned up inside the trailer at night we no longer have to go out to answer nature's call. The green sack on the bed holds a Blue Ridge portable shower wooden floor. When camping in the same spot for several days, we can pull out the shower curtain, plop the wooden floor beneath it and use the enclosed area as an outdoor potty thanks to having the PETT along. At night the potty will go back into the trailer. So the external shower area now serves two uses.
 
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