Our Road Trip

We’ve been planning this trip since May, 2021 and are excited to hit the road. The idea came to us when we watched to movie, NomadLand. Our previous experience traveling in Iceland and Ireland lead us to decide a road trip across Canada, through the western United States, and down into Baja, Mexico, would be a perfect fit.

Originally we wanted to go in an RV, a Class 3 or smaller. When that didn’t appeal to us we thought about a camper van then a tear drop trailer. Finally, I think we got our fit with a Subaru Outback and a rooftop tent.

Simplicity is the key to travelling on a trip like this. An easy vehicle to drive, the option to boondock or camp when we want too, and some motel stays along the way. Honestly, I watched days worth of videos on YouTube and the idea of staying in an RV park or driving a big van isn’t my idea of fun.

The van we drove in Iceland

Subaru Outback

A Rooftop Tent

The Open Road

Why A Subaru Outback?

Choosing a Subaru Outback as our vehicle wasn’t hard after we narrowed down the type of trip we wanted. I didn’t want our trip to be about our mode of transportation, I want it to be about the journey. There’s plenty to admire about those who go with a van and the whole #VanLife thing but I think if we went that route we’d be spending most of my time fucking it ready rather then planning the intinerary.

An RV was thought of but buying one of those and figuring out where we’d keep it seemed like a nightmare for a couple apartment dwellers. Plus there’s a risk involved buying one used. If our trip ends before we want it too it’s not going to be because of some shitbox we paid way to much for. Even a decent used RV costs upward of $50,000 and used conversion vans go for $70,000 easy.

A Subaru Outback on the other hand would be a better choice for us because it gets good mileage, it’s easy to drive and park, has AWD for sand or mud, and there’s lots of them around. We can also park it in our building’s garage where it will be nice and safe until we leave.

Why A Rooftop Tent?

  1. A rooftop tent takes about a minute to set up. Undo a couple latches, push it open, and hop in.
  2. Rooftop’s are off the ground so there won’t be an issue with pests or bugs getting in.
  3. They have a decent mattress for a comfortable night’s sleep.
  4. They can be a 4 season tent if you get the right one. I know there’ll probably be a couple cold nights so sleeping in an insulated tent is going to go a long way.
  5. Not having to pack a tent will leave more room inside the car for all the other crap we’re bringing.
  6. You get to live the best parts of #VanLife without needing a van. Convenience is the key to happy travel and for us, this option is the best one.
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What We’re Packing

For the Car

  • Air Compressor

  • Lifted seat for our pug

  • Auto tool kit and a jack

  • A good road map

  • Rooftop Tent

  • Fire Extinguisher

For the Camp

  • Portable bug/rain ground shelter

  • Portable toilet and collapsable shelter

  • Folding table and camp chairs

  • A good ground mat and a tarp

  • Two person sleeping bag and pillows

  • Camp stove, utensils, and cutlery

  • Solar string lights

  • Igloo Cooler

For Safety

  • Jackery 300 portable power unit

  • 100W solar panel

  • GPS unit

  • Two-way radio set

  • First Aid Kit

  • Bear spray

  • Powerful flashlight

Our Intinerary

So far our intinerary has us leaving Toronto and heading west to the Rocky Mountains, then south into the United States, and further down to Baja, Mexico. The plan is to leave Toronto the 1st of July, 2022, and spend two to three months in Canada, mostly in the Rockies.

Once we enter the United States we’ll pass through Washington, Oregon, and California before entering Mexico. The drive along the west coast will be quite the experience and it’s a drive we are looking forward too. Once we get to the southern part of California our compas will head east for a few weeks. There’s just to much to see around Death Valley to drive by.

Then on to Mexicala, Mexico, to cross the border into Baja. The plan is to spend three months there so a long term rental from VRBO is what we’ve been looking at. Maybe in La Paz?

So, we’ll see you on the road!

Other Essentials

  • Camp axe and knife

  • Tent fan and light

  • Tic removal kit

  • Still camera w/ lens

  • Video camera w/mic

  • Rechargeable batteries w/charger

  • A sense of adventure

  • A good camp cookbook