Which Camper?

BritChaser

New member
Retiring soon and hope to spend more time outdoors camping, fishing (wading and tubing), and hunting. Thinking about getting some kind of camper - pickup or popup, but not a trailer or fifth wheel. I'm a minimalist and think I don't even want a galley; I can cook with my little portable grill and Coleman stove. It's just me and the dog.

Would like to hear what your experiences have been with pickup and popup campers. Thanks.
 
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Flushedup

New member
If you are a true minimalist, this isn't much of a discussion. What do you want to be hauling a trailer around pothole dirt roads or gumbo.... just get the pickup bed hard side camper. Cant trailer a boat with a pop up either....

If you are going to have more than just a guy and a dog, you will want to get a hotel, if just you I wouldn't hesitate to get the truck model
 

BritChaser

New member
If you are a true minimalist, this isn't much of a discussion. What do you want to be hauling a trailer around pothole dirt roads or gumbo.... just get the pickup bed hard side camper. Cant trailer a boat with a pop up either....

If you are going to have more than just a guy and a dog, you will want to get a hotel, if just you I wouldn't hesitate to get the truck model
Thanks for the info. Just me and the dog; no boat.
 

Toad

New member
Congrats on your retirement. The last couple years I have incorporated tent camping into my hunting and it has been a lot more fun than staying in a hotel (when the weather is decent). I imagine you will have a great time with your camper and enjoy your hunting trips even more than before. Let us know what you end up getting.
 

MetroGSP

Member
Personally, I’d like a truck Bed tent. More set-up and take down work, but you keep the use of your bed for transport, and it saves bucking the wind for fuel mileage. However, I’m not near retirement age and my views may change when I get to that point.
 

BrownDogsCan2

New member
Shoot I'd be happy with a soft topper and a paco sleeping pad. Better yet you could have them crease the pad so you could fold it in half and have room for a dogbox when your not sleeping on it. I know they use to make one with wheel well cutouts that fit a pickup bed. Paco pads are pvc welded white water rafting pads.
 

Chestle

New member
BritChaser
More years ago than I care to remember I set out from Kansas City with my eldest son (and 3 Labs) on a long college graduation hunt for him. Drove up to Alberta, Canada to a friends place and pretty much hunted our way back. Ducks & Geese in Canada, Pheasant in ND, SD, NE and ended back in KS. We were gone quite a while.

We did this with just a good capper on the back of my Crew Cab F-250. I posted a picture somewhere here of the back of the truck with a wire kennel that ran the length of the pickup bed on the left side which was half width of the bed. I ripped a 4x8 sheet of 1/4" plywood into 2X6.5 and that was my sleeping platform on top to the kennel. My son got the other half of the plywood on the bed itself next to the kennel. Dogs just slept in the kennel.

Pretty much like you plan, we took a Coleman stove and a small hibachi grill. Cooler and basic cooking pots/pans/utensils. We also had a small nylon pop-up camping tent that set up in a flash. This is a pretty handy thing for making room in the truck bed to sleep AND it keeps your gear squared away if it rains or snows. We got both of those.

So, we'd hunt all day, find a camp ground or park or even just the parking area for some state public hunting. Always a bonus if it had a picnic table. We'd pop the little tent, put the excess gear in that. Roll out the sleeping pads and bags in the bed. Cook (mostly what we shot). Drink a little dark brown water, talk about the day and the dogs. Then go to bed. Get up, do it all over.

Great times. We both have fond memories.

So what you are planning...minimalist...can be accomplished pretty easily in my opinion. Starts with a good capper on the pickup.
 

BritChaser

New member
Heckuva nice trip for you and your college grad son. Great info too. I think your camping style is pretty much on all fours with mine, especially the brown water detail.:cheers:
 
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Chestle

New member
BritChaser,

Found that old picture of the setup in the back of my F-250 Crew/Shortbed. This is what my son and I slept in on that trip. Obviously, I still have it. The kennel is corn cribbing, pretty stout stuff. You can see one of the sheets of plywood on the bed. I had one on top of the kennel to make a flat surface. My son had the one where it is right now. Worked great with the quick pop-up tent for gear. Looking back is making me nostalgic!

Good luck to you!


 

Toad

New member
I would definitely need some brown water before trying to fall asleep on top of that dog kennel! My back hurts just thinking about it. haha...

I let the dogs run loose (no kennel) inside my tent at night, which is nice. They put out a lot of heat, and really shove themselves against the sleeping bag pretty well.
 

Chestle

New member
Actually it was pretty good. I put the sheet of plywood down on top of the kennel, had a top quality comfy Cabela's pad on top of that and then a good Slumberjack sleeping bag. Same setup for my son on the pickup bed. Plywood/pad/bag.

Of course, a good day afield and brown water doesn't hurt. When I used to hunt elk in the Rockies, one of the team had a dad that made high quality 'shine in North Carolina. We named it Old Rocksoftener. One good pull of that stuff and you could sleep on anything. Made good firestarter too.....
 

BrowningCitori

New member
The wife and I went to Alaska last year and camped out of the back of the truck (RAM 4 door) with a fiberglass topper. We added a 4" foam pad to the back of the truck (money well spent). It worked great, rolled the bed forward during the day and put coolers in the back. At night we put extra gear in the front of the truck (bear country). The only thing I might take next time is a solar or propane powered shower. We paid for a motel when we needed a shower/laundry. Jetboil for quick coffee in the morning and Mountain House in the evening if you don't want to cook.
 

dekuiper

New member
I know this is a bit of an old thread but have to share anyway. I had a platform bed under my fiberglass topper. The platform made from 3/4"plywood was raised just enough to get over the wheel wells. It was supported by 2x6s which also provided nice slots. One for guns, one had a sort of drawer system for hats, gloves, knives, etc and the last section held a rubbermaid tub with cooking utensils and the camp stove. Bought a full size foam mattress from IKEA for sleeping. The dog could be either be wandering around or could have the kennel next to the bed. When wet and muddy - always in the kennel. I also wired LED lights in the topper...
 

Goosemaster

New member
With a truck camper, you can camp anywhere
They are great.Just pull off the road, in the ditch, or whatever. I've never been hassled. They pay for themselves real quick.You can get an old one for 500 dollars.Look on Craigslist. I rigged mine up with a tv.
 

airmedic1

New member
I know that you said you didn’t want a trailer but I had a 17’ Fun Finder camper that I pulled behind my crew cab Nissan Frontier that we really enjoyed. We would park in a city park or campground and hunt the area until we were ready to move and the go find somewhere else. It’s nice to be able to stand up and move around inside and it’s nice to have a good warm bed and place to sleep after a long day of hunting. The camper had a stove but I cooked outside and only used the two burner propane stove to boil water for coffee. It had a battery to run LED lights if we didn’t have electricity. We spent a lot of time in that camper and hunted some great areas in SD, NE and KS until we bought our cabin. We didn’t use the camper once in 18 months so I finally sold it.
 

Goosemaster

New member
I know this is a bit of an old thread but have to share anyway. I had a platform bed under my fiberglass topper. The platform made from 3/4"plywood was raised just enough to get over the wheel wells. It was supported by 2x6s which also provided nice slots. One for guns, one had a sort of drawer system for hats, gloves, knives, etc and the last section held a rubbermaid tub with cooking utensils and the camp stove. Bought a full size foam mattress from IKEA for sleeping. The dog could be either be wandering around or could have the kennel next to the bed. When wet and muddy - always in the kennel. I also wired LED lights in the topper...
I would never put my best friend in a kennel!
 
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