October 17, 2016

A Photo Essay of VanLife

In August of 2014, I landed in Anchorage, Alaska via Hawaii. For years I had a goal to drink a beer in each of the 50 states. When I landed, there were three states remaining; Alaska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. The plan was simple – in less than 24 hours, buy a vehicle and start the drive to South Dakota.

What transpired next unintentionally became one of the most epic road trips of my life…

Crossing into the ever expansive landscape of Yukon captured my attention and gave a rebirth to a dormant child-like wonder.

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One of the first camping spots in the vehicle I selected. The beastly Dodge 2500 Ram Van affectionally earned the name “Falcor”

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With no cell phone and no internet connection, the extent of my “outside world” became simply what I could see. A fact which didn’t bother me a bit!

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My goal quickly became to find places as far away from the clamor of civilization as possible.

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Which brought me to beautiful Baja, Mexico.

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And wouldn’t you know… I met a girl there.

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Her and Falcor got along great. So I asked her to join us on our trip.

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We got stuck once or twice.

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We navigated the winding roads of Mexico together.

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Found a few beaches along the way…

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We learned the challenges of crossing boarders in Central America (in a vehicle I never got around to registering)

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We took the road less traveled through Guatemala.

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We met four traveling surfers in El Salvador and gave them a ride through three countries.

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We became good friends and surfed together everyday.

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We camped out together. Lauren played mom to five over-grown, hungry boys for weeks.

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We parted ways with our new friends in southern Nicaragua.

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Which meant we were able to get Falcor organized again!

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We fell in love with the Pacific coast of Costa Rica…

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…And the Caribbean coast…

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…And all the places in-between.

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We climbed rocks,

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and surfed waves.

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We put our home on a boat in search of more adventures.

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We watched the sun kiss the ocean at night.

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And bathed in cold, mountain streams in the mornings.

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We drove ’till there wasn’t anymore road to drive.

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What we found was much more than an adventure of a lifetime. We found each other.

And that was just the beginning of our adventure together…

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We’re right back on the road in our upgraded adventure wagon. (With a bathroom this time)

If you want to read more about the start of this journey pick up a copy of the best-selling book,

FIRST TRAIN OUT OF DENVER

by Leo Jenkins

6 thoughts on “A Photo Essay of VanLife”

  1. One word : AWESOME ! In every point, it reminds me the “Into the Wild” movie !
    Except nobody got intoxicated by eating the wrong wild root…
    If you’re still traveling with your van, keep going !
    Good luck, and may the Trollish gods be with you !

    – Greetings from France 🙂

  2. And that was just the begging of our adventure together…

    At the end, you spelled beginning wrong, but you both did everything else right:) Thanks for taking your journey and sharing it.

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