We get asked a lot of the same questions about the trip so we figured we could just write up an FAQ page and send people here. If you have any other questions or just want more info, feel free to ask.
- What is your name? – Nik and Allison White (and Cheat the dog)
- What is your quest? – We are travelling around North America in an RV while still working.
- What is your favorite color? – Allison: Red; Nik: Red, no Bl…AHHHH!!!
- Ok, but why are you doing it? – There are lots of places that we would love to see but haven’t had a chance to yet. We also really like camping and hiking and skiing and kayaking and just being outdoors, so this will give us a chance to do the things we like more often and with less driving each way because we’ll be able to stay closer to parks or rivers or mountains where the fun things are. Also, because we can! So there! 🙂
- Yeah, but what about work? – Nik’s job can be done 100% remotely. Every day he has a teleconference with people in Texas, Florida, Colorado, California, Oregon and Washington so him being mobile is no big deal, he just needs an internet connection (see below). Allison does freelance writing for blogs and might pick up some substitute yoga instructor jobs along the way. We’ll stay flexible and figure it out and keep you posted.
- I thought you guys just bought a house? What are you going to do with that? – Right now the plan is rent it for a year and then re-evaluate. We pay a management company to do all the day-to-day maintenance and tenant relations. After a year, maybe we still love travelling and being landlords is insanely profitable, then we’ll keep doing it. Maybe we decide we love travelling but being remote landlords sucks a lot, then we’ll sell the house. Maybe we decide we want to go back to a sticks-n-bricks house but Denver isn’t calling to us the way <some other awesome place we find on our quest> is calling to us. So, ask us again in 2017.
- Ok, so when did you start? – We hit the road in May 2016 with our first stop in Cotopaxi, CO. We set a deadline for ourselves and were really glad we did otherwise we never would have felt ready to leave!
- Do you have a route picked out? – We kinda just have a rough idea each year. For 2016 we wanted to go North and West and we ended up all over the Pacific Northwest and Canada. For 2017 we’re thinking about slowing down a bit and spending a lot of time in central and Southwest Colorado and then heading to the many National Parks in Utah. We’d love to see friends and family more on this trip so we’ll be posting rough outlines of our plans as we go. If you’re in the area, let us know, we’d love to hang out! We also would never turn down a chance to driveway surf (park in your driveway and be your neighbors for a couple days).
- What’s your plan for the winter? – We like skiing too much to just go south and camping in the winter at a ski resort without hookups is near impossible (and it’s still really hard with hookups) so we ended up putting the RV in storage and renting a ski condo in Winter Park, CO. Allison wrote up a good description about our process in the post Winter Plans.
- So what is your rig like? – Short answer, it’s a 1989 26′ long Class C Winnebago towing our 2006 Pontiac Vibe. Check out a bunch of pictures from when we got it: We Bought our Rig! and the “after” pictures from after we put a winter worth of work into it.
- Do you stay in RV parks and campgrounds all the time? – Not at all. We’re pretty atypical compared to most RVers and we do a lot of “boondocking” or camping without hookups. In the western part of the US there is TONS of land that is owned by everyone (i.e. the government through BLM, NFS, NPS, Reclamation, etc). On most of that land, you can just pull off the road and camp for free for up to 14 days. There aren’t any facilities but there usually also aren’t any neighbors like you get in a campground. We wrote up a great how-to post about how we boondock.
- How are you going to get reliable internet? – There are basically 3 options for internet on the road: satellite, wifi hotspots and cellular. We use a Verizon Hotspot and have phones we can tether through AT&T so that covers just about anywhere we want to go. We also can always just drive into town to find a hotspot. We posted about our experience getting an Unlimited Verizon Data Plan here: Mobile Internet and Unicorns. If you want more information about mobile internet, the best source of information by far is the paid content at rvmobileinternet.com but their free stuff is also VERY good.
- What about power?– We put about $3000 worth of solar panels and electrical systems on our rig. We did a full write up of all the solar power components.
- Does Cheat like the RV?- He really likes the RV lifestyle. He loves to explore new places, have opportunities to hike off-leash, and go for longer adventures than we typically could in Denver. But the RV itself he is kind of “meh” about. It’s small (so we step on him sometimes, oops!) and he can’t see out any of the windows except in the cab. His perfect day is a morning run, laying underneath the RV all day long, and a long walk in the afternoon.
- Can I do a leg of the trip with you? – Absolutely! Just a few caveats though. 1) We’re probably going to be working during the day. Just because we’re on the road and posting awesome pictures of the awesome places we’re at, doesn’t mean that we are on vacation. You can come and be on vacation, but we’ll have to sit out some stuff during the day. 2) You’ll have to sleep on the table converted to a bed. It is meant to convert and you get cushions and everything. It’s bigger than a twin, but not quite a full. 3) If we’re boondocking together, you may have to use less power and water than you’re used to. We have a 35 gallon fresh water tank and a 7 gallon water container. Our shower head will use 1.25 gallons per minute. You can do the math. Then again, if we are at a campground with hookups, go wild!
- What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow? – “The average cruising airspeed velocity of an unladen European Swallow is roughly 11 meters per second, or 24 miles an hour.“