Boondocking Trucker Style

Boondocking Trucker Style

Most of my adult life I have been self-employed as a General Engineering Contractor. Three and a half years ago after the housing market crash I began driving a truck Long Haul. I have worked my way up in seniority and for the last year have had a dedicated run to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
With the exception of missing my family, my husband and son, I love my job.
There are several reasons why I love my job. One is it’s similar to being self-employed. When I leave the yard in Woodland, CA, I am on my own. I don’t have a manager who micromanages my every move. But I think the main reasons why I love my job, is I get a taste of the nomadic life and the view out my windshield. I drive an average of 3500 miles a week, through all types of road and weather conditions but the view is always fabulous.

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I’m not the typical truck driver, I don’t like parking at truck stops. In my opinion, truck stops are for fuel and showers and for the most part, that is it.

I have been boondocking for the better part of three and a half years in a 75 foot truck and trailer.

Prior to my dedicated run I basically went wherever my company needed me to go in the 11 western States and two western providence of Canada. 

https://goo.gl/maps/iAPcpUoivYm

Most truck drivers at the end of their shift will park at a truck stop stacked in like cord wood. Over the last three and a half years I have been very successful Boondocking my 75 foot truck and trailer.

 

 
With a dedicated run, you get to know the variations of the route you can take depending on the weather. In doing so I have found some favorite Boondocking locations. One is on the Missouri River near Craig, Montana. Then there is Craters of the Moon in Idaho and overlooking the Snake River in Twin Falls, Idaho.

 

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During this time I have also located several dump facilities along I-80 in the state of Nevada. All of them are free with great access for all types and sizes of rigs. My favorite dump facility (if you can have a favorite dump facility) is at the Cosgrave, Nevada rest area at Exit 158. 
When I’m not boondocking at a Scenic pull out, I often stay at rest areas. Most of the rest areas along I-15 in Montana have individual restrooms and some like the the rest area in Conrad, Montana have free Wi-fi.

All of the rest areas in Montana are beautifully manicured and are park-like settings very similar to state parks.

I view this job as a researcher/ adventurer stepping stone for when I am a full-time nomadic traveling the US by RV hauling our bikes with my husband when we retire.

Bell
Bells Rides

Big Sandy

Big Sandy
Boondocking /Dry Camping

Growing up from as early as I can remember my family has camped.

My parents were poor and with four kids camping was cheap entertainment. We camped in tents, cab over campers and later mama and daddy had a 19 foot tow behind trailer (20 foot length is maximum length  in Big Sandy).

All of us kids slept in tents or under a tarp in the back of the truck.

Our favorite place to camp was Big Sandy, CA.
It’s a small Campground with 18 sites just outside of Yosemite National Park and at the time it was free to camp.

Every summer we would pack enough food and supplies for a month of camping.

Back then we didn’t call it “Boondocking”, we just knew it as dry camping. Or as my Uncle Rodney would say “Living off the fat of the land”.

At some point the US Forest Service started charging a small fee and today it is still relatively inexpensive at $26 per night. It’s still dry camping with no water, no dump facilities, no electrical and you pack it in – you pack it out.
There is a camp host and a couple of out-houses which the camp host cleans daily.

This part of my childhood was truly a gift from my parents. To experience the great outdoors, to fish, hike, playing outside and getting dirty, then jumping in the creek to get cleaned off.

Daddy had a Toyota Land Cruiser that could go just about anywhere.

Mama would drop Daddy, my sister and I about five miles or so away from the camp with cheese, crackers and a canteen of water (this was a couple of decades before bottled water).

The object was to hike back to camp before dinner but without using any of the roads.
Often times this would entail crawling under, over and through Buck brush and Manzanita.
We would come dragging into camp bloody, scratched and bruised ready for a dip in the creek.

Mama would have a big pot of beans and biscuits waiting for us. The way we ate you would think we hadn’t eaten in a month, but then again mama was an excellent Okie Chef.

Our nights were filled with sitting around the campfire or we would all pile in Mama and Daddy’s trailer and play cards.

I can honestly say the times I spent camping with my family at Big Sandy we’re not only some of the best times of my life but also what helped mold me into who I am today.

Bell
Bells Rides

 

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Disclaimer:  I would have killed to have any of this camping/hiking/fishing gear growing up. No complaints I caught my limit on my hand me down, second hand rod and reel.