In which "downsizing" doesn't mean being uncomfortable in camp!

When we got rid of the camper, I had no intention of spending my nights in camp being cold and damp and uncomfortable.   

Fortunately, Jim and I have lived our lives a lot longer without a camper than with one, and we have plenty of skills (and plenty of camping gear) to ensure that our camp is cozy.

For very good weather, we have a tent. But, of course, very good weather can be hen's-teeth scarce in the we have alternate arrangements for the other 362 days each year:

The new fittings aboard the SS Illegible

The canopy is aluminum and waterproof, with sliding side windows and...

Truck stickers:  "To Finish is to Win"  and "Can't Keep Pace?  Ride a Standardbred!"
Canopy sticker:  "A man and his truck, it's a beautiful thing."  
Yeah.  That one is gonna get gone.

...a door!  

The former owner of the canopy apparently liked stickers.  Most of them will be going away, but I want to keep the elk sticker on the rear window

All it needs is a little red dot for a nose = Rudolph!

This canopy is extra-tall.  We can't play volleyball back there, but I can walk around my back bent and my legs straight.  The truck bed is 8 feet long, which gives us plenty of room to store stuff,

"Empty" contents:  3 dog crates, a step-stool, a bucket with tire chains,
a box of racheting tools, and a new starter motor (since installed).

like all the "kitchen gear" for camp.

We put all our stuff in, and then loaded all of Patty's stuff, and still had plenty
of room in back to set up one of the dog crates.

(the camp galley sets up in the horse trailer in bad weather...for some reason, I only took one picture of it when we were setting up camp last weekend)

The "patio pad" left from the camper makes an excellent
"galley floor" for the back of the horse trailer.
In (rare) good weather, the kitchen--consisting of a table, camp stove, several large jugs of water, a big pink food cooler (it was red when it was new, 10 years ago) and 3 big rubbermaid boxes of pots, pans, and food--will stand outdoors.  The rest of the time, the "horse section" of the horse trailer makes a cozy galley, allowing 2 or 3 people to hang out in there while stuff is cooking.

Meanwhile, back in the crew's sleeping quarters:

Every night is a "three dog night"...right?
In this photo, the floofs are reclining on my sleeping bag.
When I'm in it, they fill the chinks of the truck bed with their soft, floofy bums.
Two large waterproof bins keep bedding dry in transit, and provide storage while we're parked.  The mattresses are made of foam covered in waterproof plastic, which are easy to clean after muddy dogs have jumped around on them.

Obviously, every night is a "three-dog night" for us, but we also use sleeping bags for Jim and me, and a fleece blanket over the top for cold nights.  We have an additional down comforter for really cold nights.  We contemplated adding a heater, but it's really not needful.

Although we were offered a fourth floof, we graciously declined and matched the latest sheltie-in-need-of-a-home with another family.  There's just enough room in the back of the SS Illegible for two pirates and three floofs.

Besides, three shelties
The plural descriptors for "floofs" has been decided:
a group of shelties is officially a loft of floofs!

is plenty of floofs.


  1. I think something like your camper top is in my future some day for camping. I'd like a little more rain protection than sleeping in the open stock horse trailer.

    Floofs seem like good snuggling heater dogs. =)

  2. Who needs a heater when you have a loft??? Looks pretty comfy in there!

  3. Sleeping with three shelties would keep someone warm in Alaska I think :) Cool set up!

  4. Ooh, that looks so comfy. Love it! Thanks for getting pics!

  5. the back door and the extra height are two super features. long ago i dreamed of having a pop-up camper, but then i got a truck with a canopy and the canopy was such a huge improvement over a tent, i never even looked into upgrading to a camper. an 8 foot bed is wonderful and i had these great costco folding mats and down comforters.


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