I know that the #vanlife is large right now, but overlanding in general is all over social media. For families, sure, get something you can fit in (like a tiny house!), but I would like to at least propose the question of necessity.
We are supposed to be stewards of our environment, but what toll is paid from fueling large vehicles to roam on the weekends for one person, when you can get by with perhaps half at most of what you take in an overlanding rig? For those of you out there truly living it, one mobile shelter across the world, I get it, and think y'all are awesome. Not having an actual house gives large credit to whatever carbon footprint you have.
However, living in a 3000 sqft house 6 feet from your neighbor with a tiny yard and an awesome rig that burns all the gas can be improved upon. Over the past two months, I've put over 9000 miles on my motorcycle- a modest 313cc G310GS. There has been some camping out in BLM and forest land, and some hotel stays, but I have been getting 50-65 mpg, paying my $8-10 for 140 miles at a time (unless you add a bladder/rotopax for double the range). There are thousands of places to stay in Oregon on the ground, and all of them have access to the stars with a little effort. Also, you aren't adding 195 lbs of wind resistance to the top of your off-roading vehicle, and I'd bet you can still get to any place you take your rig. In addition, in 15 minutes, camp can be taken off your vehicle and it can get those extra mpgs back for your daily commute. It should also be mentioned that you can't text while riding.
In dual-sport crazy Oregon, you can find good used 650s for $3500. Backpacking gear keeps space available. I even took along (and now love) the low camp chair. It attaches right to my saddlebags, without taking up precious inside space/water proofness.
Recap: better fuel economy means less fuel used, less material to make the motorcycle, <half of the rubber for tires, same access, greatly reduced costs. More people on the road on motos means increased awareness eventually, and less space taken up on the highway. I promise, you can still have a sweet camp setup. Thanks!
#motolife is one of our favorite ways that we explore the great state of Alaska. My boyfriend has a Ducati Multistrada with three luggage boxes and we find that we can get off the beaten path and find lots of cool little spots when we’re on the bike, as opposed to in a larger vehicle.
Ultralight backpacking gear works for our purposes, and we appreciate space-savers like tiny camp tables, portable roll-up grills and Jetboils.
There’s definitely something to be said for choosing motorcycle camping - lower impact, and in my opinion, a richer, more unique experience that bonds you to other bikers you meet along your journeys.