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Camping in a minivan or cargo van

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Harrisonburg...
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Camping in a minivan or cargo van

We have done the rv in the past & also lived in anchorage back in the 70's. We are now doing a cruise, and want an inexpensive land trip to do on our own. Has anyone camped using their mini van or rented a cargo van. I don't mind tent camping, but don't think I want to do it in alaska . Planning the trip last week in August . Thanks for your input.

Also, where can I buy cheap camping gear for this short time?

I would leave behind .

Southaven...
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1. Re: Camping in a minivan or cargo van

Hi we lived in Anchorage in the 90's and loved it.))))

We have done the inexpensive land trip many times in tents and in a rented full size van and no problems. We always had alot of fun.

We always buy gear at REI Store or The Sportsman Warehouse but im sure you can buy cheaper stuff elsewhere since you are leaving it behind. Sounds like you are in for a nice trip.

Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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2. Re: Camping in a minivan or cargo van

I "camped" in a rented 2000 Suburban in Denali NP last year during the road lottery weekend (four nights in Mid September). It worked out great. The only thing I took with me in terms of camping gear was a sub-zero rated sleeping bag. (The nights dropped to about freezing!)

Wasilla, Alaska
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3. Re: Camping in a minivan or cargo van

REI and Sportsman's Warehouse would have nicer gear. Walmart, Fred Meyer's, Walmart, Costco or Sam's Club would have the cheaper stuff.

haines, alaska
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4. Re: Camping in a minivan or cargo van

Mocha, we saw a family camping in a rented U-Haul moving truck.......they said they chose this each year to camp in when they came to Alaska to fish.....looked quite pratical, sturdy and it probably costs less to rent......

Adirondack, New York
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5. Re: Camping in a minivan or cargo van

When you car camp where do you use restrooms/outhouses and showers?

Edited: 12:11 pm, March 26, 2012
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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6. Re: Camping in a minivan or cargo van

I think car campers often stay in campgrounds too. That's what I did at Denali, staying at TEK, so I used their toilets and went to the mercantile at the entrance for showers at the end of my stay.

Anchorage, Alaska
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7. Re: Camping in a minivan or cargo van

There are many places that have pay showers:

- Seward city campground

- Riley @ Denali

- some gas stations around the state

- or if you get caught in a really good downpour; consider this as opportunity knocking!

restrooms/outhouses:

- there are plenty of equipped pullouts/restrooms for use as you pass

- for when you really can't wait, a cheap portable toilet (other then holes/burying in the woods) is a home depot bucket w/lid, garbage bags and a box of kitty liter

Scott

- or as T.Von just mentioned, car camp at a campground

Edited: 12:17 pm, March 26, 2012
Adirondack, New York
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8. Re: Camping in a minivan or cargo van

Once in a while I see a car parked for a night at the pull offs with no facilities anywhere around. With RVs this is not a problem but when I see a car and people sleeping in it then what do they do? How big has to be a kitty litter box and where do you keep it?

Edited: 12:28 pm, March 26, 2012
USA
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9. Re: Camping in a minivan or cargo van

mocha, when you say cheap camping gear, are you thinking of stuff for sleeping in the rental van? In other words, sleeping pads & sleeping bags?

Or are you re-thinking using a tent?

I have car-camped with others who had a mini-van. The back seats were left in the garage.

Just to boost confidence about tent camping, I backpack all over in a tent alone & with friends without any problems. We have also car camped all over in a tent.

USA
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10. Re: Camping in a minivan or cargo van

Most car campers are in campgrounds with outhouses.

Luckily, in Alaska many laundromats have pay showers.

Edited: 4:13 pm, March 26, 2012