Travels without Charley

Back in 1982 I read John Steinbeck’s book about his travels across the US in a motorhome. It was an inspiring read. So much so that as a direct result, I recently I bought a small motorhome. For US readers, a European motorhome is not like an “RV” - most of which seem to be the size of a small English village and would be unsuitable on many of our roads.

Last weekend I ventured out in the motorhome on my first SOTA expedition in a while. I must be a bit rusty as I forgot several things but none that stopped the expedition. It was very good to be able to park up and change into walking gear in comfort. It was also good to be able to walk off the hill, have a hot shower and make lunch without moving anywhere. My next step is to combine the motorhome with cycling, there are a few hills that would lend themselves to such an approach.

There is much to learn but the initial experience was positive. Thanks for all the contacts.


Very interesting Richard.

Can you be a bit more specific about the type (and size). Van conversion? Coachbuilt? etc

BTW I rented an large RV in Arizona and drove to California many years ago… which was easy enough to manage on the roads there. However I shall never forget the look on the faces of the shop staff as I parked it outside one of the branded shops on Rodeo Drive in LA!

I saw the spots and wondered where you were “staying over”. Some years back I inquired about the hire of a motorhome for Paul and I to bag some more remote GM summits and avoid the return to a fixed base each evening, but my bank manager put a stop on my account! Looks like your investment will be a good one. What you save on accommodation you can spend on fuel and on food and drink in the pub. :slight_smile:

Welcome to the Motorhome Club!
Christine and I have been using a motorhome for close to 20 years now.
Would be interesting to know what type you have gone for;; a high top panel conversion or a coach built one.
My biggest gripe about travel by motorhome is to find the suitable parking spaces. Height barriers at around 2 -2.1 Mtrs are unfortunately installed at a lot of parking lots intended for hill walkers here in Scotland!

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This is our van:


Perhaps they are trying to tell you something, Ken.

Walt (G3NYY)

Motorhome + SOTA = Brilliant.

Speaking as someone who has just done over seven weeks at it around Europe. I’ll write the trip up when we are finally home in a couple of days.

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Hi Richard,
I miss the Toyota Landcruiser Troopcarrier LWB camper van that I bought when I first arrived in Australia some 23 years ago now. It was before I got back into Amateur radio and it would have made a fantasic portable radio shack. This thing could drive anywhere and it was shown respect in towns by “mere mortal” sedan cars. Unfortunately it was also 2.8 metres high which meant it could not fit into any of the multi-story car parks in Adelaide where we were living at the time, so after about 9 months I had to sell it and buy a “normal” car.

Interestingly, we are now considering something similar here in Germany to allow us to holiday with our dog without problems. This time I think I’ll look at a pop-top though!

73 Ed.