December 16, 2022 4 min read
Location: Bend, Oregon
Nickname: No nickname yet, might have to try and come up with a good nickname for her though!
Make & Model: Automatic 2016 Toyota Tundra
HEST products: HEST Dually Long
Critical dimensions for your bed platform: I built my sleeping platform with the Dually long in mind so it fits like a glove!
Length: 78" Width (at narrowest point): 50”, the platform converts into a bench which is 25” wide
Height: 12”, fits right over the top of my wheel well with my BedRug
Is this your daily driver or getaway car?
The Tundra is my daily driver, I tend to keep the basics as far as camping gear goes in my truck so it’s ready to go at a moment's notice!
What do you like most about your rig? The thing I like most about my rig is its capability. It’s extremely reliable being a Toyota, and really capable in everything from snow to mud, to sand.
On your average weekend adventure, what is the gear set up you bring with you? How did you navigate gear storage needs into your rig set up?
So for a typical weekend adventure, I make sure to load up my dog Jaxson and my girlfriend Tamara, in that order of course. I always throw in my camera bag and make sure the Goal Zero is charged up to keep my electronics going. My HEST Dually of course, Kelty Doublewide sleeping bag, then just typical camping gear, stove, table, chairs, Buddy heater, etc. Depending on the season I either have my rocket box packed with a quiver of snowboards, or my mountain bike on the hitch, and if it’s the PERFECT weekend I have both!
As far as storage goes, I’m not working with a ton of space so rooftop storage is a necessity. I’m pretty well covered between the rocket box and the basket. Inside the canopy, I have a shelf for my Goal Zero and smaller items, a spot for my Mr. Buddy heater, then a good amount of under-bed storage with some bins. It’s definitely still a work in progress getting my storage solution dialed in but it gets the job done, and regardless of what I do it always looks like a tornado went through my truck by the end of a trip!
Any cool custom details you’re proud of?
Not that it’s a custom detail, but I did have a blast building the setup with the help of my dad. He has a lot of knowledge when it comes to carpentry as well as all the tools which helps, but it was a good bonding experience tackling the design and execution with him.
Coolest place you’ve taken your rig to?
Hmmm, that’s tough! We’ve taken it on a few trips down to Mammoth to snowboard, we camped right at the hot springs east of town which was great for a post-shred soak and to warm up in the morning. We also took a road trip through the Sawtooths in Idaho last Fall which was epic with all of the autumn colors so I’d say either of those. I definitely have a soft spot though for all the local trails here in Central Oregon, or camping out in the Mt Bachelor parking lot during a snowstorm so I have to throw those in the mix!
Any projects in the pipeline to get the truck even more adventure ready?
So my short-term plan is to dial in the back seat of the cab a little more. I don’t want to do a full-on seat delete, but I definitely want to build a platform with storage underneath and give the pup a better spot to lay while driving. Then as far as long-term goal goes, I’m hoping to upgrade the cap to a Go Fast Camper, Super Pacific, AT Overland, or any of the wedge style, pop-up campers on the market. I think that would be the optimal setup for my rig!
Biggest challenge in your build out?
I think the biggest challenge of my build-out was trying to prioritize needs. I knew I didn’t want to go with the traditional platform build since it limited interior living space. I really wanted a place where we could crawl in and shelter from a snow/rain storm if need be, while still maximizing under-bed storage space. This is my V2 buildout so I think I got a lot closer with it this time, but half the fun of going DIY is refining the process so I doubt this is my rig's final form.
Tips for others looking to do the same to their vehicle?
I would say my biggest tip for people is to just get outside and don’t worry about the little details. I started this journey camping out in snowstorms with my old little hatchback so I could get to the ski resort early, then moved to my Tundra which I’ve refined just by using it the way I want and making little tweaks here and there. It’s easy to get caught up in the latest and greatest in the “overlanding” world, but as long as you’re getting out, using your rig, and making memories with friends and family the inspiration for your setup will come!