No website about tiny travel trailers is complete without pictures of the camper doing what it was meant to do... explore! In the few years that I've been camping with the luxury and convenience of the convertible teardrops, I've been able to take some really fun trips.
A few trips have been to the sandy beaches of Assateauge Island National Seashore, but most have been to the mountains of New York, Virgina, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.My adventures are usually only for a weekend at a time, yet they are still unforgettable.
Everybody knows what roadtrips are, but many people don't really know what boondocking is. By definition, boondocking is disperessed or dry camping, where there are no electrical hookups, and often no cell phone service. While roadtrips to a campground to meet distant friends are a lot of fun, boondocking allows you to really get away from civilization and relax.
Most state and national forests allow boondocking, but many require the campers to register for a permit in case there is some sort of emergency. Always check with a ranger station before venturing into the wild.
While I take too many trips to post up info and picture for every single one, you can read about a few of them below.
My First Teardrop Trip: TEARSTOCK
My first trip with my first convertible teardrop was to a gathering of tiny travel trailers, hosted by a group called the "TearJerkers". Referred to as "Tearstock", the gathering of about 60 tiny travel trailers was held at Black Bear Campground in Phoenecia, New York. You can read about the weekend and see some pictures from "Tearstock" by clicking on the flyer below.
Skyline Drive, Shenandoah National Park
This picture was taken in June 2011, on Skyline Drive, in Shenandoah National Park. My girlfriend and I were on our way home from a Tearjerker's Gathering in Virginia. We got POURED on overnight, but thanks to the teardrop, we managed to stay dry! Once the sun emerged from the clouds it turned out to be a beautiful day!
Assateauge Island National Seashore
Enjoying a great sunset:
A wild horse of Assasteague:
Fred, my Beagle, with his ears flying in the breeze:
Enjoying some time with friends:
An abandoned Scotty along the roadway:
Boondocking in Northern PA
My favorite place to go camping in Pennsylvania is a little-known area in the Tiadaghton State Forest. I was introduced to this area when I was attending college at the Pennsylvania College of Technolody in Williamsport, PA. The area is considered part of the Loyalsock State Forest, and has some of the nicest swimming holes in PA. Some friends and I usually go boondocking here at least 4 or 5 times each year. And it doesnt matter what month we go, the water is ALWAYS freezing cold!
A Teardrop is not a space ship. Its a box on two wheels. They are only as complicated as you make them. Some have very elaborate cabinets and woodwork, built-in sinks with water pumps, and LCD TV/DVD combos.
My convertible is pretty basic, and so were my tools. I used wrenches to assemble the trailer frame, and cut all the wood using a circular saw and a handheld jigsaw. The only thing that I didn't have was a handheld belt sander, which I borrowed from friend. All three of these power tools can be purchased fairly cheap at a discount tool store, such as Harbor Freight Tools.
As far as time is concerned, you can take as long as you want! The only deadline is the one you make. Some people start building in the early Spring in hopes of making Summer trips, while a few people actually take years to complete their master- pieces. Just build at your own pace!
Teardrops come in many shapes and sizes, and their options can vary just as much. Two of the most popular commercially built Teardrops are Little Guy Teardrops, and Camp-Inn Teardrops. A new Little Guy will cost you between $3000 and $9,000, while a Camp-Inn Raindrop 560 could set you back as much as $18,000!
Another other option is to buy a used camper. A search of Craigslist often turns up a used teardrop that is for sale. If you can't find a used one with the features you want, then you could search for a private builder who will collaborate with you and construct a camper to suit your needs. Your last option (and the most fun) is to build one yourself!
A teardrop is a small travel trailer which was popular back in the 30's, 40's,and 50's. The name is derived from the areodynamic shape that many of the tiny travel trailers employ.
They are an attractive option to a larger RV due to their cost, maneuverability, and minimal effect on gas mileage. Many teardrops weigh around 1,000lbs when loaded with gear, which makes it possible for almost any vehicle to pull.
Most are based on either a 4x8 or 5x10 trailer, and can comfortably sleep 2 adults. Some are as wide as 6 feet and can provide room for children as well.