It’s been two months since we first hit the road, and alas, the time has come for us to bid farewell to Baby and BioLite, and greet our next big adventure. We’re really so thankful to have seen so much of this incredible country of ours. There’s really nothing that compares to traveling around the USA, witnessing its incredible natural beauty, and hearing the stories of people from all over who are doing such inspiring things.
We’ll miss the grand open plains of Central Nevada; the bright and curvy roads of Arkansas, the beautiful vegetation of the Oregon wilderness, camping out and fishing in numerous ponds and reservoirs, and most of all, the late night campfires that restore peace of mind after many hours of driving our loud and bumpy fire truck.
Our trip serves as proof that unconventional energy sources can take us a long way - both literally as well as figuratively. We ran for thousands of miles on the waste cooking oil that many restaurants would have simply discarded. We kept most of our devices charged with our BioLite CampStove, KettleCharge and BaseCamp - including lanterns, GPS, cell phones, WiFi hotspot, and camera gear.
Although we spent much of the time in clothes grimy with vegetable oil, we grew to love this method of travel - not only for the cost-savings, but also for the satisfaction gained from having such a direct hand in fueling the journey. Who could forget the time we drove through Vail pass in Colorado (elevation 10,662ft) on fuel we found in a bin behind a resort near Crater Lake, Oregon?
Our experiments in using the energy all around us led to some pretty interesting situations - from boiling water in a KettleCharge in order to load the next route on our GPS (and make our morning coffee) to running around in a pitch black forest with our CampStove as a torch in order to find more twigs and pinecones to burn. We put our BioLite gear to the test under clear skies and downpours, in the desert of Nevada, the mountains of Montana, and on the beaches of Washington State.
As we return to “normal life” and look ahead to the next chapter that awaits writing, we’ll do so with a much greater perspective thanks to all the ideas sparked, lessons learned, and friendships forged along our route. Fare thee well, and see you on the road!
- Best, Joe & Dan