AWOL Gear Roundup #11

AI generated camper van drawings from adobe illustrator

Starting with this recap, I’m taking a slightly different approach. You’ll find short bits of new things plus quick recaps of our best recent stories, in case you missed them (or you only want the highlights).

Here, we have a couple of interesting tents, a clever camper trailer, and two amazing sports cars worth a look. Plus, Michelin-soled parkour shoes, chair warmers, and a great video overview of The Loam Ranger’s MTB-inspired overland rig.

  • AI-generated Camper Vans
  • HitchHome Air Tent
  • Honda Ridgeline TrailSport
  • Audi RS6 Avant GT
  • Nissan GT concept
  • Firestone AirRide
  • IO’s carbon fiber rooftop tent
  • SylvanSport VAST
  • Rocky Talkie GMRS radios
  • BougeRV water heater
  • Yakima’s new overland gear
  • Helinox camp chair warmers
  • OLLO Sapien X

Here’s what Adobe Illustrator’s AI thinks camper vans look like

Adobe Illustrator’s now lets you prompt its AI to create anything in vector art. The results aren’t always great, but these camper vans (feature image at top) turned out pretty good. I even dig the colors!

Next, I prompted it with “overland offroad truck” and it produced the above images. As a starting point for creatives, these could save hours of work, and potentially spark fresh ideas. The only downside? I used to be able to say Adobe AI and people knew I meant “Adobe Illustrator”. But now…

Hitch Home Duo+ inflatable hitch-mounted tent

Aimed at the RTT crowd, the Hitch Home Duo+ two-person tent has a generous 84″ x 64″ sleeping area and light 77lb weight. And it attaches to your hitch, letting you quickly detach it, leaving your vehicle free to roam without needing you to break down camp.

It’s also inflatable, taking just 3 minutes to set itself up, and has a thick 5.9″ air mattress. Their Kickstarter campaign opens in April with earlybird deals starting at $1,590 (eventual MSRP $3,560).

Honda Ridgeline TrailSport adds a little off-road cred

It’s not their Baja race truck, but the 2024 Honda Ridgeline gets a TrailSport edition with off-road-tuned suspension with more articulation, General Grabberâ„¢ A/T Sport (245/60R18) all-terrain tires, and steel underbody protection.

It has Honda’s torque vectoring AWD drivetrain with modes for sand, snow, mud and paved roads, but not pure 4WD modes. Ground clearance is only 7.64″, and that’s before loading it down, but they make the most of it in their promo video. Add some stiffer springs and slightly larger tires and this could be a luxe option for low-key overlanding.

Audi RS6 Avant GT super wagon

2025 Audi RS6 Avant GT high performance wagon

It’s no rally car, but the 2025 Audi RS6 Avant GT is the ultimate version of their RS6 Avant (avant = wagon in Audi parlance). It has a twin turbo V8 with an output of 620hp and delivers 626lb-ft torque through a reworked rear differential and 22″ wheels.

Carbon fiber wide body front fenders and hood, adjustable coil-overs, pass-through rear deck spoiler, and refined diffuser round things out. 0-62mph in 3.3 seconds, top speed 190mph. As awesome as this is, something tells me it’s a bit of a last hurrah for gas engines. MSRP €219,355, available Q2 2024, 660 units total, with heritage graphics inspired by the Audi 90 quattro IMSA GTO. (video here)

Nissan Gran Turismo Concept… 2020

Just gonna leave this right here. It’s Nissan’s answer to video game Gran Turismo’s call for entries, asking carmakers to imagine the next generation of sports car. What’s remarkable is that this debuted in 2014…why do we not have it yet?

Firestone Airide now available for passenger trucks

The new aftermarket Firestone Airide suspension booster is designed to support your rig when towing or hauling heavy loads. It augments your existing springs, and is controlled via Bluetooth app so you can customize the setting.

It’s available for most popular truck & SUVs, even some surprising smaller ones and wagons. Front and rear kits available, and they can be installed at any Firestone tire/auto center nationwide.

Recent Posts

inspired overland lightweight rooftop tent shown on a toyota 4runner

Inspired Overland carbon fiber lightweight rooftop tent

At just 80lbs, Inspired Overland’s lightweight carbon fiber RTT is just 4.75″ thick, has T-slots for mounting cargo rails & accessories, air vents for A/C or heat, and waterproof tent and rainfly fabric. Read more...

SylvanSport VAST toy hauler camper trailer being towed

SylvanSport VAST camper trailer w/ unique slide-out kitchen

This toy hauler uses inside space very well to create a roomy wet bath, queen bunk beds, plus room for bikes & gear. But the killer feature is the full kitchen that slides diagonally to the ground for true indoor/outdoor use! Read more…

rocky talkie 5-watt gmrs waterproof handheld radio for overland and backcountry hiking and biking

Rocky Talkie adds 5-Watt GMRS handheld radios

The new Rocky Talkie 5-Watt GMRS Radio has up to 35 mile range, rugged waterproof screen-less construction, and ultra-long battery life, even in freezing temps, with swappable rechargeable batteries! Read more…

bougeRV compact propane camping water heater for hot showers on overland travel and road trips

BougeRV compact, self-powered portable water heater

The BourgeRV Portable Propane Camping Water Heater is tiny, self-powered, and uses small 1 lb propane tanks, just like most camp stoves. It’s rechargeable and provides about an hour of use and doesn’t require a hose hookup to create water pressure. Read more…

yakima mod system storage drawers for inside overland vehicles, SUV, vans, and wagons

Yakima adds in-vehicle storage & stronger roof rack rails

Yakima’s MOD System combines stackable drawers with cubbies and totes, a fridge slide, and work stations to create modular, lockable storage for vans, SUVs & wagons. New, stronger stainless steel rails for Toyota, Jeep, and RAM better support their roof rack, and there’s a bigger e-bike hitch rack, too. Read more…

Gear, Gadgets & Tech

Helinox camp chair warmers

Helinox’s insulated camp chair covers keep your body heat from leaking straight through their lightweight fabric. Available with synthetic and down fill, with patterned and reversible designs, they fit the Chair One, Chair Two, and Sunset, Beach, Savannah, and Playa models. MSRP $60-80, some styles discounted.

OLLO SapienX Michelin parkour shoes

Focused exclusively on parkour, the upcoming OLLO SapienX uses Michelin outsoles for extreme grip and improved durability. They’re available with white or black (stealth, shown) cushioning, in unisex sizing from US 4-13 men’s (women’s 5.5-12.5).

Pre-order now for $99, delivery in March. Full MSRP will be $119. These are also popular in ninja warrior and ultimate chase tag, too. I’ve had several pairs, and they’re great for all these things.

Show Time

This is a seriously cool family-style overland build in a 2012 Land Rover LR3.

Field Notes

Big Deals

Wandering Thoughts

I’ve been busy planning a few trips and have almost constant on-again, off-again travel until July.

But that’s a good thing, I love it, and there are some great events and trips on my calendar.

Much of it is cycling related, but also a three-day overland trip with friends through Pisgah National Forest. The highlight, though, is an eight day bikepacking adventure with my son in Japan, and I can’t wait.

What I love about planning overland routes and bikepacking trips is that no matter how much advance research I do, there’s still a lot I won’t know until I get there.

That keeps it exciting.

I feel like with most trips to established tourism locations is it’s easy to see what’s there in advance, and see the things everyone sees.

Lately that’s left me feeling less satisfied despite going to some amazing places. Maybe that’s because I’ve been fortunate enough to travel a lot. But I’ve always been more excited about seeing what’s behind the scenes, off the beaten path, and going where others rarely do.

I’m guessing that’s you, too.

Here’s to the adventure!

adventurous way of life logo illustrates travel and van life ideas

Adventurous Way of Life covers the best new gear, gadgets, and tech for those who dig the outdoors, health, fitness, camping, cooking, overlanding, vanlife, and the adventurous active lifestyle. Subscribe here to get our periodic newsletter recaps by email.

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About Tyler 75 Articles
I'm a serial traveller and road trip lover who's crisscrossed the US so many times I've lost count. I've owned cars, SUVs, wagons, vans and a 37' class A toy hauler RV, and I've customized them all! I love the open road and getting off the beaten path to find new adventures, mainly traveling with Kristi and the kids to explore the world on our own two feet (and, usually, two to four wheels)!

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