New Video: TCA Bradshaw Trail Overland Rally

Truck Camper Adventure (TCA) hosted its very first overland rally on California’s Bradshaw Trail earlier this month. This free trip, scheduled immediately after our truck camper rally in Quartzsite, Arizona, consisted of 14 truck campers. To our knowledge, this was the largest number of campers to explore this historical road at any one time. The two-day trek was fantastic. The trip was completed without any mishaps and benefited greatly from recent road grading as well as near perfect weather. Temperatures ranged from the high 60s to the low 40s. The 77-mile-long road, which borders the Chocolate Mountains Aerial Gunnery Range, is maintained by the Bureau of Land Management and is suitable for a high-clearance truck camper with 4×4. FRS radios were used to coordinate all activities and provided an enjoyable source of banter throughout the trek. This is a music video of the overland trip featuring the song Outlaw Man by the Eagles.

Those who took part in the Bradshaw Trail inaugural overland rally were: Alex and Julie Blasingame (Lance 815), Bob and Sheila Eckert (Lance 825), Randall and Jeanne Grepling (Hallmark Everest), Dave and Pam Lindahl (Hallmark Cuchara), Steve Luoma and Judy Brainerd (Arctic Fox 811), Kevin and Linda MacAfee (Bundutec Odyssey), Pres and Janice Meyers (Alaskan 10), Rick Miller and Malia Dailey (Hallmark Ute), Con and Erin Nguyen (Northstar Laredo), Thom Price (Outfitter Apex 8.5), Jeff and Jeannie Reynolds (Northstar Laredo), Tim and Brenda Tahitinen (Northstar 650), Walt Simpson (Lance 825), and Mello Mike and Karen Smith (Northstar Laredo).

This is Truck Camper Adventure’s first official video of the trip.

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About Mello Mike 467 Articles
Mello Mike is an Arizona native, author, and the founder of Truck Camper Adventure. He's been RV'ing since 2002, is a Jeep and truck camper enthusiast, and has restored several Airstream travel trailers. He currently drives a 2013 Ram 3500 4x4 pickup truck with a 2016 Northstar Laredo solar powered truck camper mounted on top. He enjoys football, music, hiking, travel, photography, and fishing. He retired from the U.S. Navy in 2004 as a CWO3 after 24 years, worked in project management until 2017, and now runs this website full-time. He also does some consulting and RV inspections on the side.


    • Two things: the long-bed crewcab makes for a very long wheel base. Unless your truck is lifted, the departure angle will be very poor and will drag in deep washes. Inner are problematic as well due to the prevalence of flats. The one short-bed dually, which made this trip, got a flat due the numerous rocks on the road.

  1. Great article. WeI would consider going a future rally but before we do, we would like to know what things people do to set up their rig for off road. I’m worried the cabover will smash the marker lights and/or roof of truck. Its never happened but it concerns me. We have airbags but they don’t seem to do anything. If we inflate them more than a few pounds it seems to lift the truck up off the suspension defeating all the other suspension upgrades we have made such as the the torklift stableload upper and lower and Hellwig Bigwig sway bar front and back.

    We will take advice from anyone, but would really like to hear from others with short bed trucks with SRW. I’m wondering if the short wheel base is the source of the problem? Until we get this sorted, we just aren’t comfortable going too far off road – its just not fun. We got our truck and camper to do exactly what you folks are doing.

    Thanks, Rita
    2016 F350 Crew cab, short box, SRW
    2015 Adventurer 89RB (no slides)

    • IMHO, I think you have too many suspension upgrades on your truck. What purpose do your air bags serve when you already have Stableloads installed? Both are designed to keep your truck level under load. Does your truck need both? I doubt it. We will soon be publishing an article by Jeff Reynolds on getting your truck camper ready to take off-road. He presented the material at our recent truck camper rally. I’d definitely take note of the suspension upgrades section about the “boinga-boinga-boinga” effect of air bags when overinflated.

  2. Great video Mike! We enjoyed the Bradshaw overland trek as our first-time truck camper convoy. All the folks on the joint venture were warm, wonderful, and fun. Thanks for organizing both the TCA rally and convoy trip.

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