It was, undoubtedly, the coldest night of the trip, although at just shy of 11,000 feet, with small patches of snow still on the ground, that doesn’t quite come as a surprise. The clearing we had found to camp in filled with sunlight bright and early, rousting everyone from their slumber well before 8:00am. First on the list was for Jim Bob and I to move our tents into the sun; the morning dew was heavy, and condensation filled the nooks and crannies from the night before.
We awoke on Friday morning, perched on a mountainside at roughly 9,000ft of altitude. For me and Jim Bob, it was technically the start of Day 3, but for most of the gang, the trip was just beginning. Rewinding a bit, Jim Bob and I had departed from Southern California on Wednesday morning, making it to Southern Utah through excruciating 113-degree heat before calling it a night and catching some sleep.
There’s no better way to enjoy a vehicle you’ve built with your own hands than to use it, or perhaps in this case, abuse it. Earlier this spring, Emily and I, along with our dog Chloe, set out for the deserts of Utah, where we spent eight days camping inside our 1985 Toyota Land Cruiser. While the trip itself offered a slew of memories we’ll never forget, that wasn’t the only thing we were left with.