The Ecotrek 510 camper is designed for one purpose and one purpose only: surviving any rugged obstacle thrown its way so you can sleep soundly that night. That one purpose opens it up to all kinds of uses – hunting, fishing, 4x4ing, etc. No cutesy teardrop design, the 510 has a reinforced build meant to thrive in terrain that would rip lesser campers to shreds.
French design studio Bruit du Frigo has drawn inspiration from fallen down tree trunks, which often provide shelter for small animals, to create an eco-shelter for humans in the forests of Bordeaux. Dubbed Le Tronc Creux, which means "The Hollow Trunk," the low impact shelter is roughly the same size as a shipping container and can easily be transported by truck to different locations when required.
After successfully putting his NASA design skills to work on the Cricket Trailer
, Garrett Finney has started on an even smaller field shelter. Similar in purpose to the Teal Tail Feather
and other small campers
, the new Firefly is designed to split the difference between gear hauler and camper. It can be mounted to a pickup truck bed, towed on a utility trailer or choppered in to remote locations.
We're constantly seeing inventors attempt to create new and interesting ways to charge our cell phones. VOTO
is one product we've seen that uses fire
to charge our smart devices, and now a new take on the idea is hitting the scene. Called FlameStower, it utilizes very similar technology, but with a few twists.
The drive-in movie theater may be a thing of the past, but German camper manufacturer Dethleffs recently made a play to bring it back ... with a twist. You could call it the drive-up movie theater. Dethleffs calls it the Mini Movie Campy, a home theater packed neatly into a small camping trailer.
Perhaps it's just that we've been paying closer attention to the segment lately, but we've seen a surge of innovative, small camper hardware over the past few years. From utility trailer build-ups like the Teal panel kit
, to car conversion "campers in boxes" like the SwissRoomBox
, to more permanent van and Jeep conversions, these small campers let you escape in your everyday vehicle without the bulk and cost of larger motorhomes and RVs. Our recent trip to the Dusseldorf Caravan Salon revealed that there are dozens upon dozens of small camper designs to choose from.
With the original Volkswagen T2 Microbus set for extinction, the days of VW bread loaf camper conversions appear numbered unless something like the Bulli concept
comes to fruition. As Gizmag learned at the Dusseldorf Caravan Salon, however, the VW bus camper is not only alive in the 21st century, it's thriving.
With removable, modular living equipment, camping trailers like the Teal
seamlessly switch between sleeping people and hauling toys. At the recent Caravan Salon in Dusseldorf, German materials manufacturer Vohringer showed a trailer concept designed to do both at the same time. The Speed-Wagon uses a hydraulic lift system to open up space for a motorbike while still sleeping occupants comfortably.
The 2013 Dusseldorf Caravan Salon was stuffed hall to hall, wall to wall with RVs, camping trailers, pop-ups and mobile living equipment of all kinds. Perhaps it's the timelessly romantic appeal of conquering anything the Earth puts in your way to enjoy its bounty, but we were particularly impressed with some of the rugged, off-road-capable campers. We've put together a tour of every off-road model we found, designs that range from tented gear haulers to full-blown tactical 8x8s.
After a day spent hiking, biking, climbing or otherwise exerting yourself outdoors, a shower sure feels nice. Climbing into your car and driving home all sweaty in order to take
said shower, however, can be quite a drag. That's why Colorado native Joel Cotton created the Road Shower. It's a pressurized water tank that mounts on your roof rack, allowing you to grab a quick shower beside your car – just look out for Peeping Toms.