Hi, and welcome to my blog. My name is Bob Wells and I am the owner of cheaprvliving.com, cheapgreenrvliving.com and cheaprvlivingforum.com. If you have ever been to those sites, then you know I have lived in a vehicle for over over 10 years and I absolutely love it! I have always had two goals for my sites, and in this blog they are the same:
- Inspire others to break out of the rat race and embrace simple living by living in a car, van, or RV.
- Teach you how to do it comfortably.
This blog will continue with those two goals, but in a much more personal manner. Of course a lot of it will be my daily and weekly activities, but lets face it, sometimes that is just plain boring so I want to offer you more:
- Posts teaching what I have learned over the years.
- My philosophical musings.
- Maps to free dispersed campsites.
- A quote of the week that I find inspiring and I hope will inspire you.
So even if my life is boring, I hope your life will have been made better by coming here. Before we get started, let me give you some background on my life so you will know how I got to where I am today:
In 1995 I got divorced and was flat broke, I couldn’t even afford an apartment. So I bought a used contractors box van (a van nose with a big box in back), converted it to a camper and lived in it. At first I hated it! But, after a few months, I figured out how to be comfortable and fell in love with it. I lived in it for the next 6 years, and loved every minute of it! Then I got married again and moved back into a house.
I hated everything about living in a house! It was so big and empty, it had to be cleaned constantly, we were constantly buying stuff to keep it full, the lawn had to be mowed and the snow had to be shoveled constantly, it needed repairs and upkeep all the time. Worst of all, the f***ing thing never moved!! It was always in the same boring place. How could anybody live like that! My answer was I couldn’t.
So in 2008 I separated from my second wife (later we divorced but parted as best friends), moved into my little home-built camper on my F150 pickup, and hit the road. I lived in it for 2 1/2 years. In 2010 I bought a 6×10 cargo trailer and converted it into a camper, and have been living in it for the last 1 1/2 years. I have been boondocking on public land for 4 years now. In the summer I go up into the National Forests to live, and in the winter I go down to the deserts of Arizona, California, and Nevada and disperse camp on BLM land.
I have a small pension to live on. I was a union clerk in a grocery store for most of my life. It isn’t quite enough money for me to live on, so for the last 4 summers I have been a campground host in National Forests campgrounds. I love the job! I love living in the National Forests and the campers who stay in my campgrounds are almost always really nice people I enjoy meeting. Last summer (August of 2012, I was riding my motorcycle between campgrounds and had an accident which broke both my wrist and my elbow very badly. Because I was working and on the clock , Workman’s Compensation covered all my medical expenses and lost wages. As I write this it is 8 months later and my wrist has healed well, but the elbow has not. I still can’t work and I am receiving disability pay. I expect to be on permanent disability.
In 2005 I was living in a house, but missed living in my van very, very much. I had found a Yahoo group called vandwellers, and had become a member. I noticed that all the new people asked the same question over-and-over again. I tried to answer all the questions but answering the same question got old fast. So I decided to create a website that would answer the questions. So when people would ask a question, I would answer by sending them to the right page on the website. So I created cheaprvliving.com, and it has become pretty popular. By 2011 the site had grown very large and my mistakes in creating it made finding new articles very hard. So I created a second site to hold all new posts: cheapgreenrvliving.com. It also had a slightly different focus on how living in a van was very green and good for the earth. However, even if you have no interest in that topic, every vandweller should find plenty of useful information. At the same time I created cheaprvlivingforum.com. I had always wanted a forum for vandwellers, and finally took the plunge. In the last year it has grown into a large, wonderful community of caring, knowledgable and generous people. I strongly encourage you to join if you have not.
Until now, I worked every summer in the National Forest. I worked at remote campgrounds that didn’t have cell phone or internet reception, so six months out of the year I could only get on-line once a week or less. Because of that, I couldn’t even consider blogging. The silver lining in my motorcycle accident is that now I can start this blog, so here we are.
I wrote a book trying to put the basics of everything I have learned in one spot. It is $2.99 and available for the Amazon Kindle. Buy it here:
How to Live in a Car, Van or RV–And Get Out of Debt, Travel and Find True Freedom
If you don’t have a Kindle, you can download a free app that will let you read it on your PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, or android device.