Ryan McKee


We buy, build, and equip our vehicles to take us places so we can enjoy the outdoors get away from the stresses of everyday life. Whether you’re preparing for a cross-country adventure or just a weekend in the local backcountry, one of the best projects you can undertake is gear management and storage preparation. While each vehicle has different capacities for your equipment, a little bit of forethought can make a world of a difference when you set up camp at the end of the day. From sliding drawers to affordable watertight cases and everything in between, there’s an option for everyone when it comes to keep your gear organized. After long days on dirt trails or hours rolling over pavement, having an efficient system in place to get your camp gear in place and set up can save you quite a bit of time and get you more comfortable sooner.

While most nights I try to end our time in the vehicle before the sun goes down, sometimes we’re left working after dark. With a quick throw of a switch in the truck I’m able to illuminate the area with a combination of Black Oak’s LED fixtures, making it much easier to see while I work. We’ve opted for a more modular storage solution, and utilize three Pelican brand 1610 cases to hold our equipment. Stacked highest in the back of the vehicle next to our fridge is the sleeping/camp gear, including our tent, inflatable sleeping pad, sleeping bag, and pillows. I always find it best to set the tent first so that we can at least know our home-on-the-road is ready to go whenever we call it a night, so having this case on top means it’s first out when we arrive at our destination. By having the gear in a Pelican case, it’s reasonable to carry it away from the Jeep if we’re camping somewhere nearby that the vehicle can’t access.

Underneath the camp gear Pelican is another one containing a 2-burner stove, fuel canister, pot/pan, utensils, and all other necessary cooking equipment. Keeping it together in one case ensures that the smells of cooked food and organic dish-soap don’t seep into the fabrics of our sleeping gear, which helps decrease the chance of any furry visitors overnight. The third Pelican case, kept separately from the other two and within arms reach of the driver and passenger seats, holds both electronic equipment and additional recovery tools. Along with cameras, chargers, and hard drives, we keep our basic tool kit, first aid kit, and tow straps quickly accessible in case we need to access any of them in a hurry.

The ability to have a modular storage system that isn’t permanently installed allows for easy gear changes and quick adjustments to our needs for each adventure we go on. Whether you are going for a single day, overnight, or month-long trip, having your equipment well organized allows for efficient camping and easy access to your gear, allowing you to spend more time focusing on the fun of escaping from the norm of everyday life.