We've just returned from a 2000 mile road trip that took us from Atlanta directly North to Lake Michigan and back. Along the way we camped in the bed of our pick-up truck. The first time we "camped" like this was August 2010 on a road trip from Wyoming to Atlanta. On that trip we found ourselves in rural Nebraska, sleeping under the stars, during the perseid meteor show. It was amazing. The next night, somewhere in Kansas, we found ourselves eaten alive by mosquitoes. Not amazing. At that time we vowed to build a mosquito proof cover for the next time we attempted open air truck bed camping. Four years, a couple dozen feet of pvc pipe and one mosquito net later - TruckTentTruck was born!
During this roadtrip we learned a few new lessons. Namely, some "campgrounds" provide little to no privacy! The looks we got from a few of the fancy RVs were priceless. A couple even ventured over to us to ask "So... what are you, uh, doing?" (I really wish we'd made up a story about being meteorology students who were working on an experiment.) In Holland, MI the strange looks and lack of privacy were a decent price to pay for being right on the beach. In Ludington State Park they could have been avoided if we'd not been stuck with the very last, most public, campsight. After those locations we decided to stick to National Forests where campers are allowed to sleep anywhere; this is how we ended up off a dirt road in Indiana's Hoosier National Forest (close to the Helmock Cliffs). The photos below show our set up in a couple of places. Not pictured is the time we spent in Fife Lake (visiting family) and a day in Louisville.
Holland State Park in Holland, Michigan
Ludington State Park, Michigan
(From here we hiked through giant sand dunes to the Big Sable Lighthouse - pictured at top)
South Haven, Michigan
Traverse City, Michigan
Hoosier National Forest, Indiana
Daniel Boone National Forest, Kentucky