Last winter while Alison and I were traveling in California I met a guy in San Francisco named Devon Greer. Devon contacted me via Instagram when he found out I was traveling through San Francisco and suggested we meet up. Devon is a fantastic guy with a keen interest in overland and plans to open up his own overland outfitters shop near Marin County called Cali Overland (http://www.calioverland.com/). We talked truck and overland for over an hour in the parking lot while sipping coffee. Near the end of our meeting I mentioned that I really want to go back to Alaska and in turn Devon expressed his enthusiasm for doing the same. And thus the plan to return to Alaska was hatched.
I'm not going to give out too many details, but what I will say is that along with Devon, my friend and hopefully future associate, TJ Galmut, and I will be heading to Alaska at some point and in the process we'll be shooting a youtube mini series. TJ was involved shortly after my return to Canada when I came up with the idea to record the whole trip. I knew that this next trip to Alaska had to be epic and I wanted to make sure that I got good coverage of it, so what better way than to shoot a mini series? TJ was my number one choice for this project, I know his style and quality of workmanship with a camera and to boot he loves Toyota's and exploring.
So there you have it, Alaska, Youtube mini-series...coming soon.
In addition to all this, I figured it would be good to fly under a flag while on the trip, so to speak. So I created NorthAm Overland (short for North American Overland). As of right now, it's merely an Instagram account (@northam_overland), but in time it will hopefully develop into something in the likeness of Expedition Overland. If this trip garners enough interest, then you'll eventually see more trips planned with new mini-series', merchandise, an official website etc. NorthAm Overland is also me branching out from @AJCmedia and providing myself an outlet for all my truck related content in addition to featuring content from my associates @tjgalmut and @calioverland (Devon). @ajcmedia will continue as my photography instagram without truck-related posts.
I'm writing this blog to inform anyone who is interested about who I will be working with in the future and my vision and preparations for that future. This upcoming winter Alison and I will be heading South once again, this time with Casper in tow. We will start our journey in January and first head South to Montana where we will wait for our friends, Jasmine and Cory Schulz. We will travel with Jasmine and Cory for the next 2.75 weeks, hitting up some of the best that the West coast United States has to offer. The shortlist: Craters of the Moon, Crater Lake, Alvord Desert, California's Lost Coast (CA-1), San Francisco, Yosemite, Grand Canyon, Monument Valley and Bonneville Salt Flats. After this, Alison and I will travel and ride for another week and a half before Alison flies off to Italy. Once Alison departs I drop Casper off and meet up with the NorthAm Overland (NAO) crew and head to Pismo Beach then to Joshua Tree; expect the official NAO AK/YT trailer sometime around then. After the NAO meetup I will be heading even further South to the Southern tip of Baja, hopefully with TJ. After Baja I'll be high-tailing it back to SF to pick up Casper then back to Canada for some PNW mountain biking and family visits then back to the farm.
A little over a year ago I bought my white Tacoma and spent the summer paying it off then traveled through California for four months, then brought home Casper. Before last summer's exploits we spent our time and effort renovating Casper and saving for our time in BC during the summer. Now that I've returned to the farm for harvest it's time for stage two of renovations of Casper and for the Tacoma to receive the last of its big upgrades. In my spare time I've been putting the finishing touches on the tacoma which include: suspension upgrades (Bilstein 6112's up front, 5100's in back, OME Dakar leafs, upgraded SPC ball joints, Dirtking Fabrication stock length LCA's), Front and rear bumper's,
lighting clean up and wiring, storage upgrades (all recovery gear located on roofrack, bikes under canopy, storage drawer/ sleeping platform in truck bed),
food storage (ARB fridge in back seat),
tire and jerry can swing out on rear bumper,
and dual battery system. I can now trust the Tacoma to go further into more rough terrain with the presence of better recovery gear and better suspenion. The need to purchase ice for cooling is a thing of the past and there is always a second battery to jump the truck in case of a dead starting battery. I'm actually carrying a full size spare and increased fuel capacity. Before Alaska, I will be upgrading our RTT to a Maggiolina Columbus-Variant for better water resistance, weight savings and aerodynamics.
In a few days the truck will be complete and I will be starting on Casper renovations. Needless to say I'm quite excited for the next block of travel, I feel as though this next year is going to be monumental in the journey of realizing my goals and aspirations of being a traveling photographer.