Kitting Up for an Outdoors Adventure!

This is it: the last leg of our preparation for the New Zealand’s Biggest Gap Year. Tomorrow, we’ll be embarking on our biggest adventure ever! As we pack up our city life in Auckland, things are becoming very real…

Before all that, let’s bring you up to speed on our final campervan preparations and, more importantly, preparing ourselves.

Living in a campervan for a year and experiencing the New Zealand great outdoors at every opportunity means we need to kit ourselves out! New Zealand weather can change very rapidly, so when we are hiking, we want to be prepared for whatever Mother Nature throws at us. So we went SHOPPINGGGG!!

Suit up!

In all honesty, we’re pretty awful shoppers. The expression “shop till you drop” literally sounds like a torture method. We faced the huge outdoor adventure store, Torpedo7, with a spreadsheet of our desired hiking gear. (Yes, that’s right, a friggin’ spreadsheet). It turns out that such a “practical approach” was welcomed in such a practical store. If it was anywhere that we were going to kit up for outdoors adventures in New Zealand, it was Torpedo7. The stores around New Zealand specialise in the extreme sports, from surf to their very own ski and snowboard workshops. We don’t know what to expect from our adventures, but the retail assistant, Lance, really knew his sh*t, so we feel pretty confident in everything from the merino wool base layers to the comfortable backpacks.

 

That's a BIG pile. That's a BIG pile.
The storage unit... Enough said. The storage unit... Enough said.

How to not get crushed under a campervan

Extreme New Zealand activities came sooner than we thought with the final “modification” to the campervan. Our mission was to connect a new inverters to the 12V battery so that we can charge our laptops on the go. (Otherwise,  how can we bring you this lovely blog?!)

Like all our campervan repair stories, we had an issue. The cables were too short to reach the campervan’s batteries, so we had to pull some cables underneath the campervan to find the shortest route to the batteries. We sent our lankiest, skinniest and least important asset underneath the van to take on the task: Robin.

It’s safe to say that despite Robin shitting his pants, he kept a brave face to get the job done. Being in such a small space under a 3.3 ton campervan was pretty terrifying. And it didn’t help that our Silverfern Hostel handy man, Dom, was telling gory stories of people who have been crushed under vehicles…

We are pleased to say Robin did not die in a horrible camervan crushing incident, but we do now have power! Yay! Our final task for the day is moving our stuff out of the apartment, putting most of it in storage while the rest we take to our new mini home.

Real Life Tetris

Have you ever played real life Tetris? We have. The storage guys doubted us, they did! They didn’t think we could fit the BackpackerGuide.NZ office furnishings, snowboards, bean bags, remote control helicopters, and the rest of our useless stuff in a 1.5×1.5 metre storage unit… They were wrong! But someone really will get crushed when we open that storage unit door in one year’s time.

Finally, our last task was to move the rest of our stuff into our new home. Really, there wasn’t that much. If we’ve learnt anything from previous years of travel, it’s pack light! Basically, we have our Torpedo7 gear, camping gear, BackpackerGuide.NZ travel guide writing essentials, cameras and kitchen stuff. That’s van life for you.

Now we are super stoked, if just a little stressed, about this new adventure and huge change in lifestyle. We just have one more day until we DO THIS THING!

Laura and Robin

Torpedo7 store selfie
Torpedo7 store selfie Spherical Image - RICOH THETA

Want more?

We’ll be back tomorrow with what we did on our last day in Auckland city! Until then, find us on HerePin for our on-the-go recommendations of fun things to do in Auckland. Read more about our latest travel app obsession in HerePin: G-app Year Travel Companion. Of course, we are also giving daily travel tips on Facebook too.

If you want some tips on what to pack for your own adventure in New Zealand, check out this literature:

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