Outdoor Connection

Gone with the Wynns on a High Spirited, Camping Road Trip Adventure

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While many of us won't even consider RVing full-time until after we retire, Jason and Nikki Wynn couldn't wait to get started. Driven by their intense passion for travel and adventure, this young and hip couple from Dallas, TX traded the urban lifestyle to become full-time RVers.

The Start of the Journey

At the age of 28, Jason and Nikki Wynn were living the life reminiscent of the American Dream. He's a photographer while she is a make-up artist. Both owned successful businesses that gave them both the opportunity to travel to different parts of the world, and enjoy the perks of an upscale - but sedentary - urban lifestyle.

Being young and at the prime of their lives, Jason and Nikki had a "wear out your shoes" sense of adventure. They figured that there was more to the American Dream than just having a good job, living in a house in the suburbs, and retiring at a ripe, old age. They wanted to live a life filled with epic adventures and stories that are worthy enough to be written in books and tell their future grandchildren.

Then it hit them: the only way they would be able to appreciate and enjoy traveling the way they dream is by doing it right in their own backyard. After many discussions, they decided that going on a road trip across America was the best way to go. With that, they made the momentous decision to sell off everything they had, buy their first class A Motorhome, and hit the road.

A Worthwhile Decision

While their love for adventure propelled them to make the shift to become full-time RVers, it didn't come without a price. In order to make the switch, they had to give up a lot of things, including their very successful business - something that wasn't easy.

"It was extremely difficult," Jason Wynn said. "We both built our companies from the ground up, and that meant a ton of blood, sweat and tears invested. We worked so hard to create them, and now we were leaving them behind."

However, their infectious personalities, combined with their unique sense of adventure and Jason's experience in photography, gave birth to an interactive website and video series they aptly named Gone with the Wynns. Here, they shared videos and artistic photos of the places that they have been. The site became a hit. In 2011, the adventures they chronicled in their site clinched for them the win at the Best of the Road Contest sponsored by Rand McNally and USA Today.

The Lure of Full-Time RVing

Over the years, the Wynns have thought about all sorts of ways to travel. They considered backpacking throughout Europe, driving Land Cruisers across Africa and motorcycles across South America. However, they decided that they should explore their own backyard first!

So what was it that made them decide to go RVing across America?

"Freedom," Jason Wynn told us. "RVing gives you the freedom to visit any destination while still having the comforts of your home right with you. No other form of travel can offer rugged opportunities [side by side] with comfortable luxuries. [I mean] picture this: I enjoy the warm sunlight as it peeks in the window waking me from my slumber. I step outside in the middle of nature surrounded by golden leafed aspen trees. I scan the horizon and I realize that we are all alone. I build a fire, start the coffee, and begin making breakfast worthy of Iron Chef for us to enjoy on our private mountaintop. That's what makes RVing very special to us."

Finding Windy

Windy is the pet name of the Wynn's Class A Monaco Vesta. Of all the different RV brands and models available in the market, they decided to go with this for one reason: innovation. The Monaco Vesta was the first RV model that went through wind tunnel testing.

"Innovation [among RV models] seems to be almost non-existent. So to see the way our Windy was designed and created was a major plus in our decision to purchase our Monaco Vesta."

Surviving the Full-Time RV Lifestyle

One of the biggest challenges faced by couples considering making the shift to become full-time RVers is the increase chance for conflicts and friction to happen because of the relatively tight living conditions. Jason and Nikki were kind enough to share a few tips to help make the transition easier:

  • Step outside. The space inside any kind of RV is small. But open the door and you have an entire world waiting for you. Whether you get into an argument, or feel like you just need time alone, step outside. This way, you not only soak up the outdoors. You also are able to give each other the space you both need.
  • Don't rush things. When you rush, you can be sure that you will make mistakes. And that can lead to a lot of unnecessary arguments. There have been cases where the Wynns experienced leaving their awnings out, the antennas up, and even the power cord still plugged in the site. Before you head out to a campsite or before you leave, take some time to review your checklist. If you're on the road, and you start feeling tired or the road conditions are becoming a bit shady, pull over at a rest stop and give yourselves a break. You'll feel much better once you relax a little.
  • Balance work and leisure. Throughout their travels, the Wynns have come across grumpy full-time RVers because they are working even if they don't need to be working. They pointed out that while there are different reasons why people work while on the road, but the bottom line is that work is still work. "When you're setting out for a vacation, make sure that you're all in. If you need to work on the road, make sure that you do something that you enjoy. Not just because you need to do something with your time."

On Traveling with Pets

The Wynns travel with two cats: Cleo and Singa. They each have their own distinct personalities, as Jason explained.

"Cleo is the perfect RV cat", he said. "She's quiet. She sits on our laps when we're driving. She rarely complains. Singa, on the other hand, thinks he's a dog. He cries at the door to go outside. He torments Cleo when we don't pay attention to him. He demands to go outside to do his 'business'."

Despite the differences on their personalities, Jason and Nikki cannot imagine traveling without them. "If you have a pet, don't think that you need to leave them during your travels. A pet brings unconditional love every day while you're on a camping trip." If you own a cat, you can check out their post titled Traveling Cats to learn more about RVing with your feline friends, and our article on Tips for RV Travel with a Pet.

Tips to be Eco-Friendly While RVing

Aside from their vibrant personalities and love for adventure, the Wynns are also extremely eco-conscious. Their travels have made them realize just how important it is for RVers to conserve and protect America's natural treasures for future generations to enjoy. Some of the eco-friendly tips that they shared with us include:

  • Reduce your disposables. Try to use less disposable products, especially plastic bottles during your RV trips.
  • Reuse. Bring canvas bags when you go to the supermarket when you do your groceries. Use your old shopping bags to store your stuff or hold your garbage.
  • Recycle. The Wynns bring their own recyclable bins whenever they travel so that they could properly segregate and dispose their trash.

You can check out their blog post entitled Can an RV be Green to learn more of their eco-friendly RVing tips as well as our article 12 Tips to Go RVing the Eco-Friendly Way.

So What's Next for the Wynns?

Between putting up their beloved RV for sale so that they could downsize further, traveling to the Western part of the country, and plans to offer limited edition photographs of their trips, you could say that the next couple of months will be quite busy for the Wynns.

"We're free spirits. We go where the wind takes us. But no matter where we end up, it's obvious that adventure awaits. And we can guarantee to share the experience."

Copyright ©2012 Camping Road Trip, LLC

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