Lots of friends have asked about the specific gear and supplies we’re using on the road. In answer to them and to anyone else who may be interested, here’s the first of several lists to come. Of all the gear we’ve carefully selected for our Haven’s Path expedition, these indispensable few are our favorites so far.
(Fair warning: These read like infomercials! That’s what happens when you talk about products you like.)
Berkey Water Filter
On the road, there’s no telling where our water will come from. Every drop of water that comes into Libbie is of questionable provenance, no matter how civilized the setting. And there’s nothing like a foul-tasting precursor to intestinal distress to mess up a day’s plans.
So we filter everything we drink with the Big Berkey water filter that sits on our countertop. About once a day we fill the two-gallon tank with utility water, and soon thereafter we get tasty, safe water for drinking, for tea, for coffee – and for peace of mind.
Cafe Altura Instant Coffee
We know, we know. Instant coffee – sludge for the masses, at best.
Where are the hand-picked beans from that one photogenic Colombian grower, custom-ground, perfect-brewed, and artisan-filtered into a royal beverage for true coffee lovers? Turns out, what mattered very much to us was saving water during clean-up, which ruled out every French press, percolator, pour-over, or pressure-puck. And while we do likes us a fine cuppa joe, it doesn’t have to be all that. It just has to be pretty good, and we were shocked to find after lots of taste-testing that Cafe Altura’s instant coffee is pretty good. Really. The decaf, too, which we need for our second and third cups.
So for the combination of cost, ultra-ease, and pretty good taste, we’re happy to rely on Cafe Altura’s instant for our morning wake-ups.
Bestek 300W Power Inverter
An inverter converts 12V DC power to 120V AC power, so we can use our solar panels to run low-wattage AC devices even when we’re off shore power. For us, we just need to be able to charge our laptops, our Bose sound bar, and a few other low-power AC essentials. That’s where this Bestek inverter shines. It couldn’t be simpler to use and it gives us lots more options than using only native 12V devices.
Bose Solo 5 TV Sound Bar
When we are off grid and streaming to our TV from our phones, this is our primary luxury for interior creature comfort. It’s not often we swivel our 12V TV around for viewing, but when we do (to binge downloaded episodes of Utopia or Cobra Kai, for example), we need more oomph than the tinny TV speaker can supply, especially when a noisy furnace fan is running. This Bose bad boy fills the entire room with some booming sound waves. When we settle back against a nest of pillows in our dinette, watching TV becomes like sitting in the most intimate surround-sound theatre imaginable. We used this wall mount kit to position the speaker just so.
These Versatile Towels
We don’t have separate beach towels, bath towels, lap blankets, wraps, or throws. Instead we have one dozen of these large Turkish cotton towels, and we use them for everything. They’re pretty, they’re comfy, they’re durable, they don’t cling to sand like terry cloth so they’re easy to clean, and of special value on the humid Pacific coast, they dry fast.
And, bonus, they just get softer over time.
What have we missed? If you’ve spent time on the road, let us know in the comments below about the must-haves you rely on as much as we rely on these.
I am curious if you would replace your standard terry cloth towels at home with Turkish towels or would you miss the thickness that standard towels offer?
Great question! We were scratching our heads on this one. Generally, thick, warmed terry towels are an indulgence we’d all enjoy at bath time. Yet, the increased wash water and drying time required for terry is a big downside. Now that I know how large and thirsty these Turkish towels are, not to mention how compactly they store, I could make the switch permanently.