This year Overland Expo East was located in beautiful Asheville, North Carolina on the Biltmore Estate Mansion property and in my opinion was a perfect place. We arrived at Overland Expo East with a small convoy on Thursday, October 7th allowing us time to get settled into our base camps for the entire weekend.
Thursday night we had a neighbor camper that came that came over to introduce himself as Garry from the Unharrie forest area, he was separated from his Land Cruiser group which was sent to the overflow on the other end of Overland Expo. Sadly, they wouldn’t allow him to join their camping area with them. So we invited him to hang out with us the entire weekend. He asked a thousand questions about our rigs and explored the GEO roof top tent and was absolutely amazed by all the cool little things we have and he also talked about how we’ve inspired his Land Cruiser build. By the end of the event we created another long lasting friendship that will last a lifetime.
Early Friday morning I woke at 5am up to grab a nice warm shower, which was provided via mobile shower trailers. Cooked some biscuits and gravy on our Jet boil and relaxed watching the sunrise until everyone woke. By 9 am we grabbed our mountain bikes and took a ride towards the entry area.
First thing on our list was a Camel trophy class where the instructors taught entry level winching basics which included valuable information for any beginner. I highly suggest this class or any of their classes.
Throughout the day we visited hundreds of vendors, one of them, we’ve had contact with over the months and haven’t personally met until now; the veteran owned Java Can they provide an entire expresso kit inside a steel ammo can. The kit includes Moka pot, coffee grinder, fuel, stove, frothing pitcher, flask, cups, and a battery powered hand frother. If you’re a coffee lover like us this kit is a must have.
Another vendor, we came across that was interesting and notable was the authors Alec and Jan Foreman wrote Strangers like Angels which shares their 1977 overland adventure across 40,000 miles, through 29 countries-, in Europe, Africa, and Asia. Written for detailed records/journals and illustrated with stunning photography, their journey comes to life as they venture out to explore more of the world, engage with others, and embrace global cultures.
As Friday came to an end, we made our way back to the camping area to cook some of our Mountain House sweet and sour pork with the Jet boil which tastes awesome. As everyone finished their meals they migrated to my awning relaxing, chatting, and playing a few games of UNO.
Saturday morning the temperature was great, sky’s clear and seemed that all the storm was past until mid morning when we received steady heavy winds all day which really tested everyone’s tents and awnings. Luckily we only saw a couple canopies become airborne and one roof top tent that completely shut on itself because it wasn’t fastened to the ground.
Later that day we met up with one of our photographer contributors that arrived late and we continued to observe more of the Camel Trophy classes that included Winch Recovery techniques this class had incredible knowledge and is a must for anyone attending any future Overland Expo events.
Our overall experience with Overland Expo was exceptional there’s always room for improvement but that is with everything in life. Would we attend again? Absolutely. Actually we will be visiting Overland Expo west 2017 after we travel through Moab.
Below are some shots of vendors or overland rigs we enjoyed.