Our Adventure Mobile Set-up
We decided to put our ARB awning at the rear of our Land Rover. We often leave the back door open camping and use the rear as shelving while cooking. With an awning at the back and the door open we have a small covered space with great access to the vehicle, with a small tarp added to the non-door side we have a cozy little ‘kitchen’ in bad weather.
With our iKamper brackets we had to figure out how to attach the ARB awning. We decided to not get the iKamper annex beacuse it’s so large and we didn’t want a fully enclosed space nor did we want to store the annex. We also didn’t want to sacrifice the speed to open and close our iKamper which keeps overland flexible.
We have the iKamper anti-theft locks which frees up two of the original iKamper attachments that we were able to retrofit with brackets that we had made.
We decided to create L brackets that could be bolted to the iKamper with their original hardware then attach the ARB awning to the L bracket. We couldn’t find any L brackets that would work from hardware stores so we went to a local machine shop in Calgary, Alberta, Aaron’s Machine Shop to have them create the brackets we needed out of ¼” thick steel and then we drilled mounting holes.
L brackets attached to iKamper
ARB Awning Kitchen
We needed to carry more fuel and water which meant we needed a container system that connected to our vehicle somehow. Having come across friends that had make-shift systems and then seeing the RotopaX fluid storage system, it seemed like a much more durable and secure option. To mount a RotopaX meant we needed some type of bar on the outside of our Land Rover Discovery 2 with enough space to install the brackets. Since we have maxed out our roof rack with our iKamper, shovel attachment and ARB awning, we needed to create a new location. Our best idea was installing a ladder on the rear door of our Disco 2. We ordered a Disco 2 specific OEM replica from Brit Parts. Installation was fairly simple requiring use/purchase of a new tool, threaded insert rivet tool. This tool was not easy to find (locally and didn’t want to wait to ship) NOTE: Make sure you buy the correct hardware (SI vs Metric).
With the ladder installed, mounting the RotopaX adapter plate required a little ingenuity in the form of a rear circular electrical box plate. We marked four holes on the plate to match the adapter and were drilled and filed to accept carriage bolts. Once the RotopaX is attached and locked with the RotopaX lock this ‘system’ cannot be stolen as the bolts can’t be accessed.
Self made attachment for RotopaX on an exterior ladder
Why didn’t we have this when our kids were in diapers!!! Keep the garbage and recycling outside the vehicle with one of these. Due to bears and cougars in our area depending on what’s in our garbage we still need to store a small bag in the vehicle at night. We have also used the Trasharoo to hold extra items when not using as a garbage bag. The Trasheroo still works with our hitch mounted Bike Rack and can hold some of the rack accessories in the multiple external pockets when not being used. Simple yet so handy!
I seriously hope to never use this.
We have had friends stranded meters from a quiet highway (a man covered in mud in the middle of nowhere waving for help does not have many people stop to help, thankfully one kind couple did but that is whole other story), in no cell range who in most circumstances would have prepared and even owns a Hi-Lift jack but didn’t have it on him. Well I was sold. This wasn’t even a crazy off-roading situation that one would think a Hi-Lift jack would be required but it was. We are out of cell range the majority of our adventures and using our In-Reach Satellite device to call Search and Rescue sometimes feels extreme, but we of course would if needed.
Long story short. We bought a Hi-Lift jack, mounted it with clamps to our bumper and presto we have a different tool to use for back-up if needed.
This summer (2018) we purchased a iKamper Skycamp roof top tent. We have always been tenters but found the set up and take down took longer than we wanted. Then one random youtube video showed us the iKamper, a little more research and we were sold! It fits our family of four comfortably and will be good for 4 adults as well. Our full review and thoughts on the iKamper can be found in our iKamper Roof Top Tent post. We’ve been on some serious 4x4 trips with lots of washboard and side to side movements for days and still no visible issues with rack holding iKamper or iKamper itself.
We attached a good ol’ fashion wood and metal shovel to the roof rack of the Land Rover using clamps. We attached Quick Fist clamps to the Thule cross bars with a pair of Thule clamp mounts. The Thule clips seem to be a weak point and shake loose a bit after repeated vibration but can be easily tightened. We had a small shovel but when you actually need to dig yourself out a big one is way better on the back and to reach right under the vehicle. The shovel is also used for making our backcountry ‘outhouses’.