For all the wonderful things us New Yorkers have at our fingertips, fresh air is not one of them. Luckily, places like the Hudson Valley and Catskill Mountains serve as easy getaways from the hustle-and-bustle of New York City. And with so many places to explore (ahem, just look at our website) why choose just one? Trade in the urban jungle for the lush forest with Escape Campervans, whether its for a weekend New York State roadtrip, or an epic cross-country roadtrip.
Though Escape Campervans launched their NYC location in 2012, they only recently entered our radar. We were suprised to find out that they’re the largest campervan rental company in the United States and Canada, boasting 500+ campervans in its fleet. When we got wind of the ready-to-go campervans, we immediately had to take one out for a spin. And in good company — our buds at Faherty joined us too!
There are multiple Escape Campervan models available; we chose the Maverick, which comes equipped with a queen size bed (and linens), 2-burner propane stove, solar-powered fridge, solar panel/charger, water tank and sink, foldaway in-van table and benches, cookware, and camping chairs. Everything is included in one price (though depending on where you plan to go, you may want to add mileage.)
New Yorkers pick up at the vans at the New Jersey depot, which automatically gives roadtrippers a head start at getting out of the city. (Pro tip: most renters take a taxi to the depot!) At the depot, campers are given a clear rundown of the van: how to convert the bed, use the propane stove, overview of the controls, etc. Then shortly after, the world is your oyster — make your way up north for a New England loop, head south for a surf trip to the Outer Banks, or begin an epic cross-country road trip.
If you’re staying in the Northeast, Harriman State Park is a great place to start, just 56 miles from New York City. Staying close to the city on night one assures plenty of time to get acquainted to the van before setting off into the sunset. From there, it’s an hour to the Catskills, three hours to the Adirondacks or Finger Lakes regions; about six to Niagara Falls, and eight to Acadia National Park.
Pack Smart! Perfect #Vanlife Gear: Faherty A/W ’18
Get the Look: Pack smart! Escape Brooklyn hit the road loaded up with gear from Faherty, whose sweaters, pants, jackets, blankets and flannels were a perfect match to the laid-back vibe of the van. Some of our favorite pieces for women include the blanket jacket (shown on Maggie above), the Chesapeake Sweater, and their signature super-soft flannels. For men, we love the blanket lined CPO jackets, the comfort twill jean, and basically anything flannel.
And because they’re so awesome, Faherty is giving our readers $50 off a $200 order! Just enter code “FALLESCAPE” when checking out; valid for one-time use only.
Get the Van: And because Escape Campervans is also awesome, they’re giving a discount to our readers too! Follow this secret link and use code “BROOKLYN10” for 10% off; some terms and conditions apply. Check the link for details.
Last But Not Least: Tips for Car Camping
- Plan your campsites ahead of time: Use resources like Hipcamp, AllStays, NY State Park’s list, or Reserve America to find campsites
- Stay warm at night: Don’t depend on wearing lots of layers to keep you cozy in the sack! Though Escape Campervans comes with bedding, you can never go wrong with an extra blanket or two. We heard Faherty makes some great ones!
- Pack camping essentials: REI has a great list.
- Keep a window cracked: For ventilations sake. Breathing all night in a vehicle will fog up windows, and collect moisture where you don’t want it. Open the windows just wide enough so that an animal or person can’t get in.
This post was created in collaboration with Escape Campervans & Faherty. However, all views and recommendations are our own. Special thanks to Ethan Covey for photographing our adventure!