5 Things You Need for Your Pickup Truck Vacation (Except the Truck)

Whether your NRA family is camping, fishing, hunting or just road-tripping, these five products transform a truck into an all-purpose vacation vehicle!

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posted on May 16, 2024
Sportz Truck Bed Tent And Go Anywhere System 1

1. Headrest Gun Safe—The Slide

Heading on a road trip begins with the question, “Gun, license, wallet, keys?” Sometimes when I am traveling, I may have to stop and may, for whatever reason, need to stash my sidearm, medicines, cash or other valuables in my truck. There are various ways to do this but the very best option I have found is the NRA Bullseye Award recipient, the Headrest Safe. Specifically, I like the Slide, which my wife and I tested. The Slide Bundle gives you two matching headrests, one with the safe inside.

The Headrest Safe is a safe within your headrest and is hidden in plain view. There are two versions of the safe: The Vulcan, which is permanently in the headrest; or The Slide, which you can slide out and take with you like any other small safe. It is TSA compliant too! The safe can be put in any vehicle with a two-post removable headrest. There are video directions to watch and pause as you install this on your vehicle. We found the installation to be straightforward.

The steel lock has three ways to open once installed. You can use biometrics (fingerprint), the keypad or even a hard key. I set ours up for my finger and also programed in a four-digit code so the rest of the family can access the safe as needed. The 18-gauge steel safe locks into the seat so it won’t go walking if someone were to figure out what it was ... which I doubt will happen, given how discreet this safe is.

I set ours up on the passenger seat so I could reach over and access it easily. My adult kids can easily punch in the code from the rear seat and get things out of it as well. I love how nice the safe looks, and obviously it is nice to have a place to stash an extra handgun, cash or documents while on the road. What a great design and idea! Top of Form

2. Center Lok Overhead Gun Rack

I always try to vacation somewhere that offers some use of my firearms. At the very least we bring one or two in case we need them. The problem we have run into is where to stash them while on the road without losing all that precious space. Great Day Inc, based in Louisiana, makes a long list of U.S.-made outdoor products for ATVs, UTVs, trucks and pets. Their Center Lok overhead gun rack is my go-to for stowing my long guns out of sight but easily accessible in seconds. The Center Lok overhead rack requires no drilling to install it. Yes, you read that correctly. No. Drilling. I put mine in my truck in less than 20 minutes, and have since removed and reinstalled it in half that time or less. The invention is genius and solves a problem many of us have.

It is adjustable and comes in several configurations for various trucks. Before you purchase one, take the long gun you anticipate putting in the rack and see if it fits side to side in your truck cab up against the headliner right above the headrests. A few really long duck guns or turkey guns may not work very well due to cab configuration. The Center Lok is well designed, and I am able to put my rifles and most of my shotguns in the rack. Some require moving the gun clips to fit them properly. I found this out by calling and talking to the good folks at Great Day. They have awesome customer service that is prompt and as down-home as you can get. Well-made in the USA!

3. Napier Truck Bed Tent

If camping is in your future and you have a truck or SUV, consider a Napier tent. We got the Sportz Truck Bed Tent to camp and sleep off the ground. This tent has a large door, and at 6’2” I can nearly stand up inside! (I loved that. My knees don’t like crawling much these days!) There is a rear window, tent floor, an awning, rain fly to keep the water out, ceiling vents for those warm summer evenings and large windows, which are sealable. The poles are color-coded to make set up easy.

The tent comes with a gear loft, lantern holder and some pockets for things like a flashlight or cell phone. It is made from polyester taffeta and polyester oxford. The large bag it comes in has the instructions sewn inside on material that will last, which makes it very difficult to lose them! The design allows you to use this with the tailgate down.

We put this tent up the first time in less than 30 minutes, but we were taking our time—and also assembling the next product on our list. We were much quicker the second time putting the tent up as we knew how to set it up. There are videos online that show the setup and they are helpful.

This tent is large enough to comfortably sleep two adults and possibly a small child. We really appreciated the thorough instructions, simple design and the quality of the tent. The wind was blowing pretty steady at 15 mph with a few  higher gusts and once we had the tent strapped to the truck it stood up well. If you have not camped in a while, this is a great investment that will allow you to pull in pretty much anywhere to get some shuteye and enjoy the outdoors in short order.

4. Cleanwaste Go Anywhere Total System

One of the not-so-nice things about spending a large amount of time outdoors is having to answer nature’s call. There are a lot of people who avoid overnights outdoors because of this. That is no longer an excuse with Cleanwaste’s GO Anywhere Total System. No matter where you go, you can take this product and have a private, dignified place to take care of your business.

Included is the GO Anywhere Portable Toilet (for those of you who don’ t need privacy where you camp, you can get the portable toilet separately if you wish), a GO Anywhere Privacy Shelter, 15 GO Anywhere Toilet Kits (bags), 1 large bag to put the used kits in and a backpack that stores the whole thing, which is only 18 pounds.

The toilet itself is simple and very sturdy. It folds up in a case and is easy to clean. The shelter pops up like a hunting blind or tent, and is also easy to set up and break down. There is ample room in the shelter and this would be a great product anywhere you go to camp or stay overnight.

My wife was impressed with it and told me that camping was going to be much more enjoyable now. If you have kids, this is the deal. No more worrying about where to go or if there is poison ivy or snakes about while you are doing your business! I give this product a gold star as it will enable a lot more people to enjoy the outdoors.

5. Peragon Retractable Limited HD Truck Bed Cover

If you own a truck and drive it camping, hunting, shooting or fishing, you know that stopping at a store for something is a risk if you have gear in the back or if the weather looks bad. Your gear could be stolen, rained on or snowed on. Enter American-made Peragon truck bed covers. I have had a few truck bed covers in my time and they worked, but the Peragon Retractable Limited HD model is at a whole new level. The panels are only 35 lbs. and can be removed and stowed in your cab or garage in less than 30 seconds if you have gear that requires the whole bed.

One of the great features of this product is that I can retract the top to where I need to retract to get to my gear and I am not fumbling with lifting a heavy lid or crawling under a top to get things. The Limited HD is classy looking and sleek in design. I can lock it from the driver’s side to keep my gear out of sight and away from prying hands as well. With a 5-year warranty, lifetime product support (should you even need it) and great install videos that anyone can follow, this is one product to have on your truck if you are going on vacation and need to stop anywhere along the way.

There is no additional noise when driving with this cover. It is tight and makes the truck look better too. The n- drill “clamp on” install is a plus, as is the stainless-steel hardware. Consider getting the Xtreme Ruggedized Powdercoat. It stands up to UV and abrasions like nothing else. It is cooler at high temps too. I love American-made products and this is definitely a favorite of mine. The problem is that I think my wife wants one now for her truck! I guess I can’t blame her.

 

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