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Adventures at Heart: Traveling in Numbers on an Airstream Club Caravan

Michael and Judy Shelley-profile-image
Michael and Judy Shelley
February 24, 2024

TL;DR: Michael and Judy Shelley, avid Airstream travelers, share their experiences of exploring the US and Canada, emphasizing the joy of community and adventure in their journeys, from caravaning to impromptu Harvest Hosts stops.

Adventures at Heart: Traveling in Numbers on an Airstream Club Caravan

Michael and Judy Shelley are expert travelers. At 72 and 68 years old, they’ve spent 8 years in their 31’ Airstream Classic Travel Trailer, they’ve spent 900 nights on the road and lived full time in their trailer for nine months. They also love to travel by ship, with 500 cruise nights under their belt.

But it’s the Airstream travel that’s taking center stage in their lives these days. “Airstreaming is allowing us to see portions of the world in the U.S. and Canada. We love getting off the interstate,” Judy said. Last summer, Michael and Judy did just that: they followed a dirt road for two miles to get to a Harvest Hosts destination distillery in a town they’d never heard of.

The couple was traveling from their home in Texas to meet up with caravanners from the Arkansas Razorbacks Airstream Club. They were the 18th Airstream to join the caravan that started out in Little Rock, Arkansas. Even though their stay at the Harvest Hosts property was accompanied by 2 inches of rainfall in just one night, “It didn’t dampen our spirits,” Judy said, “We could not have asked for a more accommodating experience in good company.”

In true Airstreaming fashion, friends tell others where and when to meet up: Another 6 Airstreamers dry camped behind the distillery. All 23 were headed to the annual Airstream Club International Rally.

“As it turned out, the food truck that was scheduled to visit the distillery didn’t show that night,” explained Judy. But the owner and some of his family offered to make us dinner – I mean the good stuff: tenderloins and corn…and on the way back after the International Rally, we stopped again and they got us pizza, on the house!” Judy recounted the memories of sipping whiskey and watching one of the Airstreamers who travels with his washtub bass pair up on a whim with the house guitarist.

Airstream Caravan route planning is done by volunteer Club members. Some of the Club’s more popular National Caravans, like the North to Alaska Caravan book years in advance. Others, like the caravan that Michael and Judy met up with when towing from Texas to Wyoming, are happy to pick up a fellow Airstreamer en route. “We gained a 24th on our caravan by the time we pulled up to the gate,” said Judy. In total, the Shelley’s have booked five Airstream Club National Caravans and attended more Airstream Club rallies than they can count.

“On every long cruise we’ve gone on, we’re ready to get home after 4 weeks, but we can be gone for over three months with an Airstream Caravan, and be ready to get right back out on the road,” said Judy. She credits this to the enjoyment of traveling with others who have a shared interest, “We enjoy things like cooking together, and its easy to make fast friends because everyone has such interesting journeys to share,” she said.

Michael recalls a time when they were in Montana and had to cancel reservations at Yellowstone National Park when the furnace in their rig went out and temperatures were going to be in the teens. “On a whim, we made our own Harvest Hosts pub and winery crawl. One of the days, we made just a 2.7 mile trip, because we just had to stop at this place with the most amazing view of the mountains,” he smiles recalling the memory.

“Every single one of us is an adventurer at heart,” said Judy, “and the collective creativity of planning a trip with people like that brings you to places you’ve never heard of.”

Rally Registration QR Code with Colored ACI Logo.png

Look for Harvest Host experiences along the route to Sedalia, MO where the Annual Airstream Club International Rally will be held coming to the ACI’s Blog soon!

*****

There’s something brewing this spring that’s going to bring a whole lot of business to breweries. And distilleries. And U-pick farms and the whole host of unique locations that serve as Harvest Host stopping points along the well-traveled and not-so-traveled roadways that Airstream Club International members meander in their endless pursuits for adventure.

Airstream Club International’s legacy Courtesy Parking program will soon be added to the Harvest Host map and will include the features we all know and love about the Harvest Hosts reservations system: detailed host profiles, contactless booking, photos, reviews and route planning tools.

If a Courtesy Parking Club member is also a member of Harvest Hosts, their search results will show Harvest Hosts locations and Courtesy Parking Club locations all together along the route using one convenient log-in.

The new partnership, coined ACI Courtesy Parking Powered by Harvest Hosts, will remain an exclusive perk to Airstream Club Members.

About Harvest Hosts
Harvest Hosts is a unique RV camping membership that offers self-contained RVers unlimited overnight stays at over 5,657 small businesses across North America with no camping fees. Boondock at farms, wineries, breweries, attractions, and other one-of-a-kind destinations throughout North America, and you’ll get peace of mind knowing that a safe place to stay is always nearby!
Michael and Judy Shelley-profile-image
Michael and Judy Shelley
We are a diverse, welcoming group of Airstream owners whose travel experiences range from new owners to weekend warriors, full-timers and those who seek to explore the path less traveled.