The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Who is Bertie/Erica/Colin/Vera/Connie/Rita?

Neither of us has ever named a car that we've owned (except for my first, although I'm not sure 'The Heap' really counts as a name), but we do name our tents. It's not that they have personalities; it just makes it easier and quicker to convey which one we're talking about. Whilst long-time readers with a good memory may have become familiar with who is what, it does cause some confusion, so here's the guide:

Our Terra Nova Voyager (2006 vintage) goes by the name of Vera. She's my favourite two-man tent in the collection. Here she is in action:

At a glance, Susie looks the same as Vera, mainly because she's identical in shape, size and design; she's just made of lighter weight materials. She's a Terra Nova Voyager Superlite (2007 model, when it was still a good sized tent for two people, using three equal-length poles). Here she is:

Our final two-man backpacking tent is Rita, a Henry Shires Tarptent Double Rainbow. You can read some of my thoughts by clicking here and can admire her in a very picturesque position below:

We only have one one-man tent and she's called Connie, a Terra Nova Laser Competition (2010?).

Wendy is no longer part of our collection, but as she gets mentioned in some older blog posts I'll include her. She's a Stephenson's Warmlite 2R:

All of our tents are female. Colin, being far bigger and more butch, demanded a male moniker. He was a WildAx Constellation (2009), a panel van conversion of a Fiat Ducato. He was 6m long, 2m wide and 2.6m high, making him small enough to fit down little lanes and into car parks, but big enough to live in comfort for extended periods. Here he is:


In 2017 Colin went to a new home and was replaced by Bertie, a Hymer B444DL. He's 6m long, 2.1m wide and 2.9m high, but looks bigger due to his shape. Here he posing by a fjord in Norway:


Bertie may only be 10cm wider than Colin was, but it makes him less suited to driving down little lanes. When we needed to replace our car in 2020, we thus decided to buy a large one and convert it into a camper van (the full conversion series of videos can be found on YouTube). Erica is a Peugeot Expert Tepee and is relatively petite at 5.2m long, less than 2 metres wide and a smidge under 2 metres tall (thus she can fit under most height restrictions), but she features a pull-out double bed, 2-ring hob, sink, diesel heater, solar panel + 100AH leisure battery, and a toilet. 

Best photo I have to hand illustrating her interior, but taken before we fitted the carpet

With the carpet

In action 

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