Hidden Among Giants, a Few Gems at Seattle RV Show

Our Grand Tour hit the Seattle RV Show at the opening Feb. 8, looking for a #vanlife vibe.

By and large, it wasn’t there. Most of the CenturyLink Event Center was filled with ginormous rolling homes masquerading as vehicles.

But there were some gems among the giants. For those of us looking for something a lot smaller, here are some highlights.

Rooftop tents at the Adventure Ready display.

Rooftop camping

The James Baroud Rooftop Tents offer nice, spacious sleeping chambers for folks who want to keep it simple. Prices are super-reasonable, particularly when compared to RVs. Seattle’s Adventure Ready has them and will customize your vehicle.

E-bikes from Seattle’s PIM Bicycling.

E-bikes on the rise

They’re everywhere in Seattle these days, and the trend shows no sign of slowing down. PIM Bicycles has an excellent display, with eager salesfolk who want to tell you how great the bikes are. We’re not sold on motorized bikes yet, but here’s your chance to  check them out.

One of the smaller models at the Airstream display

Don’t miss: Airstream

OK, they are ridiculously expensive and out of reach for most of us. All that said, the  Airstream Adventures Northwest display is fantastic. We had our eye on a Class B+ Sprinter Van. How much? Oh, just a paltry $200K. Who doesn’t love that fetish-worthy stainless-steel look? From the smallest trailer to the largest RV, everything is top-notch.

The Caravan Outfitter model of a Nissan NV.

Affordable #vanlife

On the other end of the spectrum, we found a highly affordable camper van in a Nissan NV body. Campbell Nissan in Edmonds sells the Caravan Outfitter model. It’s basically a (very) simple camper with a stove/refrigerator and a large awning. Hey, simple is good. Price: Under $35,000 and it gets 25 miles to the gallon on the highway.

The Riverside Retro has a clean, old-school style.

Retro cool

We’re suckers for old-time travel-trailers. It was nice to see the 2018 Riverside Retro at the RV Country display. We won’t be spending the $19,000 asking price, but it was cool nonetheless, particularly the wrap-around dining area.

That’s a whole-lotta RVs on the floor at CenturyLink Event Center.

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