The Best Off-Road Truck Campers for Boondocking

Travel trailers and RVs look nice when they’re sitting in a perfectly manicured RV park. If you’re going to get anywhere on rough roads to…

four wheel off road truck camper in the desert

Travel trailers and RVs look nice when they’re sitting in a perfectly manicured RV park. If you’re going to get anywhere on rough roads to get away from large camping crowds though, you’re going to need one of the best off-road truck campers.

Off-road truck campers sit in the bed of your truck and they come in many designs. Some are designed for speed and others are designed for comfort.

Today, we’re going to highlight some of the best off-road truck campers we can find and provide some tips to help you choose the right truck camper for your needs.

Let’s get started!

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What Makes Off-Road Truck Campers?

off road truck camper on the highway
Photo by Mike Goad via Pixabay

To be clear, there are many campers that can be towed by trucks. Our focus here, however, is on campers that sit in your truck bed or trucks that are designed to be campers from the jump.

Off-road truck campers give you a comfortable place to sleep (and sometimes cook, lounge, and even use the restroom) while maintaining excellent off-road capability.

In other words, off-road truck campers are made for overlanding. They’re designed for those that want to get off-the-beaten-path to find seldom-explored terrain.

But they’re also made for folks that want to camp in style and have all their gear once they get there.

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Who Makes Off-Road Truck Campers?

lance off road truck camper
Photo by Dave Thomason via Flickr

There are many truck camper brands out there these days, but these are a few names that have gained a solid reputation in this industry:

We haven’t included a camper model from all of these companies in this feature. So, in case you don’t find what you’re looking for below, scroll back up here to check out more of the best off-road truck campers!

What to Look For in an Off-Road Truck Camper

truck camper on road overlooking ocean
Photo by Tom Rits via Unsplash

Although a truck camper is more compact than most other recreational vehicles, it often isn’t reflected in their price tags. Because you’re likely to make a significant investment in your next adventure vehicle, doing your proper due diligence is essential.

So let’s go over the important criteria that will help you choose the right truck camper for your Overlanding style.

Fit

The most logical place to start is to find a truck camper that will fit the bed of your truck. The dimensions of your truck bed will dictate which camper models are compatible with your rig.

In this process, you must ensure there’s enough space in your truck for your overland camper.

Then, you must look at the system used to secure the camper to your truck. A Ford F-150 pickup truck, for example, may have slightly different tie-down points than a half-ton Toyota Tundra.

Payload Capacity

After you’ve narrowed down your choices to find a truck camper that will fit in the bed of your truck, you’ll need to make sure it doesn’t weigh too much. Consult your truck’s manual to find your maximum payload capacity.

This is where that half-ton, 3/4-ton, and one-ton distinctions come into play. These distinctions refer to your vehicle’s payload capacity.

Here’s a great resource that lists out common truck models and distinguishes which of those categories they fall into.

For our purposes today, we simply want to remind you that your truck needs to be able to handle the bulk of your rig as well as any camping gear you load into it.

Take the time to calculate your maximum payload capacity before you settle on an off-road truck camper.

Design

Aluminum is the most common material used in the construction of pickup truck campers these days because it is lightweight and reasonably durable.

Still, some vehicles may be able to handle a heavier off-roading camper made of steel or other metals.

More importantly, you should consider whether a hard-sided off-roading camper or a pop-up truck camper makes more sense for you. Hard-sided models require less setup time when you reach your destination and they also tend to include more spacious floor plan options.

The major advantage of a pop-top truck camper comes in fuel economy. These overland rigs maintain a low profile so you can explore more remote terrain without gouging a massive hole in your wallet.

You may have to sacrifice livability and you may not be able to bring as much camping gear in a pop-up vehicle.

Sustainability

The point of off-road overland vehicles, after all, is to cover more terrain without having to stop at a dump station or plug into electricity. So you should also look at things like solar power, battery capacity, and tank capacities when comparing your options.

A 30-gallon freshwater tank sounds like a lot on paper, but you need to do the math to understand if it’s actually going to provide enough freshwater for the kinds of road trips you’re hoping to take.

Additionally, look at the watt ratings for the equipment on the campers you’re interested in. Higher wattages aren’t always better, especially if the rig isn’t equipped with enough battery capacity to store that energy.

There is a lot of nuance to living off the grid and relying on energy from the sun, so we recommend checking out this forum on installing solar for truck campers.

Floor Plans

While it’s harder to find the best truck campers with a slide-out these days, it’s not entirely impossible. The Lance company is actually one of the few out there that makes a model with a slide-out on one side.

Still, when we’re talking about off-roading, we’re more concerned about what a truck camper company deems most important in a truck camper floor plan.

Head room is essential for taller individuals and gear storage is imperative for avid recreation enthusiasts, regardless of your specific passion.

Some of you may require a full galley kitchen and others may enjoy the project of setting up your own outdoor camping kitchen. Still, the cubic foot measurement of a truck camper will help you get a better idea of how much space you have inside.

That will require multiplying interior height by width and by length. In some cases, you may have to convert to get a proper cubic foot measurement. It will be useful in comparing the interior size of these truck campers.

Off-Road Capability

The final note on these campers is that they need to enhance your off-road capability and not take away from it. If, for example, the winch currently on your truck won’t be able to handle the added girth of your camper, things may not go so well when you encounter particular rough roads.

While rescue equipment like a winch will be something you need to fit your truck with separately from your camper choice, it is worth consideration.

Only on models like the Terranova may you be able to contact the company and ask them to equip your rig with a winch before you get it.

There are many other off-road accessories you need to consider before you head out into the boondocks of Death Valley, for example, but the point here is to make sure whatever camper you choose will allow you to off-road more comfortably and not compromise your truck’s ability to go places that others can’t.

Best Off Road Truck Campers

There are many off-road truck camper models out there. This list provides something for most pickup truck designs and bed lengths.

Four Wheel Campers Hawk Flatbed Limited Woolrich Edition Model

four wheel campers hawk model
PC Four Wheel Campers

Available Specifications

  • Base Model Dry Weight: 1,500 pounds
  • Exterior Height Down (including vent): 60″
  • Interior Headroom (open): 6’6″
  • Roof Length: 150″
  • Floor Length: 80″
  • Sleeping Capacity: 3-4
  • Fresh Water Capacity: 20 gallons

The Hawk Flatbed Limited Woolrich Edition Model from Four Wheel Campers is guaranteed to catch your eye, but it isn’t just a looker. This pop-up truck camper is equipped with everything you need to enjoy luxury off-grid adventures.

It’s built with a lightweight aluminum frame and, because it’s a pop-up truck camper, it maintains a low profile when you’re traveling. That means fewer concerns about bridges with low clearance and better fuel economy on long journeys.

It fits on full-size pickup trucks with six to 6.5-foot flatbeds and provides plenty of room for customization. Four Wheel Campers gives you the ability to choose from a variety of interior fabrics and accessories, exterior gear tracks, cold weather packages, interior, and exterior lighting, a 160-watt solar array, and much more.

Learn more about this Four Wheel Camper here and go here to start building your custom flatbed Hawk camper!

Also, if you’re looking for a super lightweight option, check out the Project M Four Wheel Camper here!

Lance 960 Truck Camper

lance 960 off road truck camper on white truck bed
PC Lance

Available Specifications

  • Base Model Dry Weight: 2,970 pounds
  • Exterior Height (including A/C): 9′
  • Interior Height: 79″
  • Overall Length: 19′
  • Floor Length: 9’11”
  • Sleeping Capacity: 3-4
  • Fresh Water Capacity: 45 gallons

The Lance 960 off road truck camper offers a non-slide floor plan with comfortable seating, a deluxe queen-sized bed, and a galley to serve your cooking needs. This cabover truck camper isn’t a pop-up, which means it takes less time to set up when you get to your favorite campsites.

It also offers more than 6.5 feet of headroom, which makes it suitable for taller campers. Because it is slightly heavier, this truck camper is designed for heavy-duty pickup trucks, such as the Ford F-350 Series with single or dual rear tires and an eight-foot bed.

Find more info on Lance’s Truck Camper Compatibility here.

The Lance 960 features something you don’t always get with off-road truck campers: a wet bath. So there’s no need to set up a cassette toilet in a tent outside with this pickup truck camper. A 28-gallon black tank and a 30-gallon grey tank provide plenty of capacity for a long weekend of off-roading.

Learn more about this Lance Truck Camper here!

NuCamp RV Cirrus 820

Cirrus 820 truck camper on top of truck bed on the coast
PC NuCamp RV

Available Specifications

  • Base Model Dry Weight: 2,830 pounds
  • Overall Height: 9’8″
  • Interior Height: 78″
  • Bed Size: 60″ x 78″
  • Second Sleeping Area: 37″ x 69″
  • Fresh Water Capacity: 33 gallons

The Cirrus Series of truck campers is manufactured by the NuCamp RV company and they are one of the newer designs on the market. It is intently designed to fit one-ton and 3/4-ton short-bed pickup trucks and it includes an Alde water heater that provides hot water for dishes and other needs.

This is a four-season truck camper that can handle your winter adventure needs. It comes with a solar kit as a standard option and the included inverter and converter supply power from the camper’s batteries to all of its interior appliances.

Inside, you’ll be equipped with a stove, sink, refrigerator, and an air conditioning unit. If you choose the convenience package, you will also get a convection/microwave oven and, outside, you can take advantage of an eight-foot motorized awning and Titan electric jacks that make it quick and easy to take the truck camper off your pickup truck when you get to a campsite.

Learn more about this NuCamp Truck Camper here!

Alaskan Campers 6.5′ Cabover

alaskan 65 cabover truck camper in white on a red truck bed
PC Alaskan Campers

Available Specifications

  • Base Model Dry Weight: 1,390 pounds
  • Height Down (including vent): 60″
  • Interior Headroom (open): 6’3.25″
  • Roof Length: 150″
  • Floor Length: 80″
  • Sleeping Capacity: 3-4
  • Fresh Water Capacity: 20 gallons

Alaskan Campers makes a variety of pop-top models made for almost any size bed you could imagine. We’ve chosen the 6.5-foot cabover camper because it keeps your base weight down so you can add plenty of your favorite camping gear and camp cooking tools.

Some of the standard features of Alaskan pop-top off road truck campers include a NOVAKOOL refrigerator, a 20,000-BTU air conditioning unit, a stainless steel sink, a 27-gallon water tank, and a dual-purpose AGM battery.

There’s also lots of optional equipment for better storage or more overland capability. Some of our favorites include a 170-watt ZAMP solar panel with control or a 90-watt portable ZAMP solar panel and custom fabric, countertop laminate, and interior laminate.

Learn more about this Alaskan Truck Camper here!

Go Fast Campers Platform Camper

gfc platform camper with pop up
PC Go Fast Campers

Available Specifications

  • Base Model Dry Weight: Most are under 300 pounds
  • Head Room (in the tent): 5′
  • Sleeping Area: 90″ x 50″ (standard); 90″ x 56″ (XL)
  • Sleeping Capacity: 2 adults (plus a fur baby)
  • Roof Storage Capacity (closed): 500 pounds
  • Roof Storage Capacity (open): 75 pounds

Go Fast Campers is one of the newer brands out there and their market is primarily racing or long-distance overland vehicles. They also make a pop-up rooftop tent, but their platform camper is great for off-grid racing or expedition-style overlanding.

Built specifically to withstand the rigors of off-road racing in Baja, this platform off road truck camper is all about going light and maximizing storage space for your off-road gear. It features cabana-style panels on all three sides so that you can get access to the bed from the sides and rear.

On top of the camper, the rooftop tent can be pitched in seconds and is durable enough for four-season use. There is even integrated pass-through access from the tent to your truck bed so you can grab anything you need or forget without climbing out into the elements.

Learn more about this Go Fast Truck Camper here!

Earthcruiser Terranova

earthcruiser terranova truck bed camper on truck parked in the woods
PC Earthcruiser

Available Specifications

  • Base Model Wet Weight: 12,000 pounds
  • Overall Height Down: 104″
  • Overall Height Up: 126.5″
  • Overall Length: 250″
  • Fuel Capacity: 60 gallons

The Earthcruiser Terranova is one of the most unique adventure truck campers you’ll find. It’s built to be married with one-ton truck chassis from Ford, Chevy, or Dodge and the exterior is manufactured with molded fiberglass walls that are insulated to be a full inch thick.

The entry door is also made of fiberglass and features a deadbolt lock with a programmable keypad for keyless entry. Inside, the bed is seamlessly integrated into the main living space and the dinette can be converted to additional sleeping quarters for guests.

The power system for the Earthcruiser Terranova doesn’t rely on solar power or an extensive array of batteries. Instead, it has been designed to sip power and includes numerous backup systems if needed. All the electrical system components are organized centrally so that you can easily upgrade or troubleshoot issues.

Learn more about this Earthcruiser Truck Camper here!

Hallmark RV LaVeta

hallmark laveta off road truck camper with pop up top
PC Hallmark LaVeta

Available Specifications

  • Base Model Dry Weight: 1,212 pounds
  • Height Down (including vent): 64″
  • Interior Headroom (open): 80″
  • Overall Length: 140″
  • Floor Length: 80″
  • Center of Gravity: 31″
  • Sleeping Capacity: 3-4
  • Fresh Water Capacity: 30 gallons

The Hallmark LaVeta is a pop-up off road truck camper made for mid-size trucks with standard beds. It features a queen bed in the cabover and an additional sleeping area in the dinette, but you’ll have plenty of custom choices when it comes to finishing your build of this off-road truck camper.

For starters, you can choose from bamboo, maple, and oak when it comes to interior cabinetry. There are other materials available, for an extra charge. Other custom options include solar panels, a stereo/entertainment system, a utility roof rack, a portable or built-in cassette toilet, and a power lift system for the top of the truck camper.

Regardless of the custom options you choose for this hard-sided camping vehicle, there are standard features as well. They include manual crank lifting mechanisms, dual battery systems, a forced-air propane furnace, and a variety of unique storage solutions.

Learn more about this Hallmark Truck Camper here!

Northern Lite 10-2EX Limited Edition Wet Bath

Northern Lite 10-2 EX LE truck camper with stabilizers on black truck bed
PC Northern Lite

Available Specifications

  • Base Model Dry Weight: 3,285 pounds
  • Overall Height: 106″
  • Interior Head Room: 6’8″
  • Overall Length: 218″
  • Floor Length: 131″
  • Center of Gravity: 48″
  • Sleeping Capacity: 3-4
  • Fresh Water Capacity: 36 gallons

The Northern Lite off-road truck camper is one of the most luxurious adventure rigs out there. Made for a full-size, long-bed pickup truck and equipped for four-season camping, you won’t have to leave the comforts of this hard-sided truck camper until you’re good and ready.

In addition to its freshwater capacity, this overland camper features a 40-gallon grey water tank, an 18-gallon black water tank, and a six-gallon hot water tank. You’ll also have a 40-gallon propane capacity in this truck camper and it comes with two 185-watt solar panels to provide plenty of solar power for off-grid camping.

Inside, you will have floor plan choices that include a U-shaped dinette or two face-to-face dinettes. Durable hardwood cabinetry throughout is pleasing to the eyes and a full galley makes it easy to avoid half-hearted meals when you’re camping far off-grid.

Learn more about this Northern Lite Truck Camper here!

Conclusion

The great part about off-road truck campers is that they’ll go wherever your truck can go.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this collection of off-road truck campers from some of the best brands in the industry and we wish you safe and wonderful off-grid travels in the months to come!

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