Jack's 2007 Chevy with a 2008 FWC Hawk

locrwln

Expedition Leader
I have a build thread going on in the domestic section, but it seemed appropriate to put the camper stuff in the camper section.

I found and purchased a 2008 FWC Hawk shell, it was owned by an older couple that bought it new and used it about 8-9 times and it looks new inside and out. It spent most of it's life in a barn or under a carport, so it didn't see much if any weather or especially sun. Got a good deal on it and my wife and I are already planning the mods to the camper. :wings:

2008 Hawk Shell model that was like brand new inside and out. Saw very little actual use, yeah for me.





The jacks are from my other camper, so they won't be staying on.

Jack
 
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locrwln

Expedition Leader
I was attempting to wire up the FWC, so I needed a "parking light" wire and a 12v hot wire for the interior lights and for a 12v supply for my Waeco refrigerator. I ordered a 3 port 12v to put inside and a seperate fuse block. Working out of town sometimes sucks, because I had no idea what GM had done for me...

Sunday morning my wife and I head out to the garage and begin wiring everything up. I had to re-do the wire on the camper side. No idea what the PO was thinking, but they had a 7 pin male plug with wire nuts to splice everything together and it was really hokey. I cleaned everything up and planned on using a different plug, but after working my way through everything, the 7 pin made the most sense.

I mounted the fuse block and began running wires. I crawled under the truck to route the wires and look for a place to tap into the parking lights. Well little did I know, but GM was way ahead of me. I noticed a wire loom zip tied up to the front bed mount on the driver's side. I pulled it down and realized that it was a "trailer" wiring harness, I looked in the owner's manual and found out that it was specifically for wiring up a cabover/5th wheel plug in the bed. So a 7 pin coupler made even more sense, GM even placed a hole in the corner to route the wires up through, gotta love it when the factory does the hard work for you.

Then the problem...I couldn't figure out why the 12v hot wire wouldn't show as being hot. The owner's manual was no help, so to the internet we went. Come to find out, I needed to install a 30amp fuse in the "stud #1" position under the hood. Monday morning I ran down to Napa and picked up the fuse and now we have power. Needless to say, I removed the auxillary fuse block (not needed right now, will add it back later).

Jack
 
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locrwln

Expedition Leader
My wife and I decided it would be nice to give the new camper an overnight try to figure out what worked and what we needed to improve. We have been up the road from Frenchman's Lake to Doyle (Northern California), but never explored the area or driven north towards Milford.

Sunday afternoon, we loaded up and headed out. We got past Frenchman's Lake and as we were headed north, we came across a road labeled Dixie Point Lookout and decided to give it a try. As you can imagine it was one of the many Firewatch Lookouts that scatter the Sierras. The road had been bladed otherwise the snow would still have been too deep.



On the way up, we found some Holly and Snow plants in bloom.



The watch tower



The views...








Jack
 
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locrwln

Expedition Leader
We headed back down the mountain and turned north and as it was getting later in the after noon, we decided to look for a place to camp and turned off one of the roads in the area and found a great one.



Had to cross the creek to get there.



Woke up Monday morning and as I was looking around camp, I spotted a buck with his antlers still growing and velveted. I couldn't get a picture because he kept moving in and out of the trees and the camera wouldn't pick it up.

We packed it up (which took all of about 10 minutes) and took another way out. We made it up and out to the main road. As we were making our way north, my wife spotted a bear. I skidded to a stop and got the camera out and was just able to get a picture of a beautiful cinnamon boar. He moved up the hill and we decided to leave him to his foraging.



Found a little fixer-up-er



The view out the front door.



We turned before making it to Milford and turned left and headed for Beckwourth on Hwy 70 and back home.

Planning on a couple of day trip this coming weekend into Northern Nevada.

Jack
 
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Stan@FourWheel

Explorer
Looks Great !


Just let us know if we can help with anything on the "new to you" camper.

The empty shell model is pretty simple, so you probably won't have too many questions for us.

Happy Camping !!


.


.
 
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locrwln

Expedition Leader
Looks Great !


Just let us know if we can help with anything on the "new to you" camper.

The empty shell model is pretty simple, so you probably won't have too many questions for us.

Happy Camping !!


.


.
Thanks. We debated about buying the shell when I first found it, but considering we have everything from years of vehicle camping, we decided to give it a try and we couldn't be happier. As you said, we have everything pretty much figured out.

Really, really liking the camper.

Congrats on the Hawk!

Looks like you have some amazing country to explore.
Thank you. And yes we do in pretty much every direction, which sometimes makes it hard to decide where to go...:wings:

Jack
 

BajaXplorer

Adventurer
Thanks for posting pix of Dixie Point lookout. Looks like a place I will have to see next trip to my son's (lives in Chester). We also have a Hawk and couldn't be more happy with it (and the followup customer service from FWC).
BX
 

locrwln

Expedition Leader
Thanks for posting pix of Dixie Point lookout. Looks like a place I will have to see next trip to my son's (lives in Chester). We also have a Hawk and couldn't be more happy with it (and the followup customer service from FWC).
BX
No problem, it is worth exploring that area, nothing too rough, mostly forest service roads, but very scenic.

Looks great guys.
Thank, now we just need to get yours.

Jack
 

locrwln

Expedition Leader
I forgot to add some minor mods that I have done to the camper.

First of all, those "storage boxes" that are mounted inside the camper, after I hit my head on them for the second time and my wife and I could find no use for them, nothing we owned would fit inside them, off they came. Not sure what other people do/use them for, but for us, they were just in the way. No more hitting my head, well except for the occasional door entry/exit...

On my Lance, when I purchased it, the dealer installed these "centering" mounts that are mounted in the four corners of the bed and center the camper in the bed. They also prevent the cabover from shifting side to side or twisting inside the bed. I knew that I didn't want to mount something like that, but during our drive home with our new to use FWC, we were driving through the serious wind and when I would stop to check everything out, I could see that the camper has shifted in the bed.

I decided that before I did the "permanent" mount and knowing the terrrain/abuse the camper would see, I needed a solution. So I got out the measuring tape, measured between the wheelwells of the truck bed and measured the width of the camper base and realized that there was almost a 2" difference. So a few cuts with some plywood, some paint and screws, I made some plywood "bumpers" that I screwed to the side of the camper between the tie down access doors. As I lowered the camper back into place, the bumpers centered and located the camper perfectly. Now after two trips, there has been no shifting or twisting of the camper within the bed. Sorry no pics of those two mods, but I thought it was worth mentioning.

Our only regret so far, is that we didn't get one sooner...:wings:

Jack
 
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locrwln

Expedition Leader
We shall call this trip the roads less traveled. It was a great trip and we saw some amazing country (as usual anytime you travel through northern Nevada). This trip started like most of ours, we picked a direction, looked through the maps and found an interesting point to shoot for. I was looking in the northern Washoe/Humboldt areas of the state (Northeast corner) and noticed a lake by the name of New Year Lake that ran parallel to the CA/NV border and looked both remote and of a good size.

Saturday morning, all loaded up, we headed out. We topped off in Gerlach and headed north on Hwy 34. Just north of the Petrified Forest and the summit, we noticed a road off to the west that looked interesting so we took it. There was a great camping spot next to a little creek with plenty of shade and open areas as well. We had two Hawks circling above us as we walked around talking to each other.

Once we were done drove north on 34 before turning west again and followed a road to SR 447 just south of the Wall Canyon area. We turned north and drove into Cedarville (fuel stop, damn small factory tank). I learned after my first trip into the Blackrock, that you always want to get fuel every chance you can. So after topping off, we turned east and headed back into Nevada. Just after crossing over the border, we found the road we were looking for and turned north.

The map and gps showed it as being a pretty decent road...And it started out that way, shortly after turning off of 8A, there was even a camp with a 5th wheel parked and several trucks, so we were feeling pretty good. Further up the road we came to our first gate. It was a large metal gate, so everything was still good. We hit another wire gate (the first of many) and still the road isn't too bad, but the further we traveled, the less use the road had seen. The only tracks I saw were from a ATV other than that, nothing since the snow melt. Soon after, the road really became overgrown and at times, I had to get out and look through the vegetation and rely on the gps to ensure I was still on the trail. We slowly worked our way along most of the time in 4low. The truck did great, it just needs more clearance, I don't think there is one part on the underside that didn't kiss a rock at some point.







The road didn't get any better and the adventure continues.

Jack
 
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locrwln

Expedition Leader
After working our way over the many fields and ridges, we finally started down towards the lake. It took us roughly 2.5 hours from the turn off of 8A until we reached the lake. With better clearance and suspension, it would take less time, but for a stock truck, it did great. The veiw as we approached the lake.







We made it down to the lake and decided to call it a day and make camp.





There were no visible use of this rather large and pretty lake. And if you look at the maps, there are no "big" roads leading to it, the only ones we could find were small trails.

The lake at sunset, we were on the south end of the lake looking north.



The only downside, were the mosquitos, they were voracious and were more than happy to have some fresh blood. It was a great night and it was really nice to have the place to ourselves.

Jack
 
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locrwln

Expedition Leader
Sunday morning the plan was to continue around the south end of the lake and head north and exit onto Ft. Bidwell road. As they say the best laid plans...

As we were working our way around the lake, I had to get out and scout the road out, at this point it didn't look like any one had traveled this way in a really long time. As we got to the southern most point, there was a large male antelope that acted like we were the first vehicle he had ever seen, he wasn't afraid and kept coming toward us to "check" us out. He would only get about 300 yds away, before his courage would break and he would move away. Then he would come back and do it all over. We were stopped and watched him do it several times, before it was time to keep moving.



After working our way around the lake, the road just kind of stopped at a very old corral. I got out and began scouting out the trail. I figured out why the road had seen so little use, there were two sizeable creeks feeding the lake and the second one was much too deep to cross the sides were several feet tall, so no vehicles are crossing and driving north around the lake. So we had to turn around and head back the way we came. Which was really surprising, considering the gps and the map showed it going through. Oh well, we decided to try the road heading south at what we were calling antelope crossing and it too petered out after climbing up into a very neat valley. So back out the way we came. The vegitation was so thick that even after we had just driven through, I really had to concentrate to find the trail and even scout it out again. It took us about three hours from the time we left camp until we were back at the spot where we had camped. Pretty wild.
 
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locrwln

Expedition Leader
Once we made it back out 8A, we headed east towards Vya. Vya is a town again. For anyone who has passed through the crossroads of Vya before would be shocked by how much is there. The pipeline has created a town once again.





We continued east on 8A until we reached the Sheldon turn off and up we went. We crossed the Sheldon to SR140 and turned right to head down to the Thousand Creeks/Durfferena Ponds area. I had been told that the campground, Virgin Valley CG, had a geothermal heated pool. We decided to give it a try. The campground was free and the pool was very well done. The bottom is natural, but there has been some concrete work with a ladder to get in and out of the pool. The temperature isn't really "soaking" hot, but it is one of the nicest temperatures you could ask for after a long day on the trail. Plus right next to the pool is a building with showers. There are these little fish in the pool that if you stand still will start "cleaning." It is a really weird feeling but kind of cool at the same time, the fish are very social and as soon as you stop moving, come near you.



Swimming with the fishes...


The pool.


We got in gear on Monday morning and headed south out of the CG. We passed near the old Virgin Valley Ranch and noticed this Black Crowned Night Heron hanging out.



We turned west again and decided to follow a road back across the Sheldon to intersect with 8A. This too was a road that had seen little use and we had the area to ourselves. Just us a few deer, antelope and wild horses. Not to mention various birds that we saw along the way. This was very open, remote country and we really enjoyed it.









For anyone looking to "get away from it all" you owe it to yourself to head to Northern Nevada area, you really feel like you are the only ones out there.

Time for the cleanup.

Jack
 
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