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Overland Expo West 2023—Top Gear

Pasq ADV1 motorcycle trailer

With hundreds of exhibitors setting up shop at Overland Expo West—by far the largest overland event in North America—the wave of products, gear, and upgrades, both well-proven and brand new, takes center stage. Many of us from the Overland Journal and Expedition Portal teams spent hours hiking the aisles of Expo’s vendor village, and we zeroed in on some top gear that we think might make a splash in the coming year. Look for more in-depth reviews of many of these products in the coming months, as well as other gems we unearthed in Flagstaff that aren’t on the list.

Dometic Inflatable Shelters

Dometic TRT 140 inflatable tent

Dometic TRT 140 inflatable tent

My colleague Graeme Bell wrote in-depth about Dometic’s line-up of vehicle-mounted inflatable shelters last week, and the big brand showcased two of them at Overland Expo for the first time in the North American market. The TRT 140 air rooftop tent and HUB 2 inflatable shelter make for a unique and easily-set-up combo that provides both slumber and shade in one air-filled combo. The tent inflates in seconds, and the HUB 2 in just a couple of minutes using Dometic’s own electric pumps, and both offer a range of accessories and upgrades to build out your perfect portable sanctuary solution. Inflatable tents have been available for some time in Europe, Australia, and Africa but have struggled to find a foothold in the Western hemisphere; is it all just hot air? I look forward to finding out.

InstaPrivy Upgrade

InstaPrivy portable toilet kit

One of my favorite products that I reviewed this year was the InstaPrivy portable toilet kit. This wilderness WC that you wear on your head may have you rolling your eyes the first time you see it, but it works well—the simplest ideas often do. My one critique was the lack of convenient storage or portability for used waste bags, but the manufacturer has addressed this with the WaBaCaBa add-on. A straightforward roll-top dry bag equipped with a couple of carabiners to secure it to the MOLLE webbing on the exterior of the InstaPrivy’s carrying case, it keeps full waste bags out of the main storage compartment and unpleasant smells contained. A simple solution to a simple problem maintains InstaPrivy’s mission.

Tune M1 Camper

2023 Tune Camper on 2018 Ford Raptor

Tune is a Colorado-based outdoor company run by adventure enthusiasts who saw a niche to fill in the pickup camper segment. Modular lightweight campers are booming in popularity (led in part by Go Fast Campers), but they have their limitations, especially when it comes to living space. Tune tackled this issue on two fronts. Despite its mere 360-pound base weight for mid-size truck configurations, the M1’s distinctive over-the-fender design and full-length pop-top boost the side-to-side interior area, as well as headroom (up to 6 feet 10 inches). The exclusive tinted and tempered-glass side panels further increase the feeling of spaciousness by letting in light and enhancing the view.

Pasq ADV1 Motorcycle Trailer

Panq ADV motorcycle trailer

Pasq Motorcycle Trailer

The Pasq ADV1 single-wheel adventure motorcycle trailer literally stopped me in my tracks when I stumbled upon it in the back rows of the moto exhibitors’ area. Lithe, compact, ruggedly built, and featuring a virtual pivot point and trapezoidal multi-axis hitch system, the ADV1 looked like it was halfway through a Backcountry Discovery Route, just standing still. The debate over the benefits of trailering continues to rage in the 4WD overland community, but it’s rarely discussed in the adventure moto world. Pasq’s little tag-along might just change that. Currently in testing and designed for a wide range of bikes, you can reserve one now.

Tredder Insurance

Tredder Insurance booth at Overland Expo

Not exactly gear and not exactly exciting, insurance is both a legal requirement and a necessity for whatever rig you drive. But do you have enough insurance to cover both your overland vehicle and all its upgrades for the kinds of off-road adventures that you tackle? This is a serious question—one serious enough that David De Jesus founded Tredder just to answer it. We often invest thousands of dollars into our adventure vehicles and subject them to extreme environments and experiences, but run-of-the-mill insurance policies may not cover all your upgrades in all circumstances. Tredder is designed to fill that gap in your coverage with a bespoke policy built specifically for your four-wheel drive. You can register for availability and updates on Tredder’s website.

Sea Sucker Storage and Mounting Systems

There is obvious overlap between the sailing and overland communities. Pilots, both on land and at sea, seek adventure, new horizons, and the particular kind of freedom that only travel can bring. In fact, we’ve seen many high-profile overlanders leave the backroads to dabble in the waves and currents in recent years, from Drive Nacho Drive to our friends Tim and Kelsey from Dirt Sunrise (soon to be Saltwater Sunrise?) and even Expedition Portal’s own Scott Brady and Brian McVickers. It makes sense that gear designed for boats could have wide applications in overland vehicles. Sea Sucker is one such brand that’s testing its sea legs on shore with a line-up of wheeled-vehicle-based products, including light mounts, camera attachments, kitchens, bike racks, and other accessories, all based on their bomb-proof suction cup mounts.

Sunflare Xplor Series Flex+ Panels

SolarFlare Solar Panels

SolarFlare Solar Panels

True innovation in the solar panel world is rare, but Sunflare has been steadily improving its line of stainless steel solar cells (the steel media all but eliminates micro-cracks and stress failures) with individual bypass diodes and ultra-flexible construction. Their newest Flex+ panel offers 17% efficiency, and Sunflare claims the .127-inch thick profile is 95% thinner than traditional solar panels. Their bypass diode technology ensures that even when partially shaded, all the modules that remain on the sunny side of things continue to produce power. The 47-inch by 38-inch, 8-pound 140-watt Flex+ panel mounts easily with high-bond double-sided adhesive—no drilling or hardware required—and costs $575.

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Stephan Edwards is the Associate Editor of Expedition Portal and Overland Journal. He and his wife, Julie, once bought an old Land Rover sight unseen from strangers on the internet in a country they'd never been to and drove it through half of Africa. After living in Botswana for two years, Stephan now makes camp at the foot of a round mountain in Missoula, Montana. He still drives that Land Rover every day. An anthropologist in his former life and a lover of all things automotive, Stephan is a staunch advocate for public lands and his writing and photography have appeared in Road & Track, Overland Journal, and Adventure Journal. Find him at @venturesomeoverland on Instagram.