I found out about Travis’ Denver-based overlanding rental business, Titus Adventure Company, about a month ago when I wrote up a press release detailing their new mountain biking gear rental add-on. But after doing a little bit of digging and learning that Titus offsets all of the carbon emissions of their fleet, I wanted to learn more about the company and how they got to where they are today. Ultimately, Travis offered up one of their vehicles (a 2019 Tacoma TRD Off Road) for a few days so I could get a feel for the whole experience and (obviously) I jumped at the opportunity (pictures from that trip included in this article).
Upon arriving at his garage, Travis gave me a full walkaround of the Tacoma, pointing out all of the vehicle features and demonstrating how to set up the Alu-Cab rooftop tent and awning (standard on the Tacoma & 4Runner, the Sequoia has an iKamper tent). As part of his base rental package, he also provides a generous amount of camping gear; we loaded it all into the bed of the pickup. Travis took time and explained the upgrades on the Tacoma that would keep me happy on the trail, including a 2.5-inch lift, Toytec Boss 2.0 Aluma coils and shocks, Toytec heavy duty rear leaf springs, RCI full skid plates, and RCI rock sliders/running boards. As Travis pointed out the rock sliders, he told me they were there to “protect his investment” and quickly shot me a serious glance that transitioned into a smile. I chuckled nervously and promised to take good care of Patsy (the Tacoma; all of his vehicles have names) in the San Juan’s.
As an engineer who worked for the awning manufacturer Carefree Colorado, Travis knows and loves the overlanding world but was looking for a change in his career. He wanted to find a pursuit that felt more meaningful, one which would give him the opportunity to enact positive change through his work efforts. One Labor Day weekend, while driving back from the mountains with his family, inspiration struck.
Travis had wanted a bigger family vehicle for extended weekend trips but couldn’t justify making the purchase given the frequency of his needs. Having realized that no rental companies were offering the ideal overland-ready rig, he saw the opportunity to offer the very service he wished existed. His goal was to enable people who live in the Denver metro area to pursue overlanding (and hiking, climbing, adventuring, etc.) with capable off-road vehicle rentals.
But Travis wanted to operate a different kind of vehicle rental company, one that would result in a positive impact on our planet and local communities. “We’re in the business of helping people get outdoors sustainably,” he told me. Because transportation is responsible for a significant portion of air pollution in the Denver and Boulder area, Travis decided to offset all of the emissions from his rental fleet by investing in local regenerative organic agriculture which acts as a local carbon sink. He does this through the Colorado Carbon Fund, a local non-profit.
During our discussion, I was surprised to learn that the cost of the offset is very inexpensive, about $80/year per vehicle (for an estimated 15,000 miles per year). Travis told me that some rental companies offer it but generally upcharge customers for the option. Bucking the trend, Titus offsets all vehicle emissions for every trip and doesn’t pass on the cost to the customer. He also takes his dedication to reduce emissions one step further: if you are an electric vehicle owner, he’ll give you 20 percent off your adventure rig rental. Incentivizing customers to reduce their environmental footprint is what it’s all about.
“Adventure with impact” encompasses Travis’ ethos of changing the way we drive and recreate, and he takes this mission to heart. He takes his commitment to outdoor recreation one step further by donating $10 for every vehicle rental day to a selection of partner Organizations like the Colorado Mountain Club. He changes partners roughly twice a year to spread the impact around to worthy causes.
Ultimately, Travis aims to make overlanding more accessible to urban dwellers. In general, vehicle ownership is trending towards the “sharing economy model,” he pointed out. Why own a $60K overlanding rig, with all of the associated maintenance, storage, and recurring costs (registration and taxes, etc.) when you can just use ours when adventure calls? And as someone who shares a single private parking space amongst three people in Denver, I couldn’t agree more.
Learn more about Titus Adventure Company and their fleet of carbon-neutral overlanding rigs.