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Rugged and Ready Altair Camper Deepens Your Overlanding Relationship With Nature
While searching for RVs that can help you survive off-grid, I doubled back to a crew that I knew creates wonderful teardrop trailers, Cedar Ridge Campers. This time around, on the other hand, I was met with a different kind of glamper, the Altair.

Rugged and Ready Altair Camper Deepens Your Overlanding Relationship With Nature

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Folks, like most other RV and camper manufacturers out there, Cedar Ridge was sparked by a love for the outdoor and camping life. Because of this love, we can now own handcrafted machines from the backwoods of Murray, Kentucky.

However, the Altair is unlike the teardrops this crew builds (the most commonly built camper from this manufacturer). Instead, think of this camper more as a rolling utility box that just so happens to have the structural strength to support a suspended tent integrated into its use. Sounds like the sort of RV that's built for folks that don't think it's a big deal that a little piece of fabric is all that stands between you and hungry bears.

Now, if you're familiar with the glamping and RV world, you may have seen this camper style before. Typically, they're very trendy among populations where the natural landscape is as unforgiving as possible, and one of those countries is Australia. I'm not saying there are no other American, South African, or even Canadian manufacturers that build these sorts of campers, but the country that seems to have made the greatest use of this style is Australia, and we all know what it takes for a machine to perform out there.

And so, overlanding is the name of this camper's game, and all of it starts with how this bugger is built. Two models are available for this unit, but the only difference between the XL and standard Altair is that the XL is roomier, granted by 1 foot of extra height. Nonetheless, both units are set upon a welded and powder-coated steel chassis, and the shell's frame is built from steel and covered in aluminum panels, ensuring that your rooftop tent doesn't buckle the camper and it stands up to the landscapes you happen to drag this sucker through.

To help you ride even further than your average glamping habitat, a 3,500-pound (1,587-kilogram) HD Timbren axle-less suspension is in place, and so is a 2-inch (5-centimeter) lift for excellent ground clearance while riding through rock gardens and riverbeds. There are a few other knick-knacks in store too, but I'm going to leave some things open to your own exploring.

Diving further into all that is the Altair, because the unit reserves the sleeping space outside the shell, all of it is used for nothing more than gear, tools, toys, and above all, off-grid systems. Not only are there countless cupboards and storage bays reserved for things like your foods and drinks, coolers or fridges, and even gas tanks and water pumps, but in the middle of all that, you'll also find batteries, solar panels, a BMS (Battery Management System), and even the possibility to add things like an outdoor shower. There's no need to mention that an outdoor galley is also in place and available.

Other than that, everything else is in your hands, and so are the adventures you have in mind for this and subsequent off-griding years. But how much is all this going to cost you? Well, it all depends on the unit you need, but the standard Altair is coming in at around $17,000 (€16,700 at current exchange rates). That's nearly $5K more than the standard teardrop camper this manufacturer builds, but you can see where some of that cash goes.

At the end of the day, if you're into rugged off-grid machines that won't take you away from that natural setting you seek but rather deepens your experience with it, then this is one rig you should consider for the next few summers. After all, it looks like it will hold up to more than just one trip, and it won't leave you scrounging for pennies at the pump.

Editor's note: This article was not sponsored or supported by a third-party.


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