Overland Journal Gear Guide 2019

Each issue of Overland Journal features in-depth coverage of equipment and vehicles, as well as full-length trip stories that span the globe. Our strict standards for writing and photography, in addition to our striking layout, means that our subscribers receive an expedition and adventure travel magazine that is at once inspiring, informative, and attractive.

United States
Overland International
5 Issues

in this issue

3 min
the feed

JOB WELL DONE Kudos to journalists Brady and Cordes for a hard look at a wide assortment of impressive expedition kit, and the overall subject of off-pavement trailers. Good luck finding this kind of coverage anywhere else. The only shortcoming I noticed was that the type of coupler was not specified in some instances, [nor] the pros/cons of each addressed. Historically, the most common practice has been that the trailer suspension and brakes were less sophisticated than [that of the] tow vehicle. It is unusual to even see shocks (dampers) accompanying leaf springs on the average trailer, and if there are brakes, they are most often drums. Ground clearance is usually sacrificed in the name of deck height to ease access and/or loading. Conventional and common design has not lent itself to…

6 min

GRAEME BELL Graeme Bell is a full-time overlander and author. He was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, but considers Europe home when not traveling the planet with his wife, Luisa, and two children, Keelan and Jessica, in a Land Rover Defender 130 (affectionately known as Mafuta). To date, the Bell family and Mafuta have over a period of seven years toured Southern and East Africa, circumnavigated South America, and driven from Argentina to Alaska before touring the US from coast to coast. In December 2016, Graeme personally transformed their Defender from a standard double cab into a camper with through access, a pop-top, and sleeping for four in anticipation of their current adventure, driving from Europe to Southern Africa. CHRIS SCOTT Chris Scott is an award-winning, UK-based adventure travel writer who specializes in…

1 min
front runner spare wheel step

Accessing the roof rack on four-wheel drives seems like a real pain these days. Tires keep getting bigger, vehicles keep getting higher, and most of us aren’t getting any taller, which means that it’s time to get a leg up on the problem. If you have the right vehicle and feel like drilling holes in your truck, you could permanently mount a ladder, but for everyone else, there’s this convenient step from Front Runner. This helpful product attaches directly to your spare tire using a 5-meter endless ratchet strap and provides two steps and three handholds to make accessing your roof rack a snap. It’s made from black, powder-coated stainless steel and will fit tires up to 35 inches with no drilling or tools required. Installation couldn’t be easier. Simply thread the…

1 min
scheel-mann seats vario f xxl

According to a Harvard study, the average person will spend 37,935 hours of their life driving. For overlanders, that figure is undoubtedly much higher, so it only makes sense that we would search out a better seat for our health. With two back surgeries behind me, I wanted something highly adjustable and ergonomically designed, which led me to Scheel-Mann. Scheel-Mann has been producing aftermarket seats for over 50 years, and their work has been used in nearly every segment of the automotive industry, from race cars to four-wheel drives. They offer a range of models with different features, fabrics, colors, and sizes, but it was the Vario that caught my eye. It’s based on the company’s traveler seat which is fashioned to promote good posture and back health for any occupant,…

1 min
mosko moto backcountry pannier kit and duffle

Aluminum panniers have been the gold standard of moto luggage for good reason: they’re easy to pack, easy to lock, and your gear stays protected. You can put your Starbucks sticker on them, too. The downside? If you have any kind of get-off, your panniers are done—at least on one side. After replacing my third one, I decided to give Mosko a try. I know what you’re thinking: Steven, you must be a sucky rider. Maybe that’s true, but I like to use my gear. So I went with the 35-liter pannier system paired with the 30-liter duffle. The panniers are easy to install, and the mounting wedges, which connect to nearly any kind of metal luggage rack, make nightly removal a snap. The pannier system comes with all the hardware you…

1 min
prometheus design werx expedition watch band compass kit

For Patrick Ma, Prometheus Design Werx (PDW) founder and field gear innovator, an everyday carry compass is essential kit. Inspired by heritage equipment used by old-school commandos, PDW has modernized the wristwatch band-mounted compass of yore with distinctive, functional features. With scant makers of pressure-rated, oil-filled button compasses, sourcing certainly wasn’t easy. Secured inside a ruggedized non-magnetic billet aluminum housing (titanium also available), the PDW Expedition Watch Band Compass is unobtrusive, comfortable down to 100 meters, and prepared for abuse. With strontium aluminate illuminating the four cardinal directions and the silicone gasket encircling the compass, it’s ready for low/no light terrestrial and maritime navigation.There is also a groove machined into the case interior to secure that glowing gasket. Break the compass? There’s a small hole on the housing flipside to nudge…