Katie Larsen

Katie has been living on the road since mid-2017, traveling across the United States and Canada while working as Editor-in-Chief for Go-Van.

I’ve never been positively sure about what I wanted my life to look like. Sure, I had ideas and set general goals but when I envisioned my life five or ten years down the line, the picture was pretty fuzzy. Like most people do when they feel unsure of themselves, I kind of stumbled my way through life, taking the “normal” steps, but with my own spin on them. I graduated from high school, went to college, completed internships, studied abroad, got my first real job, etc. While all of those experiences were great and challenging and rewarding, I still could never quite shake the feeling that there had to be more. After just a few years in the real world, I was already sick of commuting to work and spending eight hours of my day at a desk job. I was bored with myself and with my day to day life. Around this time, my partner, Evan, coincidentally started talking about wanting to build an adventure vehicle and travel in it. After many discussions, we agreed to do it. So we bought a van – a 144” WB high roof Sprinter. 

I was still in a bit of disbelief when we drove the thing off the lot, but I was so excited for the changes it would bring. Over the next six months, Evan and I worked around our 9-5 jobs to finish the conversion of the van into our new home. The day the van was done (and I mean that literally), we put our two weeks notice in at work and moved into the van to hit the road full-time. As you can imagine, living out of a van changed everything. I couldn’t believe how free and in control of my life I felt. We drove up to Alaska and explored glaciers. We drove on the highest paved road in North America while spending a month in Colorado. We found the best free campsite in Jackson Hole, overlooking the entire Teton mountain range. Every day was filled with hiking and adventures, while every night ended with a campfire. The first six months were amazing, but things came to a halt when I checked my bank account. 

Originally, we had saved up enough money to live on the road for a year before having to return to Oregon to dive back into our normal lives. However, after spending some time on the road, I knew that I was never going to really be able to go back to a desk job with a nine-to-five routine. By this point, we had connected with a lot of people in the van community and realized how widespread this nomadic lifestyle and vanlife movement is. For the first time, I started to realize that my life could look like this long-term if I wanted it to. I had the option, I just had to figure out the details. I grew very determined to figure out how I could earn a living doing something I actually enjoyed and still continue this new lifestyle I was growing so fond of. I found myself excited about the possibilities and began applying for remote positions. After months of searching for remote employment, I came across the perfect opening at Go-Van and went for it. Now, I am stoked to announce that I’m working as Editor-in-Chief with a company whose mission, lifestyle, and long-term goals align with mine. 

Working on the road is very different than just traveling. I went from having an insane amount of free time and very few obligations or commitments to thoroughly using my planner, staying organized, and meeting deadlines. The good news? I absolutely love what I’m doing. I am so passionate about this community. People are kind, interesting, and genuinely work to build each other up. There is even an ongoing trend of fellow van-dwellers sending hearts back and forth in DMs, even with people who have never met before. Truthfully, I don’t even know why we do it, but I know that I love it. 

I am eager to dive deeper into the world of nomads, outdoor explorers and creative adventurers. I want to meet you, learn your story, and share it with everyone else. Please, please, please, reach out to me! Send me photos, videos, snippets of your life, mantras, your favorite camping spot coordinates, book recommendations, anything. I want to get to know you. Notice we’re in the same area? Let’s hang out! I want to continue building and strengthening this community in any way that I possibly can.

Even just a few short weeks on the job, I already know I am exactly where I should be. I can’t stress it enough: you can make your life look like whatever you want it to look like. Whether that’s living in a house, a converted sailboat in a marina, a tiny home, or a home on wheels. You just have to decide to do it and whole-heartedly pursue your choice. While the next ten years may still be fuzzy for me, at least I know what the next few look like.

Get in touch with me!

Email: [email protected]

Instagram: @s0weboughtavan

Blog: s0weboughtavan.wordpress.com

Facebook: SoWeBoughtAVan