‘OVERLAND DAD’ BUILDS A 2021 FORD F250 SUPER DUTY FOR OFF-ROAD CAMPING ADVENTURES.
“THIS ISN’T A TYPICAL OVERLANDER BUILD, BECAUSE COREY ISN’T A TYPICAL OVERLANDER; HE’S AN EXPERIENCED OFF-ROAD DRIVER, AND THIS BUILD WOULD DEFINITELY PUT HIS SKILLS TO
Sometimes, we get to meet really special people who have their priorities in order and their lives in good perspective. This is most de nitely the case with Corey Whitaker. Before anything else, he’s a dad and a husband. His role in the family de nes everything in his life, even when it comes to building bad-ass off-road vehicles—all of them.
Corey became interested in nature and camping at a very young age. He explored with his own family since before he can remember, and his wife grew up loving camping too. When he got his first real job, he bought a Scion TC, thinking he could easily take it to the mountains. After a winter of having to use chains to get up to the mountains, he quickly realized that he had made a very bad mistake. He also realized that this vehicle was a huge limiting factor in his outdoor fun. So, he bought a 2008 Toyota Tacoma 4x4 double cab short-bed—the rig that sparked his love for off-roading.
After six or seven years of learning the ropes while off-roading in countless locations, Corey started to take more interest in more-vehicle-based camping using BLM and state land to cover more ground and explore more trails. While wheeling was an activity he did mostly with friends, his wife would come along for the camping.
“As long as I can remember, I’ve been into the outdoors,” Corey says. “I was brought up camping, and so was my wife, Anna.”
Around this same time, Corey and Anna’s lives would forever change: Their twins, Emma and Gavin, were born, giving Corey his true namesake as the “@OverlandDad.” He started a new Instagram account dedicated to documenting the family’s adventures and, of course, truck pictures. While most of his friends didn’t understand the whole truck “thing” or off-roading in general, Corey had found his creative outlet. It became an amazing way to document his beautiful family and their adventurous experiences together.
“It’s a creative outlet for me that has become a big part of my identity,” Corey shares. “I’ve met so many of my friends as a result of starting the account and have also met some really awesome and inspiring people along the way.”
The off-road community, coupled with social media, inspired him to start both his Instagram and YouTube accounts, which really fueled his interest in photography and videography. What started as a way to document his family outings turned into a creative process that continues to inspire people all over the world.
Out With the Old, in With the Bad-Ass
While Corey has had a couple of cool rigs, the first one that really stood out was his incredible 2016 Toyota Land Cruiser
200 series. It was decked out with all the goodies necessary to take his whole family off-grid for days. It was also one of the only long-travel LC 200s in the world—and a massive inspiration to the entire JDM offroad community. Unfortunately, it was also a prototype suspension kit that brought a lot of its own issues.
On a trial run at the Gorman suspension test track, Corey’s CV took its final turn before it exploded.
Now imagine: Your vehicle is inoperable, and you’re waiting for a tow truck in the pitchblack night with two small children. Most normal parents would freak out, but Corey
was prepared with hot cocoa, fruit snacks and mac-and-cheese. His kids barely even noticed anything was wrong. The tow truck came, and off went the Land Cruiser.
“EVEN THOUGH HE HAS THE ABILITY TO HOUSE AN ARMY, COREY STILL WANTED TO BE ABLE TO GET TO HIS FAVORITE, SUPER-REMOTE CAMPING SPOTS. WITH THIS MONSTER OF A BUILD, HE STILL CAN.”
That whole suspension debacle gave Corey an excuse to start letting his eyes wander into the distance for a potential next build. At this point, their third child, Sierra, was well on her way.
Corey says, “It was around that time that we realized we needed a bigger vehicle if we wanted to be comfortable on our adventures.”
So, Corey decided to “shift gears” and move into the next build: He shot for the moon and purchased a 2021 Ford Super Duty F-250 Tremor 6.7L Turbo Diesel. This monster of a truck puts down 475 hp and 1,050 lb/ft. of torque (yes, you read that correctly: 1,050 lb/ft. of torque), and he needs every bit of that power to take this beast of a truck to the most remote of mountaintops.
This isn’t a typical overlander build, because Corey isn’t a typical overlander; he’s an experienced off-road driver, and this build would definitely put his skills to the test. And, his rig isn’t just a cabin on wheels, it’s also an extremely capable off-road rig.
The build also comes with a list of priorities to keep his wife and kids content. After a few well-planned, thought-out rig builds under his belt, Corey felt super-confident about his experience and started this insane F250 build. He and his wife made a plan and started with their list of absolute priorities.
Running hot water. When there are five people, dishes tend to stack up fast. Nobody wants to wash dishes in the freezing cold—with freezing cold water—in the dead of winter. Also, after a long day of hiking or snowboarding there’s nothing better than a hot shower. In addition, Corey and Anna now have three kids … and they get filthy. Keeping them clean before bedtime was incredibly important.
A place to unwind. When the weather gets bad, it’s always nice to have a place to retreat to. Rooftop tents don’t always cut it, especially when you have an “army” of kids. Too many bodies in a rooftop tent is not a place to relax and unwind, let alone sleep well. The camper gives them a decent-sized
“COREY AND ANNA NOW HAVE THREE KIDS … AND THEY GET FILTHY. KEEPING THEM CLEAN BEFORE BEDTIME WAS INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT.”