“We hope to spark curiosity, spontaneity, and bring out the sense of adventure everyone has within. We live in a society where almost everything is planned, and we are farther removed from nature and the outdoors more and more. We hope our campers connect more people to the outdoors and to their adventurous spirit … no matter where you’re from, your physical ability, or your lifestyle. Adventure is for everyone!”
The above quote is how Outdoorsy owner Camila Ramirez responded when asked about the mission of her rental business, Overland Discovery. This mission and the Overland Discovery business make the perfect match — especially when paired with Camila and her husband’s adventurous and innovative personalities.
“My husband Eric and I moved to Colorado a few years ago after living in various cities all over the world,” Camila says. “I’m originally from Bogotá, Colombia and have lived in seven different countries, and 12 different cities. Eric was in the military and spent most of his life abroad as well, having lived in Japan and Spain.”
“In 2017, we were ready to live somewhere where we could play as hard as we worked, so we opted for a place with endless outdoor activities where we could have a better work/life balance,” Camila explains.
They managed to find that balance when they moved out west.
“We’re both entrepreneurs and adventurers at heart, but we didn’t know how we would bring together these two passions until we moved to Colorado and went on an epic camping trip in Moab, Utah. We borrowed a friend’s tent, drove to Moab straight after work on a Friday night, and spent the weekend mountain biking, hiking and disconnecting. It was incredible! Except for the fact that we woke up sore and dusty every morning.”
“We drove back home and decided to build out our first Jeep camper — a Jeep Wrangler with a rooftop tent.”
Why a Jeep camper? It offered exactly what Camila and Eric needed. “We decided to build out a Jeep camper because we wanted to blend adventure and comfort,” Camila says.
“While we’re adventurous travelers, I’m not a big fan of sleeping on the ground on a camping trip and waking up sore and tired. I love camping, but I also enjoy waking up feeling refreshed and ready for a day full of activities — like mountain biking, hiking, trail running, etcetera!” she says. “I’m also not a big fan of planning or packing, so we wanted something that didn’t require a lot of extra prep. We just wanted to get off work on a Friday afternoon and head straight for the mountains!”
The couple completed their camper and got right to work testing it out. “With extremely demanding jobs at the time and little time to prep, plan, and experience/discover new things, we were the perfect guinea pigs,” she says. “We went out on trips, explored Colorado, tested equipment, and built out what we thought would be the perfect overlanding vehicle for the modern traveler.”
After some tweaks and additions, the camper was finished. “We knew we wanted to rent our first Jeep camper and create a business when we purchased our first Jeep, but we didn’t know if we would be successful,” she explains. “We realized we were adventurous travelers but did not necessarily want to ‘rough it’ every time we went camping. So we did some research and found a gap in the market.”
“If we were feeling this way, there must be others like us — people that don’t want to carry all their gear around and sleep on the ground, but they also don’t want to drive an old school 30-foot RV for a weekend escape.”
Knowing there must be people looking for rigs like theirs, Camila and Eric listed their Jeep camper on Outdoorsy. “We chose Outdoorsy because it’s a brand and platform we trust,” Camila says. “We did a lot of research when finding a booking platform and Outdoorsy was the only one that we believed catered to the modern traveler. We were not happy or impressed with companies that cater to traditional RVs only, and while there are other rental platforms for vehicles, they were not a good fit for us.”
“Outdoorsy also stood out because of its stellar customer service. We felt like we were indeed joining a community rather than just being a number on another company’s list of customers. We appreciated the personal touch and the fact that Outdoorsy matched with the brand we wanted to build.”
“Additionally, Outdoorsy has a great offering for commercial operators, like ours, with its Wheelbase Pro booking software. This was a huge selling point for us. We enjoy the benefits of being on a peer-to-peer rental platform, while also being able to manage our brand and reservations on our own website. It’s a win-win!”
It turns out the couple was right about what was needed, and there definitely was a demand for their Jeep camper. “Over the course of the first year, we had enough interest through Outdoorsy, our website, and a few other platforms that we decided to expand the fleet and go all in!”
“In the summer of 2019, I quit my corporate job in tech to run Overland Discovery full-time. And, we just opened our first commercial location— I like to call it our Overland Discovery HQ — in Denver in December. We’ve expanded to other types of vehicles and have plans to expand our footprint to other states!”
In the past two years, Camila and Eric have expanded their fleet to include 11 different campers, including Jeep and campervan rentals. They have made more than $150K renting these vehicles. Best of all, they have had the opportunity to share their passion for adventure with others.
“Now that I’m running the business full-time, I tend to live vicariously through our guests and their experiences,” Camila says. “We’ve had so many great memories and experiences this past year, from honeymoons to surprise proposals in the mountains to father-son and grandpa-grandson bonding trips. This is why we do what we do! It inspires us every day.”
All about Camila Ramirez
Favorite morning beverage:
“Coffee! Although it should be water …”
Favorite campsite meal:
“Burrito bowls — a mix of sautéed veggies, beans, instant rice, hot sauce, and avocado!”
Music you like to play on the radio:
“Whatever is my favorite song at the moment on repeat. Currently it’s Dance Monkey by Tones and I.”
Best game to play on the road or at your campsite:
“BS! It’s an easy card game that everyone knows how to play.”
“Fall. Especially in Colorado!”
Last photo you took:
“A picture of our new Overland Discovery HQ in Denver!”
What’s your Outdoorsy spirit animal?
If you could travel anywhere in an RV, where would you go?
“Road trip from the U.S. to Patagonia, Argentina.”