What is “dirtbag?”
“Going dirtbag” as I use it here means voluntarily living on the road, in your car, without a permanent dwelling. I think the term originated among climbers, who are probably the main group who choose this lifestyle.
Why go dirtbag?
Let’s say you have some project that requires a lot of time and possibly travel, but not much money or other resources. Maybe you want to climb the 50 state high points, climb awesome crags in every part of the country, or study Civil War battlefields. Doing any of these things seems prohibitively expensive to most people who are not independently wealthy. However, none of the major expenses standing in the way are intrinsic to the project.
For most travelers, lodging is a major expense of travel: either $50 to $100 for a hotel, or thousands of dollars for a camper or RV, plus $10-$20 per night for developed campsites. But if you’re spending most of your time on your project, you only need a place to eat, sleep, and stay reasonably clean, so fancy accommodations are a waste. A permanent dwelling is another waste of money for someone on the road. Why pay $500 to $2000 per month for a place to store stuff you aren’t using, when you can either sell it off or rent a storage unit for $50 to $100 per month?
So if you’re committed to a project and not independently wealthy, going dirtbag can make the impossible possible.
Why write about it?
For most people, living on the road is unfamiliar and possibly frightening. But with some basic knowledge, it is remarkably easy and even comfortable.
What will this blog contain?
When I’m on the road, it will mostly be a travelogue. When I’m not, it will feature sporadic articles on dirtbag living.