EP21 | Overlanding in Europe and Scandinavia with Rachelle Croft

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Episode Description

Want to know what it’s like to go overlanding in Europe? Scandinavia? Norway? Fresh off the plane and back home from filming Expedition Overland’s Nordic Series, Rachelle Croft sits down to share her experiences.

Listen in as Rachelle explains the Scandinavian concept of “right-to-roam” and “off-pavement” vs. “off-road.” Learn the basics of overlanding in Europe and how the experience differs from overlanding in the U.S. and in less developed countries around the world.

Learn about how and where to camp in Scandinavia, plus, hear why Rachelle has her heart set on returning to Norway!

Detailed Episode Summary

Part 1 (1:30-8:00) Intro/Rachelle Returns from Overlanding in Europe! Fresh off the plane home from her adventures in filming The Nordic Series, with her beloved dog, Piper, by her side, Rachelle shares her reaction to her journey and how hearing foreign languages around her is “music to her ears”! Also discussed is the fact that the last major International Trip for XO was South America.

Part 2 (8:00-14:00) Overlanding Scandinavia and Norway: The team goes to Nordkapp! How overlanding in Europe means easy border crossings. Europe is paved, so you need to learn to appreciate the traveling rather than the off-roading experience. The Scandinavian concept of Allemansrätten concept is explained.

Part 3 (14:00-22:00) Thousands of Miles Through Europe: Rachelle explains the details of XO’s overlanding route through Europe and Scandinavia, starting in Belgium and finishing in Iceland. The Troll’s Road in Norway (“Trollstigen”), the food, the coffee, the people and the spirit of travel. How the culture of Europe embraces “the spirit of travel.” How the world has opened up again since Covid.

Part 4 (22:00-24:30) Overlanding to the Place of Your Family Roots and Heritage: Rachelle and Jimmy explore the concept of using overland travel as a means to explore your own family’s roots and heritage throughout the world. Rachelle shares what it was like for her to travel to Norway where her own Norwegian heritage is found.

Part 5 (24:30-34:00) How is Overlanding in Europe Different from Other Parts of the World? What is customary food in Norway? Finland? Sweden? What are the people and cultures of Scandinavia like? What is the weather like in Scandinavia in the summer? How did our Webasto heaters and Alu-Cab perform on expedition in Scandinavia? Nordkapp explained.

Part 6 (34:00-38:00) Overlanding and the Animals of Scandinavia: What’s the difference between a Caribou and a Reindeer? Why are their sheep everywhere throughout the countryside of Norway? Rachelle explains some key aspects of the animals of Scandinavia.

Part 7 (38:00-49:00) What is It Like to Camp in Europe and Scandinavia: What is the difference between “wild camping” and camping in an established campground? Can you wild camp in Europe? What is it like to camp in a Scandinavian campground? Do you need to reserve a spot or is there space available? “Park for a Night” (app. For overlanding Europe) and The Trans European Trail explained.

Part 8 (49:00-50:00) Coffee Culture in Europe and Scandinavia! A former barista, Rachelle dives into the coffee culture she experienced while overlanding in Europe and Scandinavia.

Part 9 (50:20-58:00) Overlanding with Your Kids: Rachelle shares what it was like to be overlanding with her eldest son, Cyrus Croft, while on expedition in Europe. What is it like for a teen to go overlanding? How do you manage school if you want to take your kid overlanding?

Part 10 (58:00-1:01) XO Trucks in Europe! Can you use a full-sized truck to go overlanding in Europe? Rachelle shares her thoughts about how the XO trucks did on expedition throughout Europe, discussing XO Tundra build, “Orion,” and Tacoma “Atigun.” What kinds of vehicles are popular for overlanding in Europe? Is the EU ready to go to fully electric vehicles in 2030?

Part 11 (101:00-End) The Conclusion XO’s Nordic Tour Route Describes, Wrap up: Rachelle talks about the team’s excitement to adventure to Iceland and their anticipation of “off-pavement” trails there. End.

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