That’s a loaded question. Short answer: probably nothing, but maybe everything. People who know me understand my deep roots and enduring passion for off-road racing and four-wheeled adventures. On a dual sport motorcycle ride in Baja last year Otto and I hooked up with our friends Yeti & Yolo. These BFF’s are full-time vehicle-based adventurists. “Big deal,” you might say, “so are people who live in their 1977 Fairmont in the Walmart parking lot.” There’s a fine line between homeless and choosing to live in your two-seater Jeep, and Yeti and Yolo have figured out how to make it look fun and easy.
We spent some more time with them in Baja in 2016 on a Camp4Lo
trip our friend Matt organizes. Otto and I dragged food and supplies for the 4Lo customers in my old Tacoma, and really got to know Yeti and Yolo over five days and about 750 miles of off-roading and camping.
I’m a grumpy old man, so generally things like inspirational Instagram quotes make me yawn and roll my eyes. After a week of hanging with these two, it was obvious that they’ve got a true passion for living life on their terms and that it’s not all made-up social media bullshit. During the Baja 1000 race last November, they stayed up long after we went to bed, just to help push Class 11 cars (essentially a stock VW bugs) through the silt beds to get them on their way. Last summer when Yeti and Yolo competed at the 36 hours of Uwharrie
, the event organizers created a new “Gung-Ho” award for their positive-outlook-no-matter-the-conditions attitude that was so infectious it helped other competitors finish the event. You can fake a lot of stuff on the old ‘gram, but you can’t fake that.
Lots of us here have been wheelin’, racing, wrenching and camping long before it was called “Overlanding.” That love for road trips and the outdoors is a big reason why we’re into motorcycles. Yeti and Yolo are gear heads, and their Jeeps are proof. On their adventures, they switch between the Yeti jeep pictured here and Yolo’s “Miss Tina” TJ. For more than 400 days, they’ve lived in one or the other, mostly in a rooftop tent on the trailer pictured here, or another one that Yeti built himself. When we did the 4Lo trip, they left the trailer at home and camped on the ground like the rest of us.
Over the summer, the Yeti Jeep got a huge boost in horsepower with an LS engine swap at Novak Conversions
and later a G2 axle swap. What’s cool about this setup is that it’s an all-around rig that can get to the trail without a trailer; it’s been cross-country multiple times and is still incredibly capable when the going gets rough. Since the rig is open to the elements, our 100% waterproof Exfil-115
bags make sense and both Yeti and Yolo keep one on board with various smaller bags stuffed inside to ward off weather and dust. We’re stoked that they like our lightweight Moto
gloves and Exfil-7
bags as much as we do, too.
So, what’s a couple of homeless friends in a Jeep got to do with Biltwell? We like to believe Yeti, Yolo and the bikeriders at Biltwell live by the same credo: have fun outdoors, and customize everything, including your life.
(PS, you can follow them on instagram: @thejeepcalledyeti & @thewildyolo )