I’m Switching My Blog to Substack

After 5,762 posts and 13,041 comments here over the past 15 or so years, I’m switching my blog over to Substack, which I feel is a better platform for my photos and writing.

It’s kind of a combination newsletter and blog — and you get an email each time a new story is posted.

I’m just getting started with Substack, and it’ll take me a little time to get more fluid with it.

I invite you to check it out. Subscriptions are free and there is an option to become a paid subscriber ($5 per month ) if you want to support my work.



(I continue to post on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lloyd.kahn/)

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Tiny Home on Wheels and Chinese Van

Dear Lloyd

I saw this van & cabin set-up here in Birkenhead, Auckland.

The first thing I thought was, is that a sauna on a trailer? Nope. It’s a cabin on a trailer. I’m really not sure how you’d get the cabin off the trailer. Perhaps once the trailer gate comes down, you can get a forklift in there.

The van is a SAIC, a state owned Chinese company, the made in China Sprinter, if you will.*

I hope you had a blast in Mexico.

Dan (Dwyer)

*All-electric, up to 210 mile range, appears to be about half the cost of a gas-powered Sprinter van, BUT I believe not available in US.


NOTE: I’m still posting here infrequently while I get set up to start using Substack in place of this blog. I’ll be posting at least once a week on Substack.

If you want to see my latest Email newsletter, GIMME SHELTER, explaining my forthcoming new modes of communication, go to: lloydkahn.com/gimme-shelter-february-2024/

If you want to be on the mailing list, send email address to lloyd@shelterpub.com.

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Scotty and Marissa’s Travels in Latin America

This letter from my friend, photographer and long-time surfer Leo Hetzl. Leo and partners have had a house in the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, which is a short walk through the jungle to a prime surfing beach.

Hola Lloyd,

I have been down here for a couple of weeks, will be here until the 22nd. There have been good waves and today it is too big for me.

A few days ago I met Scotty and Marissa. They have been traveling around Latin America for about 8 years in a camper that Scotty built around a 1988 Toyota truck when he was home in Oregon. They started out in Oregon and have been everywhere, including Patagonia. Marissa has been with Scotty off and on for 6 years. She sometime goes home to work while Scotty continues traveling around and surfing. They are on their way back to the states, don’t seem to be in a hurry, what happens, happens, they don’t really have a long range plan, or even a short range plan. We really clicked as soon as we met; one problem is they don’t drink Turkish coffee so I have to give them lemonade and Galletas María.

I showed your book on traveling campers and they said some of the people in the book are friends of yours. They have been fans of you and Shelter Publications for years.  It is really a small world, so many connections.…

Above and at left: Scotty and Marissa

The story of Leo and his wife Marija going 20,000 miles in the Sahara desert in 1972 in their Citroen 2CV van is in our latest book, Rolling Homes.

See Leo’s Instagram: @fotohetzel

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Building a DIY Cabin with Friends, from Start to Finish

Lloyd, you had taken an interest, and shared, an old cabin build video of ours.

A friend of mine just cut together an updated video that actually shows the cabin interior being finished. The old one stopped when the exterior was done. This video also focuses more on the cabin build proper than the summer camp vibes.

Just wanted to share. Hope things are well and VERY much enjoyed all of your shares from the recent Baja trip.

–Jeff Waldman

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Gary’s Van Home

Coincidence or cosmic, this guy, who turned out to be Gary Moffat, came up to me in the lobby of the little hotel where I was staying in San Jose del Cabo, and said “Lloyd!”

Turns out he had sent me pics of his decked-out Chrysler hybrid minivan a week earlier.

We were on the same wave length.

Here are a few rushed shots of his rig, I asked him to send me details for my blog. It’s a great build; he gets 33 mpg, at times 40 mpg.

Conversion kit by Vanpackers

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Adventures with Chilón

A few words about my extraordinary friend (of 36 years), Chilón, who has been my guide, fellow explorer, delightful companion. Among other things, he’s provided me with a window into the world as Mexicans see it.

We’ve been to cave painting sites, remote ranchos, multiple taco stands attended solely by Mexicans. His two boys are like my nephews, about the same age as my two sons.

He’s full of good humor, and generates delight wherever we go. We went to Costa Rica together, and when we took cabs in the capital, San Jose, he’d sit in front, start telling jokes and the cabbies would be laughing so hard they could hardly drive.

He had a radio program for 15 years, where his name was Periquín, or “parrot,” that was immensely popular with local kids. He’d say, (in Spanish), Now, Luis and Maria, you mind your parents, and do your homework, and now here is the latest song from The Rolling Stones.”

The last photo is of a woman who recognized him as Periquín on the beach at Los Cerritos last week.

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Reflections on Trip to Baja

This trip has been cosmic. First, it’s been healing. Out of the heavy rains and winds into the bright blue sunshine of this most southern part of California was just what I needed. Plus meeting a ton of great people, Mexicans and gringos.

It’s been like coming home. I spent 12 years coming down here 2–3 times a year, so I know my way around. In spite of the enormous growth, I still love it. Like San Francisco, years ago I decided to stop bitching about the glass half full, and enjoy the still wonderful parts of the city.

Another extraordinary thing: people recognize me. Has happened half a dozen times down here. Happened on the street in Berlin, city of 2 million people, a guy walking by says “Lloyd!”

I think it has a lot to do with sticking around long enough…

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