Customer Story | Victor S. | Evo V2 | “it literally saved me from a serious injury or even death.”

Customer Story | Victor S. | Evo V2 | “it literally saved me from a serious injury or even death.”

Submitted By: Victor S.

The origins of me getting into overlanding started when I joined the Army, I was 19 years old from Bryan, TX and got stationed at JBLM over in Washington State. The infantry brigades over there are a Stryker focused one and I was mounted infantry on an ATGM variant of the vehicle. The vehicle had a crew of 4 so it was very tight knit, we’d joke, argue, eat, sleep out of the vehicle we lived in for months at a time.

We did this in the high deserts of Yakima, Washington, the deep forest just south of Tacoma, Washington, just outside of Mt. Rainer National Park, the Mojave Desert, the desert just south of Boise, and finally to the mountains near Paso Robles, California.

Although during this time I would complain like every other soldier my age and it wouldn’t be till later that I realized how fortunate I truly was to have that opportunity to experience those many months in some of the most beautiful places this country has to offer. This is what planted the seed.

Fast forward to recent times, I currently travel the entire nation working on broadcast towers, without getting into too much detail I’m basically one of the guys that changes the light bulbs you see way up in the sky at night. My company pays me per diem and it’s up to me with how I spend it for lodging, I was getting tired of spending money on Airbnb’s and shady hotels.

I had always wanted to get a rooftop tent so I could feel how I did when I was in the military, so I figured why not do the RTT thing, so I went ahead and got the EVO 2 from FSR.

I received the tent and was extremely excited to throw it on my truck. I spent the first 2 months in Maumee Bay State Park (right along Lake Erie in Ohio), we had a tower job right in that area. During that time, the weather ranged from the mid 40 degrees - 20 degrees. I felt completely comfortable in the tent with blankets and a sleeping bag. It would stay very dark on the inside even during the day, and the Tri-Layer worked well in keep the elements out-I slept in it during high winds, snow, and rain…. never once did the outside make its way inside.

The zippers held up well and never came off track (which was a big worry). One night I forgot to put the stoppers on the shocks (editor’s note: gas strut locks on the gas struts), and they still stayed up during a windstorm. The mattress never made my back hurt, not once. I could store ALOT inside the tent when folded. The LED light strip was extremely convenient.

I felt safe in the tent, and it looked extremely dope when mounted to my FJ. I spent a consecutive 97 days nonstop in that tent without ZERO wear and tear issues. Not a single hiccup and not a single complaint!

I started it in Alabama -> Ohio -> Indiana -> Arkansas -> Texas -> Missouri -> Illinois. 

Here’s the best part of the tent, two days ago it literally saved me from a serious injury or even death. 

Since I travel full-time that means I’m doing a lot of driving in my personal vehicle. I was leaving Chicago and I had been awake for close to 24 hours at 4:45ish I passed out at the wheel and hit a light pole at 60mph which resulted in my truck rolling over 5 times (I believe so, there were no other witnesses). I woke up as I was rolling over and instantly knew what was happening, I landed on my driver’s side and had to crawl out the jammed passenger door.

It all happened so fast, and I was rushed out in an ambulance before I could really get a good look at the vehicle. I left the hospital without a single scratch or bruise on me, I was completely fine!

I believe the tent saved me and here’s why: the tent hung over my vehicle on either side by roughly an inch, so when my vehicle was rolling the tent contacted the ground before the actual roof of my vehicle each time it rolled over, which means the energy of my heavy vehicle hitting the earth was dispersed more evenly. Yesterday I went to the tow yard to look at my vehicle and the roof wasn’t too deformed, but my roof rack mounts were ripped out and the tent was closed completely due to the top and bottom piece not perfectly lining up on one side of the tent. I even opened the tent to grab some belongings and it opened just fine, just won’t close properly. 

Only one of my airbags deployed. I would like to attribute my survival and health to my vehicle being an absolute tank, but I truly believe that if that tent was not on my roof than the ceiling of my vehicle could have seriously hurt me. Although I am extremely sad that I will no longer enjoy the night listening to the wind, rain, and wildlife…I’m even more thankful it was a beefy product!

My insurance is going to help me out as much as it can, I’m going to be ok it’s unfortunate that I lost essentially my house, but I have a really good career. I’m only 27 and making this life change so I could save money and invest more was a fun experience and I’m glad I could prove doubters wrong about my ability to stick it out in the cold. I never felt wilder than I did with my time in the Army! 


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