Family Adventure: An Interview with Famagogo 227

Welcome, Peter Holcombe and the “Famagogo,” family. Thanks for chatting with us at Camping World about your RV experience!

Q. Tell us a bit about yourself, and what first drew you to RV travel? 

A. While we’ve always traveled extensively, we never actually planned on becoming RVers. Originally, we had planned a year-long road trip in a van that we converted ourselves. But Peter’s dad begged us to go look at a few RVs before we purchased a van. And with our first step into a Winnebago View, we felt like we found both a vehicle and a home. And because we felt completely at home on the road, one year turned into two, then three…and here we are on our eighth year of full-time RV living with no end in sight.

Q. Describe your travel style in five words or less! 

A. Driven by adventure.

Holcombe Famagogo Family Driving Winnebago RV
Famagogo Family drives their Winnebago RV from one white water destination to the next.

Q. A few lightning questions…Favorite snack, meal, or beverage to have at the campsite? 

A. Can you ever really have enough chocolate?

Q. 3 pieces of gear you always have in the RV?

A. Kayaks, kayaks, and more kayaks (6-21 kayaks at any given time to be exact). And a camera comes in handy too.

Q. First thing you do when you arrive at the campsite? 

A. Usually we spend the entire day kayaking on a river, so we almost always roll into camp well after dark. So we put up the blinds and go to sleep.

abby kathy holcombe kayaking great lakes
Abby and Kathy Holcombe kayaking the Great Lakes.

Q. You got into RVing as photographers; did you ever imagine your photography business would lead you to a life on the road full time? 

A. We started our wedding and portrait photography business so that we had something that we enjoyed doing that served the lifestyle that we wanted.  But never in our wildest dreams did we imagine that our lifestyle would become our business. It is becoming increasingly difficult to tease apart when we are working and when we are playing as our passion for travel, adventure, photography, and writing have all intermingled to become our dream career that never knew even existed.  It’s truly been a dream come true.

Q. What’s it like living in an RV as a family? Fun, interesting, silly, surprising?

A. Living in 70 square feet as a family of three (plus a 70 pound Labrador) is cozy at best, and claustrophobic at worst. But here’s the thing, we have enjoyed more time together as a family than we could have ever imagined. We have literally been together through everything over the past seven years. And while sometimes we grouse at each other over silly things, the connection and closeness that we share is something we could have never gained in any other lifestyle.

Q. What would you say are the greatest perks of RV travel for a family? 

A. The best part of living in an RV on the road full time is the experiences and education that we have given our daughter throughout her childhood. She has been to 23 countries, 49 states, and six Canadian Provinces, communicated in a dozen languages, experienced natural wonders first hand, seen original artwork from the masters, set world records, and developed a deep passion for freestyle kayaking that continues to push her in her quest to be the best in the world.

The Holcombes at camp.
The Holcombes at camp.

Q. What defines an awesome family adventure to you?

A. An adventure takes you into a wild, unknown place where anything can happen.  A place where you learn as much about yourself as the place that you are exploring. If’s it’s not daring or a little bit scary, it isn’t a true adventure.

Q. Do you have any family RV travel stories you’ll be telling around the campfire for years to come?

A. [From Abby…] One summer, we were driving down this long, windy road in the middle of nowhere Washington. We were en route to a beautiful boondock spot. We drove for hours upon hours and anxiously awaited the arrival of our relaxing campsite for the night. But as we looked ahead, we saw a giant log blocking the road! We stopped the van and walked over to figure out how to get around it. As we got closer, we realized that the log wasn’t actually the issue, it was that the road behind the log had been completely washed away by the river! We were almost out of gas and frustrated that we couldn’t get to our chosen campsite for the night. But as we looked around, we noticed the soft hum from the river, the gentle chirp from the birds perched above, and the gorgeous scenery. It might not have been our original plan, but I’m so glad that the log forced us to stop and appreciate where we were because it sure was beautiful. We spent the night next to the river behind the log and it was even better than our original destination and surpassed all of our expectations for our original route! The moral of the story is to pause in every situation, but especially the stressful ones, and find the little silver linings.

Abby Holcombe Team USA Kayaker
Abby Holcombe is a Team USA Pro Kayaker. Her RV lifestyle has allowed her to have a rich education and pursue her passion for whitewater.

Q. What is your favorite quote, lyric, or mantra that you repeat on your travels?

“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view.  May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.”  —Edward Abby

Thank you for your time and stories. See you out there on the road!

Kelsey’s first career as a performing artist had her traveling the world. Eager to keep traveling, she hit the road to see the USA in a 69’ Airstream Overlander. Today you can find her writing about travel, design, and good food. When she’s not planning her next trip, she’s sipping on local beer and petting other people’s dogs.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.