Start Lean, Dream Big: Craig Hurst of Gearbox Adventure Rentals on Family-Friendly Camping, Planning for the Future and #VanLife

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Craig Hurst, owner and founder of the Birmingham-based camper van rental company Gearbox Adventure Rentals, joins Carrie on this week’s episode. Craig and Carrie start off the conversation with what Craig loves about vans, his life long entrepreneurial spirit, and the valuable insights he gained while working retail. Craig tells us how Gearbox refined the process of camper van build outs, how the camper van experience differs from tent camping or an Airbnb, and gives some tips for traveling and parking while exploring with a camper van. Craig and Carrie then move on to business operations: marketing the business at events, deciding which vans to use, and the surprising benefits of not having investors in the beginning. Craig tells us the truly spectacular names of the vans in their fleet (hint: Alice in Wonderland!), where the name of the business came from, and gives us the scoop on some of the future plans for Gearbox. Craig and Carrie wrap up with some excellent resources for anyone looking to build or expand a business. 

Mentioned in this episode: 

Gearbox Adventure Rentals 

Icon Vans

Gearbox Adventure Rentals on Instagram 

Gearbox Adventure Rentals on Facebook

Asheville Van Life Rally 

The Market at Pepper Place


Moss Rock Festival 

Vecchia Pizzeria  

Moss Rock Preserve 

Church Street Coffee and Books

Story Brand by Donald Miller 

Start With Why by Simon Sinek

The Lean Startup by Eric Ries

About Carrie

Carrie Rollwagen is host of the Localist podcast and cofounder of Church Street Coffee & Books. Currently, she works as Vice President of Strategic Planning at Infomedia, a web development company in Birmingham, Alabama. Find the Localist at @thinklocalist on Instagram and follow Carrie at @crollwagen.

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