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Sierra's USA Tour - Take a 'Chance'

We are Sierra and Nevada! I (Sierra) was born and bred Scottish and also the lucky owner of an American passport (thanks mom!). I have been travelling for 4 years calling New Zealand, Australia and America home in the last few years. Nevada is a native kiwi bird, who left New Zealand 2 years ago to travel and work in Australia, saving up money for grander travels in the future. Our paths first crossed down under, then 15 months of long distance and a world pandemic later we finally ended up in the USA together. Then entered #vanlife into our world. Or more, Vancation. We bought our beautiful 2007 Mercedes Sprinter with the intentions of travelling to all 51 mainland America National Parks over 4 months.


We bought ‘Chance’ in April 2021 for $34,000 USD. Already converted.

At purchase she had 79,000 miles on her.

She’s a Turbo Diesel and gets an incredible 20-23 mile per gallon.


Nevada secured a 6 month visa to America so that set our time scale. Covid ramped up van life demand worldwide but particularly in America. Before Chance we bought what we now call the BBT (Big Black Turd) and it is the disaster van we will not talk about. So after cleaning up the BBT mess the clock was really starting to tick. Options were thin and our dream trip looked more and more impossible. When we found this Sprinter advertised we decided if this van did not work out, that’s it. We’re taking a holiday to Hawaii and admitting defeat. She was our last chance. The van angels were on our side, with a $2,000 internal ‘electrical tweaking’ bill and a few days later we owned Chance, had a free AAA map in hand and hit the road with 4 months left on Nevada’s visa.


The conversion consisted of:

6’4” standing height

Fixed bed

12V Hisense fridge

2 x 12 V Deep Cycle Batteries (charged while driving through alternator)

Inverter with socket (1500 WATT)

Shore power hook up

Propane double stove

Sink with 5 gallon fresh water tank and electric pump

Table and two seats can convert into couch/addition single bed

Two windows

Extensive accessible storage




Follow Sierra & Nevada's travels on Instagram @SierraPB

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