Updated: Dec 7, 2020
I first met artist Cate of ArgosyOdyssey on Instagram and to be honest, I wasn’t sure if what I was seeing was real. A hand painted (beautiful, crazy painted) 1976 22ft Argosy Airstream with a goat in some amazing scenery that would make even National Geographic seem pale by comparison. The more I saw, the more I fell in love with this Instagram channel, Cate’s art, and of course, Frankie the goat!
Cate and husband Chad found the Argosy on Craigslist just as a shell and spent only 6 months renovating it. They had just sold their bar (another awesome story) and were ready to dive into a complete lifestyle change.
I asked Cate if I could interview her, and she was very kind to oblige.
FTC: Tell us about your family (fur included) who travels with you. How long have you been RVing, how did a goat become part of the family?
AO: “We moved into the Argosy the summer of 2016 and are still full time RVers. We have traveled around the country with Frankie the goat and Maggie the dog, until Maggie passed away a year ago. Frankie was a gift from the man who sold us our bar (The Bywater) in Asheville, NC back in 2014. She grew up with our 3 dogs and when it was time to move out West, leaving her behind was unfathomable to us because she is part of our family.”
FTC: What's the best place you've ever been?
AO: “That is a tough one, there are so many favorite spots of ours. A few that come to mind are the Alabama Hills of California, Banff Alberta, and the Southern Oregon coastline and Redwoods.” FTC: What's the craziest goat story you've had while traveling?
AO: “We were hiking once along the Rogue River at Rainie Falls in Oregon and Frankie began to ‘freak out’, making spitting noises which is how a goat warns others. She had spotted a mama bear and two cubs right across the river from us that we had not noticed. She is an excellent guard goat!”
FTC: What's it like RVing full time with a goat?
AO: “Honestly, we spend very little time indoors. When we are in Grants Pass (our homebase) Frankie is foraging on the farm or enjoying playdates with other goats. Chad works at a vineyard and I have an art studio downtown. While on the road, we are out hiking and exploring. Our inside time is mostly at the end of the day when we are gearing up for bed. (Frankie sleeps at the end of it of course!)”
FTC: How is life traveling 'on the hoof'?
AO: “Traveling with a goat is not too different than with dogs, and we seek out pet-friendly hikes, bars/restaurants, and points of interest. Just like traveling with any animal, it obviously comes with some caveats that require extra planning and foregoing some places you’d otherwise visit. With that being said, traveling with animals brings an extra amount of joy and fun, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. Frankie loves adventure as much as we do!”
FTC: If you had one place left in the world to go (or return to) where would it be?
AO: “It would be super fun to take our trailer across the pond and explore different continents. I feel like every place in the world has unique and incredible beauty to offer and if we win the lottery one day - we’ll definitely do that!”
FTC: What was your first camping/RV adventure like?
AO: “Our first RV camping experience was our ‘Going Away’ party with our friends and family in Asheville. We took the Argosy for the first time to our buddy’s private campground along the French Broad river and our friends pitched tents or just dropped in to hang for the day. It will always be one of our favorite memories.” FTC: What advice would you give to anyone wanting to engage in a similar lifestyle?
AO: “Living simply and unloading all the extra material things that weigh you down is incredibly freeing and gives you a whole new perspective of what’s really important in life. You gain a new appreciation of the simple things in life, whether it’s a beautiful sunset or a hot shower. You don’t need that 100” flatscreen, a fancy car, or a designer purse.” FTC: What would you have done differently?
AO: “Taken less shortcuts with remodeling the trailer. We’ve had to re-do a few things, mostly because we were trying to keep the cost down or were in a rush and didn’t take the proper time. But that’s a lesson learned and everyone will have a learning curve when embarking on fulltime trailer life.”
Great advice, Cate! Thanks so much for the interview and enjoy your time out there in the Argosy, I know I’ll be following on Insta!
All photos Copyright ArgosyOdyssey
All writing Copyright Fern the Camper
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