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How We Met & Other Untold Stories (not just a road trip 1)

We’re trading our keels for wheels! Because that’s how our adventure together started 15 years ago when we drove our ’85 VW van from Texas to Florida to get hitched.  Seems only fitting we should celebrate with yet another road trip.  This time we’re driving around the northland of New Zealand with its dramatic coastlines, ancient forests, and cascading waterfalls.

Along the way, we’ll take a byway of our journey together.  It begins in the land before Facebook, with a girl on a mission to escape her small-town country life.  Two days after high school graduation she headed to the big city in pursuit of misadventures, opportunity, and independence.

She was bright-eyed, bushy-tailed, and ready for anything…except a persistent and annoyingly confident gold-hued boy.  Little did she know he would turn out to be her biggest adventure of all.

This is the story of us.  A road trip down memory lane, part one.

 

Anniversary Trip (15 Years) on Roadtrippers

ROADTRIPPERS?

We’re long-time fans and friends with the humans behind Roadtrippers.  That’s why we teamed up with them for this road trip.

Roadtrippers is a FREE app (and website) that came out right about the same time we hit the road full time in our RV circa 2011 (couldn’t have been more perfect timing).  We hit it off straight away and have been friends ever since.  It’s been our go-to road trip app for discovering weird roadside attractions (hello Cano’s Castle) and wild places to camp (Trona Pinnacles).

The free version is awesome and packed with all the important features. But, if you are a serious road tripper, or going on an extended trip, there is a paid “Plus” subscription. Plus gets rid of ads and unlocks features like live traffic and offline maps (very useful during the trip).

🚐 Camper Van Rental

🎥 CAMERA GEAR USED TO FILM THIS VIDEO

🎶 MUSIC IN THIS VIDEO:

  • Source – Artlist, Get 2 Months for FREE: https://bit.ly/artlist-GWTW
    • Artists – Paper Planes, Kevin Graham, Low Light, Giants and Pilgrims, Ian Post

🙏 THANK YOU!

Thanks for joining us, it wouldn’t be the same without you. 🤗

Ups, downs, and all arounds, we share it all. We’re able to do so because people like you show up each week, read, watch, comment, share, shop our gear, and toss a tip in our production jar. If you like what you see, there are lots of ways you can show your support.

Hello there! I honestly don’t know what to say, so I am going to tell you a bunch of random facts instead. I'm a fish eating vegetarian who hates spiders and loves snakes. I almost never took vacations growing up. I wanted to be Pippi Longstocking (still do). I misspell about every other word I write and still struggle with grammar. I love splurging on a good high tea (which is really hard to find these days). And whatever you do, don’t tell me I can’t do something, because then I'll HAVE to do it!

Comments (57)

  • Have met and stayed with you for a few days and followed your through your many adventures over the years, it was wonderful to learn about the beginnings.
    You are the most genuine people I have met in the business and your love for adventure and each other is a true inspiration. Happy anniversary Darlin’s and keep doing what your doing and be safe!
    Love you 😽😍🎉🥂🎈
    Karin

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  • Deborah Kerr

    Happy Anniversary and many, many more!! Love your story!

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  • Rob Lang

    I just discovered your channel. You two are awesome! We lived in NZ for a few years on a similar adventure and discovered so many wonderful people and places. Piroa Falls is our favorite place to stop on our way up or down from Northland. Happy you discovered it too!
    When you finally get to Auckland, visit our friends at Tart Bakery for vegan bakery goods. They have amazing food and are the kindest people we’ve ever met. Ask for Phillipa. 🙂

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  • Keith Braun

    Happy anniversary! Wishing you many more. Stay safe.

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  • JUDY Goodson

    I started watching your videos when you were in a huge RV and had stopped to taste the beers made around Knoxvillle, TN. Your adventures have lately gotten quite a bit more treacherous. Crossing the Pacific during cyclone season??? Who does that?

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    • Curious Minion

      It’s actually not cyclone season in the southern hemisphere but they did have to contend with winter weather. If you haven’t seen it, check this one out about the trip planning: https://www.gonewiththewynns.com/big-changes
      Curious Minion

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  • Linda Jones

    happy anniversary, and may the Wynns always blow love, peace and adventures in your life.

    Delighted to hear your story. Thank you for going the extra mile, as always. I sigh a little relief knowing you are on land for a little while. 🤗

    I had a friend who lived on a boat and when visiting she also loved touching our grass, saying how much she missed it.:)
    Take care!

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  • Hank Heyns

    Amazing episode…the work required to make the amazing video..so glad you guys share this adventure

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  • Knut Blaise

    Pretty sure you scan these before making them publicly visible and I am hoping you still have time to act upon this situation which might yield some great content while visiting NZ.

    Comment on your YouTube video (https://youtu.be/OCDGeSVvXPY).

    Behind New Zealand’s ‘100% Pure’ Image lies a Dirty Truth (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_mrSrvlFlQ) Seek to 11:30 for NZ streams so polluted you can’t swim in them and where a dog can die from ingesting just 1 tsp of stream water. This is being caused by a transition from sheep to cattle farming. Seek to 20:55 to discover how NZ indigenous people are fighting for control of the fresh water.

    As you were interested in water filtration on a trip to an island and you’re generally trying to make the world a better place I thought this might be of interest. Maybe you could do some video on this topic or minimally heed any warnings you see on staying out of NZ water.

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  • Eric Hall

    I’m so thrilled to see you enjoy places in the world that we would like to visit sometime … after COVID? I am curious about the drone and the NZ acceptance of such. I am studying for my FAA Part 107 certification though so often discouraged by the changing climate and attitudes especially local governments and archaic restrictions that are almost impossible to know about. Your photography and editing is now explained by the story of your pro experience. Jason, has your frugality taken a back seat to having the coolest tech?

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  • Bernard

    Wonderful story and great video you guys! Tear jerker… happy anniversary to you!

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  • Alan Solomon

    Wow. Great comments.
    Happy Anniversary to you Both.
    The music you chose pretty much fit the topic or footage throughout.
    The interspersing of the current and the past was really nice, informative and an added plus.
    There is a lot of warmth, emotion, commitment and love in this video. We all can use more of these same character assets today in our world. Thank you.
    Its really beautiful to check this out from my viewpoint. However, its way better for you both to be experiencing and living it all these past 15 years. Thank you.
    Safe travels and happy togetherness.

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  • Carole

    So happy to see you are actually VISITING NZ. As an expat I have found it frustrating to see so many cruisers limit their exposure to this beautiful country to Opua, Whangarei & AK! As divers make sure you dive the Poor Knights – one of Jacques Cousteau’s fave spots! Watch the crazy Cruising Kiwis for lots of tips on NZ. They had an amazing episode recently about the kauri tree that no I know you will enjoy. Like another poster first thing I do on Sunday is check fir your episode. As a senior on limited income you are an important part of my week! Happy Anniversary!

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  • Jennifer Lopesi

    I think this has to be one of my favourite videos of yours so far!! It’s so cool to hear your story as a couple and how it all began. Stunning videography too. Love it! Can’t wait to see more 😀

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  • Angela

    Hello, well done! That fern you turned over had silver on the back and is only found in NZ, good on ya Nikki you found a national treasure without even knowing it. The Silver Fern is on many NZ sports teams jerseys including the All Blacks (our rugby team), is the name of our national netball team and found all over NZ on so many products. Some tourists spend ages turning over ferns to find a silver fern and you go and do it first up. I was nervous at first when I started watching this, knowing you’ll be showing off the towns and places where I live, but your fresh perspective set me at ease and I can’t wait for next week! Love having you in NZ.

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  • John S.

    Like the way you are doing current and inserting the wedding story.

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  • Jeanette Brennan

    Love your love story — you make such a great team. Enjoy every minute of your road trip! Stay curious, adventurous, and most of all, stay happy! Still next time…🎊🚐🎊💖🏞🌿

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  • Kelly Crothers

    I love all of your YouTube episodes, but this has been one of my absolute favorites! The two of you are true soul mates, and with the hike through the forest, the cool temperature and the waterfalls, (except for some of the species of trees and fauna), you could have been hiking in Algonquin Provincial Park here in Ontario, Canada (the landscape just looks really similar!)
    I’ve never been to New Zealand, but it looks beautiful and I’m looking forward to watching and learning how you guys started this wonderful and crazy (in a good way) journey through life! 👍👍😁

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  • Marjorie Nehlsen

    Now I can’t wait for you to continue your story. What a wild and crazy life
    So exciting and full of interesting places and adventures. Long way from TX.

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  • Pam McClure

    Love this chapter. Cannot wait to see more New Zealand. And I love your story very much.

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  • Mike

    Fantastic video! Love the backstory..and the editing was spot on!

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  • Steve G

    Also, what was up with sanitizing your boots for the climb?? They do know you were outside, right?

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    • Joe J

      It’s probably to prevent non-native plants (seeds) from being brought into that protected area.

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    • Meb

      The could explain better than me.

      “When you are out on a native forest walk with Bush and Beach your guide will get you to clean and spray your shoes as you enter and leave the forest. We do this to help stop the spread of a disease which is affecting our iconic Kauri trees, this disease is known as Kauri dieback.”

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    • Christina

      It’s to protect the forest from the spread of Kauri Dieback Disease: https://www.kauriprotection.co.nz/

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    • Shez

      There’s a big issue in NZ with hikers spreading diseases that they trek in on their shoes that is causing certain trees (Kauri) to die. So all trials require clean shoes to prevent Kauri die off

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    • Peter V

      Hi Steve, In NZ just now, we have a problem with dieback of our native Kauri trees. It’s caused by transfer of a fungus from other parts of the country, so if you want to walk in the kauri forest, you need to disinfect the soles of your boots

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    • Diane S.

      Hi Steve, New Zealand takes great care to protect its native flora and fauna. The cleansing of the boots/shoes is a way to prevent non-native seeds or spores from invading the environment there. I hope you get to visit there someday. It is my favorite place on earth.

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    • Steve G

      Wow, I think my question has set a website record for the most responses ever! Thank you for the education. I was totally unaware NZ had a problem. I only wish we could do the same for the Elm Trees in the US. Dutch Elm Disease is ruinous to the species.

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  • Steve G

    Congratulations on your anniversary! One question, Jason, how did you shoot the video of the milky-way? It was outstanding.

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    • Michael

      Yes, it was great!

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  • sherry johnston

    You two are so great. Loved you in the beginning love you now. Thank you for taking us all along on your adventures, I know sometimes it seems more like a job (the constant filming, editing, adding the music in) than fun but thank you thank you for all the hours & taking us along. Love to both & hope your anniversary is beyond your wildest dreams

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  • Connie

    This is great– thanks for taking us along on your adventures!

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  • Michael

    Happy Anniversary and thanks for another beautiful video and story. Look forward to part 2.

    By the way, I’m sure you’ve already started your repairs and upgrades. As I mentioned before, I still strongly suggest you consider a sea-based hydronic heat pump as the foundation for your HVAC system. It would be the best addition for heating and cooling on a boat, and would supply all your hot water needs at low energy usage. They are so efficient on land that I would guess it would be a no-brainer for boat life.

    They work by taking the heat out of the sea water to heat your space thru a parallel loop which never sees the salt water. In hot temperatures, the indoor cooling loop has the heat removed to the sea loop thereby giving you air conditioning at relatively little cost. Another loop heats your potable hot water tank in hot or cold weather.

    The type of compressor used in these heat pumps uses much less energy to run, and can be run in reverse for the opposite effect. The only other energy use is for small circulation pumps.

    Anyway, it is worth a serious consideration.

    Enjoy the fun of the boat rehab.

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  • Simon Bretherton

    I only became a viewer/ supporter a few weeks ago. At the moment, I’m going through – in chrono order – the 281 “sailing videos”. It will take time, but eventually I will catch up. What you are presenting is unique. I love it. The quality of the photography, the story telling, everything – absolutely wonderful. If I count all my fingers and all my toes, I reach “20 thumbs up”. You are worth every one of them. Congratulations, keep going. What you produce enlightens my days (I’m 77). After watching the 281 sailing videos, I plan to work through all the other stuff you have posted. You two are amazing! Thank you so much for sharing your stories with us.

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    • Dinah Rogers

      Don’t overlook the previous chapter of fulltime RV living! That’s how we fell in love w the Wynns. We were also motorhome go, and Jason’s how-not-to videos were LIFE!

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  • Diane

    What a beautiful beautiful video. I love your exploring, your honesty and telling the story and every detail of how you two begin your adventurous and your relationship and knowing there’s much more to come. Im excited to check in next week for more adventures thank you so much I truly enjoyed it I love the music I love the content and I love you both! 😍😍

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  • PoliticalSailor

    I haven’t even watched yet…got diverted looking and signing up at Roadtrippers in prep for retirement. 😉 The code is incorrect, it is THEWYNNS.
    Okay…fix-it duty complete…now for the love video watching. 🙂

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  • Michael Warden

    You guys are just ridiculously adorable.

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  • Ember Baker

    Love this video! Beautiful snippets of your road trip interspersed with your back story — what a great idea! Really lovely way to reveal yourselves in the before time. Truly there is an artistry to the way you present content that I haven’t found on any other You Tube channels. Really well done! Great story telling, beautiful photography, and perfect music selection. And the two of you are so kind and thoughtful. I’m in love with you both, and I’m addicted to your videos. Happy anniversary! Thanks for sharing your lives with us in this way. Your generosity of spirit enriches many lives.

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  • Jeannine Sheridan

    Great storytelling! I have to say, it’s one thing to take that first hike, but Jason practically hikes twice to be setting the camera for walk away, then having to go back and retrieve the camera. So enjoy my Sundays with The Wynns. Happy travels. J9

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  • Jim Lyon

    Thank you both for all the interesting, informative, fun videos you’ve made over the years! I really enjoy following your adventures. I loved the music you used for this video.

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  • George J Niania

    Aloha the Wynnes’,
    OMG great you are touring my home country. Hope you get to know some of the local indigenous people (Maoris) and have a Marae experience. If you get to Napier in the Hawkes Bay province on the east coast of New Zealand have family there that can help with the Marae experience, if you haven’t had it already 😀

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  • Angie

    I love the black and white poncho/sweater! Would you share where you got it?

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    • Jenniferb

      I was checking comments to see if anyone else had asked that. It is super cute.

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  • Wylie

    Nice! And you are sooooooo lucky to be tourists in NZ at a time when NZ is essentially closed to tourists. Wait til you experience the other three seasons there. ! Last best first world country in the world.

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  • About Creativity

    Very good.

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  • Jonathan Henson

    You two are amazing people and I love hearing how it all started! Safe travels and I look forward to part 2!

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  • Lisa Scarpa

    Shoot. I thought the first comment didn’t go through and I retype and basically posted the same thing twice. Whoops.!!!!!!

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  • Craig

    You guys are great story tellers, I look foreword to your adventures.😁

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  • Lisa Scarpa

    You are so inspiring in so many ways. We are now looking at our meals differently and trying to eat more fruits and veggies and more tacos please. I have made my own flour tortillas but without the press. That will be my next purchase. I am also trying to fine tune my bread making skills too because of you. Thanks for taking us along for the ride. Stay safe!

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  • Lisa Scarpa

    You’re so inspiring in so many ways!! You even have us eating healthier and looking at meals differently than meat with a side of veggies and a starch. Fruit and so many kinds of tacos, omg! I have made my own tortillas but without that press thing, that will be my next purchase. Thanks for taking us all along for the ride!! Its spectacular!!

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  • Boyko

    Can’t wait for the next episode. Even though I have been following for a long time now, I had no idea of the 15 year old guardian story. Curious(ity)…

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  • Elizabeth Conlon

    Thank you for sharing your experiences with us! I follow you and so love your spirit and adventures. Trek on!

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  • Shirley A Hanson

    Cant wait to see the next episode, it is all so interesting and its the first thing I do on a Sunday morning here in NC.
    Pity your episodes are only 30+ minutes long!

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  • Jim Lindsey

    Great story and video! Love how y’all work together. Looking forward to the next installment of your story.

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