PILOT MOUNTAIN — Jonathan and Kathy Sechrist have discovered a new niche in the world of campers.
The Sechrists’ celebrated their business with an official grand opening on Saturday. The couple own and operate Rustic Trail Teardrop Campers off West Dodson Mill Road in Pilot Mountain.
The couple build unique compact campers, that are “affordable,” according to Jonathan.
“We built our first teardrop camper in 2013, at our home in Westfield,” stated Sechrist.
“It was for our personal use, as we love to camp.”
However, it wasn’t long before Jonathan decided to market the unique campers.
“I put an ad on Craigslist just to see if there was any interest, and there was.” said Jonathan, much to his surprise.
Within the first year the Sechrists’ sold nine campers. In 2014, they continued to sell, according to Jonathan, he sold 19 campers.
“In 2017, we have sold 46 campers so far, so we are really growing.”
In January, the couple officially opened up shop. “We really just needed the space,” said Jonathan.
Now, the company has five sub-contracted employees, along with their 23-year-old son Levi, who helps at the shop.
In addition to a place to build the campers, the couple also is able to showcase the three models they currently sell in their showroom which features a wall covered with mural of Pilot Mountain, painted by their son, Levi.
“Papa Bear, Grizzly Bear, and Polar Bear are what we call them,” said Jonathan.
Explaining Papa Bear was the original design. “What makes these neat is they are somewhat custom made.”
Each model has it’s basic feature, yet you can add-on features to fit the needs of the customer, explained Jonathan.
The basics include a dinette, a queen size bed, and cabinet storage space. “We can add amenities, such as air condition,” said Sechrist.
Jonathan explained, he knew folks wanted a comfortable alternative to a tent.
“Our mission is to offer people a quality product they can enjoy nature in at an affordable price.”
Sechrist explained so far, he has been able to operate his business virtually debt-free and tries to encourage customers to buy their campers debt-free if possible. “That’s the reasoning for the affordability.”
ReachEva Winemiller at (336) 415-4739 or on Twitter @ThePilotNC