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Traveleze: 1959

This 35mm Kodachrome found in a thrift store is dated August 1959 and bears the notation "Jim, Bristlecone." The color-coordinated Chevrolet truck and Traveleze trailer are a nice late-Fifties touch. View full size.

This 35mm Kodachrome found in a thrift store is dated August 1959 and bears the notation "Jim, Bristlecone." The color-coordinated Chevrolet truck and Traveleze trailer are a nice late-Fifties touch. View full size.

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FS "Gray & Green"

When I joined the Forest Service in 1978, we had a few of these old vehicles with the light gray cab roofs in the parking lot, which the old-timers called "green & grays".

This paint scheme came on all vehicles that the FS owned, but after the General Services Administration (GSA) took over all Government vehicle fleet management, all FS vehicles were the same color for a while. Yes, that weird minty "green like no other green" color.

By the 1980's the GSA provided rigs in all commercial colors, for cost savings.

U.S. Forest Service Traveleze

The U.S. Forest service did have "Traveleze" trailers. I have photos of the exact same trailer with date code and number of units.

Ask the man who owns one!

Except for the gentleman pictured being in uniform and the truck having government plates and identification on the doors, this could be straight out of a period magazine ad for the truck. ...Or the trailer.

Not Bristlecones

These are not Bristlecone Pines in the background. They look to be some kind of fir. And this does not look like the area where the pines grow above Bishop Calif. Although he could be lower on the mountain. Bristlecones also grow in Utah, Nevada as well as eastern California. There are also similar, but not as ancient, Foxtail pines. But these trees don't appear to be foxtails either. Has anyone been able to see what state the license plates are from? This could be a "Bristlecone camp" in some other area entirely.

[It's a U.S. Government license plate. - tterrace]

Side mirrors?

Relative youngster here as I wasn't even born when this pickup was made. But I notice two side mirrors on the truck - one high, one low - both circular. Was this common back in the day?


Assuming "Bristlecone" refers to the Bristlecone pine forest east of Bishop, Calif high up in the mountains along the Nevada border. The oldest trees in the world.. so they say. Been there, seen that.

Civilization Nearby...

Jim can't be too far off the beaten track. It looks like there is a telephone line connected to his trailer.

I love this site.

Where else could one stumble on something like this, nicely blown up for close viewing? I drove one of these pickups up in the Colorado Rockies with the Forest Service for two summers back in the mid '60s. Four on the floor (with a super-low stump-yanker first gear, good only for hauling heavy loads up 4% grades--most of the time you started in 2nd if you wanted to make progress), and yes, mine was two-tone as well. The rest of the stable included a '58 Ford F100, also two tone, and a couple of shiny new Dodge Ram V8s that were all-green, and two Jeeps, a Wagoneer and a CJ5. It was a joy and a privilege to motor around in such a beautiful mountain setting (much like in this shot) in such a cool vehicle. Thanks for the memory!

Found in thrift store

I this where I can expect all my photos to end up? and then find them here on Shorpy?

Unchanged after all these years

Forest Service Green

USFS truck

The Chevrolet half-ton pickup (called Apaches in 1958-59) belonged to the US Forest Service, part of the US Department of Agriculture. USFS trucks have been their own particular shade of green for many years, but I can't recall them ever having been two-toned. Would be interesting to learn whether the USFS commissioned matching travel trailers; can any Shorpyites confirm? (edit: Thank you DougR for the confirmation of two-toned USFS trucks!)


It appears Jim is member of the US Forest service according to the lettering on the truck. The Traveleze is probably his "ranger" cabin!

Classic Forest Service

Classic pickup. Classic trailer. Jim looks pretty classic, too, even classy for livin' in the woods all summer. All in minty green. I feel like I'm 4 years old all over again and staring out the open window of an unairconditioned '60 Chevy Bel Air on a two-lane road out West.

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