The Happier Camper is not so happy after thieves make off with retro trailers

Missing campers/Photos courtesy The Happier Camper

The Happier Camper lot on Riverside Drive is home to a candy-colored assortment of restored, retro campers that are available for rent. But last Tuesday, owner Derek Michael, who has restored many of the ultra-light trailers,  arrived on the Happier Camper lot in Los Feliz and discovered that two of his favorites campers–a 1986, bright Orange Uhaul CT and a purple Scamp from 1979–were gone. After cutting a fence lock, the thieves probably just loaded both campers on to a truck and drove off with them, Michael said. Now, Michael, whose father also restored small, old fiberglass trailers, wants the campers back and has posted a $2,000 reward:

The loss of the little campers is devastating. I spend hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars restoring them to there original glory. They were very special to me and the two that were stolen were my favorites. I spent many nights camping all over California in them myself, and they are missed.

Each camper is probably worth about $10,000, Michael said. He has rented the campers to young couples seeking alternatives to “big ugly RVs”; older couples interested in taking a nostalgic trip; and even for weddings, where they have been used as changing rooms and photos shoots. “People love the look and Americana feel they have.”


  1. What a bummer. Was wondering where the trailers went.

  2. Thieves are scum. Hope you get your trailers back (and thieves arrested). Get ’em L.A.P.D.

  3. They are probably already down near Rosarita by now.

  4. Man I’d be devastated too. What an incredible dick to steel these unique pieces of art. This is like taking someones dog. I hope you get your trailers back!

  5. i was totally saving up for that orange one.

  6. Maybe put some sort of gps in the rest of em….Keep putting the word out. Im sure they are somewhere that someone would recognize them. See if you can get picked up by ktla or get a spot nationally. Especially if you have more pics or video of restoration. Make a big deal of it. Let everyone know. Sorry this happened to you.

  7. Derek is a really good guy and has lots of passion for what he does. i hope the thieves rot in hell and Derek gets his campers back.

  8. Some tweakers probably ganked them,hopefully the owner had insurance. Trailer trashes dream ride, kinda like the scooby doo mystery machine! Good luck getting her back, they might even strip it for recycled metal or something…

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