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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers

 > Best TT in the western parks?

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Kavoom

Kansas

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Posted: 03/28/21 09:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We had similar requirements and we live in the mountains. I don't want to be stuck on a concreate pad looking into the next trailer either and so you are right shorter is better for nature, longer is better for an RV parking lot with all the amenities. And 28 feet or shorter is a sweet spot for places like National Forest campgrounds etc.

The shortest you can get will be in the 5K dry weight range and 25 feetish. For that, you will likely need to have either a Murphy bed approach or a sideways RV queen with the full size bunks in back (teenagers). Remember, trailers are either 7 feet wide or 8 feet wide. Go 8 foot is my recommendation. More room. Have good tow mirrors. A catalina 221DBS is an example. Dry Hitch weight will run 500 to 600 lbs. Here is a sample vid on one. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8tTvKx8lV1M

The advantage of this approach is you get REAL "full" bunk beds AND a place to sit other than the dinette. The disadvantage is that you have little privacy for the front bedroom. This type will run 5K to maybe 5300 lbs and 25 - 27 feetish.

The other approach is to have a separate bedroom with doors AND full bunks. Here is what we ended up with an Aspen Trail 2340BHS or BHSWE (western edition). Here is a vid on them a couple years old. They have added some bells and whistles since like power stabilizers and hitch, fireplace etc. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R3sXOlpxv-s For the permanent bed AND privacy, you gotta add at least two feet to the unit. Ours is 27 feet four inches and 5500 lbs dry. These floorplans run 27 to 30 feet generally. Our Dry Hitch weight is 614 lbs. Add 200 for bigger tanks and two batts. You give up the sofa sitting.

So, based upon what you indicated these types of floorplans would be my recommendation. There are quite a few of each type with variations from different manufacturers. I's steer clear of the ones that have the small 29 to 32 inch bunks...unless you have small kids and intend to go bigger later... And watch for the small dinettes if you don't go slideout as they will realistically only hold two people of any size. The seven foot wide units usually have these.

And, as you may already know, your gray tanks are the weakness of any system. Our little one had a 28 gallon gray tank and it was good for three days two people and maybe three showers total not each person.

We got ours for 23,600 AND, used trailers are very valuable now days. You will find yours is worth a few thousand more than just two years ago, so either sell yourself or find a dealer who will give you what it is worth. WE had one dealer offer 8K and another 11K so keep that in mind as you deal and negotiate in 2021.

* This post was edited 03/28/21 09:49am by Kavoom *

rexlion

Broken Arrow OK

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Posted: 03/28/21 12:18pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

A fancy new trailer sounds fun. But the family memories of sightseeing, trail hiking, and camping together will be much the same with the old trailer as with a new one. When you say "expandable," do you now have a popup or is it a hybrid (tent ends but otherwise hard-sided)? What is its length? Although tent material knocks a few campgrounds off the list due to bear-related prohibitions, the vast majority of locations would still be possibilities to you.

Keep in mind that a new TT will be off-gassing for the first 6 months or so, and these chemicals can make some people's eyes water. If you're buying used, this won't be an issue... but then you'd need to be eagle-eyed when inspecting for possible water damage.

My guess is that prices will still be high all this year, but by 2022 we may start to see some changes as new RVers decide to move on to some new, more exciting hobby.


Mike G.
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toedtoes

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Posted: 03/28/21 01:18pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As the boys are getting older and will likely be interested in other things as they move into adulthood, why not simply add some traditional camping gear. A tent, sleeping bags, sleeping mat, etc. Let them sleep in the tent. As they go off to college, let them take their camping gear with them so they can continue the joy of camping.

With that, you have holiday gift ideas for quite a few years as you help them build up their camping setup.

And you and your wife won't be looking to downsize again in 3-4 years.


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2g's

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Posted: 03/29/21 01:11am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

PepperUp wrote:

We’re beginning to plan a multi week trip with two teen boys to see the great west! Looking for any tips on taking a TT 5000 miles through the major parks (Yellowstone, Rocky Mountain, Bryce /Zion, Grand Canyon).


Tow vehicle is a 2014 F150 with tow package.

DH wants about 27 -28 ft with slide and larger bunks. Trying to stay close to 5000 lbs dry weight. I think shorter would be better for all those mountain roads, busy campgrounds etc.


The length doesn't matter in those parks. We camped in those same parks with our 40' motorhome and Jeep.

The 'mountain roads' are very doable with any size. The roads going into those parks aren't a big deal. They're plenty wide for any size RV.

Your main issue is your F150 truck. You're going to have to stay within your truck's capacity.

colliehauler

Mc Pherson KS USA

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Posted: 03/29/21 07:53am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

toedtoes wrote:

As the boys are getting older and will likely be interested in other things as they move into adulthood, why not simply add some traditional camping gear. A tent, sleeping bags, sleeping mat, etc. Let them sleep in the tent. As they go off to college, let them take their camping gear with them so they can continue the joy of camping.

With that, you have holiday gift ideas for quite a few years as you help them build up their camping setup.

And you and your wife won't be looking to downsize again in 3-4 years.
This would be my recommendation as well.

agesilaus

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Posted: 03/29/21 08:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I liked the tent idea but the wife nixed it instantly, heh


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lane hog

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Posted: 03/31/21 03:04am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Your boys might not want to travel with you all the time, but my 20 year old just came with us on our spring break trip, and is planning to come with for our two week trip this summer. Our 28 year old has tagged along with his wife and daughter when we've gone on weekend trips, and his wife and daughter came with on our Yellowstone trip last year.

I'm glad we've always had the room for friends and grandkids to join us.

Length isn't as big of an issue as some make it out to be. I agree that the 28' or less is probably best for your F150, and there are lots of floorplans in that size where you can have room for six or seven.

We've got a 2016 F150 with the tow package, and currently pull a 30' trailer. The length is at the edge of the envelope for what most people would be comfortable with, and if you don't have the right hitch or experience, it might not be right for you. I've been towing for about 20 years, and don't fear it. Neither does my wife, who has her CDL and also some experience driving large vehicles.

We've traveled with a 30' motorhome pulling a dolly and a van, and also with a 30' fifth wheel, and never had a problem at Big Bend, Guadalupe Mountain, Grand Canyon, Zion, Yellowstone, Grand Teton, or any other park out west.

You will be limited at some NFS campgrounds, but even there, the length of the site is often listed as where the wheels can fit.

On my 30' Grand Design, I've got 10' of overhang behind the rear axle. As long as there isn't a tree in the way at the back, we usually fit into sites listed as a 25' foot max.

* This post was last edited 03/31/21 03:25am by lane hog *   View edit history



  • 2019 Grand Design 29TBS (had a Winnebago and 3x Jayco owner)
  • 2016 F-150 3.5L MaxTow (had Ram 2500 CTD, Dodge Durango)
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Grit dog

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Posted: 03/31/21 10:34am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

wing_zealot wrote:

You’d getter better responses if we knew what the weights are that are listed on the two stickers on the drivers door of your truck. There are several weight ratings on theses two stickers.
For good reliable answers, let us know what all of those ratings are.
For wild ass guesses - carry on as is.
For learning and research on your own > clicky

Good idea!

That way all the rvnet weight cops have yet another persons situation to pontificate and overanalyze..... and argue about and pontificate even more about past near death experiences and bring up things they feel are the law when they aren’t.....

OP, presume your truck is a 5.0 orEco boost. Either with a tow package will comfortably pull a 7klb TT. As good as any 1/2 ton gasser will anyways.
Around 5k dry weight is a good starting point and will not end up being too big for the truck’s britches.
Fuel mpg is more about wind resistance and weight than length. I wouldn’t expect any significant mileage difference simply due to 4’ in length and say 500lbs.

Sounds like an awesome trip planned! Have fun camper shopping!


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