Monday, January 28, 2013

What would I have instead of a teardrop?

Even though I camp in and love my teardrop trailer, I also enjoy checking out other types of camping trailers. I think the design, space efficiency and personalization of other trailers says a lot about the people who own them. When given the chance, I will go up to a random owner of a small fiberglass trailer or an Airstream and ask if I can peak inside. Rather than getting kidnapped, I make a new friend.

So what would I have if I didn't have a teardrop trailer? Here are my top six picks for an alternative camping trailer or vehicle (if money was no object):



Airstream Sport 16

This quintessential camping trailer would be the height of camping luxury. I would not want one of the larger Airstream trailers because I would need a truck to tow it, but one of the smaller new or vintage trailers would be just fine, thank you. I would specifically want the Airstream Sport 16 foot with that tiny wet bath, dinette and an actual closet.




VW Westfalia Vanagon (1985 with Poptop)

There's something so secretive and self-sustaining about a VW van. You can discreetly park them anywhere, haul a nice load of food and water and still have some room to stand up. Every time I see a Westfalia in a campground, I can't keep my eyes off of them. I chose the 1985 because of the more plush interior and an optional automatic transmission.




Thor or Little Guy T@B

I've been in love with the T@B ever since I saw it at an RV show about ten years ago. They are limited when it comes to a bathroom and water storage, but for their size and weight, you can fit a lot into them. They are cute and colorful with everything you need to stay warm and comfortable while camping. The T@B used to be made by Thor Industries, but is now being manufactured by Little Guy.





Sportsmobile 4x4

My husband really likes the Sportsmobile 4x4 van and every person I've met who owns one are so cool and friendly. This is the type of camping vehicle you want if you intend to head out into the deserts of Baja or Nevada. They are tough and expensive, but can hold up to about a week's worth of food and water. It's the ultimate bug out vehicle.





Trillium 1300

The fiberglass Trillium was originally built in the 1970s and it making a comeback. The best version of this lightweight trailer is made by the Trillium RV company in southern California. They have a 4,500 lb. trailer with a wet bath and a 1,300 lb. trailer without a wet bath. The 1,300 would be easier to tow, but the 4,500 would be nice for longer trips.





Knaus Schwalbennest (Swallow's Nest)

This tiny speck of German ingenuity had me at willkommen. The Schwalbennest was built the first time in the 1960s and was briefly brought back by the Knaus company for their 50th anniversary. If I had had enough time and money to jump on a plane to Germany and hire a shipping company to bring one back to the U.S. for me, I would have it in my hot little hands now.

11 comments:

  1. Wicked! That's probably the most unique camping vehicle I've heard of.

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  2. What a great list. Love the Trillium.

    One comment, it's a widely held misconception that you need a truck to pull one of the larger Airstreams. I've seen a 30' triple axle Airstream towed, safely, by a Jaguar Sedan.

    In Europe, trailers are routinely towed by mid-size family cars.

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    1. Thanks for the info. I have seen 25-30 foot Airstreams also being towed by larger SUVs, but a Jaguar! I guess having 8 cylinders helps.

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    2. For sure, the larger engine helps. So do decent brakes of course. Thing is, people used to tow trailers in the 1950’s with cars that were nowhere near as sophisticated as today's models.

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  3. Great list! Some of my favorites too. The trailer I lust after now is the Cricket, the ultimate high tech bug out vehicle.

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    1. Yes, I love the sink and shower options in the Cricket.

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  4. Thank you for helping me identify what I bought!! Was looking for a trillium and ended up purchasing a suprise - a vintage Schwalbennest !!

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    1. You lucky duck! I've always on the lookout for a Schwalbennest! Where did you find it? Would I be able to do a post on your trailer for the blog?

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    2. of all places - in Winnipeg, Manitoba. It must of travelled a long way :)

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  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  6. Fun post. How about a 6th option? www.homegrowntrailers.com

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