I'm sure you hear messages like this all the time, but I hope you'll still help...
I'm in the very early stages about possibly, maybe, perhaps, thinking about getting some kind of camper-trailer-sorta-thingy. Although I've narrowed down some ideas, I'm still pretty overwhelmed with the process.
I live in Henderson, Nevada, which is NOT Las Vegas (though, ok, it IS right next door). I love to hike and explore, and spend every weekend driving 100+ miles into the middle of nowhere, hiking, exploring, then driving all the way home again. If I decide to go out on Sunday, it's another long drive out and back. I do have a tent, but I donít use it very much. Generally, I take the long drive home instead, because (1) I get cold VERY easily (yes, itís cold in the desert in the winter), (2) tents are NOISY in wind, (3) tents offer no protection from crazy people, and (4) I'm too old to be sleeping on the ground, even with an air mattress. Oh, and (5) while I don't need a shower when camping, the ability to wash my hair in the morning, with warm water, would be a HUGE plus.
So, given all that, I've started thinking about a camper. I don't want a pop-up tent camper. I looked at the pop-up hard-sides (Aliner and Chalet), and wondered if the pop-up effect really gained you anything. They also seem pricey, at least when new. So, I just started looking at the fiberglass, non-popup types, but I've become lost in the details.
Here are my needs, concerns, etc. I hope you folks can help me narrow the field!
My tow vehicle is a Suzuki Sidekick Sport. It's a GREAT off-road vehicle (mine has been duded up with a 3 inch lift, a full-locking differential, and full skid-plating, so she can go anywhere.) It has loads of torque, however, it doesn't have much power in its four tiny cylinders. I often find myself in the slow lane on highways when going up hills, sometimes with the big mac trucks. The owner's manual says the following. Gross Trailer Weight
(loaded trailer) can't exceed 1,500 lbs. If the weight
is over 1,000 pounds, the trailer must have brakes
. The Gross Combined Weight
(loaded vehicle +loaded trailer) canít exceed 4,600 pounds. the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating is 3,685 pounds.
So, anything I get will have to be small, and light
. Thatís fine. Iím small and light
The trailer only really needs to sleep one, but if it could sleep 2 or 3, that would be a nice extra, when my like-minded friends and folks visit.
Iíd like a stove and sink. A fridge
would be great too, but itís not as important.
I like to go on rough back roads, so I need a trailer than can be bashed around a bit.
I need something with insulation, since I get cold easily.
The trailer needs to withstand PUNISHING desert sun. Thatís one of my main worries with fiberglass Ė how does it stand up to 365 days of intense desert ultraviolet radiation?
Iím not a physically strong person, so the trailer needs to be easy to manage, such as when hitching it up.
Finally, I would really like to keep the price under $10,000. The further under $10,000, the better Ė as long as the trailer is still a good quality item. I donít mind buying used.
SoooÖ..I would love to hear any, and all, opinions!
Thank you so much!