Vehicle for mountains - Page 6 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-11-2015, 10:17 AM   #71
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Name: Dale
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Wayne, The 1/2 ton Ram 1500 is getting a lot of good reviews, and a lot of people around here swear by the 3/4 ton and 1 ton Rams for heavier towing. A neighbor who commercially hauls cattle and horses long distance using goose-neck style trailers burned his way through two 1 ton dually Fords before switching to the same in a Dodge Ram and loves it. So they must be doing something right at Ram, and it certainly seems to be a viable option. Again, others on this forum can give you feedback from their first-hand experience. Back on Jeeps, I think that allure you mentioned works against consumers. In the late 80's, we attempted to negotiate a lower price with salesman at a two different Jeep dealerships, and neither would budge off the list price. One finally confided in us that if we weren't willing to pay full price today, someone else will pay full price tomorrow. So they were willing to wait. I don't know if that is still Jeep's "profit model", but it sure was back then. We ended up getting a great deal (according to Kelly Blue Book) on an '88 Toyota 4Runner instead and never looked back. Having said all that, my heart still skips a beat whenever I see a 4-door Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon!
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Old 02-11-2015, 11:04 AM   #72
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Del I just noticed this thread, missed it before. I'll throw in my two cents worth for a couple of reasons, first I own a 2013 Ford EB and second I live in MT.

The first thing I would encourage you to do is look at the video from the link below where they pit the eco boost against the Ram 1500 diesel and the GMC 6.2 L gas engine. I'll be the first to admit Ford goes a bit over the top with their narration and hoop-da-la enthusiasm but the results speak for themselves. And keep in mind for this test they were using only their new smaller 2.7 L EB engine not the larger 3.5L. Does this mean the other two vehicles are inferior? Hardly, all of them are exceptional and have their own strong attributes that Ford does not address. The point is for anyone not thinking these EB engines are very capable will get a reality check.

2015 Ford F-150 Trucks Video | Uphill Towing Battle | Ford.com

Now if you're still in doubt after viewing this video google, stress test done of the eco boost engines for these trucks and you should be able to come up with some half dozen or more videos of this scenario alone. Effectively before releasing them to the public Ford beat the living hell out of these engines. There may be some other auto company that has done the same level of stress test to their engines but I'm not aware of it. Clearly Ford is betting the bank on their eco boost engines. They are in their cars as well as the trucks. As for people getting poor gas mileage with these EB trucks, here is the way I figure it. It would be an understatement to say these engines are "peppy", by that I mean if you put your foot into they will pin you to the back of your seat, like right now. More importantly I suspect many an individual drives these trucks in this manner even while towing. Its very easy to do. Just don't expect great gas mileage exercising the technique of full throttle.

Aluminum trucks? Truth is they have been putting aluminum hoods on their trucks for years and Jaguar and Range Rover have integrated aluminum for years also. There is nothing new about this and suspect it will be the wave of the future for all cars and trucks sooner rather than later.

Granted there are detractors of the latest and greatest technologies. I am not one of them, but instead prefer to embrace it. Having made a living in a profession (photography) that can only be described as technology intensive if nothing else what I have observed about the human race is, we never turn our back on a technology until it is supplanted by yet another more superior technology. Its what we do. I am reminded of the CEO of REM (Blackberry) standing before the world, out loud and in public joking and detracting about the first iPhone and its eminent demise. The rest is history.

As for old school purely mechanical autos being superior to newer technologies, one only has to think of the Corvair, Ford Fiesta, Ford Bronco, Edsel, International Harvester what ever you call that thing that must have been the first true SUV back in the 60's, and the list is as long as both of our arms put together. I'm sure you get the idea.

While I am very enthusiastic about my Ford truck, I would also be remiss if not stating it might be overkill or at least more than deemed necessary for something as small and light weight as the Scamp you are considering even in the intermountain west… most of the time. However lets say somewhere down the road you decide you either need or want something a bit larger than the scamp, the Ford truck will be able to accommodate that easily. Well assuming you're not thinking of a 60 ft 5th Wheel.

All that out of the way hopefully this next comment will not offend you, its certainly not meant to, but am compelled to bring it to the table. What I find incorrect about your logic regarding camping/rv'ing five years down the road are two fold. First you're going to miss out on five years of fun and there are some very cool and nice places to camp in the deep south and secondly you should get your feet wet in an area where you are already comfortable in, that being the deep south. Start small, it doesn't have to be the end result. Tow with what ever you already have and purchase a small affordable camper sooner rather than later. If need be you can sell these before moving to Big Sky Country and buy new at that point, or any combination of those things. And who knows you may not even like RV'ing. Better to find out now while in FL rather than later.

Ok enough of this novel, but more than willing to share info about MT too.

Hopefully this is helpful
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Old 02-11-2015, 11:45 AM   #73
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The point is for anyone not thinking these EB engines are very capable will get a reality check.

2015 Ford F-150 Trucks Video | Uphill Towing Battle | Ford.com
Rob, the vid you posted is impressive and shows how the technology is in high gear especially for tow vehicles. That 2.7 makes the 3.5 in our car seem like a wholly mammoth and I agree the days of big engines is almost over*.

A buddy recently towed a good size TT to the top of Independence Pass (elev 12,000') with a dated GM V6 in an Olds FWD sedan. No problem. My dad back in the 60's towed our 2,000lb 16' shasta up the same climb with a Galaxie V8 and it was a slow go.

*Driving any sort of vehicle is personal preference no offence intended to anyone.
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Old 02-11-2015, 12:24 PM   #74
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Rob, thanks for the input. I actually bumped into information yesterday suggesting that some of the V6's outperform some of the V8's. My curiousity would be if the V6's would be able to endure while performing at that level or if it will strain them more leading to early or earlier failure. The video was certainly impressive and will serve as a catalyst to cause further investigation and research.

As to perhaps I'm engaging a bit in overkill ref vehicle choice and/or requirements, when going into a new uncharted situation, my innate tendency is to err on the side of overkill rather than risk underkill. I realize a Scamp-sized trailer is not enormous, nor enormously heavy. I might verily easily get by with a 6 cyl. As for wanting something bigger in the future, I don't see it. It will just be me, and mebbeso a dog. My requirements are minimal: bed, dinette, bathroom. Up until now I've done all my 'RV'ing' camping in a tent, and often a backpack-sized tent at that. A Scamp/Casita/RPod type trailer would be ideal for me, and is a concession I am making primarily due to getting older. I'm only 57, but sleeping on the ground is less fun than it used to be, and night time bathroom calls are more frequent. With advancing age, I don't expect them to get less frequent.

Your point about getting some kind of trailer and doing some camping and towing on my home turf to start with is well taken, and not something that hasn't occurred to me already. The main constraints are financial. As alluded, I work for local gov't, and don't make tons of money. The plan is, save a sizeable down payment until late this year, early next year and buy a vehicle. My old 2001 Ranger is, like me, getting tired. Then take a couple years to pay off the vehicle. Then save prolly for a couple years and buy a trailer. By then, I will be at or close to retiring. If I could score a trailer before moving, I would happily and camp at Oscar Scherer or Hillsborough or Ft. DeSoto in my area. When on vacation in Montana I usually camp at the Many Glacier campground in Glacier, mainly because I get to see the most bears there. Last year I got up there late and spent 4 days there before they pretty much closed things up, so I dropped down to Madison campground at Yellowstone for about 10 days. Mainly I've been driving mid-sized rental cars up there, and they have gotten around fine. However, driving up there in possibly adverse weather with a trailer strapped on behind, something I haven't done, inspires me to caution and buy enough vehice.

Last year in Madison I was taking a little notice of the smaller trailers, but hadn't made the conscious decision to buy one yet, or even to get a new vehicle yet, so wasn't as observant as I could have been. That is one reason I am wanting to try to come back out this year, even though I might be better served by sitting here on my vacation and using the money I would spend on vacation to assemble the down payment more quickly, is so I can pay more attention to the trailers I see, see what they are being towed with, and whether the owners live there or are just visiting.

I have never either lived in Montana, or any mountainous state, or owned or towed a trailer before, so much of this undiscovered country. There are a few certainties...I AM going to get a new vehicle within the next 12 months...I AM moving to Montana after I retire in late 2020.

I realize that I am just a young padawan with much to learn, both about towing, and trailers and trailer life, and living in Montana. It is my intent to get an appropriate vehicle, and hopefully a trailer, while I am still working with a decent, if not spectacular, income, before I am consigned to living on a fixed income from my retirement and social insecurity. I am trying to get my ducks lined up in the next 5-6 years so that I can have fun when I retire.

I have't decided where in Montana I want to move to. That will be the subject of probably a couple of vacations in the years just before I move out. I will go out for probably close to 3 weeks each time and try to check out various locales and get some idea where I want to relocate to.

Mebbeso if I looked around, after I get my new vehicle payed off, I could score a cheap(er) used trailer. Or maybe I'll just assemble a decent down payment the first year and then try to finance the rest of a trailer purchase. Believe me, I agree with the wisdom of getting something sooner rather than later and getting some experience, esp before moving.

I have put in for pretty much the first 2 weeks of September off this year, and assuming I don't get bumped by anyone, I'm thinking to head to Glacier for maybe 5-6 days and then drop down to Madison again. How much time I spend at either place would be adjustable one way or another.
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Old 02-11-2015, 12:57 PM   #75
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Wayne, have you considered a good used Honda Ridgeline. For comfort, reliability, resale, and versatility you can't beat it. More power than you will need.



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Old 02-11-2015, 01:09 PM   #76
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Wayne,

I haven't ruled anything out, other than the small SUV's. I'll look into the Ridgeline a little.

And that pic just looks like you were having all kinds of fun!! Wish I was there instead of here!

Rob,

I have witnessed 'trailer creep' myself when it happened to friends. Get one, then want a bigger one, then a bigger one, etc. While I don't see myself moving past anything the size of a Scamp, one of the things they taught us in college was not to use absolutes, words like 'always' and 'never'. So although I don't foresee myself moving bigger than a Scamp, I am disinclined to say that it would be absolutely impossible and never happen. ;-)
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Old 02-11-2015, 01:21 PM   #77
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Unfortunately, I am a lowly paid public servant, and would have to get the 6 cyl if I got one. The diesel would be out of reach, too. It would have to be the 6 or nothing.
We bought a 2009 Jeep Unlimited to pull our first Oliver. BIG mistake, first trip into the West right out of Pagosa Springs I thought we were gonna stall out. Pedal to the metal, 4500 RPM, 2nd gear, 25 MPH. Don't do it unless you're trying to pull less than 2000 lb.

If you're traveling the West, with anything very heavy, get a full size Pickup with plenty of torque. I've never been sorry that I bought something that was a little over-sized for the job at hand.

Don't get me wrong about a Jeep. I have a '92 Wrangler bought brand new and I love it. If it would pull out current Oliver I'd be using it. I wish we could tow it along behind the trailer. Hmmmm.....
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Old 02-11-2015, 01:59 PM   #78
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Wayne,

I haven't ruled anything out, other than the small SUV's. I'll look into the Ridgeline a little.

And that pic just looks like you were having all kinds of fun!! Wish I was there instead of here!
No, that isn't our Ridge in the pic above Wayne but my buddy's wife has one here in Canada and luv's it. Our TV is a V6 G35 sedan. One tough hill we did once was getting up to Watkins Glen State Park. It was a 1st gear climb but no issue. Funny thing is my pal who lives near here has the same 23' trailer. He goes to the races in Watkins Glen but is reluctant to try towing his trailer up the same hill. His TV is a newish Tundra V8. Hummm.
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Old 02-11-2015, 02:02 PM   #79
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Steve,

That's exactly the situation I am striving valiantly to avoid!! That's why I'm trying to do my homework and choose wisely before I purchase the vehicle and before I purchase the trailer.

I would love a Jeep. I've always wanted a Jeep. But I've got serious reservations that a Jeep is in my best interests given my plans and requirements. But that little fact doesn't keep me from wanting one one little bit!
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Old 02-11-2015, 02:03 PM   #80
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Wayne,

It sounds like your friend is the type of guy who Dirty Harry Callahan was talking about when he said, "A good man's got to know his limitations."
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Old 02-11-2015, 02:50 PM   #81
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I love the big tow vehicle discussion we have one now, but previously towed our Scamp 16 with a 4 cylinder all over North America without a single issue.

Today we were at teh Scamp Camp in Highland Hammocks State Park and met a couple we've known for a couple of years. They have a Boler, almost identical to a Scamp 13, named the Love Bug. With a name like that you know they're a nice couple.

They tow their Boler with a 4 cylinder, 1.6 L, manual transmission Honda Fit and have towed with Fits for a number of years. He told us that he exceeds 28 mpg. Very impressive number for a gas engine.


Just thought some one might be interested in the other end of the tow spectrum.

As to mountain climbs, we had 250,000 miles on our Honda when we sold it and crossed numerous mountain passes in the Rockies. Though we often had to slow down we rarely had to shift into second. The fact is that as a percentage of driving times mountain passes are relatively few and far between.

As to effect on engine life, I'd have to say no negative effective. We never replaced a single drive line item. The Honda never seemed to mind high RPM, never burned oil and had the original clutch. As for the Honda Fit driver towing with the CRV was an economic choice, we owned it and sized our trailer to the tow vehicle.
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Old 02-11-2015, 02:54 PM   #82
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Wayne,

It sounds like your friend is the type of guy who Dirty Harry Callahan was talking about when he said, "A good man's got to know his limitations."
I like Dirty Harry Wayne and recall the movie where he said the quote.

In reality his Tundra would easily get his 23 up that hill. The newer Tundra's are very capable. BTW... his Sunday cruiser is a 427 Shelby Cobra but I can't seem to convince him to set it up as a TV.
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Old 02-11-2015, 02:57 PM   #83
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Norm,

Wow. Towing with a Fit! Who'da thunk it! Dunno what a Boler is, but it can't be too terribly big.

And while I understand your point about mountain passes not being transited all that much, I'm looking at it from the perspective of someone who is going to be living out there, which means I may be driving them a lot more frequently than perhaps somebody who lives back east and only goes out there a few times a year or less.

I'm not discounting either your advice or your experience, just saying that my daily reality once I move out there may be different than others.

Did you get into Highlands Hammock before all the rain on Monday? I worked Monday and had to get out of my car a couple times around 3 p.m. and got drenched! It was rainin' like a dog here!
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Old 02-11-2015, 03:02 PM   #84
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Wayne,

Of course his Tundra would git-r-done. Not sure why he's so cautious. It's his choice, though. Best to just let him operate in his comfort level.

A Cobra??!!! Youza!!! My first car was a '67 Mustang with a 200 engine that I bought used in 1974 for $600. My clan commander's name in World of Tanks is SparkyGT, and he's a Mustang man. If I won the lottery I'd have me a Mustang again with a V8, but that dream is yet another that is slipping away.
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