View Full Version : Just saying Howdy.

04-28-2007, 06:41 AM
Well I am a new guy to the forums and to camping. Well not camping per se as all the wife and I have ever done was in a tent. She and I once did 5 states in 10 days in nothing but a tent and a Jetta. That was a good trip....

I am getting old now, and with a kid on the way, I am looking to camp again (taken 5 years off from camping...) and I want to be more comfortable while doing it.

I know NOTHING about camping with a trailer. I am perusing this site and can not figure out what dry camping is. is there wet camping? I have no clue how to hook one these things up or how to make any of the doo dads work. I don't know how to hook up the thing to a camp site. I don't know how large a camp site I need. I saw it mentioned soemwhere that some camp sites don't allow pop-ups? Why would that be? I don't know what I would need for equipment.. and man the list goes on.

All that being said.... I LOVE how these trailers look. I mean the amenities, combined with the fact that it is collapsable for easy towing... AND fits in a a garage, I can barely stand waiting to buy one! :) I am probably going to wait for a year until the kiddo is born and has a few months on him before heading out, but it just looks like so much FUN!

I own a Honda Ridgeline, which is not the optimal tow vehicle I know after reading some of the entries on the site. I belong to the ridgelineowners club, and there are guys there that say they tow 4900 pounds regularly without issues! jinkies! but I am only looking for a 2619 or perhaps a 2720 for a little extra sleeping room for me and the missus. I have seen a mounting system that allows a canoe to be secured over the bed of the truck onto a roof rack that leaves the trailer hitch open. I think this would still put me at less the 4000 pounds of total gear being hauled which should leave me plenty of power as long as I am not trying to climb Mt. McKinnley at 70 MPH......

Anyway, thanks for the great site and all of the great information. Hopefully I will be smiling with a TM rolling behind me in 12 months.. especially after being armed with expertise from you all!

04-28-2007, 09:45 AM
Let me be one of the first to welcome you aboard! You are right, you will love camping in a TM, especially if you have a little one. We never tried tenting with an infant, but I bet it is challenging. A TM makes everything so much easier.

Getting old? I don't think so! If you have a kid on the way, that would certainly put you in the younger half of this board.

When you buy a TM, the dealer or previous owner will show you how to set it up and take it down, and how to work all the appliances and other doo-dads. It seems overwhelming until you actually do it. Then all of a sudden it is like the Staples ad with the big red button - you say to yourself "Well, that was easy". I find most of it easier than setting up our big 4-man wall tent, for example. You'll make a few mistakes at first, but that is just a learning tool. It will all smooth out quite quickly.

By the way, the term "dry camping" means camping without utility hookups of any kind. The three basic utility hookups are water, sewer, and electricity, and you will find these at almost any commercial campground. And of course you pay more for a site at a commercial campground, and this is part of the reason why. Dry camping means that you bring your water with you (or there may be a central spigot so you can carry water to your TM), you collect and dispose of your own gray and black water (there may be a dump station on the way out), and you provide your own electricity (from the TM's battery, which is charged by your tow vehicle). Fortunatley, most of the TM's electric appliances also operate from propane, so the need for electricity is minimal. Dry camping is usually associated with campgrounds in national and state parks, BLM land, and more outdoorsy areas. The cost of a site is less in such places, and the sites tend to be bigger, prettier, and more scenic, and nicer in so many ways. But the price you pay is that you have to dry camp, which can get to be a hassle after 3-5 days. Some people prefer one, some prefer the other.

Where do you live? It is quite possible that there is a TM owner nearby who would be willing to walk you through everything when you get your TM. We're a pretty helpful bunch. If you are anywhere near greater Phoenix or southern Maine, I could certainly do it.

And in the end, almost anything you want to know can be gotten from this group, either in previous posts, or by asking the question.


04-28-2007, 10:15 AM
Thanks Bill. Currently I live in the Washington DC area... But I was born and raised in MA so I am quite familiar with Maine. SUCH beautiful country.

This site has already given me some pretty great ideas... I mean I never even considered a telescope or anything.. but now I can picture my son and I sitting out and after a hard day of bike riding canoeing, or if I can learn - fishing, and checking out the stars. Oi!

I am a bit older than your typical first time dad.. I am pushing 38. Wife and I have been married going on 13 years and finally have decided we have changed careers enough and attended enough school.....

I just can;t imagine a better way to spend time as a family than enjoying some of the best nature has to offer. The wife and I have met some of the nicest folks in campgrounds while we were tenting. We stayed for a four days in a campground called Kountry Kamping near Naples, FL that had the nicest older couple in history. Every morning when we came out of our tent they had coffee and conversation waiting for us.

Now I really have to decide what I want to buy. I love the idea of a larger unit but I am ultimately concerned about my tow capacity, storage ability as I like the idea of keeping it in my garage and not havign to pay to store it, and need.

I am also concerned about expense. I have seen on the internet advertise 3120's fro 28,000 while other dealerships selling 2720's for 29,000 yikes I have a lot of research to do.

04-28-2007, 11:18 AM
There are lots of good "previously owned" units that become available on this site, on eBay, on http://www.rvtrader.com/ on http://www.rvusa.com/ and many other places. If you are having sticker shock on the new TMs, look up some of these units. There are also some folks on this site that are towing with a Ridgeline, so you might want to contact them and see what they have to say. It may not be the "ideal" tow vehicle, but they can tell you all about it. I understand that it is "doable". By BTW, Welcome to the forum! And you're definitely not "old". I wish I was only "Pushing 38!" That was over 22 years ago!

p.s. In fact there's a nice 2720SL on eBay right now: http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/Trailmanor-model-2720SL-camping-trailer_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQcategoryZ50064QQihZ012QQ itemZ220107285432QQrdZ1QQsspagenameZWDVW

04-28-2007, 11:55 AM
Any of you "newbies" or even "oldbies" would like to camp with the Mile High TrailBlazers in Colorado, you are indeed welcome. We host six of seven campouts during the camping season. The best way to find out how to use your TM is to use it. Come to one of our events and we will educate you from the hitch to the rear bumper. If you would like a copy of our camping schedule you can go contact John Lanpher at [email protected]


04-29-2007, 07:00 AM
Some sites don't allow popups because of being in bear country. They'd go through the canvas (or other fabric) sides in nothing flat. Of course the TM is hard sided, so that restriction doesn't generally apply -- it's a folding trailer, not a popup.

04-29-2007, 03:20 PM
:new_bdays Thanks everyone. This site has been REAL helpful so far. I broached the idea with my wife last night and she is excited about it as well. I don't think near as much as I am.. but enough so that I think I might be able to make this happen sooner rather than later. :)

I really like the idea of camping out with some experienced folks from the trailblazers (I am guessing this is a club for owners...) and getting some great tips and help figuring out ho to not be "that guy." You know the one that rumbles in committing every campground faux pas oin the world becuase he has no idea what he is doing...

OOH.. and how can you find out what campgrounds ban TM's? I haven't seen any in the campground threads..but mostly becuase they are for the good ones....

Now if only I can find a way to tow a TM and carry a jet ski too.. then I can convince the wife we need both for when we go to the lake...

04-30-2007, 09:02 AM
You will have no problem carrying a canoe on your Ridgeline - I don't know that we've taken our TM anywhere without a canoe on top of our TV. If you have a cap on the back of the Ridgeline, carrying a boat will be a snap. If you don't have a cap, it will be a little more complicated as you can't use a rear hitch carrier. Check to see if Honda has a carrier and, if not, check out the Yakima and Spring Creek websites. I used a Spring Creek suction cup rack for years - it is very stout. Now I use Yakima bars with Yakima Landing Pads on the cap and cab of my Ford F-150. Welcome to our little group - I pestered members for a year before buying a new 2619 in 2005! - Camp2Canoe

04-30-2007, 10:49 AM
If there's any room on the draw bar of your trailer hitch between the ball mount and the place it goes into the receiver, you can add a collar to attach a bike rack or a rear support for a boat. I can't find a very good picture but here's one that sort of shows what I'm talking about. You might have to find a weld shop to manufacture something.

04-30-2007, 12:16 PM
If there's any room on the draw bar of your trailer hitch between the ball mount and the place it goes into the receiver, you can add a collar to attach a bike rack or a rear support for a boat. I can't find a very good picture but here's one that sort of shows what I'm talking about. You might have to find a weld shop to manufacture something.

OOH! Nice!

04-30-2007, 03:02 PM
Sweet! Wife just gave me permission to buy spring of next year. OI!

**rubs hands together maniaclly**