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Yes to do camping with 4 you need ability to haul the associated gear. When we had our boat we packed the gear in the boat. When we sold the boat we needed a trailer to haul the gear given your correct if you have spent a few years collecting various camping gear and are beyond the basic small tent or two, ice box and sleeping bags - and like to have bikes - chairs - a bin of kitchen stuff - bin of food - + ice box - kids toys and even hauling in your potable water you will run short of space with the OB by its self to haul it.

With the trailer I pack our own fire wood given we have the space to do that, obviously the kids toys the wagon has been a big hit and sees lots of use in the campground by all the kids LOL - we took it the first time as a last minute just toss it on now its almost a must have.

If your doing short trips - not doing any long climbs or lots of high speed hot temp stuff and really pay attention to what your packing and have trailer brakes you can make the larger heavier trailer work for a while but you will know after a couple of trips that the ability to haul it and all your stuff and the kids is going to be pretty limited regarding where you see the car willing to go LOL.

The quicksilver 10's can be found for a good price lightly used if you keep your eye out for them and they offer the layout you listed above at considerable lower weight which case you wouldn't need to get a bigger tow vehicle the Ob would do just fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
One issue with the quicksilver is that it doesn't have a hardtop when it is down. They say to remove the canvas for winter storage... then what do you do, tarp it? The trailer could easily fit in my garage, but I just don't want to do that!

Moreover, the only Quicksilver with a 3 way fridge is the XLP, which has a tongue weight of 250lbs... which just won't work. (An electric fridge is no good when there's no electricity).
 

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One issue with the quicksilver is that it doesn't have a hardtop when it is down. They say to remove the canvas for winter storage... then what do you do, tarp it? The trailer could easily fit in my garage, but I just don't want to do that!

Moreover, the only Quicksilver with a 3 way fridge is the XLP, which has a tongue weight of 250lbs... which just won't work. (An electric fridge is no good when there's no electricity).
Even my 28ft 8000lb empty sailboat does not have an electric fridge LOL. A block of ice lasts us 4-7 days depending on how hot it is.

I understand why you would want these things but having done lots of camping and cruising on the boat I have yet to find a good reason why I need them. If I were living on my boat an electric fridge would be very very nice but for the occasional weekend stay - or week long or two week long trip an ice block or two is far far less hassle and costly.

Given your trying to find an option that works with a very limited towing capacity you do need to give a few things up.
 

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AS for the the quicksilver for winter storage you simply lay a couple of 1x1's over it and toss a tarp on it so you get air flow and keep it dry etc. The Hard top pop top tent trailers actually have some of the highest number of consumer complaints about the tops leaking - not raising correctly etc etc etc. Also the tops on those trailers are very very light weight and do not tolerate much abuse to start with.

Everything is a compromise with RV's - cars - boats etc what you might think is better will have a whole other set of issues that might for you not be a better option.

I operate on the # of days being used vs cost. Our boat we use year around and spend upwards of one to two nights a month on - and take sailing 2-3 times a month.
Camping we generally do 3-4 trips a summer ranging from a quick weekend to a 3-5 day trip.

Everyone knows people who own boats that are never used outside of maybe 4th of July fireworks or the RV that only gets used once or twice a year. A big factor with the use is also the ease of use of the boat or RV etc. That includes where you need to store it - how long it takes you to go get it - clean it- pack it etc - how much of an effort it is to actually haul it to your destination etc.

All things you need to consider for the RV trailer or boat etc. We use our little utility/tent trailer a bunch simply because it takes me 5 minutes to hook it up - its clean given it sits in the garage. I have a 12ft sailboat racked on it which we run over to the local lake and will toss in the water and go sailing for an hour or two then go home etc. The trailer is so easy to haul the wife and I on a Thursday night snagged grandma to watch the kids Friday and Saturday - we hooked the trailer to the car Friday evening after work and drove to Napa set up the trailer and spent Saturday wine tasting.

Next week I pull the tent off the trailer and I'm running a bunch of stuff to the dump given my fatherinlaw is having major work done on his new to him condo and we have a few things collected from our rental property that we need to dump. The # of days being used cost factor for our RV trailer is really high! ha ha

Really ask your self how much you plan on using it - and what you really need. When you have an expensive toy sitting in the side yard 7months out of the year not being used you start to question why you spent so much money on it not to mention having to replace the tires and do the bearings on it almost every summer. The Electric fridges and battery systems need also need to be used to keep them up so if your parking the trailer for 4-6 months during the winter that stuff will have a very short life. I get about 5-6yrs out of our two Group 31 deep cycle batteries on the boat- that is with a very high tech battery management / charger plugged into a dock power when the boat is not being used. We just replaced the charger this month $230 for a 15amp charger. The previous one was 7yrs old and a 10amp charger I'm pretty sure the old charger failing was a major cause of our house batteries needing to be replaced this time also. I'm VERY VERY happy we do not have a fridge to deal with LOL.
 

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One issue with the quicksilver is that it doesn't have a hardtop when it is down. They say to remove the canvas for winter storage... then what do you do, tarp it? The trailer could easily fit in my garage, but I just don't want to do that!

Moreover, the only Quicksilver with a 3 way fridge is the XLP, which has a tongue weight of 250lbs... which just won't work. (An electric fridge is no good when there's no electricity).
Derek, you reside in Canada so you could also consider Alto teardrop manufactured in Quebec City
Alto 1723
I have one and love it ...just got back yesterday from six weeks in Wyoming and Montana...got 20.1 MPG (US gallons) on 3500 miles trip ...on in Feb and March I was 8 weeks in Arizona and New Mexico...in the Fall 2011, Quebec and Maritimes and I am an Albertan.
Truly long distances driving with my Alto and OB 3.6R.
Absolutely fantastic teardrop...have not seen anything better and lighter in 17 ft trailer class with 7ft headroom...you can find more info and pictures in my previous posts. It also fit into the standard 84" North American garage after lowering roof position...just by pressing a single button roof goes up and down.
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 · (Edited)
Here it was on the maiden voyage in May:


The trailer is 2150lbs empty. In the pic it's was fully loaded with water & 2 propane tanks on the tongue.

You rarely want the RPM to get under 3000 because there's no power, and it does struggle a bit on the hills. It's quite stable. I made the mistake of coming home with a partial water tank and there was some serious sway (tail wagging the dog). I was very happy to have the brake controller.

I've tried to avoid the mountains & serious hills. You can google map your route & plug the url into here:
GPS Visualizer: Assign elevation data to coordinates

I've put over 3000 miles on it this year. The last trip was from Kelowna to Newport Oregon, mostly following the water down to the ocean, but going through Yakima for a stop at Cabellas. It was over 100F at times; the only time it really heated up was sitting in traffic outside Portland. It was 97F and we had the a/c running. I've got an ultra gauge and when I saw the air intake hit 150F, I turned the a/c off. It went up to 185F and the coolant eventually climbed to 214F.

We got 21.4 mpg on that trip (which is better than some tow vehicles, without the trailer!).

I was a bit worried about the soft suspension on the old 2010, but the added weight seems to actually firm it up.

Tow mirrors are a must, you don't see much without them.

Overall, I'm seriously impressed with the Outback as a tow vehicle. I'll keep it for another year or two, then get something with a little more space & power. Eventually I'd like to do some camping in the Rockies and head over the Cascades as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
Here's the Deluxe Camp Kitchen we picked up at Cabella's (inside the attached screen room):


We do all of our cooking outside, and also got a portable BBQ from Costco. Plenty of room for a family of 4, and we don't pack all that light either!
 

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Derek Nice set up. For sure avoid the hot temps and long climb combo with the Subaru it simply doesn't have the cooling capacity to handle the climb. Sitting in traffic baking in Portland is no different with or without the trailer. LOL

We hit Cabellas for the first time just west of Reno on highway 80. Shortly after we were told about a place that makes Cabellas look like Grandpas Garage
Locations Map | Scheels

Keep the Ob going next 3-4yrs we are going to see some interesting options surface. Ford's new Designs are all world market cars the new Ranger 3.2L diesel 5cylinder would be the cats meow for a small but very capable adventure rig. Of course its sold everywhere but the US right now given it would gut the F150 profits.

Dodge Ram 1500 3.2L V6 diesel will be interesting to see probably show up end of this year or early next year but their engine production capability is nearly zero so they will be about as rare as seeing Zebras in Washington State.
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
If I was buying now, I'd go for a 2014 Durango with the V6 and AWD. Same mileage as the H6 Outback (18/25), but it's a bit bigger and will tow 6200lbs. (Or save some money on a used one, taking a 6 spd with slightly lower mpg).

Now that the Forester is practically the size of the Outback (and the Tribeca is on it's last legs), maybe we'll see a bigger/stronger Outback? I definitely wouldn't buy another first year model though...
 

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If I was buying now, I'd go for a 2014 Durango with the V6 and AWD. Same mileage as the H6 Outback (18/25), but it's a bit bigger and will tow 6200lbs. (Or save some money on a used one, taking a 6 spd with slightly lower mpg).

Now that the Forester is practically the size of the Outback (and the Tribeca is on it's last legs), maybe we'll see a bigger/stronger Outback? I definitely wouldn't buy another first year model though...
Assuming the new 3.2L V6 diesel is well done by 2015 all the large Chrysler products will probably offer a model with the small diesel v6 including the Durango.

Subaru lost its shirt trying to go larger the company is puny regarding resources and size compared to pretty much any other auto maker if they were to ever offer a larger heavier vehicle it would be a resourced Toyota product which case why bother?

Next three years we will start seeing the big three bring light diesel vehicles. Ford already has a really really nice small diesel global product line up they could have them on the lot tomorrow. GM knows this hence the Cruz testing the waters and talk about doing a new midsized truck to cut into Toyota's dominated midsize market no doubt with smaller diesel options for that midsized pickup in the very near future.

The only company that is going to be hurting is Toyota given it has spent billions on Hybrid hype it will go into its death throws before it EVER brings its highly respected diesels to the US Market. LOL Toyota today is in trouble - it lacks design appeal and its no longer really viewed as the over the top stand alone quality standard. Toyota needs to do some pretty bold things in the next 5yrs or it will be viewed as having tired dated and quite boring designs.
 

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Derek, you reside in Canada so you could also consider Alto teardrop manufactured in Quebec City
Alto 1723
I have one and love it ...just got back yesterday from six weeks in Wyoming and Montana...got 20.1 MPG (US gallons) on 3500 miles trip ...on in Feb and March I was 8 weeks in Arizona and New Mexico...in the Fall 2011, Quebec and Maritimes and I am an Albertan.
Truly long distances driving with my Alto and OB 3.6R.
Absolutely fantastic teardrop...have not seen anything better and lighter in 17 ft trailer class with 7ft headroom...you can find more info and pictures in my previous posts. It also fit into the standard 84" North American garage after lowering roof position...just by pressing a single button roof goes up and down.
Sorry, I didn't see you posted this. Just curious because I fell in love when these when I ran across them on the internet. I hear now you can get them in the US. Can you give me a rough idea what you paid for it? That is the one thing I don't know about them. Jealous though, just the coolest design ever. :29:
 

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Here it was on the maiden voyage in May:


The trailer is 2150lbs empty. In the pic it's was fully loaded with water & 2 propane tanks on the tongue.

You rarely want the RPM to get under 3000 because there's no power, and it does struggle a bit on the hills. It's quite stable. I made the mistake of coming home with a partial water tank and there was some serious sway (tail wagging the dog). I was very happy to have the brake controller.

I've tried to avoid the mountains & serious hills. You can google map your route & plug the url into here:
GPS Visualizer: Assign elevation data to coordinates

I've put over 3000 miles on it this year. The last trip was from Kelowna to Newport Oregon, mostly following the water down to the ocean, but going through Yakima for a stop at Cabellas. It was over 100F at times; the only time it really heated up was sitting in traffic outside Portland. It was 97F and we had the a/c running. I've got an ultra gauge and when I saw the air intake hit 150F, I turned the a/c off. It went up to 185F and the coolant eventually climbed to 214F.

We got 21.4 mpg on that trip (which is better than some tow vehicles, without the trailer!).

I was a bit worried about the soft suspension on the old 2010, but the added weight seems to actually firm it up.

Tow mirrors are a must, you don't see much without them.

Overall, I'm seriously impressed with the Outback as a tow vehicle. I'll keep it for another year or two, then get something with a little more space & power. Eventually I'd like to do some camping in the Rockies and head over the Cascades as well.


Great post! This is actually one of the campers we are looking at and have been going back and forth with load questions. We are also looking at the sport but it is noticeably smaller but still a nice camper. Listed tongue weight on that one is 116#'s. Thanks for a great post!
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
Update: The Subaru burned a litre of oil on that trip last summer. I didn't really think anything of it at the time, but it has continued to burn oil. My dealer has done a consumption report, but says that it's not unusual (about a litre every 4000 km).

I think the major issue with the Subaru is the lack of cooling capacity. If I did it again, I'd definitely upgrade the radiator. Instead, I've upgraded the tow vehicle to give the Subaru a rest...



I did go for a Durango, but the RT with a hemi. :D

I just did basically the same trip, over 2000 km (1200 miles) and through some hills around Yakima. I took it easy on the way down and got 14.5 l/100km (16.2 mpg US), but coming back I didn't show any mercy for the hills and got 14.7l/100km (16 mpg US).

I don't know if I converted last years mileage to US from Imperial, but it's not really a fair comparison anyway because I avoided all the hills with the Subie. This year I tackled the hills with ease, but consumed A LOT of gas going up! It was barely broken in and it did consume 0.25 L of oil (still on the factory dino oil).

At the base of the Columbia River Gorge on HWY97 it was 41C (106F). The engine oil reached 124C (255F), but the rad temp never reached the white halfway mark and the tranny never went over 96C (205F). The cooling capacity is impressive! I thought I'd be putting a lower thermostat in it and reprogramming the fans, but now I'm not sure.

A V6 would've done the job with better fuel economy, but I do love the RT and I really wouldn't want the ride any softer.

PS - I can't believe the Outback only gets a CVT now, I think that's a serious step backwards. Lot's of subie fans enjoy camping and the outdoors, and I bet that many of them will turn to Jeeps (the new Cherokee?). They should offer at least one model that's more capable... but I guess Nissan has ruined the Pathfinder as well.
 

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Update: The Subaru burned a litre of oil on that trip last summer. I didn't really think anything of it at the time, but it has continued to burn oil. My dealer has done a consumption report, but says that it's not unusual (about a litre every 4000 km).

I think the major issue with the Subaru is the lack of cooling capacity. If I did it again, I'd definitely upgrade the radiator. Instead, I've upgraded the tow vehicle to give the Subaru a rest...



I did go for a Durango, but the RT with a hemi. :D

I just did basically the same trip, over 2000 km (1200 miles) and through some hills around Yakima. I took it easy on the way down and got 14.5 l/100km (16.2 mpg US), but coming back I didn't show any mercy for the hills and got 14.7l/100km (16 mpg US).

I don't know if I converted last years mileage to US from Imperial, but it's not really a fair comparison anyway because I avoided all the hills with the Subie. This year I tackled the hills with ease, but consumed A LOT of gas going up! It was barely broken in and it did consume 0.25 L of oil (still on the factory dino oil).

At the base of the Columbia River Gorge on HWY97 it was 41C (106F). The engine oil reached 124C (255F), but the rad temp never reached the white halfway mark and the tranny never went over 96C (205F). The cooling capacity is impressive! I thought I'd be putting a lower thermostat in it and reprogramming the fans, but now I'm not sure.

A V6 would've done the job with better fuel economy, but I do love the RT and I really wouldn't want the ride any softer.

PS - I can't believe the Outback only gets a CVT now, I think that's a serious step backwards. Lot's of subie fans enjoy camping and the outdoors, and I bet that many of them will turn to Jeeps (the new Cherokee?). They should offer at least one model that's more capable... but I guess Nissan has ruined the Pathfinder as well.
Thats pretty good mileage actually. Even my 2010 2.5 cvt was typically doing 16mpg with the 1800lb 21ft boat with any sort of road related load be it wind or climbs. The 07 4.7L v8 Sequoia typically will return 16-17 with that type of trailer load but with lots of cooling and hill climb power compared to the Subaru.

Nothing beats lots of good cooling capacity vs hot west coast climbs.
 
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