Tag: camper trailer

Popup Trailer Camper – Fun Camping on a Budget

By boatingrvcenter • October 29, 2009 11:15 AM

Popup trailer campers are designed for people that want to spend some time outdoors without the expense and maintenance of an RV. Most are reasonably priced and can be stored without taking up a lot of room. They are a good choice for first time campers and families on a budget.

Popup campers are not quite as easy to set up as some might think. This is especially true if weather is not cooperating at the campsite. Wind, rain, and cold make the task a bit frustrating due to the time involved. Basically, a hand crank or hydraulic lift is used to open and lift up the top portion of the camper. Beds and other items are then slid out. The reverse is performed when it’s time to leave. While not excessively difficult, it’s not a fast process and you need to plan for this.

Most popup campers have canvas or soft sides. They weigh less than any other category of camper and that means you don’t need a truck with a large towing capacity. Many vehicles are capable of towing a popup camper. Check your vehicle owner’s manual for towing capacity and requirements.

Something to look out for is mountains. Besides the obvious hills that have to be climbed, air is thinner and that reduces engine power. Your vehicle will lose about 3% horsepower for every 1000 feet of elevation. Turbocharged and supercharged vehicles will not experience this type of loss. Just make sure the tow vehicle can handle the load if you plan to drive in high elevation areas.

Popup trailer campers have a low towing profile and that helps with both handling and fuel mileage. You shouldn’t need special side mirrors because the camper is folded and the rear window of the tow vehicle is not obstructed. You just have to account for the additional length of the camper when parking and turning sharp corners.

Backing up with an attached camper can take a lot of practice. You have to steer in the opposite direction that you want the trailer to go. Unless you have a lot of experience with this, have someone stand outside and guide you to prevent accidents or over-steering the trailer.

Popups usually have limited amenities because they are soft sided. This means that there is not much in the way of security regarding theft. Don’t leave items in the camper that a thief would want to take. Be careful where you camp. Most people I have encountered while camping are honest, but there is always someone that thinks he/she is entitled to take what they want.

Windy and cold rainy weather can make things difficult. Wind will rock the camper due to its light weight. Heavy rain will beat down on the top and can be noisy. Cold will come through the fabric and give everything a chill. Take good quality sleeping bags if you are going to camp where cold could be an issue.

Make sure everyone that will be using the camper really likes each other because there isn’t much privacy. Bathrooms (if equipped) are usually covered by a thin material and are not soundproof.