4x4 on mountain path

Find the Right Off Road Camper for You

Love off roading?  If you enjoy leaving the pavement and travelling in the back country on the weekend, maybe one of these camping trailers is for you.  Built for going off the beaten path, there are a number of off road camping trailers out there to choose from.  I’ve researched 4 of them, but a google search will find quite a few more.  Here, in no particular order, is an overview of just some of the options available to you.

Whatever your camping style, from minimalist, to more of the comforts of home, one of these will fit you.

Highland Expedition Outfitters T3 Overland

Highland Expedition Outfitters T3
HE Outfitters T3 Camping Trailer – Used with permission – heoutfitters.com

The T3 Overland off road camper from Highland Expedition Outfitters provides a basic platform for a 56” roof top tent which sits on top of the trailer, storage space for supplies, and a few accessories.  A fold out awning gives you a covered area beside your tent.  The trailer itself is equipped with stabilizer arms to keep the trailer in place when you are moving gear around, and more importantly, when you are in the tent on top of the trailer!  There are a number of add-ons, including an optional solar power unit that allows you to go completely off grid, and still have some electric power.

To get over the ground, the trailer has 15” wheels, and 16” of ground clearance to allow travel over rough terrain.  Inside, you will find 32 cubic feet of storage space.  It has a lock and roll coupler for a secure connection to your truck or SUV, and optional electric brakes.  With its all aluminum body, the T3 only weighs 550 lbs, including the rooftop tent!  If you are doing some serious off-roading, the last thing you want is a bulky trailer holding you back.  The T3 is light and agile to let you get where you want to go.

Learn more about this trailer from Highland Expedition Outfitters, and check out the available add-on’s on their web site.  (423) 608-6628, heoutfitters.com

Highland Expedition Outfitters T3
HE Outfitters T3 Camping Trailer – Used with permission – heoutfitters.com

Turtleback Trailers – Expedition and Weekender Models

Camping with Turtleback Trailers
Camping with Turtleback Trailers

Turtleback trailers has more than one model trailer.  Their new Weekender is a small, lightweight trailer designed to be paired with a small SUV.  And there is the Expedition, the Weekender’s big brother.   Although they are sized differently, they have many common features.

Most notably for me, is the kitchen.  Because one of the highlights for me of a good camping trip, is cooking.  Normally. when you think of a camping trailer, and a kitchen, you normally think of a kitchen INSIDE the trailer.  These trailers have everything there, when you open it up and pull it all out, for an outdoor kitchen.  These trailers have stoves, sinks, pantries, and lots of storage space.

Overall, the Turtleback trailers are similar in concept to the model from HE Outfitters.  The tent goes on top, and your stuff in the trailer.  What Turtleback has added are the extra amenities, including the outdoor kitchen, on board water storage, and numerous compartments to keep your stuff organized.  If you are going to buy one of these, go to their website and click on the option to build your trailer to get the features you want.   Find out more at turtlebacktrailers.com, or call them at (855) 732-2383.

Turtleback Weekender
Turtleback Weekender – used with permission – turtlebacktrailers.com


The Moby1 XTR Off Road Camper

Moby1 With Tent
Moby1 With Tent. Used with Permission – moby1trailers.com

Moby 1 has trailers of all sizes, starting with one that you can pull behind a motorcycle. I’m going to give a general overview of their line, but definitely hit their web site for more details.  So far the trailers I’ve listed have provided storage place, with an outdoor kitchen in the Turtleback model.  The Moby1 line adds sleeping space to the offering, with a climb through sleeping area.  These trailers all have a teardrop design, with doors up front opening to the sleeping area, and a rear hatch that opens up to a storage and kitchen area.  If the internal sleeping area isn’t enough the top end model, the XTR also comes with an optional roof top tent, similar to the other trailers.  You can trick this one out with a portable toilet, A/C, and many other options.  But it is also built to follow you off road on whatever terrain you can drive to.  For more information, check them out online.  http://moby1trailers.com/

Moby1 - Galley
Moby1 – Galley. Used with Permission – moby1trailers.com


Oregon Trailers – Terra Drop

TerraDrop from Oregon Trailers
TerraDrop from Oregon Trailers. Used with permission – oregontrailers.net

I’m wrapping up with the Terra Drop from Oregon Trailers.  Oregon Trailers also has multiple trailer models available, but for this article I’m going to stick with the Terra Drop, since that is their off road model.  This is another Teardrop style trailer, once again ruggedized for off road. This also has sleeping space inside, with a kitchen in the back. On top, much the same as the others, you can have an optional top mounted tent, or additional cargo space.  The main body size is 5 feet wide, 4 feet high, and 8 feet long, slightly shorter than the Moby1, but as wide as the Moby’s widest queen size option at 60”.  The Terra Drop weighs in between 1,200 – 1,500 lbs compared to the Moby1’s 1,800 lbs.  So there is really not a huge difference in size between the two.  I’ll leave it up to you to compare the available options and prices to see which one is the best value.    Check them out online at OregonTrailer.net.


TerraDrop from Oregon Trailers
TerraDrop from Oregon Trailers. Used with permission – oregontrailers.net

So how do you pick the right off road camper?

First, you need to consider what type of camping you’re going to do.  Do you only want something to load your gear into, or do you want to sleep in it too.  Do you want more comforts, or less weight?  We all have different definitions of camping, and different levels of comfort.  And we all have different places we want to go in the outdoors.  The teardrop models let you sleep inside, with an on the roof option available.  They have more features and more comfort, but also more weight and more cost.  The T3 is a gear hauler, and the Turtleback adds a kitchen, both with tents on top.  So whatever your camping style from minimalist to more of a luxury experience, one of these will fit you.  None of them are for RV type campers.  You are not going to spend a lot of time inside.  These are for sleeping and eating, and spending your camping trip outdoors, which for some of us, is the whole point of camping.

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