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Old 02-21-2016, 10:20 AM   #91
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I think we all like to think we've made the best choices -- and in the end we all have different priorities so there usually isn't a "best" choice. However, when Terry and I started looking at tow vehicles we were truly clueless -- didn't understand for example, that there are Highlanders and there are Highlanders -- and folks picked up on that and set us straight for which we were very appreciative.

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Old 02-21-2016, 10:25 AM   #92
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Jim, I'm working on organizing the photos my mother had and recently came across an unused horseshoe curve post card she must have saved when she lived in Harrisburg. My Dad shipped out for England in Early September 1943. He was stationed at Indiantown Gap, after training in Louisiana and the Mojave desert. Nothing a lot prettier than parts of Pennsylvania in the fall.

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Old 02-21-2016, 10:31 AM   #93
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We need to hold a rally in the Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania....Tioga County, PA Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania and Rail Trail
never in doubt, often wrong
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Old 02-21-2016, 10:40 AM   #94
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Location: St. Paul, Minnesota
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21 -- The Skylark. Towed by a 2014 Highlander
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I have mixed feelings about tow vehicle discussions. I have never seen anyone's mind changed, and they seem a bit like "mine is bigger than yours" discussions. I do appreciate the discussions where folks have asked about experiences with specific tow vehicles and specific trailers. When we got our 17, 4 years ago, I asked about towing it with a Sienna van. I got two or three replies that were helpful to me from people who actually had 17 trailers and towed them with a Sienna. Similarly, when we got our 21, and were deciding on a tow vehicle I contacted two or three people who towed 21s with a Highlander, and got the benefit of their experience.

We have about 20,000 miles on our 21, and about 26,000 miles on the Highlander. If there has been one surprise, it is that a greater percentage of the Highlander's miles are towing than I anticipated. Chalk it up to being retired and the extra comfort of the 21 for two people when on long trips. We have been out about month and could stay out a lot longer.

Most of the miles have been west of the Mississippi, and we have spent a lot of time in the mountains. We have gone over a lot of passes now. More than DW, who doesn't like mountain driving, would like. We go up all the mountain roads as fast as I wish to go up them. The limiting factor isn't the horsepower, but how fast I am willing to go around corners on narrow roads. If I am holding up traffic, I use one of the pullouts that one often finds on long grades. Similarly, we have come down a lot of roads, and have never felt any sort of brake fade. I do put the transmission in "S" and understand that the Highlander gets peak HP and torque in the the 4-5K rpm range. My dealer tells me that brake wear etc. is normal for a car with our mileage. We are about 3000 miles into our current trip and the dashboard tells me the average mpg is 14.1 -- a bit less than some of our previous trips where we have been closer to 14.5 or 15. I chalk it up some big headwinds we have had this trip.

I have a few quibbles with the highlander. you can't put road bikes in the back unless you lay them down. In the winter, there are often times when the sun shines on the GPS and the glare makes it hard to see. Even with the Andersen WDH there is a bit more squat on the back than I would like. but amazingly enough the Toyota Manual tells me there is no need to use a WDH with a trailer less than 5000 lbs. If I had to do it over again I would get a AWD, but we chose FWD because it gets slightly better mileage and there are fewer things to brake. The only time it has made a difference is getting the trailer out of storage in the winter when the aisle in the storage lot is covered with compacted snow/ice and the trailer is a bit stuck to where it is sitting.

There. I have said too much on my experience, but you all have the benefit of whatever insight there is to be had.
Camping: Where you spend a small fortune to live like a homeless person.
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Old 02-21-2016, 12:07 PM   #95
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
We need to hold a rally in the Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania....
Last couple of trips down south we have stayed at "Leonard Harrison SP". Beautiful vistas, great cycling on the rail trail along the Pine River.
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Old 02-21-2016, 12:14 PM   #96
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Location: Mission, British Columbia
Trailer: 2012 Escape "Classic" 5.0
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If one feels the need for a full size 3/4 or one ton truck to tow an Escape then what do they feel they need to tow one of the SOB monsters out there?

One thing that hasn't been brought up though is wind resistance. If you read the fine print in the towing specs of smaller vehicles this usually comes up. With my Ford Ranger the maximum frontal area allowable for the trailer is 50 Sq. Ft. so right away this limits what can be towed even though the maximum allowed tow weight is (apparently) 5600 lbs. I usually take the manufactures tow limit and half it for the dry weight of the trailer I want to tow ie. 2800 lbs dry weight for the Ranger and find that this gives me a comfortable margin to work with. My Classic 5.0 is about 2650 dry (3600 lbs ready to camp) and the frontal area is within the specs for the Ranger. I have my trailer brakes set up so that the trailer does the braking it needs and leaves very little impact on the tow vehicle braking. This setup leaves the trailer brakes "jumpy" in town so I just back off the boost when towing in town for any length of time and put it up when on the highway. After towing over 30,000 km with my Ranger have encountered zero problems even though living in the Fraser Valley means that I usually have to drive a mountain pass to go camping.

With the 21 and the 5.0 TA the extra width and height, and therefore larger wind resistance, of these trailers is going to limit what you can tow with it with more than the weight of the trailer and if I had one of these I would defiantly go with a full size truck but a 1/2 ton is suffice in my mind. One reason I bought my 5.0 Classic when I did is that Reace had mentioned that he was going to build a bigger 5.0 and I wanted the smaller frontal footprint.

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2012 Escape "Classic" 5.0 / 2009 Ranger Sport 4X4
Former trailers: 2005 Escape 17B / 1972 Boler 13'
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Old 02-21-2016, 12:18 PM   #97
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Excellent Post Leon! Much Appreciated.
Steve and Debbie
2016 - 21'
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Old 02-21-2016, 12:52 PM   #98
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Let me know when you get the Grand Canyon of the East rally organized and we'll be there. I checked out the link and I am very interested in taking the Ole Covered Wagon Ride. However I'm only going if they are pulling with any combination of Percherons, Belgians and Clydesdales. A Six Horse Morgan Hitch in the mountains is insanity, not near enough horsepower. Shires would be marginal.
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Old 02-21-2016, 02:56 PM   #99
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
We need to hold a rally in the Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania....Tioga County, PA Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania and Rail Trail

Sounds like an excellent idea!
Eric (and Mary who is in no way responsible for anything stupid I post)
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Old 02-21-2016, 03:08 PM   #100
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Originally Posted by thoer View Post
I've been getting our new Highlander ready for our Southwest trip next week and haven't been here lately. But apparently, to be "safe" towing our 17B, I'd better trade it back in for a F350 diesel dually with an exhaust braking system. I wonder though, maybe I should just go straight to a semi?
No, the semi-tractor wouldn't have the right weight distribution between the axles while towing a 17B... you should just carry the Escape on the back of the truck!

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