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Old 12-15-2014, 12:41 PM   #1
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17B with Gaucho Option

Hello all. I am seeking input/advice regarding my ongoing trailer search. I had narrowed my search to either an Escape 19 or Bigfoot 21. Recently I was made aware of the Escape 17B with the Gaucho option, and that is where I am seeking input.

Our criteria:

Must sleep four (2 adults and 2 boys- 10 & 11) in relative comfort;

We want to stay as light and small as possible, but our tow vehicle can tow 10k pounds, so the weight is not an issue in that regard;

We will frequently eat and sleep outdoors as weather permits, but we live in the PNW so sometimes it is cold and wet for a few days and indoors will be the ticket;

In short, I want as little trailer as we need, but not too little!

What say you, particularly from owners with two kiddos...

Thanks, Jeff (anyone near Central Oregon owning a 17B that we can look at let me know)
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Old 12-15-2014, 12:53 PM   #2
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We have 17B without gaucho and kids don't camp with us. About the age of 12 they have no interest in sleeping in the same room as parents. If they camp at all, they move into their own "room", a tent.
If you went with 17B and gaucho, you will spend a lot of time converting rear dinette to bed and vice versa ( so four can eat at the table ).
We have friends who have a 19, permanent rear bed and four-person front dinette. In inclement weather, we gather in the 19 to eat or play cards.
If I was able to do-over, I'd go with the 19 and either a Highlander or Pilot tow.
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Old 12-15-2014, 01:00 PM   #3
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We had a 17B for two years, although no gaucho bed, and it was great for two adults and a 60 pound Elkhound. Still, we wanted a permanent bed and larger dinette, so now have a 19, and are loving it after the first trip. We tend to eat outside also, but the extra room does go a long way.
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Old 12-15-2014, 01:17 PM   #4
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The Bigfoots are great trailers, but you would have to go to a 21', or larger, to sleep 4. Their smaller ones just don't have the room on the two beds, unless you really want to sleep tight. At least with the 17A, you do have the gaucho option, which will let you sleep 4. Of course the 17 is even better, but then longer, wider and somewhat heavier. There is usually just two of us, and our dog, and we love the 19.
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Old 12-15-2014, 01:24 PM   #5
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With your tow vehicle, you have all of your options open. I think the advice given on the previous posts is spot on. There is a huge difference between the 17 and 19, and with 4 people I think the extra room in the 19 would be very appreciated. But things change. We changed our mind from a 17 ft. Casita to a 19 ft. Escape. And after seeing the 19 and 21 Escapes side by side, we ordered the 21. And it was a 13 ft. Scamp that first got us interested in fiberglass trailers. I would suggest going to ETI and comparing every model they have. Being in them physically shows everything in a way that no picture or brochure can do. Good luck with your decision and you want it to be the correct one. Loren
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Old 12-15-2014, 02:59 PM   #6
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Thanks all, some very good points to consider. I am trying to be as flexible as possible, particularly if shopping for a used trailer. I have looked at Bigfoot, Casita, Escape, Oliver and Scamp and I think they all make a really good product, with pros and cons for each. There is a really nice 2011 Casita 17 Deluxe that is for sale 20 minutes from me that is very tempting, but I think it might be too small for longer trips. For long weekends and in fair weather I think it would be really nice, but we plan on taking many longer trips during school breaks and summers. That's why I'm thinking 19' or 21' as a minimum. I agree with several of the posts that having a permanent bed is a great idea, less hassle and convenient for those quick naps that sometime happen after a long day outdoors! I also need to look at the issue of adequate storage and the 19's and 21's seem to shine there. Headroom is also a consideration, as I am almost 6'3".
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Old 12-15-2014, 03:03 PM   #7
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19 is also wider than the 17, which makes a difference in the kitchen area, one person trying to get past another.
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Old 12-15-2014, 03:19 PM   #8
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If you are serious about doing longer trips and having 4 people stay in the trailer, I would strongly point you toward a 19 or 21. We had a 17 which we really liked for just the two of us. But due to some inclement weather and some minor health issues on our spring get-away, we ended up spending much more time inside the trailer than we anticipated. So we upsized to a 21. When we spent 3 weeks coming back in the fall, we really appreciated the extra space.

GBaglo's advice about the kids moving out is sound. We used to go on family vacations in our westphalia, but about the time the kids hit 12 or 13 they preferred the second tent to the attic of the VW. But even so, you will find that 4 people inside a 17 will be "tight".
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Old 12-15-2014, 03:19 PM   #9
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I'm 6-1 and the 21 headroom works good, particularly with the digital thermostat so there are no knobs protruding on the bottom of the AC. Bed is also plenty long enough, at 80 inches long. Tend not to spend much time vertically anyway unless the weather truly sucks........
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Old 12-15-2014, 06:04 PM   #10
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I would expect the bathroom height in the 17b to be too small for you.
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Old 12-15-2014, 06:53 PM   #11
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I would expect the bathroom height in the 17b to be too small for you.
The highest point of the ceiling in a 17 is a wee bit under 6'2", the height of my husband. He finds this no problem, as he's often not standing in the trailer, and when he is he is likely to be looking down at something, effectively reducing his full height by just a smidge. The padded headliner used by Escape is also convenient, as head-on-ceiling contact is not painful (unlike head-on-cabinet-corners contact ).

The bathroom ceiling is several inches shorter, so a tall man had best be willing to sit to do whatever he needs to in there. (The bathroom doorway can be another head bonker )
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Old 12-15-2014, 10:55 PM   #12
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Thanks for the responses. I need to get my feet inside a 17B to know for sure. I left a message for Tammy this afternoon to find an owner nearby.
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Old 12-15-2014, 11:39 PM   #13
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Our 17B with a gaucho bunk works fine for the four of us but I am 5'10" and my kids (12&14) are on the small side. I sleep on the lower bunk but that would be too small for you. I think a 17B would not be as good a match for someone your size.
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Old 12-15-2014, 11:55 PM   #14
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Jeff, (Oregonian), I was a single mother once-upon-a-time. When my kidlet and I would go camping (tween), her first words... will there be a pool, second words... will there be "boys"?

Plan on a tent outside the door, close (so you'll feel comfortable with the situation). Trust me, you will all be happier...

I honestly think screen rooms for travel trailers weren't invented so much for bugs as they were for parents with young teenagers... they want their space and we want their stinky feet outside!
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Old 12-16-2014, 12:23 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thane View Post
Our 17B with a gaucho bunk works fine for the four of us but I am 5'10" and my kids (12&14) are on the small side. I sleep on the lower bunk but that would be too small for you. I think a 17B would not be as good a match for someone your size.
Hey Thane, thanks for the first hand experience with kids and the Gaucho bunks. I was thinking my little guys on the bunks and wife and I on the larger bed, curious why the lower bunk for you? Jeff
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Old 12-16-2014, 12:27 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post
Jeff, (Oregonian), I was a single mother once-upon-a-time. When my kidlet and I would go camping (tween), her first words... will there be a pool, second words... will there be "boys"?

Plan on a tent outside the door, close (so you'll feel comfortable with the situation). Trust me, you will all be happier...

I honestly think screen rooms for travel trailers weren't invented so much for bugs as they were for parents with young teenagers... they want their space and we want their stinky feet outside!
Hey Donna, weather permitting our kiddos usually prefer outside also, so a screen room would be nice!
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Old 12-16-2014, 01:01 AM   #17
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This is the screen room that is optional.
On my 17B
Attached Thumbnails
awning and screen room.jpg  
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Old 12-16-2014, 10:08 AM   #18
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I'm 6'-1" and I was first sold on a Casita without seeing it in person. After seeing one first hand I was dissapointed with the headroom, had none! I think they are very nice trailers, but just don't offer the room my family needs. We are a family of three, but want a bunk/cot option to at times include a guest.

A week after seeing the Casita, we located an Escape19 here in NJ via the factory. The three of us, along with the owner stood in the trailer and didn't feel packed in. The headroom was to my liking and the permanent bed screamed nap time We haven't seen a 21, but bet it just kicks it up a notch on interior space and storage. Another selling point for us was the large refrigerator option. My only wish is if the production schedule could be slightly speeded up. Demand seems huge, and good things come to those who wait.
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Old 12-16-2014, 10:25 AM   #19
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We have a 17B with guacho bunks and two young kids. We find the kids want to spend as much time as possible outside and we usually only eat inside in the morning so the trailer is the right size for us. Frankly there is no escape trailer that is big enough inside to accommodate two young kids for real play time.

We also went the 17B route to fit into more campsites and make it easier to navigate in the mountains.

Being 6'3" might be an issue in any trailer so it is best to see one in person.

Are you in eastern oregon? If so we might be closest to you.
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Old 12-16-2014, 12:33 PM   #20
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More good food for thought. Smilycook I'm in Central Oregon, a six hour drive from you. Thanks for the offer of viewing your trailer, but we should be able to find one in Portland, Eugene or Salem which are closer. I've been watching the exchange rate and it's looking like a good time to buy a new 19!
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