Sunday, October 23, 2011

Pickup Truck VS Trailer

Sometimes I don't feel like driving my sensible Subaru any more.  It is a great car, but sometimes I think I would be happier driving a little pickup truck.  Having the simplicity of being able to chuck stuff in the back and just go.  

We have a little trailer Phoebe found several years ago, and we use it all the time.  It is great, because it is there when you need it, and not when you don't.  But sometimes the hooking and unhooking, the backing it in, or driving down the freeway feels bothersome.
That usually gets me thinking about buying a truck.  And every time I go down that road, I realize that it just doesn't make sense to change vehicles.

A few recent examples of the back and forth:

We had a whole load of horse poop to move.  Shovel it up from the pasture, and move it to the garden.  It was wet and heavy.  
The trailer sits about 15 inches from the ground.  With each shovelful, I was grateful I was not loading a truck.  The extra oomph it would take to get the manure up into the bed of a truck was more than I would have been able to muster.

We were shoveling the poop to clear a spot for the new stall mats we were putting down.  Phoebe is all about mud management in the pasture, and stall mats are a great tool.  Not cheap, but durable and long lasting.  At 4'X8'X3/4" they are not light either.
Our trailer is slightly smaller than 4X8, so the mats were jammed up against the sides, making them even harder to pull out.  And backing the trailer through the gate into the pasture was a pain.  Score one for the truck.

The next job was taking a load of bath and kitchen fixtures to the ReBuilding Center, a local non-profit recycler.  Once again, the low deck on the trailer saved the day.  It might not look like much, but that cast iron tub was a monster, and probably more than we could have lifted into a truck.  
Then think about the 6 loads of wood I loaded and unloaded last month, plus loading the log splitter.  And the load of metal recycling and the dump load I will take tomorrow. The trailer is the clear winner.  

Best yet, when I am done hauling, I unhook it, and am back to my little wagon.

So I have stopped sneaking peeks at Craigslist truck adds, and accepted my lot. I am a nice, sensible Subaru kinda guy.

And that horse manure?  It covered all of Phoebe's garden, both inside the fence and out.


  1. ..great post..we have a truck that is mostly a yard truck ($4000 to fix for the road but fine for shores )..I think this will be the last one I have..besides driving it where most other vehicles go a trailer is almost as good..and WAY cheaper..trucks are expensive to buy and maintain..and mine sits around for weeks at a time without being used..and that was before it needed the work when I could still use it on the road.

    Next time is a trailer for me..with a vehicle that can drive all the way in and out in the snow AND mud with no issues. the GF and I have this discussion all the time!

  2. Yeah, a trailer would be awesome to have. We use Lee's truck once or twice a month depending on what we are up to. That thing gets terrible gas millage.

  3. Thanks for taking the time to illustrate the value of keeping it simple. I have a 1983 Chevy pick up, 2wd, with only 107k but the trans., exhaust and belts need replacing because I rarely drive it. When I need it, I'm always wondering which thing might be rusted or dry-rotted, which thing could fail.
    I spent the morning on-line truck shopping and thought, "A trailer might make more sense". And you made it all the more clear. Good work.


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