Re: Do you have a trailer?
golden cliff (c60clg1@CORN.CSO.NIU.EDU)
Tue, 24 Oct 1995 19:43:46 -0500
I have been a Scoutmaster for 19 years (as of next month). Most of that
time I didn't have the luxury of a trailer. It was a lot more work
going on trips and loading and unloading each time. EVERY time forgetting
something or another. We are going somewhere every weekend.
Our needs are very diverse. My troop fluctuates between 50 and 70
members. We have a very active schedule and often times are operating
more than one activity simultaneously. Many of our trips are small with
8-15 boys, but sometimes might have 35 or 40. Last weekend we had two
trips with 8 boys each plus a fundraiser, the weekend before we had a
large Campout with 40 boys and leaders. We usually have about 20-25
overnight activities each year, plus a large number of day trips, service
projects, and fundraisers.
We now own 7 trailers. They are an absolute blessing. Each has a
purpose (or future purpose). Some weekends we use as many as 4 of them
at a time.
We call this the Nimrod. It will hold 8 bicycles and equipment for 8
people. It was custom built from an old (1962) pop up camper. The
trailer body is 6' wide and 8' long. The cargo space is about 18" high
and is enclosed and lockable, with bike racks mounted above. It is light
enough for any car to pull. We use it very heavily not just for bike
trips, but also for small group outings or for transporting goods for
Trailer #2 This is a 1960 Winnebago Travel Trailer, totally enlcosed, 7'
wide, 12 feet long. It is equiped with a kitchen, storage cabinets, and
can sleep two adults, with dining for 4 people at a table. We usually do
not use this for camping, but rather for concession stands. We use it for
a food booth at a two day festival, plus 9 saturdays as a concession stand
for a soccer program. On occasion we might bring it as an adult winter
trailer for Polar Bear campouts. I refuse to sleep in it. If the boys
sleep outside, so do I. Sometimes, the only way I can coax other adults
is by promising a warm cozy trailer, it can also be a good emergency site
if a boy falls in a river, etc. and needs a warm location to thaw out in.
(Luckily that need has never arisen) On rare occasions for large outings
we will use it as an additional equipment trailer. When not in use we
also use this trailer for storage.
This is a 1978 Chevy Luv short bed truck converted into a trailer.
It transforms any car with a hitch into a vehicle capable of transporting
a truckload of equipment. I don't own a truck, I have a car and a 17
passenger mini bus. This trailer gives me the hauling capacity of a small
truck. Any time I need a truck and one isn't handy, I hitch up to this
trailer. I use this trailer extensively. It's 5' wide and 6' long,
and is light enough to be pulled by most cars. We use it for small
group outings, service projects, fundraisers, and it also transports 4 bikes
Trailer #4 This is a 6 place canoe trailer built in 1976 and rebuilt in
1986. We own a fleet of canoes and used this trailer 7 times this year on
canoe trips, plus another 3 times loaned out to other groups. It has
traveled about 1,400 miles this year. We often have to borrow additional
canoes and haul them in trucks or vans. Trailer #7 (under construction
this winter) will meet our future needs.
This is our most recent addition, a 12' long, 6' wide enclosed Haulmark
trailer. We just purchased it in June. We have not customized it with
shelving as of yet. We keep it stocked and ready with equipment
for 4 patrols, and it is packed. When my volunteer carpenters get
through customizing the interior, hopefully it will be a little roomier. We
use this trailer for our larger trips, but not on small ones.
Trailer #6 A work in progress. We have stripped down a pop up camper to
the bare frame, 7' wide x 10' long. We plan to convert it into a bike
trailer capable of transporting 20 bikes, 10 on the platform bed, and
another 10 from an overhead rack. Currently we load 8 bikes on our
Nimrod trailer, 4 bikes in our Luv trailer, and the rest loaded on
assorted trucks and vans. We had 7 bike trips this year. This trailer will
be a very welcome addition, (hopefully completed in early spring 1996).
Under construction. An old boat trailer we are converting into an 8
place canoe rack. We plan to purchase some additional used canoes to
expand our fleet. This will become our main canoe trailer with our older
one in reserve for big trips when we need them both.
Of these trailers, 6 were donated by various members of the community.
The 6x12 Haulmark was the only trailer we purchased. My committee thinks
I'm crazy, but I would like to acquire one more trailer, a small enclosed
trailer; 4x6 or 5x8 equipped with gear for 2 patrols, ready to go. We
would use it often.
An equipment commitee of adults and boys spent last saturday cleaning out
our 1 car garage of outdoor equipment and our resource room in the church
basement. I am fortunate to have adults knowledgeable in welding,
capentry, and electrical. I am not gifted in any of these areas. When
it's time to repair gear, the other adults send me off to play somewhere.
I just play with the toys, they put them away and keep them in good
repair. My equipment chairman (adult) and quartermaster (youth) are a
father/son team that are a great resource for me. They have assembled a
team of boys and adults that manage our equipment needs and do a
Our biggest problem is storing all these trailers in easily accessable
locations. We currently store 4 at our church parking lot (I don't think
the church isn't real excited about this fact), 2 at a farm, and 1 at
another farm. We may get access to a local warehouse. Anybody out there
have an old cattle barn they're not using?
You need to assess your needs. What size group do you have? How active
is your program? What equipment do you need to transport? What are your
There is no magic number of trailers that are right or wrong, it comes
down to one basic question... Do you have the tools to do the job? If not,
then you need to set some realistic goals to acquire them.
YIS, Cliff Golden
Scoutmaster Troop 33
DeKalb, Illinois email@example.com
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City