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RookieEP

Full size truck or Big SUV

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gunsrus
you ever get a truck, you will love it and wonder how you  got along without one !

I've discovered that the converse is also true.  When you can no longer have the truck you love, it is amazing how well you can get along with a small, cheapie 4x4.

When my wife got sick 6 years ago, I needed to buy a low slung coupe that would allow me to transfer her from her wheelchair to the vehicle and back again to go to the doctor, etc.  My beloved V8 crew cab pickup was too high and the door openings too narrow.  I couldn't have both, so I sold the truck and bought a Honda coupe (great daily transportation, BTW - fast, comfortable, fuel efficient and not all that expensive).  For hunting, snow driving and general utility work, I was stuck with a little POS Jeep that previously I used only as a dedicated tow-behind vehicle for the motorhome.  I thought that suddenly being truckless for the first time in many years was just yet another punishing life change resulting from her illness.  Turns out I was wrong.

The little 4x4 Jeep can go anywhere any rational bird hunter might want to go.  It is actually much better and more practical off-road and in deep snow than my truck was.  It carries my two dogs and everything else I need for hunting nearly everyday and I can take another guy and his dogs and stuff if need be.  Since it's an old POS, I don't hesitate to throw bloody dead critters, soggy smelly dogs, firewood, rocks or whatever else in it or to tie anything on to it, like my canoe.  It has a Class 3 hitch, so I can tow with it when I must.

No it's not comfortable, quiet and nice like the truck was.  But, it's full of scratches, dents and dings and it's literally a vehicle no one would steal, so I don't hesitate to take it anywhere and do anything with it - which I would never do with the nice (and expensive) truck.  When I'm hauling stuff, sometimes I need to take two trips, but, as a retired guy, I don't have a truck payment either.

I'm (mostly) with Bede on this.  While I certainly recognize that there are some folks who need trucks or huge SUV's - like Matt, but mostly contractor and farmers - I suspect that 90% of the guys who drive trucks don't really need a truck - they just want one.  That's just fine, of course, it's a free country - but before spending your money make sure you know the difference between "want" and "need".

For example, nearly all the guys at my gun club drive really nice full-size trucks.  The parking lot literally gleams and I reduce the properly value when I park my dirty, battered POS Jeep there.  But, I actually use my 4x4 as a real 4x4 nearly every day - unlike those beautiful showpiece trucks.

So, no longer being able to have a truck, I now wonder why I ever thought I needed one.

Greg ,

I totally understand your not needing a full size SUV . You are fortunate to hunt right out your back door .

Myself , my hunts are usually 4-5 hours away and require some planning and extensive room for 3-4 Setters and all that go with it. I am thinking that most on this board have to drive quite a ways to get to good covers . My new ''Camp'' in Maine is only minutes from Covers so the Wrangler wii stay up there for the Season . I still have to get there so back and forth with the Tahoe is necessary for me . I am fortunate that i can own two vehicles but if only one it would still be something large and comfortable and able to fit everything . My hunting is prioritized in my life so that's the direction I go . If you can afford it , new or used then  large is the way to go .

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Bede
Because 30 yrs ago you shot a pile of deer?

Good one, Bede, ya' really got me there!  Haven't actually needed a 'burb since then either. In fact, I'm kind of ashamed of myself.

Over and out.

Just making a joke!.

Neat picture of a classic vehicle,  one I'd love to own.

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Doubleplay

A truck specially with an empty bed is not a very capable vehicle off-road. Approach and departure angles are terrible and it's wide.

If you need something for off-road work, any Jeep or a medium size truck like Tacoma is the way to go.

However if you need the vehicle for long trips and towing stuff and have more than two-three dogs and also hunt big game you can't beat a full size truck. Specially a truck bigger than a 1/2 ton.

Actually the ideal situation is to have one of each.

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Doubleplay
Sometimes you just NEED a large vehicle. In the fall, i'm taking long trips, carrying 4 or 5 bird dogs, and towing my 24' Airstream. A Ford F350 crew cab with a dog topper, water tank, equalizer hitch and 7.3L diesel gets my gear, dogs, guns, and traveling hunting lodge where I want to go. In the summer it tows my boat to Mexico.

The rest of the time I drive a modest SUV - Toyota Landcruiser.

You my friend have good taste in vehicles...

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bennelli-banger
It's always interesting to read threads like this.  I think it is human nature to defend our own positions on the topic du jour, and to rationalize that our approach is correct and good and should be emulated by others.  I am wracking my own brain right now over this very topic.  I had 3 suburbans in my 20's- early 40's; currently, I have a Saturn Outlook with 113k, and also, a rav4 with 18k.  I also have an old 'burb at my SD hunting camp that stays there year-round.  I am 50 now, only one kid left at home, and not for long.  I have concluded that an awd sienna van by toyota would be the BEST thing I could buy for about 355 days of the year.  Love the idea that dogs aren't jumping off or up onto a pickup tailgate.  I just drove to a dealer lot and scoped out the gm crew cab short box trucks...I will be lifting my dogs up/down from the tailgate if I get a pick up...not a huge deal, I do it sometimes as it is now with my outlook.  I do think, at the moment, i will go the route of the pick up, though I still am struggling with this whole conundrum.  I would rather have my dogs inside my vehicle vs a truck bed, but I have hunted out of pick ups enough to know it isn't a huge deal.  If I had gotten better assessments of the current GMC Acadia from some folks I trust and respect I probably would have gone that route...6 cylinder, great room in the back with the seats folded down (same layout as my current saturn outlook, really impressive roominess), and an overall design that is comfortable.  If I didn't live and work in a city, I would go the route of the crew cab pickup for sure...still probably will, as my wife suffers from anxiety and rarely drives her 2014 rav4, so I guess I have that as my city vehicle....

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Bede

I wasn't defending my own position so much as challenging the status quo. People can do what they want with their money, but the orignal poser is getting by with a Honda Pilot sized vehicle, there are some great options with nice off road capabilities, if that's a shortcoming with the existing vehicle, in this class. He said nothing of 8 kids, 4 dogs, or a heavy boat, so I don't see the point of a $60k+ Suburban.

As far as the truck vs SUV. I had a truck, a regular cab 4cyl 4x4 Tacoma. I miss it daily. However, I now have kids, and am nolonger renovating an old house, so I don't need it. I don't miss having the dog in the back, most of the time, but it was nice if he was particularly smelly and messy. FOR ME the biggest drawback of a midisize crossover is the off road capability, or lack thereof. This is a setback. You get an improved ride, less noise, and with current vehicles (not mine), higher MPG. I don't care as much about the noise or ride, I'd prefer the off road capability, even moderately, and if I could afford a newer vehicle, wouldn't lose much MPG.

The perfect compromise for me would be a 4dr "midsize" truck, a Tacoma or the new Canyon, with a cap. This would be the best of almost every world. A very close second would be a more capable crossover or real SUV, a 4Runner, Xterra, or even the new Cherokee Trailhawk. I think the latter option provides suitable off road capability with better MPG than the 4Runner or Xterra options. For long trips, I'd get a rooftop box.

You miss having a bed when you dog is smelly, or you shoot a deer, but the security of an enclosed dog and cargo is a nice feature of SUVs.

Again, this is ME talking, one dog, no boat. No place to store a lot of gear so I don't own it, no budget for long trips to Montana, etc.

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Dogwood
Sometimes you just NEED a large vehicle. In the fall, i'm taking long trips, carrying 4 or 5 bird dogs, and towing my 24' Airstream. A Ford F350 crew cab with a dog topper, water tank, equalizer hitch and 7.3L diesel gets my gear, dogs, guns, and traveling hunting lodge where I want to go. In the summer it tows my boat to Mexico.

The rest of the time I drive a modest SUV - Toyota Landcruiser.

Awesome!!  I'm suffering from C-man envy yet again.  Has all the toys AND knows how to use 'em!

What kind of boat?

Carry on . . .

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PointingMutt
For those who've had both crossovers and true SUVs, how much does the additional off-road capability help in most hunting situations?  Most of my hunting is off of gravel forest service roads and spur roads.  The biggest issue seems to be ground clearance on the spur roads.  Do you really lose much in this case with a crossover?

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Doubleplay
For those who've had both crossovers and true SUVs, how much does the additional off-road capability help in most hunting situations?  Most of my hunting is off of gravel forest service roads and spur roads.  The biggest issue seems to be ground clearance on the spur roads.  Do you really lose much in this case with a crossover?

It's not only the ground clearance... skid plates, differential , tires all plays a huge role.

A crossover or a soccer mom suv is adequate till you get stuck in mud puddle somewhere 2-3 miles from the nearest asphalt road..

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charlo slim

Because 30 yrs ago you shot a pile of deer?

Good one, Bede, ya' really got me there!  Haven't actually needed a 'burb since then either. In fact, I'm kind of ashamed of myself.

Over and out.

Just making a joke!.

Neat picture of a classic vehicle,  one I'd love to own.

OK, I guess I get it. Don't you just love that classy color scheme as well?  The kids, those insolent brats, dubbed it "The Booger".

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tut

I've had 3 4Runners.  I wouldn't want to go to any places beyond where they have taken me.  The problem I have ever had is on roads that have switch backs.  The only huge fault I have with the 4Runner is the turning radius is god awful.  Beyond that good vehicle indeed.  Lots of ground clearance and great in the woods or on the highway.

PS.  I love the idea of a truck, but with two dogs the 4Runner is big enough for me.

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RookieEP
I'm a family of four with 2 dogs.  Every day driving I don't need a big vehicle it is a want.  I mean I could drive a Camry.    But when you add two buddies and their dogs some long trips the big SUV of truck shines. Guess I could rent one.  But what fun is that and doubt I'd really do it.  Reality I want the truck but family stuff and comfort the extra seating of a big SUV is nice.  My old neighbor had a Burb and they are like luxury on the road, and you do feel safe in crappy weather

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henryrski
I like my F250 Super duty with 4 doors and an 8 foot bed. :p

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Chukarman
Sometimes you just NEED a large vehicle. In the fall, i'm taking long trips, carrying 4 or 5 bird dogs, and towing my 24' Airstream. A Ford F350 crew cab with a dog topper, water tank, equalizer hitch and 7.3L diesel gets my gear, dogs, guns, and traveling hunting lodge where I want to go. In the summer it tows my boat to Mexico.

The rest of the time I drive a modest SUV - Toyota Landcruiser.

Awesome!!  I'm suffering from C-man envy yet again.  Has all the toys AND knows how to use 'em!

What kind of boat?

Carry on . . .

This is stuff I have accumulated over the years… When I retired early so that I could spend more time wasting time, I bought the necessary 'stuff' - mostly used stuff.

The boat is a Parker center console. Great for fishing the Sea of Cortez with a couple friends.

Carrying on.

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martyg
you ever get a truck, you will love it and wonder how you  got along without one !

I've discovered that the converse is also true.  When you can no longer have the truck you love, it is amazing how well you can get along with a small, cheapie 4x4.

When my wife got sick 6 years ago, I needed to buy a low slung coupe that would allow me to transfer her from her wheelchair to the vehicle and back again to go to the doctor, etc.  My beloved V8 crew cab pickup was too high and the door openings too narrow.  I couldn't have both, so I sold the truck and bought a Honda coupe (great daily transportation, BTW - fast, comfortable, fuel efficient and not all that expensive).  For hunting, snow driving and general utility work, I was stuck with a little POS Jeep that previously I used only as a dedicated tow-behind vehicle for the motorhome.  I thought that suddenly being truckless for the first time in many years was just yet another punishing life change resulting from her illness.  Turns out I was wrong.

The little 4x4 Jeep can go anywhere any rational bird hunter might want to go.  It is actually much better and more practical off-road and in deep snow than my truck was.  It carries my two dogs and everything else I need for hunting nearly everyday and I can take another guy and his dogs and stuff if need be.  Since it's an old POS, I don't hesitate to throw bloody dead critters, soggy smelly dogs, firewood, rocks or whatever else in it or to tie anything on to it, like my canoe.  It has a Class 3 hitch, so I can tow with it when I must.

No it's not comfortable, quiet and nice like the truck was.  But, it's full of scratches, dents and dings and it's literally a vehicle no one would steal, so I don't hesitate to take it anywhere and do anything with it - which I would never do with the nice (and expensive) truck.  When I'm hauling stuff, sometimes I need to take two trips, but, as a retired guy, I don't have a truck payment either.

I'm (mostly) with Bede on this.  While I certainly recognize that there are some folks who need trucks or huge SUV's - like Matt, but mostly contractor and farmers - I suspect that 90% of the guys who drive trucks don't really need a truck - they just want one.  That's just fine, of course, it's a free country - but before spending your money make sure you know the difference between "want" and "need".

For example, nearly all the guys at my gun club drive really nice full-size trucks.  The parking lot literally gleams and I reduce the properly value when I park my dirty, battered POS Jeep there.  But, I actually use my 4x4 as a real 4x4 nearly every day - unlike those beautiful showpiece trucks.

So, no longer being able to have a truck, I now wonder why I ever thought I needed one.

I'm in the sharper nail as opposed to bigger hammer pool. We always look for the simplest, most elegant solution to everything.

We could afford to drive any production vehicle made, but have two compact vehicles and a 15 year old 4Runner for hunting and BC travel.

As Modest Mouse said, "We built ourselves a pillow but we use it as a crutch." No one "needs" a large vehicle unless you own a company in construction, mining or oil.

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