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Setter58

Hunting Rig- SUV vs Truck?

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Setter58

Since I got such great feedback on my first post.  Thought it might be worthwhile to hear thoughts on a hunting rig.  Kinda general question and realize this might not be the typical question on here so apologies if this is the wrong place to post...

 

Currently running a 4 door 4wd ford truck, keep the dog in back seat in kennel.  In the past I have liked having the bed for deer hunting/hauling dirty stuff but in reality it sits empty on most days.  My brother wants to buy my truck which most likely means I take my wifes AWD ford explorer and she gets something new.  Would be smarter for my daily commuter and I think I can prob make it work for my hunting rig since I plan to be focused on birds primarily this fall. 

 

I guess I could get one of those hitch platforms for hauling extra/dirty stuff behind the SUV.  Does anyone on here use one of those and how does it work for them?  I can just imagine something important falling off.

 

Any thoughts on preferences for a SUV or truck?  What am I not thinking about?

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Remo

My wife has an Outback and I drive an F-150. If it wasn't for pulling a few heavy items I'd hunt from an Outback. I despise the box on my truck.

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UplandHntr

Im on my 5th Suburban andnlove the space and also having everything enclosed in climate control. Mostly the dogs. I dont buy the argument that a pick up truck is more a truck than a Suburban. I have LT aggressive AT tires on it and have put it thru hell. Hasnt let me down. I may be one if the few left that use a Suburban as a truck.

I have a hitch hauler. I dont use it much as it can make accessing the back of the truck a pin. HOWEVER, they make carriers that swing away to the left or right so access isnt an issue. 
Ive never left the 3rd row seats in,  always pulled them out at purchase. I have a cargo tray in back and also 2 back seat Mud River covers that I put down. I dont worry about messes, stains, etc. 

When going on an extended trip out west, I pull out the back seats as well. 8 bolts with a cordless impact makes it a 5 min job. It becomes a cave back there. Ive slept in the back with 2 Goldens in MT for several years. 
SUV’s get a bad rap from pick up guys but are very capable. Obviously Im comparing 1500 trucks. Also, very few guys have 8 ft beds anymore. Most are 6.5 ft at best. I can haul 4x8 sheets of wood and 13 ft boards inside. 


Im a huge Suburban fanboy

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Jim Vander

Ive tried both. I have a 4Runner that I set up with drawers and 2 mid size kennels. The plus for that vehicle was it could go pretty much anywhere. the down size was lack of space. Im sort of a minimalist but was still challenging, particularly my arb fridge which I dont go anywhere without. I live in Va so my road trips are far and weeks in duration. After about a week it would smell like a kennel which was not great but could be overlooked. I dont like dogs loose in vehicle party because mine are sort of jerks but I also dont think its safe. I have always had a truck as well and a 4 hole dog box thats a holdover from my trialing days. The upside is that dogs are safe and secure and the box is well insulated, plenty of storage under the box and lots of room in the truck for things that need to be out of the weather, no dog stink, room for more dogs which is really nice on extended trips. The down side is that even though 4wd its not nearly as capable as the 4runner. Dogs have to be loaded into the box, visibility is a bit sketchy. 

If I could get by with 2 dogs Id probably still use the 4runner and accept the compromise, but Ive had too many trips compromised by an injury, or over worked  dogs to go back there. The 4runner is now at college with my daughter. So for now this gets job done.

 

IMG_0497.jpg

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grouse28

What Upland said. I have a smaller Jeep Liberty two dog crates with a hitch carrier for longer trips. I like everything accessible and protected.

Too much inaccessible space in the bed of a pick up and I am too old to be crawling in and out of a PU bed. Unless I needed something to tow I would consider a SUV.  Contrary to popular belief you do not lose your man card if you don’t drive a manly pick up. 

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Two Barrels

When your dog gets sprayed by a skunk you will really appreciate having a truck with the dog box in the bed.

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quailguy

I have never operated out of an SUV; I’ve always had an F150/250. 
If your buddy’s idiot pointer gets sprayed by a skunk, you want a pickup. Putting a deer in your pickup is much better than carrying him in the back of an SUV. Putting 74 decoys laden with mud in the back of a pickup is much nicer than using the back of your suv.  Some of that bottom ooze smells pretty bad. 
 

My F150 is rated to tow up to 12,000 pounds. That SUV? Not so much.  
OTOH, it’s lots easier to park that Jeep than my F150. Maybe the SUV gets better mileage?  Although that is not really a consideration now.  
So you need to understand your needs and go from there.  
Waidmanns Heil !!

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quailguy
12 minutes ago, grouse28 said:

What Upland said. I have a smaller Jeep Liberty two dog crates with a hitch carrier for longer trips. I like everything accessible and protected.

Too much inaccessible space in the bed of a pick up and I am too old to be crawling in and out of a PU bed. Unless I needed something to tow I would consider a SUV.  Contrary to popular belief you do not lose your man card if you don’t drive a manly pick up. 

You don’t?

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grouse28

Man Cards are lost by wearing ear rings, man buns, man bags and other items items created for the feminization of the American male.

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Jacksdad

Owned a Suburban for one year.  Great for road trips, good looking and rode like a dream.  BUT i never liked tossing wet, muddy waders and gun cases in the back and that was pre-dog.  Can also be tougher launching a boat when you don't have waders and need to climb around onto the trailer.  We also crab frequently and while one of my friends insists it's better to transport the crabs home in the cab i really don't want to do that and much prefer leaving them in the bed.  

 

Next step is to get a cap with those side lift windows which, i hope, will mitigate the need to crawl way back into the bed which, i agree, is a PITA.  

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grouse28

The side windows in a cap are nice, if things are within arms reach. Most beds are near armpit height and it is still tough to get near the center of the bed. 

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Rogue Hunter
57 minutes ago, Two Barrels said:

When your dog gets sprayed by a skunk you will really appreciate having a truck with the dog box in the bed.

 

I really would like to have a 4runner or something similar, but one day the lovely Lucy is going to tangle with a skunk.

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mccuha

Well I’ve had both.  I like the truck best.  I’ve been using a truck with a camper top.  It’s worked great. I’m going to have to change now. Between me and my hunting partner we take 5 that going to be 7 dogs after this summer. Now I’m contemplating either building a dog topper or remove my cap and build a bigger dog box with a big storage compartment in the back of the box to hold our gear and luggage.  There’s no way I could make an suv work without towing a trailer , which I do not want to do.  

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Up North

Truck with topper. You can put four kennels in back, and yes you will one day find a skunk!

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WyomingArt

5 Suburbans, two 1/2 T PUs,   one IH Scout, two Subaru Foresters,  all 4x4 or AWD.   DW didn't like driving the Suburbans or PU's.  I don't have a strong preference for a hunting outfit. If it was limited to upland  birds or fly fishing then the Suburban would be 1st pick,  add elk, moose or deer, then PU's work best for me. 

 

I like the dogs up high, away from the rear bumper, for their safety in either outfit. And with AC on keeping dogs cooler in a Suburban is easier than a PU bed with aftermarket fans on hot fall days. 

 

Suburbans and skunked dogs  are bad juju.  No way around it. Been there, but just once. Did carry multiple bottles of Skunk Off, it works OK, but the smell gets in the interior and lingers. 

 

On long trips my wife would lay the seats down in the Suburban and sleep while I drove. Somehow she never did that in the pick ups  : )    And I've slept in Suburbans many nights while fishing or hunting solo or with 1 dog. 

 

re: Subaru Forester and upland, tried it, didn't work for WY, ID terrain where I hunted. 

 

Suburbans are a ton of money now and being retired, kids long gone,  we don't need a large cabin 4x4 any longer.  So a Tacoma 4 dr  works fine, tho I miss the long beds.

 

Final thought, I like body on frame construction for longevity, so some unibody SUVs would be out. 

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