Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 01-10-2013   #41
salida, Colorado
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 283
If u go with the sienna I would suggest paying for the tow package
As I believe it's design for mountain driving ie better alternator etc

psu96 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2013   #42
Learch's Avatar
Dundee, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 655
The thing about my Sienna is once I hook a small trailer to it or have every seat full, the mileage matches my Dad's 1998 Suburban. So if you will spend a lot of time loaded, I wouldn't be shy about the larger rigs. The V8 rigs burn more fuel unloaded, but the 5.7 liter doesn't have to work very hard to move a large load, where my 3.0 van is working pretty hard with a small 4x8 trailer full of camping gear and 4 people and a dog in the van. My cousin runs a short E-250 van with a 460, and it gets 12 no matter what. He doesn't daily drive it, when it's driven it is used for hauling either people or cargo, so the 12 mpg doesn't bother him too much. I'd like to get an occasional use rig that is larger and hauls a load, and I'm missing true 4wd capability

Learch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2013   #43
Paul7's Avatar
Post Falls, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 781
This really helps, I'm starting to think a larger SUV is the way to go.

A pilot is probably the smallest I'd be comfortable with but I could be asking a lot of it.

I think I would tear a sienna apart with our roads to trailheads to hikes I'm already not getting to a few with the outback.

I'm going to test drive a few explorers and similar sized vehicles.

Some commented on full size vans and those are a no go here where where we drive on snow a lot.

I had a two wheel drive pickup once and it was a major source of frustration in the winter.
Paul7 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2013   #44
MT4Runner's Avatar
Kalispell, Montana
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,436
Jeep XJ Cherokees are also decent mid-size take-the-family SUV's. Buy the newest you can afford--they got better every year. Pay cash for one and use it on the weekends. Again, no 3rd row seating, but would be a great shuttle/rough road rig.

More interior room than 90's 4Runners, about the same as Explorers; lots less than Suburbans/Expeditions.

It would be a great vehicle to hand off to a teenager in a few years. Buy a nicer car with a 3rd row for your wifey's daily driver.


Run away screaming from early 90's 4Runners with the 3.0L v6. That was the only terrible engine Toyota ever made--plagued with head gasket issues.
The late 90's 4Runners with the 3.4L v6 are awesome vehicles.
Early 00's 4Runners with the 4.0L v6 are pricier, but larger, 3rd row, and more towing capacity.
MT4Runner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2013   #45
Learch's Avatar
Dundee, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 655
Body on frame, low range

I'd stick with a body on frame vehicle with a low range in the transfer case. A third row era Explorer meets both of these, but ground clearance is no more than an Outback. Also, the rear independent suspension has very little wheel travel. The Honda would probably be okay, but they are unibody no low range, however they do have a center differential lock that mimics a standard transfer case in 4Hi. I had a 2001 Durango for a while, and I liked it a lot. We moved to the Sienna for the added interior capacity and economy. Around town we gained a lot of MPG, but on our big trips the mpg was virtually the same between the 2 vehicles. I really like Grand Cherokees for offroad prowess, but they don't have as much interior space/ legroom as my 1995 Legacy wagon I daily drive in. My Dad's Suburban does everything well; low range, moderate offroader, tows great, and we can easily pile him, his wife, her daughter, my wife and I, and our two kids, plus a friend and have cargo room in the back still. I'm not an Expedition fan, I like Excursions, but you either battle fuel economy or higher maintenance costs with the V10 or Diesel. The Durango is third row, but with the third seat up there is little cargo space. Jeep Commanders have third row, but they are a love/ hate vehicle...
Learch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2013   #46
Fort Collins
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 129
Wow, people get really excited over their ride!...Me too.
I am going to add to the plusses for Toyotas. I have an 06 Sienna (110k) and a 98 4Runner that just rolled 190k, and I have enjoyed them a ton. I think a Sienna could get to just about anywhere you can take an Outback, there wouldn't be a loss there. And while I too was never too keen on getting a Mini-Van, once I made the jump, road tripping has gotten sooo much better. It is a very well thought out family mobile. My family of 4 kids nearly fills it up, but we love it. I have not towed anything with it, but I think someone covered that well a few posts ago. If you really need the extra ground clearance, 4Runners can get about anywhere, though the 3rd row would be tight. The van is my 4th Toyota, and I keep getting them since I do my own maitenence, and they run for a long time pretty trouble free.
Click image for larger version

Name:	Van.jpg
Views:	166
Size:	863.4 KB
ID:	5461
"If I'm not there, it means I'm dead...or late!" General W.R. Monger
co_bjread is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2013   #47
mrkyak's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 311
Dodge Ram 2500 diesel.seats 5 easy/. Diamond Creek take out, 25 day trfip, one cataraft, one kayak, one sup and all the gear.15 mpg.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_1903.jpg
Views:	128
Size:	117.3 KB
ID:	5462  
mrkyak is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2013   #48
boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 298

I have had a Honda Pilot for 6 years, 102k miles. I have been very happy with it. I have towed plenty of rafts and other things around and it did fine. When I go over the passes, 11,000+ with the trailer I am one of the slower cars. It doesn't bother me since that is a small part of my driving. Most of my driving is in the foothills. Daily driving, through all sorts of weather on 7 miles of twisting mountain roads. It has served my family well. We have 2 kids and have brought many kids on many trips. We have used the 3rd row of seats pretty regularly and been glad to have it. I wouldn't want to abuse it like I did my F150, but I have pushed it a few times and it has come through just fine.
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face.
shoenfeld13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2013   #49
montuckymonkey's Avatar
Kellogg/Newport Beach, Idaifornia
Paddling Since: 2012
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 31
I'm tellin ya...

Go look at used low mile 4x4 Sububans and 2000-2002 4x4 diesel X's they do everything your wanting them to do and ya can sleep in them to. I do drive my X everyday and short 5 to 20 trips mostly...yes the warm up thing is important and I do it everytime and I plug it in everyday as well but for me I have to remove snow/ice and that takes a couple minutes anyway...mileage is in 16 to 18 mpg range in town unloaded with the full size gas SUV's from what my research showed is that you get mid to low teens always and it goes down as you load them. Again I get 20+ on the hwy towing 3000 to 6500 lbs at 75-85 mph and in town it's 18 loaded or unloaded. Until I get over 6500 to 7500 lbs my X doesn't even know it's towing anything...I don't think it notices 5 - 8 people either. Yes diesel maintence is more money but the fact that it is less frequent I have found it to work out the same overall. this is my first diesel and I am extremley glad I went this route. I could have bought a 1/2 ton for what I use my truck for really but again I decided in the long run it would be better to have a truck that isn't working as hard doing the things I ask of it...being around and in the auto industry my whole life I have found the less stress you put on any vehicle the longer it will last.
montuckymonkey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2013   #50
montuckymonkey's Avatar
Kellogg/Newport Beach, Idaifornia
Paddling Since: 2012
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 31
Also remember...

100,000 miles and a diesel is just breaking in.

montuckymonkey is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Topic Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
How to buy a vehicle in Chile gohuge Whitewater Kayaking 0 10-01-2012 12:13 PM
Vehicle in the Arkansas Domar Dave Whitewater Kayaking 5 07-11-2011 04:26 PM
Awesome Vehicle that can handle the lifestyle? bldrmorgan Whitewater Kayaking 44 07-01-2010 12:06 PM
Best Vehicle for Kayaking/Rafting CUBuffskier Whitewater Rafting 19 11-18-2009 10:21 AM
Vehicle Help: Year vs Mileage FatmanZ The Eddy 11 11-03-2008 10:46 AM

» Classified Ads
2" Seat Riser Kit for NRS...

posted by penguin

Ever feel like you sit low in your NRS oar frame? I did, so...

12' 9" Jacks Plastic...

posted by Imlivinforever

12'9"x19" Jacks Plastic Cataraft for sale. No handles,...

Maravia 14 x 22 Cataraft...

posted by Music

2016 Maravia Custom Built 14 x 22 Cat... MEEEOOOWWW!! I...

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities

Copyright 2002-2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:24 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.