Outdoors

High Camp teardrop trailers wrap fine woodwork with aluminum skin

The High Camp teardrop features birch plywood construction with an aluminum skin
The High Camp teardrop features birch plywood construction with an aluminum skin
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The High Camp Trailer doesn't have a built-in entertainment center, but the available iPad mount makes it easy to add a compact one
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The High Camp Trailer doesn't have a built-in entertainment center, but the available iPad mount makes it easy to add a compact one
The cupholders fold up when not in use
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The cupholders fold up when not in use
The two integrated cupholders keep campers' drinks close at hand
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The two integrated cupholders keep campers' drinks close at hand
The cabin includes two adjustable LED lamps
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The cabin includes two adjustable LED lamps
A ceiling fan provides ventilation
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A ceiling fan provides ventilation
Upper storage cabinets at the foot of the bed
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Upper storage cabinets at the foot of the bed
The headboard includes large storage compartments for clothes and bags along with small, easy-access cubbies
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The headboard includes large storage compartments for clothes and bags along with small, easy-access cubbies
The High Camp trailer features birch plywood construction
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The High Camp trailer features birch plywood construction
The High Camp offers an aesthetic blend of aluminum and wood
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The High Camp offers an aesthetic blend of aluminum and wood
The gas struts make opening the hatch as easy as opening the tailgate on an SUV
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The gas struts make opening the hatch as easy as opening the tailgate on an SUV
The galley has a small built-in clock
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The galley has a small built-in clock
The stove and cooler slide out to make access easy
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The stove and cooler slide out to make access easy
Caron placed the cooler and stove side-by-side so that they don't get in the way of each other, a problem he had with other galley designs
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Caron placed the cooler and stove side-by-side so that they don't get in the way of each other, a problem he had with other galley designs
The galley includes two cabinets for storage
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The galley includes two cabinets for storage
The galley includes two cabinets for storage
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The galley includes two cabinets for storage
The three-burner cooktop offers plenty of space for cooking
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The three-burner cooktop offers plenty of space for cooking
The wood cooktop lid provides counter space
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The wood cooktop lid provides counter space
Inside the High Camp's galley
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Inside the High Camp's galley
Inside the High Camp's galley
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Inside the High Camp's galley
High Camp teardrop trailer
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High Camp teardrop trailer
High Camp teardrop trailer
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High Camp teardrop trailer
Since this photo was taken, High Camp has replaced the horizontal aluminum tank with a vertical setup
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Since this photo was taken, High Camp has replaced the horizontal aluminum tank with a vertical setup
High Camp says the 36 x 32-in (91 x 81-cm) doors were designed to make it easier to get in and out
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High Camp says the 36 x 32-in (91 x 81-cm) doors were designed to make it easier to get in and out
The High Camp's fenders are steel finished with a powder coating to match the aluminum body
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The High Camp's fenders are steel finished with a powder coating to match the aluminum body
The High Camp teardrop features birch plywood construction with an aluminum skin
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The High Camp teardrop features birch plywood construction with an aluminum skin

The High Camp teardrop trailer may be new to the market, but looking at it whisks you off to a world of intricate craftsmanship that all but went extinct decades ago. The shimmering aluminum shell protects a warm, inviting birch interior with a variety of smart details.

Like many a camping trailer designer, High Camp Trailers founder Dennis Caron gradually built a business out of his own personal love of camping and travel. Shortly after getting married in 1999, Caron quit his job in Manhattan and road-tripped across the US with his new bride, camping along the way. The newlyweds eventually landed on the opposite coast in Portland, Oregon, where Caron discovered the teardrop trailer and fell in love. He tells us that he would have given his right arm to have traded his two-person tent and pickup truck sleeping platform for such a cozy abode on his road trip. However, he also had some quibbles with the available designs and set out to address them.

Specifically, Caron found problems with the galley layouts of other trailers, so he designed his galley from scratch, starting with a set of automotive-style gas struts that make opening the hatch much easier. Inside, the three-burner cooktop and Coleman stainless steel cooler can be accessed with ease thanks to slide-out hardware. The cooktop is permanently plumbed to the 11-lb propane tank on the tongue and includes a hinged wooden cover that acts as extra counter space whenever the stove is not in use. The galley also includes two storage cabinets for pots, pans, food and dishes, along with two under-counter storage areas that hold the 100-Ah deep cycle battery plus a 30A power converter and added open storage.

Inside the High Camp's galley
Inside the High Camp's galley

The teardop trailer in general is a powerfully nostalgic design that immediately sends one into a daydream about roasting marshmallows and road-tripping to the beach ... even if one never actually lived those experiences as a kid. High Camp builds on that inherent nostalgia, offering a body that is both comfortably familiar and recognizably distinct. The shape shows the influence of the Tiny Camper, which Caron says inspired its profile, but the High Camp has a more cohesive, rolling form that gives it something of the presence of a shrunken Airstream.

When you pop open one of two lockable side doors, the cold, smooth exterior quickly gives way to the warmth of the 3/4-in (1.9-cm) birch plywood construction inside. The cabin is filled with a queen-sized, 4-in-thick (10-cm-thick) mattress. It offers plenty of storage space, including large storage compartments in the headboard, two small, open headboard cubbies for glasses and other small items, and upper cabinets. There's even a pair of fold-down cupholders. Ventilation is delivered by the sliding screen windows on the side doors and the adjustable Fantastic roof vent/fan with rain-sensing auto closure.

Below its stylish body sits a chassis welded from 2 x 2-in square steel tubing. The chassis houses the 7-pin wiring harness that controls the running lights, electric brakes, and battery charging from the tow vehicle's alternator. The wheels are secured to the frame by a Rockwell American 2,500-lb (1,134-kg) torsion axle. The teardrop measures 12 x 7 x 5.5 feet (L x W x H, 3.7 x 2.1 x 1.7 m), has a dry weight of 1,250 lb (567 kg) and a tongue weight of 165 lb (75 kg). The cabin measures 40 in (102 cm) from the top of the mattress to the ceiling.

Caron left his job as a business appraiser to launch High Camp about a year ago. His teardrop is available now starting at US$14,900, and High Camp also offers a variety of accessories, such as a solar charging system, battery monitor and custom iPad mount.

Source: High Camp Trailers

2 comments
The Skud
I'm picky, but I prefer to do my cooking out of the rain, perhaps a clip on canvas annexe, fastening to the trailer sides and the raised hatch?
Robert Walther
He took his wife camping, on his honeymoon, in a tent?
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