Lumberjack's hard-edged teardrop trailer folds into a tiny cabin
Showing yet another style of compact Australian camper trailer with all-world ruggedness, Lumberjack Camper Trailers presents its latest, the Birdsville. The trailer looks like a hard-edged teardrop or squaredrop while towing, but its roof pops free and folds forward to create a living space much larger than the typical tear. It sleeps four people on a double bed and two bunks, offering comfortable living for the intrepid family of explorers.
Australian camper trailer manufacturers are quite adept at blending fabric and hard walls into shelters of innumerable sizes and forms. The Birdsville reminds us of the new X3 that Patriot Campers just released, albeit with a taller, more robust squaredrop hard body in place of a compact trailer box. For Lumberjack, the Birdsville fits somewhere between the recently launched Sheoak squaredrop (with available roof-top tent) and the company's deep lineup of flatter, longer soft-sided forward-folders.
On the road, the 17.7-foot (5.4-m) Birdsville is easily mistaken for a basic ruggedized teardrop trailer, its shape familiar from similarly framed squaredrops like the Off Grid Expedition. Like other tears and squaredrops, the Birdsville does in fact have two sleeping berths inside its insulated fiberglass walls, only those berths aren't side by side on a single mattress but stacked in dual bunk-bed format.
The Birdsville's hard-sided interior doesn't work on its own, though. Arrive at camp, unlatch the roof and fold it forward to reveal a tent that greatly increases living space. The front section of the tent is dedicated to the built-in queen-size bed, while the rear section opens up headroom over the bunks and floor. The upper bunk relies on the tent for ventilation, while the lower bunk has a dedicated window with built-in fly screen and shade. During the day, the bunk beds convert over into a bench seat. The trailer is optimized for families, two kids piling onto the bunks while the parents enjoy the comfort of the queen bed.
The Birdsville interior is great for sleeping, winding the evening down with some entertainment on the LCD TV or digital Bluetooth/CD stereo system, or spending a little time sitting and relaxing, but it's not really built to spend the bulk of the trip in. Instead, it pushes campers to spend their days outdoors, which is really the draw of camping to begin with. Cooking happens on the full slide-out kitchen with dual-burner stove and stainless steel sink. The pantry next to the slide-out has a fold-down cover/worktop and storage shelves, and the front toolbox on the other side of the slide-out kitchen has a built-in fridge slide. Up above, the L-shaped awning provides some shade and light weather protection. The canvas walls and flooring included as standard turn the awning into a full annex tent.
Down below its vibrant white, black and orange body, the Birdsville has a hot-dipped galvanized chassis, dual-shock independent suspension, 16-in tires and 12-in electric brakes. Other key specs include a dual deep-cycle battery electrical system with control panel, independent 80 and 40L stainless steel water tanks with skid plates, dual electric water pumps, and a rear-mounted spare tire that swings away for access to the rear entry door. The trailer measures 6.9 feet (2.1 m) in both closed height and width and weighs 3,090 lb (1,400 kg).
The Birdsville retails for AU$29,999 (approx. US$19,860), fully equipped. We hope to take a closer look at this new member of the Lumberjack family at the Victorian Caravan, Camping and Touring Supershow going on through Monday. We'll bring back more news and impressions from the show in the coming days.
Source: Lumberjack Camper Trailers