Teardrop and tiny home collide into rustic-modern Skyview camper
With three decades of building snowboards within a bare-eye view of the Colorado Rockies under its belt, Never Summer has conceded the battle against the year's first solstice, launching a trailer perfect for enjoying the mountains when they're not deeply layered in snow. Its stylish little Skyview trailer, a teardrop that doesn't quite drop or tear, can also be specced into a cozy, winter-ready micro-cabin for powder-chasing adventures. So whether you're a three-season explorer or "always-winter" diehard, the Skyview makes comfy mobile homestead.
Instead of sending its snowboard designs off to some faraway factory in China or Dubai, Never Summer has cultivated an industry-wide reputation for manufacturing right in one of snowboarding's most common stopovers: Denver, Colorado. It's a good problem to have when you start looking for ways you can apply that established US manufacturing know-how to another industry, especially when that industry has been running as hot as a raging bonfire. The US RV market may be cooling down in roughening economic waters, but it still seems like a solid summer gig for a snowboard brand.
Never Summer decided another copycat teardrop or squaredrop design simply wouldn't stand out in the jam-packed American (or even just Coloradan) tiny camping trailer market. So it looked to the world of midcentury modern architecture and product design for inspiration, creating something more unique, striking and colorful.
With the goal of optimizing interior space usage, the design team structured an interesting balance between camper and tiny home, styling a small trailer that would feel equally at home at an art show or a remote backcountry clearing. Not quite a parallelogram and not necessarily a trapezoid, the 11.9-foot (3.6-m) Skyview is perhaps best described as a distinctive quadrilateral prism beautifully colored in shades of earth and sky, and accented by rotated-chevron fins made of oiled red cedar. All at once, it's modern and classic, urban and backwoods.
The Skyview's shape is quite unusual, but its body shell construction is a classic teardrop pairing of powder-coated aluminum skin over top marine grade-finished Baltic birch, set on a welded steel frame and cushioned by a 3,500-lb (1,588-kg) HD torsion axle suspension. The 1,500-lb (680-kg) dry weight leaves 2,000 pounds (907 kg) of payload before hitting that max axle rating. The 14-in baby moon-hubbed steel wheels with all-terrain tires lift the trailer for 14 inches (35 cm) of ground clearance.
The Skyview's interior definitely shows the efficient space usage for which Never Summer aimed. At just under 48 inches (122 cm) tall, the cabin is well short of standing height, but offers plenty of room for sitting up and taking advantage of the sofa configuration of the convertible queen 5-in (12.7-cm) memory foam mattress. That mattress doesn't even fill out the entire floor of the Skyview, the way teardrop mattresses generally do, instead floating on the wood plank-look vinyl to leave space for packs and gear. The rustic wall paneling and Baltic birch shelves create a warm, woodsy atmosphere throughout, while the openable overhead skylight with screen and shade makes good on the trailer name.
Part of the reason the Skyview is roomier than other small two-person trailers is that Never Summer doesn't integrate a tailgate, side hatch or slide-out kitchen, instead relying on a simpler pairing of attachable outdoor shelves and a dual-burner portable gas stove. The shelves offer food prep, storage and stove space, and one is designed for indoor/outdoor use. Around back, a spare-tire-mounted table holds the sink basin.
Rather than enticing prospective buyers with a low price only to upsell with the "optional" equipment necessary to complete an actual camper, Never Summer offers a full package out of the gate with virtually no add-ons. That package not only includes standards like a 100-Ah AGM battery pack, shore power hookup and LED lighting, but also accessories like Rhino Rack cross bars, a rack-mounted RoadShower, a 270-degree Rhino Rack awning, 200-W solar capability, and a 1,200/2,400-W pure sine inverter. Available electrical plugs include six USB ports, two 12V outlets, a 110V GFI outlet, a waterproof outdoor 110V outlet, and a waterproof outdoor 12V outlet.
The Skyview is available for order now and wears a base price of US$24,900. The only add-on option that Never Summer currently offers is the $1,000 "Four Season Package" with a 5,000-BTU heat and air conditioning unit for interior climate control throughout the year. Never Summer does not go the way of several neighboring trailer builders in piling on huge amounts of available battery, so the climate control requires either shore power or a generator to run.
Source: Never Summer