Outdoors

Taxa refreshes its tiny, funky multi-box camping trailer

Taxa refreshes its tiny, funky...
Taxa rearranges the kitchen, adds height-adjustable rack towers and sprinkles the 2021 Woolly Bear with a few other updates
Taxa rearranges the kitchen, adds height-adjustable rack towers and sprinkles the 2021 Woolly Bear with a few other updates
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At just under 11 feet long, the Woolly Bear is a compact base camp with plenty of storage capacity
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At just under 11 feet long, the Woolly Bear is a compact base camp with plenty of storage capacity
Taxa shows the Woolly Bear with a slide-out cooler here, but the front compartment also has a 12-V hookup for electric fridge/freezers
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Taxa shows the Woolly Bear with a slide-out cooler here, but the front compartment also has a 12-V hookup for electric fridge/freezers
The Woolly Bear won't hold a roof-top tent and bikes on top, but owners can add a hitch rack
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The Woolly Bear won't hold a roof-top tent and bikes on top, but owners can add a hitch rack
A battery box for a Group 24 battery, prewired outlets and LED lights are features on the Taxa Woolly Bear
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A battery box for a Group 24 battery, prewired outlets and LED lights are features on the Taxa Woolly Bear
The side opposite the kitchen has a large storage cabinet and spare tire
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The side opposite the kitchen has a large storage cabinet and spare tire
The new tower bars adjust to three different height levels, providing more or less space between the RTT and the cargo tray
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The new tower bars adjust to three different height levels, providing more or less space between the RTT and the cargo tray
The cargo tray runs the full length of the trailer top and has plenty of lash points for easily attaching things
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The cargo tray runs the full length of the trailer top and has plenty of lash points for easily attaching things
2021 Taxa Woolly Bear specs
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2021 Taxa Woolly Bear specs
The open space between the Woolly Bear's two boxes can hold firewood, jerry cans and other hard-to-fit provisions
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The open space between the Woolly Bear's two boxes can hold firewood, jerry cans and other hard-to-fit provisions
Taxa rearranges the kitchen, adds height-adjustable rack towers and sprinkles the 2021 Woolly Bear with a few other updates
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Taxa rearranges the kitchen, adds height-adjustable rack towers and sprinkles the 2021 Woolly Bear with a few other updates
View gallery - 10 images

After fully updating its Mantis and TigerMoth camping trailers, Taxa has turned its attention to its smallest model, the Woolly Bear. Taxa's little rolling tent-top toolbox looks much different than it did the first time we checked it out, sporting an "adventure trailer + base camp" design that's been refined after hours upon hours of hard time on the trail. Use it as a 21st century chuck wagon or throw a Thule Tepui roof-top tent (RTT) up top and make it a complete camper.

The Woolly Bear was still a prototype when we looked at it back in 2016, and it had the rough spots and question marks to prove it. The fold-out bike-carrying lid-cum-ground tent platform was certainly an eye-catcher, but Taxa eventually revised the design into a simpler, more conventional roof rack + roof-top tent combo.

In the past, Taxa used fixed towers to hold the RTT-supporting crossbars in place, but for the 2021 model, it makes its towers height adjustable. The new powder-coated steel bars secure at three different height settings, allowing users to adjust the height of the RTT or crossbars for the most optimal blend of low center of gravity and storage space.

When raised to full height, the crossbars clear plenty of space for taller gear to fit on the full-length cargo tray, which holds up to 600 lb (272 kg). Users can carry a kayak or surfboards on the tray, using the numerous perforations to tie everything down. At just 4.8 feet (1.5 m) high, the cargo tray keeps contents readily accessible, and the step-on grade fender provides a boost for those who need.

The cargo tray runs the full length of the trailer top and has plenty of lash points for easily attaching things
The cargo tray runs the full length of the trailer top and has plenty of lash points for easily attaching things

Also new for 2020 is a standard spare tire mounted next to the smaller body module over the fender. Taxa has widened the wheelbase slightly to 5.3 feet (1.6 m), with the aim of improving stability and tracking behind off-road vehicles.

The long kitchen hatch on the main body gets reorganized with updated interior plywood shelving for things like a dual-burner portable stove, cookware and cups. The full-length hatch door drops down to serve as the countertop.

The open space between the Woolly Bear's two boxes can hold firewood, jerry cans and other hard-to-fit provisions
The open space between the Woolly Bear's two boxes can hold firewood, jerry cans and other hard-to-fit provisions

The rest of the main body is sliced up into additional cabinets for general storage. The separate small box in back houses a slide-out sized for a 45-quart cooler or a fridge/freezer. For the latter, it includes a dedicated 12-V outlet wired to the battery (not included) that stores in the tongue-mounted battery box. Between the Woolly Bear's two body boxes, an empty space lets campers squeeze in large, awkward items that might not readily fit into the cabinets, such as firewood and jerry cans.

The Woolly Bear has packed on some weight since we wrote about a targeted weight as low as 700 lb (318 kg) five years ago, but at 1,270 lb (576 kg) dry, it's still still quite light for a camping trailer, designed to be towed by modest four-cylinder vehicles. Gross vehicle weight lists in at 2,100 lb (952 kg), leaving 830 lb (376 kg) of payload for the tent, gear, water, food and cargo.

At just under 11 feet long, the Woolly Bear is a compact base camp with plenty of storage capacity
At just under 11 feet long, the Woolly Bear is a compact base camp with plenty of storage capacity

The 2021 Woolly Bear has a powder-coated steel chassis and rides on 15-in steel wheels with all-terrain tires cushioned by a torsion-axle suspension. Additional features include various LED lights, 12-V and USB outlets, and a digital voltmeter. The trailer starts at $11,800, and available options include a three-person Thule Tepui RTT, 6-foot (1.8-m) awning and 5-lb propane tank with mount.

The 6.5-minute video clip below does a nice job of putting the microscope to the new 2021 additions and changes and the Woolly Bear's features in general.

2021 TAXA Outdoors Woolly Bear Walk Around

Source: Taxa Outdoors

View gallery - 10 images
2 comments
Michael son of Lester
This is an amazing trailer and I was really liking it until the $11,800 (15,137.04 CAD) price point came up. Add to this shipping, tax and import duties (1,967.80 CAD) license ($100 CAD) and the total comes to 17,204.85 CAD. That comes to a hefty chunk of change for a trailer that I have to add a tent to sleep in.
Mick O
Nice concept but aimed at the US market. I reckon that elevated strut system would last less than a day on any outback road down under. Too much weight above a struts that would vibrate until failure under relentless corrugations.