Outfitter Caribou Camper on the Quadrasteer GMC with leftover capacity to tow a trailer,

Also Reviewing  TORKLIFT Frame Mounted Camper Tie Down.

The low profile aluminum framed Caribou Popup Camper from Outfitter in Longmont CO, is ideal for going to remote areas away from the crowds that find the Colorado campsites in the summer. Using the GMC Denali Quadrasteer all-wheel-drive, makes it even easier to go exploring or hunting farther in the wilderness. The Caribou was securely attached to the Quadrasteer with Torklift's Fastgun spring loaded turnbuckles and their frame-mounted tie downs. I love to get lost in the Rocky Mountains while on assignment. So we wondered in the woods on the south side of Lake Dillon, seeing are far we could go.

 
 

The compact Caribou goes under trees, threw most drive ins and of course has less wind resistance for better gas mileage than a hard side camper. Hard side campers are also famous for the side wind shuffle that keeps both of your hands firmly on the steering wheel as you suck coffee from a straw trying not to weave into traffic on the winding mountain roads. I try to tow trailers with all the review vehicles that are sent to me. With a light Caribou camper from Outfitter, I have enough of the trucks payload and trailer capacity left over to tow a boat or 2-horse trailer. The GMC Denali extended cab AWS has a trailer capacity of 10,300 lbs. The Caribou popup camper model C6.5 has a dry weight of 850 lbs.

Queen size bed and head room when you crank up the torsion assisted lift system for the roof, this is roughing it in comfort. There's 10 screened closable windows in the soft top so you can feel that great cool mountain breeze in July or check for bears or elk or teenagers out wondering in the woods.

Nothing like turning around in a campsite or boat ramp without reverse. The Outfitter Caribou we used was the C6.5 model for short beds. It has a 6.5' floor plan. There is also a 8' model. We reviewed the larger Apex model last year with the Nissan Titan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With the this model, you have plenty of room to step up into the camper with a trailer.

 

 All Outfitter models have;
  • One piece Rubber roof
  • Welded aluminum frame
  • Torsion assisted lift system for the expandable roofline
  • Vacuum bonded composite walls
  • Filon High Gloss, UV protected, white FRP Exterior (non-yellowing)
  • Dow block foam insulation
  • Insulated Weblon Soft wall
  • Solar Reflected Windows
  • 3 ft., 3-way refrigerator
  • Four corner Mechanical Jacks
  • Polar Aire ventilation system
  • Shurflo electric water pump
  • 3 Burner high output stove with Piezo ignition
  • 30 Amp power converter with trickle charge
  • Queen Size Cab-Over Bed
  • Under bed storage
  • LPG & Carbon Monoxide Detectors
  • One 20 to 40 lb LPG bottle with a gauge
  • Locking Fresh Water Fill
  • 110 Volt & 12 Volt Outlet
  • Oak Interior Doors
  • Washable curtains
  • CD player with AM/FM Radio
  • Sliding Cab Through Window
  • Insulated 21 to 32 gallon fresh water supply
  • Camper Installation Tie Downs with Center Guide
  • Complete Installation onto Truck
  • Electronic ignition 16 to 20K BTU furnace

Brian Ward (the boss) demonstrates raising the roof. Brian does his own field testing with Outfitter campers. He's the 3rd generation builder continuing the family business into the 4th decade.

Below shows I had room to park the Caribou next to the garage under the roof & at Sonic for onion rings & a strawberry shake. Try that with a hard side.

Forget backing down the boat ramp, just do a U-turn in a Quadrasteer. Horsetooth reservoir near Fort Collins CO is a well kept lake and campsite. It was clean, with a good mix of rocks, trees, flowers and Yuca in the campground. But you do have to pay a fee as it's not part of the National Parks or State Parks. It's part of Larimer County. I couldn't find a campsite that challenged the ability of Quadrasteer to back or turn tight. And you know I tried. As test dummy, that's my job, a fun job. Below shows the room at the rear of the camper.

An alternative to the gooseneck horse trailer with a Living Quarters, above. Lots of options, for camping with and without the horses, and a good place to lock up the grandchildren, no not in the horse trailer, the camper. Here at Lake Estes, a low profile Caribou camper and lightweight aerodynamic 2-horse Brenderup trailer. This combination worked superbly driving the winding roads in the Rocky Mountain National Park. The camper was secure with Torklift Fastgun lever action spring loaded tie down system and the Quadrasteer kept the trailer in unison.

For more information visit the Outfitter website at www.OutfitterMfg.com or call 1-877-223-0814. And they sell Torklift products.

Torklift Frame Mounted Camper Tie-Down System.

When I look at how a lot of slide-in campers are tied down, with bolts threw the front bed walls to another frame work inside the bed  and holes drilled threw the corner of the trucks rear bumper to tie the camper rear to, it worries me. The last really thick sturdy factory truck bed was in 1972. I remember my brother-in-laws new 1973 Ford F250, had a nice rounded bed wall flowing into the floor, I guess to make it easier to scoop grain out of. But the metal was thinner and when you hauled the bull to market with stock racks, he left a foot print were ever he stepped of the rack boards between the fenders. And now it's worse on all makes of trucks. Even in the nineties, a couple of men could lift a bed off a truck and carry it in good shape. Now you better have 6 men and a boy to keep the bed from collapsing while you carry it. Basically you need a sprayed in bedliner just to add some structural quality to the bed. And don't get me started on factory bumpers. In the Seventies and Eighties, we towed with the rear bumper. Now it's just decorative step. And you want to tie your camper to end of it?

Now the folks at Torklift have a system that lets you anchor your camper to the trucks frame, which makes since. The Torklift tie down arms stick out when you need to anchor your camper to them and then when you unload the camper, just pull the pins on the arms and you don't see the framework. I did use a pry bar a little to unfasten the rear bumper brackets and then slid the Torklift frame brackets into place and the bolt holes align well. I appreciate being able to use existing frame holes and bolts to attach the Torklift tie down system for campers. With boxed and sometimes hydroformed frames on newer trucks, the less you have to mess with the trucks frame the better. The GMC Denali Quadrasteer I used last summer came with nerf bar running boards as standard equipment. I did have to remove them for the Torklift frame brackets. If it were my truck, I would have welded the running board brackets to the Torklift frame brackets as an easy answer to using both. But Torklift does offer an adjustable tie down kit for running boards.

Front tie down truck frame mount. The framework of the Torklift bolts to the trucks frame for a solid anchor, without drilling holes. When you unload your camper, the Torklift arms come off with a quick pin and blend in to the trucks undercarriage. I used 18, 19 and 21 mm sockets on the 2002 GMC's existing bolts to attach the tie down arms. Torklift has a model for most trucks, even a model for the wider rear fenders on a Quadrasteer. Torklift's tie down system is heavy duty and has a lifetime guarantee.

The Parts

 

 

Rear Frame

 

 

Good looking system

 

 

Quick pin the arms to the frame bracket

Another helpful product Torklift just introduced is the Fastgun lever action spring loaded turnbuckles. Once you adjust them for your camper, they snap into place with a standard pin and are lockable. We put the Fastguns to the test off-road as they kept the Outfitter Caribou camper tight on the Quadrasteer GMC bed. This speeds up the camper loading/unloading process.

Fast Gun Lever-Action spring loaded turnbuckle, does remind you of Rifleman.

Torklift also has a SuperHitch receiver. This is the hitch you need with a 10-12 foot slide-in camper, if you plan on pulling a trailer too.

Caribou height allows you to go anywhere your truck can go. Go deep into the wilderness.

 

Easy to crank up the soft side.

Screen window and privacy closure, Velcro in

Quality counter & sink, with Shurflo water delivery

The vanity mirror and storage.

Ventilation times 2 roof vents plus 10 windows

Three burner stove with Piezo ignition The table pulls out and the dinette turns into a bed

I told you

Series 24 battery Easy access

Back door for refrigerator Propane tank with gauge Did I mention the 10 windows?

Exploring in comfort

Filon exterior looks great & will for many years.

The Outfitter factory is in Longmont CO Handmade in the USA, 150 a year, one at a time. I didn't have to use any special hitch, towing worked well with the camper.

Yeah that's me sneaking around trails

Fastgun lever action spring loaded turnbuckle
Brian Ward of Outfitter tried the Quadrasteer with a boat in tow. "It acted like the truck had a properly adjusted weight distributing hitch with sway bars, when it didn't. The boat stayed put when I tried to get it to whip. The truck and trailer worked as one.
  Vern Trujillo towed a 26' travel trailer with the GMC Quadrasteer. "The control in lane change with a trailer was great with no sway. Backing up the trailer was also easier. It's a truck I'd consider purchasing."

For more information visit the Outfitter website at www.OutfitterMfg.com or call 1-877-223-0814.

For more information on Torklift camper systems, visit their website at www.TORKLIFT.com or call 1-800-246-8132

For more information on Quadrasteer, visit www.QuadrasteerClub.com 

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