i was literally just about to order another set of zee's. hmmmm…
As boring as they are, it's hard to stray from Toyota for reliability and fuel economy.
I think we're down to highlander vs highlander hybrid vs sienna AWD.
Might be nice to have a cavernous vehicle for the odd time when we need it.
Thanks for the advice.
Xterra, rav4, escape are all too small, not much bigger than our little car.
Budget is about 30k, but hoping for less.
We tow a 17' bigfoot trailer in the summer, 2400 lbs dry and empty. Nissan frontier pulls it easily but drinks 20 L per 100 km instead of usual 13 when not towing.
we have 2 little monkeys and a dog, and an owes-me-nothing toyota prius with 300k that's constantly overloaded now that baby 2 has arrived. we have lots of hobbies that involve lots of gear.
having been scouring reviews, sounds like lots of good options out there.
good size cargo space (much more than prius, but don't need a suburban)
awd and decent ground clearance (4-low and off-road prowess unnecessary)
3rd row fold-down seating isn't important but might be nice
can easily tow 3000-lb travel trailer
good gas mileage
can't afford a new vehicle, so used
not a minivan (i know the sienna awd is awesome, but just no)
not a subaru (the new ones are great vehicles but they're still so ugly and they require expensive brake overhauls including calipers every couple years)
narrowed down to:
toyota highlander (maybe hybrid), dodge durango (new version), mazda cx-9, gmc acadia, ford flex or explorer (new version), acura mdx, bmw X5 (used).
would prefer a modern diesel for good mileage (especially towing) but can't afford mercedes or vw touareg or audi Q7. and i know their maintenance costs are high, especially the diesels. for some reason used bmw X5's are much cheaper and my friend's is really nice, but still seems a bit too fancy for us. above options all get mediocre mileage, though highlander is the best (but also the most boring vehicle).
anyone have personal good or bad experience with any of these, or other suggestions?
$580 incl taxes for a couple cords of quality dry wood is a typical price in squamish/whistler, but its an outrageous price anyway else (as with most things).
fir is really messy, so that likely accounts for some of the shrapnel. its easy to find, dries fast, burns well. alder is not bad, but a cord of that should be cheaper, it doesn't give off as much heat (similar to pine i'd estimate). there's birch around, but its less common. it packs way more heat (likely not quite as much as oak or maple, but much more than fir).
get a chainsaw and an old pickup and get your own wood, its easy and kind of fun. there's lots around, just scavenge fresh cut blocks. then you can build some trail too.
I think it depends what trails you like to ride. The gnarlier trails are going to be much more enjoyable on a bike with more travel and a slacker HA. It may take a couple of seconds longer to get up there but MTB'ing is all about the descent imo.
i struggle more going up than down, and i like long-ish rides, so i'm biased towards a good pedaller. i enjoy the challenge (and fear) of making up for it on the descents. most of my favorites in the north end of the corridor have tough climbs that access challenging descents (JTR, gravitron, UUA, etc). lots of undulating terrain up here too, nice to have a bike that flies when you get on the gas.
i share your perspective for short rides or challenging trails with easy climbs (squamish and fromme for example). to each their own.
we just did a friday ride up the callaghan valley on groomed xc ski trails on fat bikes and it was surprisingly kind of fun. as long as you're on firm snow they rode great. the are a chore to climb, but they get up just about anything if you've got the horsepower. the climb to journeyman cabin was surprisingly painless, and the rip down was very amusing.
the surly bud/lou combo was vastly superior over the various other combos in the group. no reason to go under 5". some of the 3-4" tires were breaking through the snow and bogging down.
fat bikes have a very narrow spectrum of functionality, imho. this is the first ride i enjoyed them on. i don't understand their appeal on dirt, nor in fresh snow (where they are very nearly useless, especially compared to skis, etc).
agreed. get a cheap dh bike for park smashing and a nice 5" bike for pedalling around the valley.
a modern 5" bike will make the hard climbs around here slightly less brutal, and will be capable of handling any of the valley trails. the nomad is overkill (both up and down), imho.
… Frame is a SC 5010, but running a 150mm Pike 26" with 26" wheels. Feels money! BB is ~11-15mm lower than the TRc frame it replaced…
this is weird but interesting. i've encountered 29ers in the past that i thought might benefit from 27.5 wheels to lower the bb, while giving more clearance for big volume tires, and slackening the HA with a slightly taller fork. tallboy, for example.
some 29 frames might even fit 27.5+ (2.8-3" tires on 40mm rims) wheels/tires while keeping more or less their same geometry. i could see the "plus" size standard becoming far more popular than fat bikes around here. after riding a fat bike, i suspect there's a happy medium that might work well for whistler/pemby hardtailers.