Author Topic: Ski racks for pickup trucks  (Read 10819 times)

the fixer

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Ski racks for pickup trucks
« on: January 21, 2014, 02:46:43 PM »
I saw this at a ski area on Saturday, unfortunately I didn't get a picture. A pickup truck with a ski rack sitting on top of the bed. http://www.autotrucktoys.com/ram/Mopar-OEM-Dodge-Ram-Bed-Mount-Ski-And-Snowboard-Carrier--PRD30239.aspx

My first thought was "why not just put the skis in the bed of the truck, isn't that what a truck bed is for?" Well, this truck (like the one in the linked pic) doesn't have a long enough bed because of the silly extended cab. So people pay tens of thousands for a giant truck that can't actually carry something that's 170-180cm long without spending another ~$500 to outfit it with a specialized rack.

(Granted, just throwing your skis/snowboard into a truck bed is not a great way to transport them because you can damage the bases/edges, but a simple ski/snowboard bag would solve that problem for less money and be more versatile)

Undecided

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2014, 05:47:34 PM »
At least it lets them carry something. I've never had a truck, but I've wondered what one does with those short-bed double-cab trucks.

greaper007

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2014, 08:58:28 PM »
I think there's just a bunch of goofy people out there that think accessorizing the hell out of your car looks cool.   I put a thule rack on my 03 vw golf, but only so I could carry 12' lengths of lumber (and my canoe) on top of it.    $300 was painful at the time, but it's more than paid for itself and I still get to enjoy decent mileage in a paid off car.

Jamesqf

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2014, 11:17:28 PM »
Well, a lockable ski (or whatever) rack for your pickup is nice, if say you plan to stop by the grocery store on the way home, and want to be sure your gear will be there when you get back :-)

The Guru

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #4 on: January 22, 2014, 08:22:00 PM »
I saw something similar once: a full size pickup, bought presumably to carry stuff....

...whose owner had installed a tonneau cover, rendering it incapable (or at least inconvenient) for carrying stuff, then....

...installed a hitch-mouinted bike rack to once again enable it to carry stuff.

Jamesqf

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2014, 10:26:42 PM »
...installed a hitch-mouinted bike rack to once again enable it to carry stuff.

The rack is actually not that silly.  Much easier to load, and bike doesn't slide around in the bed.

greaper007

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2014, 10:34:39 PM »
...installed a hitch-mouinted bike rack to once again enable it to carry stuff.

The rack is actually not that silly.  Much easier to load, and bike doesn't slide around in the bed.

Well....getting less than 15mpg while driving with a device that could have been installed on a prius that gets 50+mpg and probably cost less to purchase is sort of silly.

bikebum

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2014, 10:20:26 PM »
A buddy and I used to wrap our snowboards in a blanket and put them diagonally in his short truck bed.

the fixer

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2014, 10:26:22 PM »
I will admit I hadn't considered the advantage of being able to lock the skis to the rack, something you can't do if you just throw them in the bed of the pickup. I'd probably opt for a more general solution like a cap or cover, but both each have their drawbacks.

Jamesqf

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2014, 12:59:15 AM »
Well....getting less than 15mpg while driving with a device that could have been installed on a prius that gets 50+mpg and probably cost less to purchase is sort of silly.

Maybe.  But then, if the place you intend to start biking from is at the end of a dirt road that climbs about 2500 ft in 5 miles, and is rough enough that Jeeps get high-centered... Well, you're going to look pretty silly trying to drive your Prius up there :-) 

And my Toyota pickup averages better than 25 mpg.


GuitarStv

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2014, 07:39:53 AM »
Well....getting less than 15mpg while driving with a device that could have been installed on a prius that gets 50+mpg and probably cost less to purchase is sort of silly.

Maybe.  But then, if the place you intend to start biking from is at the end of a dirt road that climbs about 2500 ft in 5 miles, and is rough enough that Jeeps get high-centered... Well, you're going to look pretty silly trying to drive your Prius up there :-) 

And my Toyota pickup averages better than 25 mpg.

Yeah, but only pussies would start their bike ride at the top of the hill.  Real men park their Prius when it's too uneven to continue and saddle up the iron steed.

greaper007

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2014, 09:57:48 AM »
Well....getting less than 15mpg while driving with a device that could have been installed on a prius that gets 50+mpg and probably cost less to purchase is sort of silly.

Maybe.  But then, if the place you intend to start biking from is at the end of a dirt road that climbs about 2500 ft in 5 miles, and is rough enough that Jeeps get high-centered... Well, you're going to look pretty silly trying to drive your Prius up there :-) 

And my Toyota pickup averages better than 25 mpg.

I've driven my honda civic hybrid to the base of lots of 14ers that had 5-10 miles of dirt road to get there.   I might have to park a miler earlier than all the occasional usage suvs at the base, but I get to have an extra 2 mile walk in Colorado's beautiful mountains and I get 55mpg on the way there.   

With snow tires and a roof rack, I think I can count on my hands the number of times I wished I had 4wd or an suv or pickup in the last 10 years.

the fixer

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #12 on: January 30, 2014, 10:31:12 AM »
On my road trip across the country this summer there were several places that the high clearance of our van was required. The worst road was the access to the trailhead for Wetterhorn and Matterhorn in the San Juans, and there were a few others.

In Washington, the access road to Mt. Adams is quite poorly maintained, and high clearance comes in handy there too. I have seen people with Subaru Outbacks and such up there, but a Prius' ground clearance is way too low to make it.

The only free camping area I know of around Leavenworth, Washington is a couple miles up a narrow dirt road full of potholes. I think I went up there twice this fall, and would have gone to that campground more if I had known about it sooner. I have similar stories about looking for camping around Boulder Canyon in Colorado.

Several ski areas in the northwest, especially backcountry, are inaccessible to FWD sedans when there's lots of snow. Also, the snow chains available for tiny sedans are a joke because there's not enough room in the wheel well for anything except tiny cables, and you need hands the size of a Japanese person to put them on (speaking from personal experience).

I'm with Jamesqf that some serious outdoors people cannot get by with unmodified subcompact cars, and if the vehicles we need are used for nothing other than frequent access to the backcountry, it's not an inefficient usage.

I'm not advocating for SUVs though, those things are just dumb. My dream vehicle is a Suzuki SX4 with a lift kit, that would be perfect for all of the above and still get acceptable mileage. A Geo Tracker should also have no problem with any of the areas I've mentioned and it would be much cheaper.

greaper007

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2014, 11:34:39 AM »
For serious backcountry people (the kind that use their cars for their jobs) I agree.   99% of the people I know with 4wd don't really need it though.   

Beyond that, if I needed it.   I'd just get something old and cheap that has 4wd.   Maybe a classic cherokee or an 80s-90s full sized truck, and keep a sensible car for the majority of my travels.   You could get those cars for less than $5000 and insurance would be in the $20 a month range.   Who cares if it gets 5mpg if you only drive it 1000 miles a year.     Then you drive something like a newish civic around the rest of the time.

I just can't imagine having to pay $40,000 for a truck (along with increased registration costs and insurance) and suffer with 15mpg on my daily drives for the 5 times a year I actually needed it, yet that's what most people in Colorado seem to do.   Strange.

Jamesqf

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #14 on: January 30, 2014, 12:12:59 PM »
Yeah, but only pussies would start their bike ride at the top of the hill.  Real men park their Prius when it's too uneven to continue and saddle up the iron steed.

Oh, that's not the TOP of the hill, it's just the end of the road.  The hill goes up another couple of thousand feet.  It also gets you out of the hot & sagebrush into cooler with trees - much nicer for the dogs to run.

Beyond that, if I needed it.   I'd just get something old and cheap that has 4wd.   Maybe a classic cherokee or an 80s-90s full sized truck, and keep a sensible car for the majority of my travels.   You could get those cars for less than $5000 and insurance would be in the $20 a month range.   Who cares if it gets 5mpg if you only drive it 1000 miles a year.     Then you drive something like a newish civic around the rest of the time.

'88 Toyota 4WD pickup.  $2800 to buy (minus $1100 I got for the '84 that I'd had for years, but couldn't get to pass smog).  And averages 26-27 mpg, mostly driven up & down mountains, or heavily loaded (or both).  Well under $20/month for insurance & registration.  Most of the pavement and good dirt driving is done in a 70 mpg Insight.

Have to agree about the $40K pickups.  To my way of thinking, if you'd hesitate one second before loading the bed with horse manure, it ain't really a working pickup :-)

greaper007

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Re: Ski racks for pickup trucks
« Reply #15 on: January 30, 2014, 12:33:46 PM »
Yeah, but only pussies would start their bike ride at the top of the hill.  Real men park their Prius when it's too uneven to continue and saddle up the iron steed.

Oh, that's not the TOP of the hill, it's just the end of the road.  The hill goes up another couple of thousand feet.  It also gets you out of the hot & sagebrush into cooler with trees - much nicer for the dogs to run.

Beyond that, if I needed it.   I'd just get something old and cheap that has 4wd.   Maybe a classic cherokee or an 80s-90s full sized truck, and keep a sensible car for the majority of my travels.   You could get those cars for less than $5000 and insurance would be in the $20 a month range.   Who cares if it gets 5mpg if you only drive it 1000 miles a year.     Then you drive something like a newish civic around the rest of the time.

'88 Toyota 4WD pickup.  $2800 to buy (minus $1100 I got for the '84 that I'd had for years, but couldn't get to pass smog).  And averages 26-27 mpg, mostly driven up & down mountains, or heavily loaded (or both).  Well under $20/month for insurance & registration.  Most of the pavement and good dirt driving is done in a 70 mpg Insight.

Have to agree about the $40K pickups.  To my way of thinking, if you'd hesitate one second before loading the bed with horse manure, it ain't really a working pickup :-)

Something I can agree with.     A potential argument turns into an agreement, an internet miracle!