Tentrax - There's No Place Like Home
For my wife and me, the options for traveling in our '95 Land Rover Defender 90 have always been limited by how creatively we could pack all of our gear. If we loaded too much on the roof rack, we risked compromising the handling by compressing the suspension and changing the center of gravity. And with an ARB fridge and a Powertank sitting in the back of the rig, what little space we had inside was effectively gone.
What we needed was an off-road trailer that we could tow just about anywhere; one that might even provide a comfortable night's sleep. Eventually, this took us to Tentrax sport utility trailers in Eugene, Oregon, where we spoke with owner Bob Mazziotti.
He explained that the Tentrax is available in All-Terrain and Boulevard models. The major difference between the two is that the All-Terrain is built for off-road use and the Boulevard is built for on-road use. The Tentrax All-Terrain is a lightweight, fiberglass tub with a boxed-steel, powdercoated frame and a Torflex (torsion bar) suspension that offers progressive torque action.
Weighing only 550 pounds, the tub provides roughly 24 cubic feet of dry, lockable storage. But even better is one of the unique options available with the Tentrax: a durable, weatherproof pop-up tent and a comfortable 4x8-foot bed that tucks away inside the lid of the trailer, leaving a lot of open storage space underneath.
Adding to the appeal of the Tentrax are further custom options. To begin with, each unit is handbuilt in Eugene, Oregon, using American-made parts. Each trailer can then be perfectly matched to your trail rig. So if you have, say, a Wrangler, you can order the Tentrax with matching taillights, identical paint, and wheels and tires.
Because of the well-thought-out design, the overall tongue weight is variable. Whether empty or full, the tongue weight is roughly 70 pounds. However, you can add weight to the tongue by adding cargo to the optional steel trays located along the length of the tongue. You can also counterbalance the tongue weight by adding accessories (and much more storage) to the class-3 receiver on the trailer's rear bumper.
After our Tentrax All-Terrain was delivered to the house, we scheduled a series of trips that took us from the sand dunes of Pismo/Oceano Beach to the rocks of Johnson Valley to the mud, snow, and river rock of our favorite Big Bear trail. For the purposes of this test, we loaded the Tentrax with 350 pounds of gear and added an extra 85 pounds to the tongue.