As anyone who loves traveling in a towable will tell you, your choice of one boils down to how you prioritize certain things. You can have a large trailer that offers all the comforts of home, with accommodation for the entire family and all types of fancy features, but you're looking at awful mileage, additional storage fees, and maybe some other vehicle than your daily driver. Or you can have the smallest, most basic trailer, and you'll get good mileage, a higher degree of mobility, the ability to tow with a smaller vehicle, and better garageability.
There are some in-between options, but they suitable options if you're a weekend warrior or an occasional traveler because they entail even more compromising on your part. And then, there's the TrailManor.
Bring the glittery rainbow confetti because, unlike the mythological horse creatures, the TrailManor exists in real life. As noted above, it's been around since 1983, with several owners and location changes. The company started out in Tennessee, moved to Nebraska, and is now in South Dakota, and boasts a network of dealers throughout the country and, from what we can tell a very loyal fanbase.
Currently, TrailManor offers four models (2518 Series, 2720 Series, 2922 Series, and 3124 Series), each with several possible layouts and a series of optionals. The name of each refers to the dimensions, so the smallest is 25 feet (7.6 meters) long at camp and 18 feet (5.5 meters) long in road mode, while the largest is 31 feet (9.4 meters) and 24 feet (7.3 meters), respectively. They're all based on the exact pop-up mechanism with springs and latches, are single-axle, and exceptionally lightweight.
TrailManor is able to offer such a low weight by building the body differently from other companies. For starters, the lower and upper parts are separate entities. Secondly, they're both made with a sheet of laminated closed-cell foam sandwiched between aluminum sheets. Even the walls, the counters (which have a faux marble appearance), and the floor are made of laminate to shave off weight but not compromise on durability.
In one layout, the 3124 Series can sleep as many as six people on two king-size beds, one at each end, and the convertible dinette. It also offers a full kitchen with storage on either side, a full dry bathroom with a soaking tub, and even a wardrobe with hanging space. The only thing more impressive than the presence of these features on a pop-up trailer is the fact that they require assembly at camp.
The interior also requires assembly, from latching the front door into the correct position to positioning the insulation flaps throughout the space, popping up the bathroom (what a strange phrase to type!), and hanging the cupboards on their hooks.
It sounds like very hard work in writing, so TrailManor has a video tutorial that shows it's not that complicated. It might take some getting used to, but the system of springs and hooks is designed to be fool-proof if somehow patience-testing. Admittedly, the entire operation becomes more taxing once you add your possessions in all those pieces of furniture you have to move around, or if you're in a rush to get set up at camp, for whatever reason.
The smallest and most basic TrailManor trailer starts at a hair over $32,000. The company says you should expect an increase of just 10% in fuel consumption over 100 miles (161 km) while towing it – just to put things into perspective when you're budgeting. But we reckon you can't put a price on the looks and the attention you'll be getting when the moment comes to transform your little box into a proper mobile home at camp!