Monday, February 27, 2012

Timberline Range Camps

Man oh man, I have been waiting for this past weekend to come for some time now!  Back in December I was approached by Kelby Madsen (my brother), of Timberline Range Camps with a great idea.  First of all, we have been trying to find a time that all of the brothers could get together for a fishing trip to Fish Lake, Utah..  We have been trying for some time, but with all of us scattered across the state with busy lives...well, you can imagine it has been tough to do!  Kelby takes Timberline on the road all over the West, and has been the hardest to catch up with.  So, along comes this idea!  Let's fish for a weekend, and it will be a great opportunity to test out a Timberline Range Camp in winter conditions!  Sometimes you have to combine work and play to make it all come together!

I met Kelby just west of Fish Lake on Friday afternoon, and we got right to setting up the camp.  For this trip we would be fortunate to spend a night in the 24' "Legacy" model camp.  OK, I'm not going to lie...when Kelby pulled up my first thought was, "man, how are we all going to fit?  It just doesn't look that big."  I went to work helping him unhitch the trailer, and level it out, still doubting what kind of a night this was going to be trying to sleep 6 in the camp!  Then I stepped inside...

Wow!  Yeah, I was way wrong!  Immediately I started making comparisons to my 24' travel trailer.  Right off the bat it was easy to see that there was MUCH more storage space than I have in my camp trailer.  Much of this is made possible by features that allow items to stow away, such as the large dining table, a full sized bed (there is also a queen pillow-top bed at the front of the trailer) and 2 additional couch-type cushions that convert to beds.  All this tucked away until you need it, which gives you a large, wooden floor that is very striking when you do not need those extras pulled out.

It didn't take long for the boys to make their selves to home!
As I entered, to the right I found a nice little freezer/refrigerator, with a microwave in a cabinet above that.  That's right, these new range camps have some differences than those old versions sheep herders used years ago.  These camps are equipped for generator use, plumbed with gas, a water supply, toilet, shower, and sink!  Yep, everything you will find in a camping trailer...with one great addition...a wood burning stove!  Just like the old sheep camps you may remember, this trailer can be heated by a good old wood stove!  As an option, some models can also come with a cooking top/oven with the wood stove.  How cool is that?

There was still one more surprise in store.  As I went out to check the exterior storage, Kelby directed me to a bin on the right side of the trailer.  He lowered the lid, and out slides a Camp Chef 2-burner stove!  Talk about fast set up!  One of my dislikes with camping is getting my Camp Chef and all my accessories set up for cooking.  Well, with the Legacy this stove is always ready!  There is no need to hook the gas bottle up, it is plumbed to the stove, which glides out for access on rollers.  What a set up!

A while later Kelby, his son Austin, my son Braden, and myself were joined by our dad, Paul Madsen, and another brother, Brett Madsen.  So how was the room?  We had no trouble getting everyone fed, the slide out table provides plenty of room.  As for sleeping, for the couch cushions the arrangement is a little tight, but a great fit for kids.  The full sized bed, and queen pillow top provide for a great nights sleep!  What a night to test it in winter conditions!  A fairly strong breeze, and temperatures near single digits!  I can't say enough about the construction of these camps.  We started a fire in the wood stove, and we were soon opening windows!  We let the fire die, and went to sleep.  The furnace was set for 50 degrees, and it never kicked on all night.  Talk about insulation!  Also, we were not far from the highway (due to deep snow we had no choice) and we could barley hear cars as they passed by.  One thing I recall is my brother giving the wall of the trailer a hard "thump" with his fist.  I wouldn't dare do so in my camp trailer, fearing I would crack the material on the wall.  Not with these range camps!  Talk about solid construction.  I gave it a thump myself, and was shocked at how solid it was...I would dare say more solid than sheet rock walls in my house!  Great durability, and very nice trim features to give it a very appealing look!

I can't say enough about how impressed I am with Timberline Range Camps!  I don't know how many times I found myself saying that I am going to have my own before long!  Yep, already scheming on how to sell my trailer so I can upgrade!

I wish I could say I was impressed with the ice fishing!  It was a very slow day at Fish Lake, with only a few of us catching anything.  A couple of small splake, 3 good rainbows, a few perch, one small lake trout, and a sucker!  I still have to say, Fish Lake still attracts me as you have the opportunity to catch so many species of fish!  Our gear and our nerves also got tested to the max, with fairly cold temperatures, and wind gusts approaching 50 mph.  Once again the Eskimo "Fat Fish 949" performed very well under harsh conditions!  Got to love Eskimo ice fishing gear!

Many from this area are familiar with "sheep camp" style trailers, but you may have never seen them like this, and I'm sure some of our viewers have little knowledge of these western legends.  Timberline has some great information on their website:
 Click on the "History of Range Camps" tab to catch up on the history of the sheep camp!   It's great information, with some great photos depicting the range camp in the old west.  You will also find an "About" tab to learn more about the Timberline company.

 Timberline has a wide range of camps, with various options for modern conveniences...including ATV "toy hauler" options!  For the specs on the Legacy model that I have mentioned here, follow this link:

If you are a guide or outfitter you have seriously got to think about the Timberline Range Camp!  So many conveniences, with rugged, durable construction, which will also create a very authentic atmosphere for your business!  As for the rest of us that love the outdoors, what a great trailer for a quick get away, and so convenient for a family!  Make sure you visit Timberline's website for more details, photos, and information. 

Check back soon!  We should have more photos and video of Timberline Range Camps in action!  Thanks for setting up this awesome weekend Kelby!  I look forward to working with you and the staff of Timberline again in the future!