If your towing vehicle has a relatively low weight capacity, or if you’re just apprehensive about towing a large travel trailer, fear not.
There are plenty of options out there for space-conscious camping enthusiasts. Read on to learn how you can seek out the best bunkhouse travel trailers measuring under 26 feet in length.
- Forest River Flagstaff Micro-Lite 25LB
- KZ Sportsmen Classic 181BH
- Jayco Jay Feather 7 19BH
- Lance Camper 2185
- Livin’ Lite Camplite CL16BHB
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Finding The Best Bunkhouse Travel Trailers: A Buyer’s Manual
What Is A Bunkhouse Trailer?
The term “bunkhouse” refers to the unit’s floor plan, which includes at least two bunk beds. These are usually (but not always) relegated to the rear of the trailer. Some larger units will also include a master bedroom area with a full or queen-sized bed.
Benefits Of Bunkhouse Trailers
What benefits do bunkhouse trailers have to offer? Plenty, as it turns out. While the layout may seem like a broad, unspecific reason for choosing a certain type of trailer, it can add immeasurably to your camping experience.
- Privacy—Having a separate sleeping area ensures that the whole family can travel together in comfort
- Convenience—No need to transform the dining table into a bed and back again
- Ease of transport—Bunk beds are space savers, making the trailers easier to tow
Also, bear in mind that if you purchase a bunkhouse travel trailer that’s under 26 feet in length, the unit will be more compact and maneuverable. This will give you more options when it comes to choosing campgrounds and RV sites for your rig.
Features To Look For
In order to choose the trailer that best suits your needs, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with a few basic guidelines. Here are the things that should be foremost in your mind as you begin your search.
This is arguably the first factor you should consider when making any type of purchase, but it’s especially important when you’re selecting your home away from home.
Although it’s certainly possible to find a bunkhouse-style model at a budget price, as a rule, you should invest in the highest-quality trailer you can afford.
There’s a good chance that cheaper brands have skimped on material and appliances in order to keep costs low, which means the trailer is likely to show early signs of wear and tear.
The interior layout of the trailer should have a natural flow, making it easy for you to move through the space without bumping into the furniture and appliances. While this can be a scarce commodity in smaller models, the quality brands should offer both form and function.
Similarly, you should make sure that the unit is large enough to accommodate everyone in your group. If you’re looking for a bunkhouse configuration, you’re probably planning on traveling with your family, so keep the dynamics of the group in mind when you’re checking out floor plans.
Also, if the bunk beds are going to be used by adults, you’ll need to ensure that they’re long enough to accommodate taller frames.
Are you planning on taking your travel trailer on the road during the winter months? If so, make sure the unit is equipped to withstand frigid temperatures. Some models might require a separate “arctic package” to make the conversion complete.
Most travel trailers are outfitted with basic furniture, along with kitchen appliances and bathroom facilities.
Some high-end models, meanwhile, will also include special features like big-screen TVs and sophisticated awning fixtures.
While you might appreciate these benefits, they’ll also contribute to the overall cost and upkeep of the camper. Keep that in mind before you make a decision.
Best Bunkhouse Travel Trailers Under 26 Feet: Product Review Guide
Forest River Flagstaff Micro-Lite 25LB
As the name suggests, this trailer is exceptionally lightweight for its size, with a dry weight of under 5,000 pounds. That makes it a great fit for most medium-duty trucks, SUVs, and minivans.
The bunkhouse has a double-bunk configuration, with beds measuring 48 inches wide by 72 inches long. The Murphy bed in the master bedroom area is only slightly longer but wide enough to accommodate two people.
Two wardrobes on either side of the Murphy bed offer ample storage space. The dinette can be converted into a bed that sleeps an additional two people.
This unit features attractive driftwood interior features, a ducted furnace, and a 13.5K-BTU air conditioner (with the option to upgrade to 15K).
Its kitchen area is well-appointed and easy to traverse, and there’s a generously-sized TV situated just above the dinette. The aluminum construction is exceptionally sturdy, despite its low weight.
If you’re looking for a modestly-sized unit that will be right at home in campgrounds or RV parks, the Flagstaff Micro-Lite 25LB could be just the ticket.
Length: 25 feet, 11 inches
Height: 10 feet, 4 inches
Width: 96 inches
Dry Weight: 4626 pounds
Sleeps: 6 people
Fresh Water: 58 gallons
Gray Water: 30 gallons
Black Water: 30 gallons
Awning Size: 18 feet
KZ Sportsmen Classic 181BH
This unit doesn’t offer quite as much living space as the Forest River Flagstaff series, but as smaller units go, it’s worth a look.
First off, we should mention that the majority of the interior space is taken up by the generously-sized beds.
The two bunks measure 28 by 75 inches, which should be long enough to accommodate most adults; while the bed in the main sleeping cabin measures 54 inches wide and 80 inches across.
There’s also a small dinette that can be converted into a fifth sleeping area, capable of accommodating two more people (preferably children, as the space is a bit cramped).
The Sportsmen Classic 181BH passes our size test with flying colors, measuring just 20 feet and 9 inches long.
That gives it additional points in the maneuverability department, especially since its dry weight is just 3000 pounds.
Note that its freshwater tank tops off at just 20 gallons, so long-term boondocking is probably out of the question.
Still, campers who prefer to spend the majority of their camping trips enjoying the great outdoors should find plenty to love about this unit.
Length: 20 feet, 9 inches
Height: 9 feet, 4 inches
Width: 7 feet
Dry Weight: 3000 pounds
Sleeps: 6 people
Fresh Water: 20 gallons
Gray Water: 15 gallons
Black Water: 15 gallons
Awning Size: 14 feet
Jayco Jay Feather 7 19BH
The Jayco Jay Feather 7 19BH is one of the company’s more recent models, meaning that its features are impressively up-to-date.
Like the previous two listings, it offers a double-bunk configuration, with a queen bed in the master bedroom and a dinette that can be converted into another bed (note that the dinette sleeping area is designed for just one person).
As far as layout is concerned, it has more in common with the Sportsmen model than with Forest River’s offering, although it is slightly longer at just over 22 feet.
The sleekly designed front profile of the Jay Feather gives it aerodynamic capabilities that are ideal for easy towing.
Wood cabinetry and vinyl plank-style flooring lend the interior a sophisticated appearance and hold up well to repeated use. The power awning is an especially useful feature. Before you decide to buy, check with the seller to find out what upgrades might be available in the future.
Length: 22 feet, 2 inches
Height: 9 feet, 7 inches
Width: 8 feet, 1 inch
Dry Weight: 3060 pounds
Sleeps: 5 people
Fresh Water: 25.6 gallons
Gray Water: 25.4 gallons
Black Water: 25.4 gallons
Awning Size: 13 feet
Lance Camper 2185
If you’re interested in keeping your carbon footprint as small as possible, this offering from California’s Lance Camper should be right up your alley. All of the company’s models are constructed to be toxin-free and ecologically friendly, and they’ve been turning out quality units for more than five decades.
This is a hefty unit, designed for larger families or groups of friends who want to hit the road together.
The bunkhouse boasts a triple-bunk configuration, with beds that are roomy enough to accommodate adults, and the dinette area can host an additional two sleepers.
The queen-sized bed in the master suite can also be configured as a sofa to open up space (note that you’ll have to ask for this option in advance).
Intriguingly, the bunkhouse can also be converted into a storage area, perfect for holding bicycles or other camping equipment. Be aware that the 2185 is fairly heavy for its size, so you’ll need a vehicle with a decent towing capacity.
Length: 25 feet, 8 inches
Height: 10 feet, 2 inches
Width: 8 feet, 3/4 inches
Dry Weight: 6000 pounds
Sleeps: 7 people
Fresh Water: 45 gallons
Gray Water: 45 gallons
Black Water: 45 gallons
Awning Size: 18 feet (doesn’t come standard; available as an add-on)
Livin’ Lite Camplite CL16BHB
Although the CL16BHB has a compact appearance from the outside, you’d never guess it if you’d only seen the interior.
Although it measures just 20 feet long, the layout makes it easy to maneuver through the space without tripping over anything.
The kitchen and bathroom facilities are generously appointed as well, with vinyl flooring that’s easy to clean—an essential commodity in small spaces. The benches in the dinette area feature vinyl upholstery as well, which makes cleanup duties even simpler.
Unlike the other units on our list, this one doesn’t include a separate master bedroom area—the double bunks and the converted dinette are the only sleeping spaces available.
That means the CL16BHB can only sleep four people, making it a no-go for large groups. For couples or small families, however, this unit has plenty to offer.
Length: 20 feet
Height: 10 feet
Width: 7 feet
Dry Weight: 2870 pounds
Sleeps: 4 people
Fresh Water: 26 gallons
Gray Water: 25 gallons
Black Water: 25 gallons
Awning Size: 10 feet
Although we would recommend any of the travel trailers listed here, the KZ Sportsmen Classic 181BH is our favorite.
As the name suggests, it’s a classic no-frills travel trailer that’s designed to embellish the camping experience, rather than replace it.
That said, the large and comfortable beds are the main reasons for its status as number one. It can be difficult to get a good night’s sleep in a trailer this small and maneuverable, but the 181BH manages to check off all the appropriate boxes.
Best of luck, and happy camping!