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Mr. Truck

I first saw the new Lakota HUT (horse utility trailer) at the All American Quarter Horse Congress in Ohio last October. Something different from other bumper pull Living Quarter trailers that I’ve seen over the years was a mechanical tip-out room. The tip-out panels open by hand with the help of hydraulic struts. This allows for the couch to fold out into a bed. The couch doubles as seating for the dinette.

There is a surprising amount of room in this unit, and all the necessities like a bathroom with toilet and shower; stove, refrigerator and sink ” what else would you need? It’s a trail rider’s dream. Some of the national forests and back country make a large LQ trailer impractical. Until now, the other solution was a truck camper and trailer. Lakota’s compact 2-horse slant with a folding rear tack room is well laid out and very similar to a large LQ. It even has the rear LQ access door to the first stall.

It’s not a stripped down trailer either, but a well-equipped, enclosed, lined and insulated aluminum, rear ramp model. The slant dividers are padded, the aluminum floor is covered with rubber mats. It comes with a 2,000 pound electric tongue jack, two 5,200 pound torsion axles with 16-inch wheels. The lights are LED. It has drop down feed doors, Sun Chaser awning, outside water spigot, outside speaker, light for the hitch and porch.

Inside the LQ are hardwood cabinets, linoleum floors, 2-burner range, 3.0 cubic ft. refrigerator and microwave ” a comfortable retreat after a hard day’s ride with AC, heat and hot water. This trailer has a 45-gallon water fresh water tank, grey and black tanks, deep cycle battery and two propane tanks.

I towed the Lakota with the all new 2007 Toyota Tundra. They looked good together, both in silver. Living Quarter horse trailers as well as toy haulers are tongue-heavy. When loaded with horses or ATVs, they balance out. But because of the empty tongue weight I’d suggest a weight distributing hitch for a 1/2-ton truck. A 3/4-ton truck or SUV would be ideal. I used a Hell-Ya hitch helper since I couldn’t add a weight-distributing hitch to a new trailer I didn’t own.

The Toyota’s 5.7L V-8 had no problems handling the Lakota. The Tundra was a double cab LTD model with the 6.5-foot bed and a factory tow package. This truck is rated to tow 10,300 lbs with it’s 4.30 axle ratio and 6-speed automatic. With electronic stability control, traction control and electronic brake force distribution, and the largest disc brakes on a pickup, the Tundra does all the work, and gives me time to play with the heated seats and JBL sound system.

In the last 2 years, 1/2-ton truck tow ratings have increased to 10,000 and to 11,000 pounds properly equipped, which allows more trailer choices like the Lakota Hut bumper pull horse trailer. Excellent value in the mid 20’s for a well equipped 2 horse slant load aluminum Living Quarter trailer. The amount of room will surprise you too.

Special thanks to Triple T Sales of Franktown (800-829-8643) for providing the Lakota trailer. The Horse model, “Fire Starter,” is an Arabian provided by Chuck Mangan and Castlewood Equestrian Center, (303) 660-9509 in Franktown.

Kent Sundling (alias “Mr. Truck”) spent 20 years wearing out pickup trucks as only a farmer could. With over 1 million miles pulling trailers, Mr. Truck has a unique collection of truck and farm stories that will educate and entertain. Mr.Truck gave up his bib overalls and John Deeres in his quest to save the farm and moved to the big city to sell trucks. After selling trucks for 10 years, this farmer now writes for eight magazines and owns over two dozen Web sites, helping folks find the “Right Truck.” If you have a question for Mr. Truck, you may contact him at his Web site, http://www.mrtruck.net.


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