Use Caution Towing a Travel Trailer Into Steep Driveways

Updated January 2022

Towing A Travel Trailer

An oops is inevitable when you’re towing a travel trailer thousands of miles. There will be some sort of damage eventually. All you can do is be as careful as possible and hope for the best.

Part of living this lifestyle is accepting the fact that things can happen and will derail your journey in the blink of an eye. It’s always a good idea to give yourself extra time to make your next reservation.

After my visit to the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, I was making my way through West Virginia toward the Florida Keys for my November 1st reservation. I had 8 days to make the 1200-mile trip.

Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum Tour

I was traveling on a major interstate but needed to fill my gas tank. I exited to a small West Virginia town, fueled up, and took off again. Unfortunately, there was no re-entry ramp going in the direction I was headed so we had a little detour.

Making a Snap Driving Decision

Suddenly I was in a “lesser of two evils” situation. My choices were a street that looked impassible for someone towing a travel trailer or a steep incline into a parking lot where I could turn around. I choose the parking lot.

The Damage

I know it was the right choice given the circumstances but I drug the back end of my Airstream in the process. Ugh! It made the most awful noise.

towing a travel trailer

Under my Airstream’s rear bumper, there are two very heavy-duty, sacrificial metal fins designed to protect the trailer from this very situation. The picture above shows what they are supposed to look like. The image below shows what they look like now.

The sacrificial fins have been sacrificed. Nothing else was damaged so they clearly did their job. Later a friend bent them back into place with a sledgehammer. He said, “you’ve got one more drag in those”. I could have been much worse.

West Virginia Fall Foliage

Visited States Map Update

I was able to add more states to my visited states map. My rule for adding a state is that I have to spend at least one night in the trailer in a state before I can add it to my map. It’s a good rule because it often keeps me from driving too far in a day.

When faced with a steep driveway entry or exit, avoid it if possible, but if you must go that way do it slowly. I was able to see deep gouges in the pavement where I drug the back end of the trailer. I wasn’t the first and I’m sure I won’t be the last.

0 thoughts on “Use Caution Towing a Travel Trailer Into Steep Driveways”

  1. Sandy, My friend used a sledge hammer to bend them back. He says I have one more drag in them. I just wish Murphy and I hadn't been inside the Airstream when the hammering began.
    Have fun with those grand-babies!

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