Fly! Wrigley Fly!

Wrigley and Meghan travel to competitions with their StowAway Hitch Cargo Carrier

Wrigley jumped over 26 feet to land the longest jump of the Dock Dogs Regional Championships in August

The farthest dock-jumping Weimaraner in the history of the sport, Wrigley, owned and trained by Meghan Williams, didn’t seem to be a born leaper. He started late in life (4 years of age), never swam before, and had to wear a life jacket to dock-jumping class.

But don’t tell him that. Wrigley just leapt away with two titles at the Dock Dogs North Central Regional Championship in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, August 8-10, 2014.

“It’s not natural for Weimaraners to jump into water,” reports Williams. Given this, and the fact that there are only ten competing across the country, Willams calls Wrigley’s success “astonishing.” At 9½ years of age, for example, Wrigley was the most decorated veteran jumper at the regional championships, with invitations to compete in the World Championships. His average jump is 25 feet; his farthest is nearly 28.

To travel to competitions, Meghan, Wrigley, and their family of four pack themselves into a small Trailblazer. “We wouldn’t be able to go anywhere without our hitch cargo carrier,” says Williams. “We’ve got two children and Wrigley in the back of the car. Everything else goes in the StowAway. It’s incredible.”

‘Everything else’ includes suitcases, chairs, all of Wrigley’s gear – leashes, collars, toys, dog food, and water bucket, plus a 24-pack of water bottles for the family, and more. “It’s amazing how much stuff will fit in there,” says Williams. “Once we put in a double stroller, and they’re huge!”

Meghan and Wrigley after the toss

Meghan has perfected the timing of the toss that enables Wrigley to jump nearly 28 feet

The wife, mother of two, full-time employee, and Wrigley’s trainer/partner, Williams is a busy woman. Add to that, her skill at throwing Wrigley’s toy off the dock is 50% of the team effort that has brought them so much success.

Kudos to Wrigley and Meghan for these amazing results at the Dock Dogs Regional Championships, where they competed in Big Air Elite and Big Air Veteran Divisions:

  • 1st place in Elite Division, earning a World Championship Invitation
  • 1st place in Veteran Division, earning a World Championship Invitation
  • At 9-1/2 years old, Wrigley out jumped every single dog at the competition, with an incredible 26’1″ for the longest jump of the weekend – of all dogs, all ages
  • Re-titled himself into the Super Elite Division (25’+ average) by having countless jumps over 25′ during the weekend competition. (This has only happened a handful of times in the history of the sport)
  • 16th overall world ranking in Big Air (out of 600 dogs)
  • Ranked 2nd in the World for DockDogs Worldwide Veteran Dogs
Wrigley and Meghan travel to regional and national championships with the StowAway Hitch Cargo Carrier

Wrigley always travels with the StowAway Hitch Cargo Carrier

Where’s Wrigley Going Next?

Wrigley and Meghan’s next event will be September 6-7 in Springfield, Illinois at The Super Retriever Series. They will also be jumping in Carol Stream, Illinois at the Ultimate Air Dogs on September 14. Follow them on their Facebook page, and the StowAway Facebook.

 Congrats Wrigley and Meghan! All of us at StowAway Hitch Cargo Carriers are so proud of you.

Cornhole: How to Play the Hottest New Tailgating Game

September 4th, 2014 | Posted by Pacrec in Tailgating | Tailgating Grill | Teams and Events - (Comments Off on Cornhole: How to Play the Hottest New Tailgating Game)
Cornhole tailgating game

Cornhole is the #1 tailgating game in America. Photo courtesy of Victory Tailgate

In the olden days, we used to throw around a football at tailgate parties and call that good for gaming. Not anymore. Tailgaters today require a most diverse and sophisticated “palette of choices”. (As opposed to “palate of choices”, which requires special menus. But more on that – and the best tailgate hitch grill on the market – another day.)

According to the folks at Infographics Mania, who illustrated a national survey, cornhole is the most popular game at tailgate parties these days. (Other than the game of football going on inside the stadium, of course.) Ladder Ball, also known as the – ahem – “balls toss” for reasons that will become apparent once you’ve seen it, comes in second, followed by Beer Pong. Then comes the Washer Toss, in which players attempt to throw large metal washers into a small hole.

Seeing as cornhole is # 1 in the competitive arena of tailgate parking lots, I decided to take a closer look at this phenomenon, which reportedly originated in the Midwest, where reserves of whole kernel corn are available in abundance. The corn goes in a bean bag, which is thrown in the hole on the board. Ergo, “cornhole”. Imagine a group of farmers sitting around one evening, wondering, “What are we going to do with all these extra kernels of corn laying around?” Answer: “I know. Let’s sew them inside little square bags and throw them into a hole on a big board. Like horseshoes, except not.” Thus was the game of cornhole born. (except maybe not.)

At any rate, cornhole is great for the entire family, according to the folks at VictoryTailgate.com. “Cornhole, also known as ‘tailgate toss’, ‘bean bag toss’, ‘baggo’, ‘corn toss’, or just simply ‘bags’ is a lawn game in which players take turns pitching cornhole bags (duck cloth bags filled with whole kernel corn) at a raised wooden platform with a hole in the far end. There are several versions and sizes but the most well-known size is 2 feet wide by 4 feet long with a 6 inch hole centered 9 inches down from the top. The surface sits 12 inches high off the ground in the back and 4 inches high in the front. A corn bag in the hole scores 3 points, while one on the platform scores 1 point. Play continues until a player reaches the score of 21. The game can be played as either doubles or singles and uses two boards with 8 bags (4 of one color and 4 of another).

“Ok, so why is it fun? It’s fun because the entire family can play. It doesn’t matter if you’re 8 years old or 80 years old. Just about anyone can play. It’s great for parties, special events, tailgating, or just for some fun in the backyard to get your family out of the house every once in a while. It’s easy to learn and can be challenging at any skill level. You and your opponent alternate throwing the 8 bags at the hole, which almost always results in some humorous situations and/or precise throwing strategies at the higher skill levels of play.”

You can even order custom cornhole boards and bags created in your team colors, with logos from all the college football, NBA and major league baseball teams.

Whoever your team is, and whatever your favorite tailgating game might be, we invite you to share it on our Facebook Community Page. Happy tailgating!

Friends, Food, Tradition (& Grilling): A Winning Tailgate Recipe

September 1st, 2014 | Posted by Pacrec in Tailgating | Tailgating Grill - (Comments Off on Friends, Food, Tradition (& Grilling): A Winning Tailgate Recipe)
Ducks-closed-3-women

Oregon Duck fans are setting the stage with the Tailgate Grill Station

A great friend and all-around great person, Joni Carlson is an avid booster of the Oregon Ducks football team. She bakes cookies for the players.  She serves on the Oregon Club board of directors. And she tailgates from dawn ‘til dusk.

“Tailgating is a great way to be a part of the college football scene,” says Carlson. “At Autzen, everyone is your friend when you get there.” Carlson has been tailgating for 30 years with the same four or five families. After a week of preparations, the crew pulls into the stadium parking lot at about 10am on game day. “Then we roll out the Astroturf and the fun starts!”

If you wander onto Carlson’s patch of Astroturf, you’ll find green and yellow flowers, and matching balloons, cups, plates, silverware and chairs. Everyone sports clothing head-to-toe in team colors, of course.  They grill everything from tri-tip to burgers and dogs, and Carlson makes duck-shaped sugar cookies frosted in bright yellow confection called Quackies.

“The three main ingredients to successful tailgating are friends, food and beverages,” says Carlson. Having perfected the tailgating scene over three decades, Joni is willing to offer up her recipe for “Winning Poppers,” the crew’s post-win tailgate tradition.

Banana peppers tailgating recipe

Photo courtesy of RecipeGreat.com

Nelson’s Winning Poppers

  • Fresh banana peppers, sliced down the center, seeds removed
  • Fill with:
  • Jalapeno cheese, shredded
  • Bay shrimp, rinsed and dried
  • Cooked Italian sausage (optional)
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Squeeze of fresh lime

Grill on barbecue, seam side up, until cheese is melted and skin is softened.

 

If you’re looking for a great grill to take to the tailgate party, check out the Tailgate Grill Station from StowAway, with a Cuisinart Grill and SwingAway Frame.

Trailer hitch tailgate open frame

The Tailgate Grill Station attaches to your trailer hitch, pivots to give you access to the rear of your vehicle, and creates a perfect outdoor grilling space

  • SwingAway Frame: Pivots 90°/180° and locks to create a safe and convenient grill station
  • More Space: The grill stays outside your vehicle to create more space inside – and keep gas and grill odors outside
  • Extras Included: Cuisinart Grill, commercial-grade cutting board, patented Swingaway frame, rack for your cooler/tailgate gear, and hitch tightener
  • Hitch Grill or Tabletop: Grill converts to a tabletop for homegating, camping, fishing and hunting
  • Best Warranty: 10-year warranty on the Swingaway Frame & Rack; 3-year warranty on the Cuisinart Grill

Tailgating Grill Recipe: Sesame Shrimp

August 29th, 2014 | Posted by Pacrec in Tailgating | Tailgating Grill - (Comments Off on Tailgating Grill Recipe: Sesame Shrimp)
Sesame Shrimp for the Tailgate Grill Station

This tangy recipe is great on the grill at tailgate parties

I tried out this recipe last weekend on my Tailgate Grill Station (though I took off the Cuisinart Grill and put it on the back patio, lickety split) for more of a “homegating” experience.

Anyway, the recipe was fantastic. Tangy, sweet and flavorful. I can highly recommend it for your next tailgate party.

The recipe comes from former NFL tight-end, Reggie Kelly, who certainly knows his way around a football field, and also has a terrific line of barbecue and other sauces that you can buy on the world wide web from KYVAN Foods.

With this recipe, I sprung for the jumbo-jumbo shrimp, because they have the best flavor, and grilled for 4-5 minutes on each side. Yum City!

KYVAN™ Sesame Shrimp

  • 2 lbs. jumbo shrimp
  • 1 cup KYVAN Sesame Garlic BBQ Sauce
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped

Season shrimp with extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. Refrigerate up to one hour. Cook shrimp on grill set to medium heat, 2-3 minutes per side. Remove from grill and in a large bowl combine with Sesame Sauce and toss thoroughly. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and serve. Enjoy with fresh vegetable and rice.

Recipe and photo courtesy of KYVAN™ Foods.

 

Trailer hitch tailgate open frame

The Tailgate Grill Station attaches to your trailer hitch, pivots to give you access to the rear of your vehicle, and creates a perfect outdoor grilling space

If you’re looking for a great grill to take to the tailgate party, check out the Tailgate Grill Station from StowAway, with a Cuisinart Grill and SwingAway Frame.

  • SwingAway Frame: Pivots 90°/180° and locks to create a safe and convenient grill station
  • More Space: The grill stays outside your vehicle to create more space inside – and keep gas and grill odors outside
  • Extras Included: Cuisinart Grill, commercial-grade cutting board, patented Swingaway frame, rack for your cooler/tailgate gear, and hitch tightener
  • Hitch Grill or Tabletop: Grill converts to a tabletop for homegating, camping, fishing and hunting
  • Best Warranty: 10-year warranty on the Swingaway Frame & Rack; 3-year warranty on the Cuisinart Grill

Let the Games Begin! And Take Your Tailgate Grill Into the End Zone

August 28th, 2014 | Posted by Pacrec in Tailgating | Tailgating Grill - (Comments Off on Let the Games Begin! And Take Your Tailgate Grill Into the End Zone)
trailer hitch tailgate grill

Fans at Notre Dame gather for tailgating reverlies

With football season upon us, I found myself wondering who first thought up the idea of tailgating. Who woke up one morning and said, “Hey, I know. Let’s drive our rig to the parking lot, pull out a cooler of beer, slap some dogs on the Hibachi, and pre-function ourselves into a frenzy!”?

As it turns out, the first partisan-based pep rally/picnic in America can be traced to the Civil War. Stephen Linn, in The Ultimate Tailgater’s Handbook (Rutledge Hill Press) explains, “Consider the Battle of Bull Run in 1861. Enthusiastic Union supporter from the Washington, D.C. area arrived with baskets of food and shouts of ‘Go Big Blue!’ to watch the opening battle in America’s Civil War. Historians generally agree this was a case of the right idea at the wrong time, war not being a spectator sport. Still, for those who attended, there was socializing and tradition, tension and excitement.”

Most legends, however, set modern tailgating firmly in 1869, when the first football game was played between Rutgers and Princeton in New Brunswick, New Jersey (Rutgers 6, Princeton 4, FYI). Fans traveled to the game in carriages and arrived hungry and thirsty. So they collected themselves at the – ahem – “tail” of their horses to eat, drink and socialize. And thus, a great American tradition was born.

Today, 240 million people tailgate at least once per year, according to a report published by Quicken Loans Racing and Beckon Media . And some organizations, such as the Tailgating Industry Association, estimate that fans spend $10 – $20 billion per year on tailgating for football alone. (Other popular tailgating sports include NASCAR racing and baseball.)

Many tailgate parties have become elaborate bacchanals, involving RVs, satellite dishes, corn hole games, gas grills, themed menus, and super-secret recipes. These are civil wars of a different kind: Michigan vs. Michigan State, Texas vs. Texas A&M, Army vs. Navy, Ducks vs. Beavers, etc., etc. – in high tailgate style.

Trailer hitch tailgate open frame

The Tailgate Grill Station attaches to your trailer hitch, pivots to give you access to the rear of your vehicle, and creates the perfect outdoor grilling space

We’ve also come a long way from throwing a few hotdogs on the Hibachi with potato salad on the side. Thanks to propane-fueled grills, tailgate menus now include more elaborate cuisine, such as kebobs, barbecued ribs, pork tenderloin, and chili poppers – as well as the traditional burgers and dogs.

If you’re a tailgater (or homegater) you can take your grilling game into the end zone with the Tailgate Grill Station – a hitch mounted grill that goes where you go and always stay outside your vehicle. Also great for picnics, camping, fishing and hunting trips, here are 5 of my favorite things about this groovy trailer hitch grill:

  1. Swingaway Frame: The patented frame pivots 90 degrees to create a safe and convenient kitchen/grill station – while giving me complete access to everything inside my vehicle. The grill also stays outside my rig to create more space inside – and eliminate gas and grill odors.
  2. Versatility: Not limited to tailgate grilling, the grill station is also great for camping, fishing and hunting. I can also take the grill off and use the frame/rack year-round for hauling up to 250 pounds of cargo.
  3. Hitch Grill or Tabletop: The Cuisinart grill converts to a tabletop for “homegating” – parties on the patio, dinner on the deck, or barbecues on the block.
  4. Extras Included: The Tailgate Grill Station includes a Cuisinart Grill, commercial-grade cutting board, patented Swingaway frame, rack for your cooler/tailgate gear, and hitch tightener.
  5. Best Warranty: It gives me great confidence to know that there’s a 10-year warranty on the Swingaway Frame & Rack and a 3-year warranty on the Cuisinart grill. Better, by far, than anything else I’ve found on the market.

Now that football season is here, I’m reminded of the great traditions, games and gatherings inspired by this sport – from as far back as the 1800s and well into the future.

How Can You Use Your StowAway SwingAway Frame?

June 6th, 2014 | Posted by Pacrec in Frames Only - (Comments Off on How Can You Use Your StowAway SwingAway Frame?)

How Can You Use Your StowAway SwingAway Frame?

The StowAway SwingAway Frame can be used for a multitude of ingenious purposes

The StowAway SwingAway Frame can be used for a multitude of ingenious applications

With its 180-degree swivel capacity, the StowAway Frame makes the hitch cargo carrier the best, easy-access method to haul your extra gear and supplies. But its ingenuity doesn’t stop there – especially when you add some of your own great ideas. What can you do with 180 degrees of moveable space on a heavy-duty, welded steel frame on the back of your car/jeep /truck? Here are some great ideas to get you started thinking out of the box and onto the frame. And when you come up with your own … send photos!

The easiest, ready-made use of the StowAway SwingAway Frame is to turn it into a tailgating grill station. Add your own grill or take advantage of the StowAway Tailgate Grill Station Plus, which comes with a Cuisinart gas grill, acrylic cutting board and two folding side shelves. Read more about the Grill Station Plus in this “Ramp Up Your Game” blog.

Also with the StowAway SwingAway Frame, you can tow a wide variety of useful things – in various sizes and shapes – up to 200 pounds:

The StowAway SwingAway Frame isn't just for pulling and hauling

The StowAway SwingAway Frame isn’t just for pulling and hauling

• Tow a portable generator to your cabin or campsite in the woods to power everything from bug zappers to coffee pots.

• Haul your motorcycle or dirt bike far away from civilization for some fun on the back roads.

• Take your Vespa on a road trip so that when you get where you’re going, you can cruise around town quickly and easily, with less gas and fewer parking hassles.

• Carry your bikes on the StowAway Hitch Mounted Bike Carrier, which holds and protects up to four bikes – wherever you want to take them – with soft rubber cradles and straps.

• Some avid Jimmy Buffett fans we know actually used their StowAway SwingAway Frame as the foundation for a Tiki bar in the parking lot. And what if – heaven forbid – you need to get more ice and limes? The whole affair swings out 180 degrees to give you easy access to the rear door/s of your vehicle.

• We also know someone who mounted a Rubbermaid tub on the back of his Tesla roadster, to give himself some extra cargo space with his space-age electric car.

This space-age electric car gets a space upgrade

This space-age electric car gets a space upgrade

The strength, versatility and convenience of the StowAway SwingAway Frame invites new and innovative ideas for towing, transporting and celebrating. Because it is so strong and well made, you can let your imagination soar, knowing the frame will always be there to support you.

Take Your Picnic and Your Table With You!

May 15th, 2014 | Posted by Pacrec in Accessories | Road Trips with the StowAway Carrier - (Comments Off on Take Your Picnic and Your Table With You!)
StowAway's buffet board lets you prepare and serve an elegant email in the great outdoors

StowAway’s buffet board lets you prepare and serve an elegant meal in the great outdoors

One of my favorite things about recreational pursuits – aside from the recreation itself – is creating a juxtaposition of the elegant with the rustic. For example, I once trekked to the top of Tumalo Butte in Central Oregon, in the dead of winter, on Nordic skis, with a backpack holding warm brie baked in a puff pastry, rice crackers, grapes, and champagne.

At the risk of bragging, I will tell you that while my friends shared granola bars, cheese sticks, mini-carrots, and apples, I rocked the adventure with my four-star menu and a checkered tablecloth.

So, to create an elegant picnic by the beach, after spending the morning kayaking in the sea, is my idea of … perfection.

Imagine my delight when I came across the MAX Hitch Carrier Team Package with a buffet board from StowAway2.com. This is a rock star accessory to the StowAway Hitch Cargo Carrier that rides behind my SUV (also very cool).

The thing I love most about this carrier team package, is that I can pack everything I need for my gourmet picnic in the Hitch Cargo Carrier and then lay out my banquet on the buffet board. (Anyone who has ever gone camping or picnicking knows the value of a solid, horizontal surface off the ground.) The board fits snugly at the top of the cargo box, creating a generous surface (23″ x 19″) to prepare my food and then present it on a buffet table. Voila!

On the technical side, the buffet board is made from a commercial-grade polyethylene that will not dull my knives, which I appreciate. On the practical side, for large gatherings, I can place two boards side by side to create a work space and buffet table twice the size. When our meal is over, I store the buffet board inside the carrier. The artistic side? That’s all up to me. And it makes me happy to create an elegant meal and serve it in the rough and rugged beauty of the natural world.

The MAX Hitch Carrier Team Package also comes with an assortment of Custom Taillight Reflectors in the rainbow colors of blue, green, orange, red, silver and yellow, adding a little more bling to my rugged adventures.

Want some other ideas for incorporating the buffet board into your recreational pursuits? I would suggest an afternoon picnic of after a day of hardcore mountain biking. To eat as vigorously as you rode, create an abundant Italian antipasto buffet of prosciutto, roasted turkey, salami, Havarti cheese, assorted olives and sliced baguettes.

Camping? Serve hearty omelets stuffed with sautéed mushrooms, chopped tomatoes, spinach, and feta cheese. Then tuck the dishes and pans inside the cargo carrier while you head to the lake or the river or the mountains – wherever your heart leads you.

 

StowAway Lid Rack – What Can You Carry?

April 22nd, 2014 | Posted by Pacrec in Hitch Racks - (Comments Off on StowAway Lid Rack – What Can You Carry?)
Strap bulky, wet, dirty or extra items to your StowAway Lid Rack

Strap bulky, wet, dirty or extra items to your StowAway Lid Rack

Packing lightly has never been my strong suit. I need choices … many, many choices. I might change my mind. I might go mountain biking instead of hiking. I might go mountain biking in addition to hiking. I might stay an extra day or two, or three. I might need extra beach chairs, a rubber raft, or a duffle bag full of diving gear (or hair care products).

Which is all just to say that I pack lots of gear and supplies. More is more, right? So in addition to my Hitch Cargo Carrier, which attaches behind my vehicle instead of inconveniently on top, I have added a StowAway Lid Rack.

The Lid Rack lets me strap bulky items, wet items, and dirty items to the top of my cargo carrier, giving me extra room inside my vehicle to help keep it clean, organized and accessible. The Lid Rack mounts to the top of the StowAway cargo carrier lid with heavy-duty brackets and anodized aluminum tubing for strength and security … because my gear is precious to me and I want to make sure it arrives in the same condition in which it was loaded.

Other gear you can safely load onto the StowAway Lid Rack include:

  • Wet suits and dry suits
  • Duffle bags
  • Tents
  • Air mattresses
  • Sleeping bags, bagged bedding
  • Small boogie boards
  • Umbrella awnings
  • Life jackets

Having the option to add more gear – safely and securely – takes a lot of the stress out of packing for me. I don’t have to choose. I don’t have to leave things behind that I may need or want. I get it take it all with me.

Installation of the StowAway Lid Rack is easy, though it requires two people and some tools. These are the parts included with your StowAway Lid Rack:

  • Pre-drilled Lid Rack with outside mounting brackets and three tubes
  • Inside mounting brackets for inside of lid
  • 1/4” Phillips head screws
  • 1/4” Locking Nuts
  • Washers

Tools of your own that you will need for installation:

  • Electric drill with 1/4” drill bit
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • 7/16” wrench or socket
  • Tape measure

When I don’t need the extra carrying capacity, the StowAway Lid Rack is unobtrusive and doesn’t get in the way. But it calls to me … elegantly, patiently, beckoning me to load up all my goodies and take those one, two, three extra days on the road. No limits, nothing left behind.

 

Protect Your StowAway From the Damage of Exhaust

April 22nd, 2014 | Posted by Pacrec in Accessories - (Comments Off on Protect Your StowAway From the Damage of Exhaust)
Exhaust can melt even the strongest of cargo carriers.

Exhaust can melt even the strongest of cargo carriers.

Driving a Lexus is a wonderful thing. Or so I’m told. I drive a 1999 Saab 9.3 convertible with 170,000 miles on it.  (I love that car.) But back to the Lexus.

As fantastic as they are, Lexus GX and LX470 models have a quirky little feature that does not play nice with the StowAway Hitch Cargo Carrier. The exhaust pipe on these Lexus models, and many other vehicles as well, points at or directly below your StowAway cargo carrier. As sturdy as the StowAway boxes are (*see note below), exhaust can cause damage to the box if not properly deflected.

Fortunately the ingenious folks at StowAway think of everything, and have designed the StowAway Exhaust Shield. This device has been exclusively designed to deflect engine exhaust away from the back of your StowAway2 Cargo Carrier, thus eliminating any potential for damage to your cargo carrier due to exhaust heat.

Options are available for both the Fixed and SwingAway frames and for exhaust pipes on the driver’s side, passenger side and both sides. No matter what vehicle you drive, if your exhaust pipe points straight back, with no downward or sideways angle, you will definitely want an exhaust shield or an exhaust tip diverter, available at car parts stores.

* The Durability of the StowAway Cargo Box

The StowAway Hitch Carrier boxes are molded with Linear Low Density Polyethylene (LLDPE) – a super durable polymer, the same material used to mold high-performance whitewater kayaks. They have twice the wall thickness of competitive boxes and are designed to take a beating without cracking. To test this theory, StowAway backed a delivery van over the lid of a box. The results: not a single crack.

Vehicles with exhaust pipes that point straight back can damaged even the strongest cargo boxes on the market

Vehicles with exhaust pipes that point straight back can damaged even the strongest cargo boxes on the market

The advantages of Linear Low Density Polyethylene include:

• Resistant to ultra-violet light

• Provides the most crack and puncture resistant structure for containers

• Not an oil-based product

• More resistant to breaking down over time than other plastics

As strong and durable as the StowAway hitch cargo boxes are, if you are driving a vehicle with an exhaust pipe that points straight back, you are at risk of damaging your cargo carrier. But not to worry. The StowAway Exhaust Shield has been designed exclusively to deflect exhaust heat and protect all StowAway2 models.

With protection from the StowAway Exhaust Shield, when you arrive at your destination your cargo box will look as swanky and reliable as your Lexus.

The Great Hitch Carrier Comparison: Rola v. Thule v. StowAway

April 22nd, 2014 | Posted by Pacrec in Hitch Carriers | StowAway Hitch Cargo Carrier Features & Options - (Comments Off on The Great Hitch Carrier Comparison: Rola v. Thule v. StowAway)
DSC_1115

The StowAway Max Hitch Cargo Carrier is unmatched in capacity and durability.

I don’t always have time – or take the time – to comparison shop. I know I should. You can save a lot of money and get a better product when you take the time to compare features and prices. Sigh. As they say, the devil is in the details. And I’d just as soon have somebody else sweat those details for me.

So, seeing as how I love short cuts, I’m going to give you one and compare the three most popular and reliable brands of gear and cargo carriers for you.

Cubic feet capacity doesn’t tell the whole story when it comes to how much gear you want to carry. Nor are all boxes and frames made from the same quality grade of materials. Also, not all carriers offer the same options and versatility to their users.  I’m also more interested in products that are manufactured in America. So, let’s see how this comparison of hitch carriers plays out in three key areas.

At the Starting Gate: Rola, Thule and StowAway

The StowAway Max by StowAway holds a total of 16 cu. ft.

The StowAway Max by StowAway holds a total of 16 cu. ft.

 

Carrying Capacity:

The Rola hitch carrier has 13.5 cubic feet of space, which holds roughly four carry-on bags. The Thule hitch carrier has 13 cubic feet of space, which will accommodate about three carry-on bags and two large duffel bags. The StowAway MAX Hitch Carrier outguns both competitors with 16 cubic feet of space, holding four carry-on bags, two large duffel bags and two camp chairs.

 

 

Durability

Rola Hitch Cargo Carrier

The Rola Hitch Cargo Carrier will hold a total of 13.5 cu. ft.

The frames on the Rola and Thule hitch carriers are both constructed frommedium-wall steel tubing. The StowAway Hitch Carrier, by contrast, boasts heavy-wall steel tubing. The box material on the Rola is polypropylene and on the Thule it’s ABS plastic. The StowAway hitch carrier boxes are molded with Linear Low Density Polyethylene – a super durable polymer, the same material used to mold high-performance whitewater kayaks. They have twice the wall thickness of competitive boxes and are designed to take a beating without cracking. To test this theory, StowAway backed a delivery van over the lid of a box. The results: not a single crack.

Thule

The Thule Hitch Carrier will hold a total of 13 cu. ft.

Optional Accessories

If you’re like me you love to accessorize, to add on value, and to mix-n-match. Which means it’s important to me to have one base product that allows me a great deal of choices in add-ons and versatile use. (Saves me money in the long run.) In optional accessories, Rola offers me a bike rack, license plate light, hitch tightener, and hitch lock. Thule has only a hitch tightener and lock to help me out. The StowAway Hitch Carrier on the other hand, offers a bike rack, cargo rack, rod rack, lid rack, grilling station, custom cutting board, wheels, wrap-around reflectors and tie-down rings. All of which blows the competition clear off the road.

It does pay off in the long run to shop around and compare details. (It’s just nice when someone has done that work for you.) At the Finish Line of this race: StowAway by a mile.