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RVing message boards => Truck campers => Topic started by: beddows on November 08, 2007, 09:30:21 AM

Title: New 2008 Snowriver Camper
Post by: beddows on November 08, 2007, 09:30:21 AM
At the end of the month I pick up my new SnowRiver. I just may have the best built camper in North America (for 2 months anyway). My camper is the prototype for a new series of campers coming in 2008. SR believes they will be the best built campers available on the market. They will not be cheap (anyone want to buy my firstborn?). The past few months they have been taking suggestions from consumers about what they would like to see in a Truck Camper and many of them have been incorporated. Not all were practical, of course and some conflicted with others. I am proud to say that 2 of my own ideas have been incorporated as well (numbers 4 & 5). SnowRiver is betting there is a market out there for people willing to pay for the best camper it’s possible to build. The high Canadian dollar is hurting them as it is all Canadian manufacturers. I just returned from Penticton where my camper is about half way finished. It’s a slow process, Snowriver’s take almost twice the man hours to build as the industry average. I am in the very fortunate position of being able to see my own camper constructed. I took a lot of photos & I have some of my own camper a week or so ago as well. I will show them here & try to explain what you are looking at and why this camper is different. I am not sure I can reveal the name, but basically they will be the same 4 designs as they are now but with lots of extras & a designer interior. They hired a well known designer of yacht interiors to do these. There are some changes, the gray tank size has been increased and the 10.8 will now drain the shower into the gray instead of the black, & I presume that will be true for the 9.6 as well. Since I have the prototype, I guess it’s up to me to tell them what does & does not work. Here are some of the innovations:

1)Auto slide closer, if you pull away with it out, it goes in automatically.

2)Real Oak laminate flooring (not fake linoleum like Host uses or used)

3)Tons of 12 volt outlets for things like cell re-chargers, portable vacuum’s, etc

4)Digital thermostat with an off on switch at the bed. This means you can set the temp before going to bed, leave it off, snuggle under a down comforter & turn it on from the bed before you get out.

5)Split A/C plugs. Some AC outlets are split so ½ runs off shore power the other half off an inverter. This is for items like CPAP machines that you can plug in when not on shore power. Or laptops.

6)Reading lights in slide

7)Outside floods on both sides & at the rear so you can safely back into a wooded campsite after dark.

8)TV in door that can be swung to watch from dinette or bed.

9)Convection oven option that will run off a Honda 2000. Polar Cub A/C also for Honda 2000.

10)Touch switch on outside rear (stolen from lance)

11)User adjustable slide mechanism

12)Clear rear door window with built in shade

13)Skylights over dinette & in shower. Solid shower stall door.

14)Shower bypass for boondocking so you can drain shower directly outside into tote tank or on ground without greasy dish water & food particles from sinks in the mix. My wife who is an environment chemist assures me this is OK (She is a tree hugger).

15)Humidistat that will automatically operate fantastic fan briefly overnight to remove humidity due to expiration.

16)Raised doors in bed area, so they clear any added memory foam topper.

17)Wireless backup camera. I am testing this one, but if it works existing SR”s can be retrofitted easily. The monitor is any portable DVD player or laptop that can also be moved inside & double as a security monitor.

18)Inside fishing rod storage compartment for Canadians or gun storage for Americans. LOL.

19)Heat ducts all over the place including closets.

20)Reico Titan Jacks

21)All outside screws & fixtures are stainless steel. All screws are sealed with mono to prevent moisture wicking into the frame.

22)New wrap around fiberglass nose cap to prevent front water intrusion. The roof has also been improved to help prevent intrusion.

23)Holding tanks can be accessed from the underside if necessary  via separate panels.

24)New richer cabinet color scheme

Don’t ask the price, I don’t know myself yet, but they will not likely be the most expensive on the market, but they will be up there.

The following photo’s are what I will try to convince you with that this is the best built camper out there. On the basis of the 10 or so factories I have visited, I believe it is, which is why I chose to buy one.  Especially when you combine that with their reputation for customer service. You will notice it is wood framed. I am not going to get into the aluminum vs wood debate. SR does build aluminum framed Class C’s so they are capable of building an aluminum framed camper but chose not to go that route with their TC’s.

go to this link for photos (copy & paste link in browser)

Title: Re: New 2008 Snowriver Camper
Post by: Ron on November 08, 2007, 08:38:30 PM
What is the finished product expected to weigh and just how big of a truck will be required to handle the weight and still remain within the weight ratings when loaded for travel?

Title: Re: New 2008 Snowriver Camper
Post by: beddows on November 09, 2007, 11:18:10 AM
About 3600 ibs wet (full propane & holding tank). Pretty well average for an 11 ft camper.  Some go over 4000. A 1 ton dually is recommended. I know someone with the same camper on a 3/4 ton SRW. Overweight. One of the nice things about this camper is that its COG is the furthest forward of any camper out there. That makes it ride quite level even on a smaller truck. not advised, however.

Specs are at
Title: Re: New 2008 Snowriver Camper
Post by: Ron on November 09, 2007, 01:51:18 PM
I suspect thare are a lot of salesman that will tell the F150 owners that it will be hjust fine on their F150. ;D ;D
Title: Re: New 2008 Snowriver Camper
Post by: beddows on November 10, 2007, 04:53:46 AM
Ain't that the truth, however, I have now been friends with the owner of Snowriver for 3 years & I know he has axed dealers he has found out doing stuff like this, or inflating warranty charges & other stuff dealers tend to do. The owner of this company is rather unusual to say the least. Here is the story of how I met him.

In summer 2005, I was on my way back from Mexico in my TC. I had picked up a stray dog down there (important later). I stopped off at a forestry site (meadow lake) near Salmon, Idaho. This place was 6 miles up a tortuous steep gravel road. The camp host was Larry Christensen,a retired federal agent from Texas. He had a SnowRiver camper. I talked to him about his camper which was the first one I had ever seen. He told me that a couple of weeks earlier, he had been having problems with his solar panel which he relied on a lot since there was no power there, even for the host. He drove down to the ranger station in the very small town of Leadore and sent off an email to the company. He then returned to the campsite to wait a few days for a reply.

3 days later a truck rolls in to the campsite with none other than Bob Mehrer, SR president & his plant manager. This campsite is 650 miles one way from the plant. They had come in person to fix his problem. They diagnosed it as a bad battery. They then hopped in their truck & drove 75 miles to Salmon, the closest town of any size, buy 2 new batteries, drive back, install them , then drive the 650 miles back to Penticton, BC.

When I heard this story, I decided I had to go see this place and it was sort of on the way home. I walked in, found Bob & told him I had met Larry. His first question was "where are you camped?". "Nowhere yet", I replied. He then invited me to camp in his backyard, even though I had a competitors camper on my truck. This I did. My dog (remember the dog?) had its first experience being inside a house. He promptly lifted his leg & peed over Bobs kitchen cabinets. I was mortified, Bob took it in stride. That was the start of our our friendship. I have since come to know this guy & his unusual approach to  business. He does not advertise, his customers do it for him. He told me a story that he was going to drop 30K in advertising in Trailer Life. Instead he invested that money and uses it to fix campers out of warranty if the customer brings them back to the factory. He says it has never run out, and happy customers are the best advertising.

I have heard many stories form people who have Bob Mehrer stories. I witnessed another, the summer before last at the national TC show in Nebraska. There was someone there with one of the earliest campers he made. The temp was over 100 and they did not have A/C. Bob went over to the Coleman display, bought a Polar cub with cash (no tax receipt), took it to a dealer & told him to install it on their camper. Free. This guy is no tycoon, he looks more like Michael Moore than Donald Trump (actually he does not resemble Moore, but you know what I mean, he never removes his baseball cap). His house is a nice, but modest, 2 bedroom rancher. There is a constant stream of customers & guys like me camping in his backyard, in fact his wife jokes about putting a state park sign up. He gives customer's his home phone number so they can call him at home if they have problems or questions. Somehow I doubt anyone would get Jack Cole's (lance).
Title: Re: New 2008 Snowriver Camper
Post by: Shayne on November 10, 2007, 09:33:37 AM
That's quite an endorsement for His TC'ers,  Maybe The people buying them should pay heed. Thanks for a great story.
Title: Re: New 2008 Snowriver Camper
Post by: rods58 on June 20, 2011, 01:05:15 PM
how do I get in touch with the manufacturer?, I know that they are out of business but...
Title: Re: New 2008 Snowriver forward to 2017
Post by: osullivangt on April 01, 2017, 01:25:47 PM
My husband and I sold our BigFoot and bought the 9'6" SnowRiver camper after seeing it at the 2008 Puyallup, WA Sportsman Show. It was the perfect configuration for a couple who was settling into the middle-aged spread. We've been trying to track down Bob and his company since 2010 but with no luck. (The RV dealer who we purchased it from has long ago folded and left no forwarding bread crumbs.) But since we got a computer and thanks to social media & Google, we learned of his passing - a sad day indeed. He was definitely one of the greats. Before buying our caper, we meet with 'can-do' Bob. He was so gracious, knowledgeable and sincere. His commitment to his customers is what tipped the scale for our decision to purchase.

We are meticulous in the care of our camper, and now that I know it's one of a kind, we cherish it even more. I would like to reach out to anyone to see if there is a design of my camper documented. Even though the unit is perfect for our use, my DYI husband has made tiny enhancements but all done under a 'discovery' mode.  I would so appreciate it if anyone has information that can help us see under the covers so we don't have to guess about the understructure (wires, pipes, tanks, vents, ducts, etc).

We've owned 4 campers (Pastime, 2 BigFoots and now SnowRiver) and so far the SnowRiver is the ideal camper for us! Hope to keep it for a very long time.
Title: Re: New 2008 Snowriver Camper
Post by: osullivangt on April 01, 2017, 01:34:16 PM
Hi rods58...any luck? We are in same situation. We bought a 2008 while back and shortly after, seemed like the SnowRiver world fell off face of earth. It's 2017 and we're still trying to get a schematic of our 9'6" camper.