TIME TO GET A NEW HAULING TRUCK… any advice from you all?

I’ve had my truck for 23 years.  It is a 1995 Dodge Ram 3500 dually.  Cummins diesel.

I have not had any serious problems with it for the entire time I’ve owned it.  But, I’m a bit leery to haul for long or extreme distances (over mountain ranges or steep grades) because it worries me a little.  I’m not sure why… probably because it doesn’t have the same power it used to have.  The mechanic says it ‘checks out’… but also shrugs his shoulders when I ask if it will haul safely.

Also, sadly, my misgivings about my truck’s performance makes me no longer feel comfortable offering my trailering services to local rescues or Fleet of Angels because I’m frightened to haul other peoples’ horses, just in case my truck broke down.

Anyway, it is fine for a work truck or driving around town truck.  And, when I’m not towing horses, I’m totally OK with it.

But, to haul horses… it is time.

This is not my truck and not me in it… but the image is how I feel about my truck. I’ve loved it.


To be honest, I LOVE my truck.  It is one of those trucks that all the young cowboys want – stick shift, 5 speed.  I still get notes on it, “If you ever want to sell this, sell it to me!”

I’ve loved my truck so much, I used to sing a song when I drove it, “I can drive my truck and trailer any where…!”

For me, it was such a skill to learn to drive a dually around our curvy road in Wilsonville, Oregon – and then to add a horse trailer onto it!!!…  Wow!  Way back then, I was so proud of myself!  I never thought I would own my own trailer!  I thought I would never learn…

I know many of you feel the same way…

But as I got more into showing and trail riding, I splurged and bought the truck I have now and my trailer- 23 years ago.

And now, 23 years later, here I am.

I still love my truck and trailer… but I wish my truck was new(er), for mechanical peace of mind.

Cosmetically, however, things have definitely taken a dive.  The inside is fine, but the dash is cracked…the ceiling liner sags, the seat no longer moves forward or backwards, the paint has fallen off on the hood and sides, like most white Dodges of that era.

If it still pulled like a locomotive, I’d drive it forever.

My truck and trailer



What is your opinion of new hauling trucks?  Do you have one you love?

My only criteria is that I want a diesel engine.

TELL ME (either comment below or email me) what kind of hauling truck you have and why you love it!

I greatly appreciate all of your input.

DO YOU HAVE A TRUCK DEALERSHIP and could benefit from a tax deductible donation?

I don’t think we can afford a new truck…. but if you have a dealership with a used truck and could benefit from a tax deductible donation, this truck is considered a Horse and Man Foundation truck and we could offer a 100% tax deductible receipt for any sized donation.

My silver and white chariot.


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2 comments have been posted...

  1. Robynne Catheron

    For safe, worry-free hauling of a trailer the size of yours (or bigger), I wouldn’t go below a 3500. And Cummins is the best. I have a 2003 Ford F350 diesel dually, and even though it’s had its share of work done, I’d buy it again. I’m a hauler for Fleet of Angels and I never worry about hauling three heavy rescues up or down steep, mountainous terrain even on the hottest days. She’s a beast!

    Before I bought Big Bertie, I talked to every hauler and trail rider I knew. I bought a horse from a woman who was going through a tough divorce who traveled all over the country to big organized trail rides. She told me that most of the bigger-rig trucks she saw in the parking lots were F350s, and frequently saw Chevy and Dodge trucks with “For Sale” signs in the windows. Evidently, although the other trucks are great for hauling, Fords are the best for hauling LIVE, moving cargo. I talked to many people after that who agreed. So, I started searching the classifieds and found Big Bertie in 2008. She was loaded, very well cared for, and only had 53k miles, which you know is just barely warmed up for a diesel. 10 years and 55k more miles later, she’s still a beast and can pull anything I hook up to her. I think her weight limit is around 18k lbs, more than most horse owners and haulers ever need.

    Good luck in your search, Dawn. Your perfect truck is out there!

  2. MARY

    You already took the words out of my mouth…DIESEL!

    Question – do you really need a dually? You can easily haul your trailer with a 3/4T “regular” truck.

    As to your choice, just go sit in trucks and see how they feel. When I was car shopping, I was looking for where my arms would rest while driving. Some armrests were to high/low. When I sat in the Chevy Equinox, it just fit and I knew it was “my car”.

    Other than that, you opened up a can of worms…Dodge, Chevy, Ford lovers all will say “their” brand is the best.

    BTW, I know how you feel about your truck…I finally had to give up my 1988 Chevy because it couldn’t take the hauling any more. My BF has it and I still miss it whenever I drive it.

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