Okay...I have been on the hunt....not for a new dog, but for a new car. I don't like traveling pulling a trailer unless I am in the toy hauler with my hubby and he is driving his diesel. Remember, I bought an 18 foot (really nice Eco-Scamper) and have used it 3 times by myself for some long trips. I did it, but it was a bit nerve-racking for me. My Avalanche is coming up on 150,000 miles. I have loved that truck, but it is difficult to "crawl" into the back to sleep. Not complaining; just, I am getting a bit older, a bit more arthritic. Jet, Xena, and I would like a smaller step up and a bit more room. :0)
I'm a lot less complicated. I really only need the bare necessities. Oh yeah....fridge and micro, etc. are nice, but I'm a mountain woman...hence, the name Green Valley mama. I need to "simplify." I have looked at used. I like to buy used, because it saves one lots of money. I haven't seen anything in the used department that I like yet. I have looked at Astros, Grand Caravans, etc. WAY too SMALL for me at almost 5'10". I like room. I have looked at the fancy schmancy vans that come with everything including the kitchen sink. Just WAY too much for me. And, way too pricey. I need something that I can also drive to work in....
I have my eye on a new Nissan van. http://www.nissancommercialvehicles.com/?site=test05252011
The nice thing about this van is that it has LOTS of leg room in the front. It's a commercial van. I don't want the high top...just the regular van. It has a ton of room and they will put a half utility rack in the back for storage. It will fit my crates nicely. It has a side door that slides open. The back door open up and then opens fully to the sides of the van. This makes it easy to get anything in and out. I could put one of those magnetic screens up when the doors are open. Easy breezy to put a sleeping area in. May need to bolt one swivel chair in the back. I liked to have a chair in the back. They would insulate it for me to keep it warm/cool for me and the dogs. And put in a window on the passenger side. It's got backup stuff, GPS, a ton of storage up front including hookups for my ipad, etc. It's actually pretty nifty. I'm looking at the 3/4 ton 6 cylinder. Plus, it has lots of electrical outlets front and back. Plus, the flooring in the back is a heavy padded rubber, nice to step on, easy to sweep, etc. I think this may be a good fit for me.
I'll feel like I'm back in the 60's again driving a van. :0)