This compact but rugged travel trailer represents a venerable RV manufacturer’s entry into the outdoor adventure lifestyle segment.
By Pamela Kay, Director Of Communications, Publishing
Winnebago refers to the Hike as a recreation vehicle “built for beyond” — beyond the beaten path. With the introduction of this small travel trailer in 2020, the company made its foray into providing RVs designed expressly for those who embrace the active outdoor lifestyle.
Five floor plans are available, ranging in length from 20 feet 7.5 inches to 25 feet. They sleep from three to four people, depending on the floor plan. All have curb weights under 4,500 pounds, which allows flexibility in towing vehicle options, among them midrange trucks and SUVs. The Hike measures 7 feet 9 inches wide, including the nerf bars. The box is a bit narrower than the average travel trailer, to allow it to traverse tighter areas sometimes favored by outdoor enthusiasts, such as national forests or boondocking spots. This width offers the added benefit of improved visibility in the mirrors while towing.
The H215HS, featured in this article, is one of two 25-foot-long, dual-axle floor plans. It sleeps four. A large U-shaped dinette in the front converts to accommodate two people overnight, and a 60-inch-by-74-inch double bed in the rear provides space for two more. A slideout on the street side houses the galley and a storage cabinet.
The exterior of the Hike immediately signals that this isn’t a typical travel trailer. A patented powder-coated-steel exoskeleton surrounds the unit. The exoskeleton can be used to secure kayaks, paddleboards, bicycles, and other outdoor equipment. Horizonal bars form a ladder-type structure that extends up the back of the vehicle, along the one-piece fiberglass roof, and down the front. Plus, sturdy rails on the bottom of the front and rear corners of the RV serve as spots to stand on while attaching equipment. The exoskeleton is compatible with popular rack systems from Thule, a company known for its outdoor and transportation products. An integrated powder-coated accessories receiver hitch at the back can be used to add a bicycle rack, or other type of rack, so even more toys can be transported.
Another apparent way the Hike differs is its wheels, which are offset from the RV body and equipped with 15-inch off-road tires. Rugged fenders (not intended for standing on) surround the tires and protect the RV during outings off the beaten path. Axle-lift kits raise the Hike by 4 inches, which helps when traversing less-than-ideal terrain. As noted, the two larger floor plans have dual axles; the three smaller floor plans have single axles. All are Dexter Torflex axles.
The Comfort Tech package that comes with the Hike provides an enclosed underbelly to protect the holding tanks and facilitate the active lifestyle. This package also includes extreme-weather radiant-foil wrapping inside the roof, which reflects the rays of the sun and contributes to a cooler interior.
Modern automotive-style graphics — including a bold version of Winnebago’s signature W — emblazon the exterior of the Hike. Winnebago employees utilize the same laminating process for the Hike’s sidewalls that is used to create the company’s motorhomes. High-gloss, scratch-resistant Filon Max fiberglass from Crane Composites is laminated to Azdel composite backing, with block-foam insulation sandwiched between. A router creates channels in the block-foam insulation to accommodate the Hike’s aluminum frame. With this process, no insulation touches the aluminum or fiberglass, and a thermal barrier results. A CNC router, with its tight tolerances, also is used to create openings for the windows; the entry door; and the exterior storage compartments, which feature slam-latch doors. The exterior compartments are lined with the same Infinity Luxury Woven Vinyl that graces the Hike’s interior floor.
A black powder-coated, diamond-plate storage container across the front of the Hike houses two 20-pound propane tanks (with automatic switchover) and has room for a battery or two. Any remaining space can be used to stow tools or other gear. A power tongue jack facilitates setup in camp, and the built-in light helps when setting up or tearing down in the dark.
The Hike features exterior LED lighting, including high-mount lights on the rear and integrated backup lights that tie into the towing vehicle. Each unit also comes prepped for a backup camera.
The H215HS comes with a pull-out exterior kitchen that incorporates a two-burner cooktop and a hand-dump sink. A quick-connect propane outlet makes it possible to power a grill via the onboard propane system. An exterior shower comes in handy for cleaning gear and people after a day of fun.
All units come with a power roof awning (also with LED lighting) for relaxing outdoors.
Even those who enjoy rugged outdoor adventures during the day want creature comforts when it’s time to kick back. The Hike delivers in this regard, and relaxation comes easy when you slip into the inviting, contemporary interior, with its European styling and clean lines. Inspiration for the sleek, minimalistic look of the Hike’s living space came from trips Winnebago designers made to Caravan Salon, a huge RV show that takes place each year in Dusseldorf, Germany.
Light wood tones, flat-panel cabinet doors, and a simple surround on the slideout opening contribute to the modern interior. A gunmetal gray insert covers the refrigerator door. Gunmetal gray also graces the accent cabinets. These European, crank-style cabinets feature a 45-degree angle on the bottom that doubles as a handle for opening them, eliminating the need for hardware.
Infinity Luxury Woven Vinyl flooring, designed to withstand the rigors of an active outdoor lifestyle, runs through the interior of the RV. This marine-grade material is resistant to water and sand or whatever else is tracked in. A textured, light-colored vinyl material covers the interior walls.
The H215HS galley has a recessed three-burner cooktop with backlit knobs and a glass cover, as does the H210RB. The three smaller units have drop-in two-burner cooktops. All come equipped with a microwave oven and an undermount sink. The larger floor plans include a conventional oven, but the smaller units come with a convection-microwave oven instead. The size of the sink varies depending on floor plan. The backsplash material behind the stove and sink extends from the counter all the way up the wall, leaving no wall space unprotected.
Unlike many smaller RVs, all Hike floor plans incorporate a dry bath, meaning that it has a separate shower. One unusual feature is a medicine cabinet that hangs off to the side rather than right over the stainless-steel sink. This keeps it from impeding the space in that area and allows it to be a bit larger than it might be otherwise. The bath area also includes a ceiling vent fan and a linen closet.
The Hike also comes with an LED TV; a TV antenna; and an audiovisual system that includes an AM/FM radio, a CD/DVD player, and Bluetooth capability. USB charging ports are provided. The Hike also has exterior speakers, for those who want entertainment outdoors.
The Explorer package that comes with the Hike includes radiused tinted windows, roof-mounted solar prep, Wi-Fi prep, and a wireless cell phone charger, along with the larger tires and axle-lift kit.
Outdoor adventurers looking to go beyond the beaten path and to do so in style and comfort will want to take a long look at the Winnebago Hike. The compact travel trailer from this well-known manufacturer manages to strike a great balance between “rough and tumble” and “comfy and cozy.”
SPECIFICATIONS | WINNEBAGO HIKE H215HS
Winnebago Towables, 201 14th St., Middlebury, IN 46540; (574) 825-5250; www.winnebago.com
78 inches, box; 93 inches overall with nerf bars and tires/fenders
10 feet 2 inches
6 feet 5 inches
GROSS VEHICLE WEIGHT RATING (GVWR)
SHIPPING WEIGHT (DRY WEIGHT)
CARGO CARRYING CAPACITY (CCC)
block foam, R-9
FRESH WATER CAPACITY
HOLDING TANK CAPACITIES
gray water — 43 gallons;
black water — 25 gallons
40 pounds (2 20-pound cylinders)
6 gallons, direct-spark ignition
(1) 13,500-Btu low-profile roof A/C unit
two-way (gas and electric)
marine with foot flush
1 year limited base; 3 years limited structural
MANUFACTURER’S BASE SUGGESTED RETAIL PRICE
* current at time of publication; specs, features, or price may change