Truck Accessories—Gear to get you out there and back

I penned this piece for Fly Rod & Reel back in the summer after putting this gear to a solid test. I’ve had it for six more months now and still feel that this account is very accurate. I am especially proud of the Thule M.O.A.B. 690 XT. That thing saves me when the back of the truck is loaded up. The Sidearm is a bit difficult, I have to admit, but only because my truck is high and when you mount that onto of the M.O.A.B, and then put a mountain bike on top, you need a fire ladder to reach it and you have to look out for low flying aircraft.  Don’t even think about a car wash or parking garage. The Titan Rod Vault is a godsend when traveling from one hole to the next, or stopping in for a brew after fishing—your rods are safe when locked up in the Titan. The Leer canopy is total money—solid fit, looks great, keeps everything dry, including me and the girls when we sleep under it. After using the Rugged Ridge floor liners for, what, almost a year now, I don’t know how any flyfisher could go without these. The water from our wading boots, and the snowmelt from our boots and shoes during winter just pools right up in these. Perfect for taking care of your rig. The Toyo Open Country AT II tires now have an interesting story behind them—I drove 2,990 miles with them in September, to reach the pike and lake trout fishing grounds, and the moose hunting grounds, in northern Manitoba. This was a massive drive over some treacherous roads and through some major construction zones filled with jagged edges, massive potholes and major frost heaves. On the return trip I was way overloaded with a full moose and all my gear in the back of the truck. I hit some potholes that made me think the tires would pop, but they didn’t and they are still turning true on the F-150. Finally, the CoverKing seat covers are awesome. Completely comfortable, easy to clean. With two little girls riding in the back seat all the time, munching away on whatever they choose, those CoverKings have saved my interior. Here are more descriptions of the product.

Anything I missed? Your favorite add-ons to your rig? Let us know. Thanks. GT

Thule M.O.A.B. 690 XT
M.O.A.B. stands for mother of all baskets and that title doesn’t mislead. You can mount this on a canopy or over the cab and carry an absolute pile of gear, i.e. extra tires, gas cans, camp stoves, rod tubes, deflated rafts, etc. In addition, the M.O.A.B has adjustable load bars that allow you to attach other carriers to the basket, such as the Thule Sidearm 594XT bike rack pictured here. $379.95 www.thule.com

Thule Sidearm 594XT
Why pay for a shuttle when most of our floats range between three and 10 miles? Can’t ride that far at the end of the day? If so, you better get off the couch or out of the office and start a new routine. If you’re motivated you can easily mount a bike to the Sidearm, which holds bikes tightly by the front and rear tires and requires no contact with the frame. After the Sidearm is done with its job it’s all up to you. $199.95 www.thule.com

TITAN Rod Vault
There’s no other way to put it—breaking down your rods when moving from one run to another or from one river to the next is a pain in the rear. And it’s easy to break rods if you don’t fully dismantle them and run them into a protective rod tube. But the Titan Rod Vault solves that problem by accommodating three fully strung rods, with reels attached, in protective weather and rust-proof aluminum tubes. In addition, a hard molded plastic locking container protects your reels from the elements and keeps potential thieves at bay. Now, when you hit the river or lake you can have three rods of different weights and with different lines, maybe one full sink, one intermediate sink and one floating, ready to roll. Mounts securely to a variety of roof racks. $499 www.titanrodvault.com

Toyo Open Country AT II Truck Tires
You can buy a lift kit and oversized rims and mud tires if it’s all about the look, but in the process you’re probably voiding your vehicle’s warranty and announcing to all that you may be a little embarrassed by your god-given endowment. If it’s about functionality and on and off road performance you may want to mount these Toyo’s to your rig. Aggressive tread design for off-road traction, but not so much that it sounds like you’re in a bee’s hive when driving on the highway. Plus, you get a 50,000 mile warranty. Can’t beat that. From $178 www.toyotires.com

LEER 100 XL Truck Cap
For a while back in the 1990s, by choice, my truck was my home, but it couldn’t have been so without a topper. These days the truck serves more as a base camp for fishing, but I still have to have a topper and the Leer 100XL offers the perfect cab-high fit for the Ford F-150. The 100XL is loaded with features, including a sliding front window, dark tinted side glass for security, an insulated roof to keep you warm when spending nights in the back, an interior dome lamp, side windows with twist out and screened vents, a frameless curved rear door, and the (optional) Thule Aero Blade roof rack system. If you want all your gear to be safe, dry and accessible, and you want the option to sleep comfortably and away from the weather, this is the topper to get. From $1,500 www.leer.com

Rugged Ridge Floor Liners
You know what it’s like to climb into your rig all wadered-up, in any season, and place your wet and grimy wading boots on the floor—disaster. That’s where Rugged Ridge floor liners can be a savior due to their extra deep grooved tread and high perimeter sidewalls, which hold mud, dirt, snow, and water where it needs to be—on the mat and not on your carpets. I am telling you that these floor mats, which fit the front and back of a truck cab are awesome. I used these in all seasons and was especially pleased as the water drained or the snow melted or the mud fell off my wading boots. It all puddled obediently on the mats. Later I was able to lift the mats out of the truck, pour out the debris, and wash them with a hose. From $54.99 www.ruggedridge.com

Cover King Real Tree Max 4 Neosupreme Seat Covers
I put these Neosupreme seat covers over stock upholstered F-150 seats and kissed my worries goodbye. That’s because this Neosupreme fabric is impervious to dirt and liquid . . . and two kids horsing around in the back seat. Dr Pepper, Go-Gurt, Big Dipper black licorice and bubble gun two-scoop ice cream disasters—these Cover Kings in the Real Tree Max 4 cammo pattern wiped clean with ease. And they were equally effective when I spent this past spring climbing into and out of the truck in wet and dirty waders while fishing pre-runoff in Montana. If you want to protect your original seats and sit on something cool looking and super comfortable, these are for you. From $212 www.coverking.com

 

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