On the Road Again
Colorado Teardrops' trailers are innovative and mountain-cool, perfect for a backcountry weekend escape
Established in 2014 by the son of a British carpenter, a family business at the foot of the Rocky Mountains is focused on building quality teardrop trailers for the adventurer at heart. Colorado Teardrops are designed and built in Boulder, Colorado by Dean Wiltshire and team.
Inspired by the natural beauty of Colorado and the changing weather around the four seasons, Wiltshire and company designed a minimalist-yet-quality product that balances style and craftsmanship. In just three years, the company designed 7 different styles of teardrop trailers to cover retro, off road, and commercial teardrop uses. Colorado Teardrops use aircraft grade aluminum to weld the trailer cabins plus 3 layers of insulation.
Compact enough to make maneuvering in the woods easy, Colorado Teardrops’ trailers can be towed by most vehicles. Whether a road trip or a backcountry weekend escape, these trailers are innovative and mountain-cool.
We sat down with Dean Wiltshire to learn more about the trailers and the design process.
What inspired you to create Colorado Tearsdrops?
My daughter Sarah and I were camping in the summer of 2011 from Boulder to Hawaii. About 2 weeks into our trip in Yellowstone, we set up our dome tent in a formal campsite near Lake Yellowstone. Nailed to a tree there was a sign that read, “Danger, bear activity. Do not enter.” After a tragic Grizzly bear attack on a camper, we headed up into Montana but turned to go south instead after hearing of black bears in the area.
I started thinking as I was driving, “What kind of hard shell could I have with this car?” A few years later, I discovered Teardrops and in 2014, my son David and I built one. At the time I was managing a Software App but I couldn’t keep people away from my Teardrop! So, I pivoted. Software is still on the shelf and Colorado Teardrops is now over 5 years old with hundreds of customers all across the US.
Tell us about the design process.
As a hardware/software Product Manager, I am well practiced in harvesting ideas and making them real. I applied Lean Design to the process. We were renting the first few we made so that I could interview and optimize the design based on input from our rental customers. We continue that practice today, continuing to improve upon what we started with.
What is your favorite place to take a CO Teardrop trailer?
I love Colorado! The Grand Plateau is my favorite, but there is also a spot on the Colorado River, this side of Moab in UT, that’s a truly beautiful place. My most recent Teardrop trip this winter took me to Gobin Valley, UT, which was so cool. Teardrops are made for cold winter nights and hot summer ones, too.