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RV Review: Dutchmen Kodiak Ultimate 3301BHSL travel trailer

Today’s RV review is of the Dutchmen Kodiak Ultimate 3301BHSL, a relatively large bunkhouse travel trailer that does some things in a refreshingly different way from what I’m used to seeing lately. 

There seems to be a growing trend toward having fewer and fewer windows on the camp side of RVs. I’m noticing this in quite a few models. In fact, there’s even a trend of there being no windows in RV doors. 

I know that windows are expensive, so cutting them out of the picture is one way for RV companies to reduce the cost to build a rig. In fact, there are some models I’ve shared with you that have but one small camp-side window. 

What’s the point of going to beautiful places if you can’t see them? Road-side windows are okay but, essentially, you’re using those to pass judgement on how the neighbors build a campfire or even make bougie s’mores with that fancy Ghirardelli chocolate. Must be nice. 

So when I saw today’s Dutchmen Kodiak Ultimate 3301BHSL I was pleasantly surprised with the window coverage on the camp side. 

The way Dutchmen has accomplished this is by taking the large slide room that’s normally on the road side and putting it over on the camp side instead. Of course, the downside of this type of arrangement is that there’s a slide room encompassing the space you have in your campsite. Depending on where you go, this could be no big deal—or be a real bummer. 

Bunkhouse

This trailer is large enough that there’s a bunkhouse in its own room in the back. That space has two beds on the camp side and then a small slide room where there’s a small dinette below a flip-up bunk on the road side. This makes a great place for younger campers as they have almost everything they need to remain oblivious to the parents who brought them along. 

There are also USB ports on each of the bunks, so they can truly ignore the occupants up front. 

Further, if they have been hitting the juice boxes (what ever happened to a glass of real fruit juice?) hard, they also have their own bathroom back here. Yep, this rig has two bathrooms. 

Two bathrooms in the Kodiak Ultimate 3301BHSL

But two bathrooms also means you’ll be hooking up the sewer hose twice, or just getting a “Y” adapter and a mountain of sewer hoses. 

The main living space offers theater seats across from an average-sized TV, where there’s also a fireplace. Nice. The theater seats share the world with a four-place dinette that can fold down to become a bed. There is storage below the dinette—which isn’t unusual.

The kitchen is useful enough with a very large sink. There’s also a decent amount of drawers and cabinets. Storage shouldn’t be an issue, though there isn’t a pantry, per se.

Of course, we’re plagued by the lousy 16” oven in a trailer designed for a lot of campers again. This is one of the areas where the cost-cutting will make a difference along the road of life. Lousy vent fans are the other disappointment—no surprise there. But the suspension is an absolutely bargain-basement leaf spring design with low-grade tires.

As an RV shopper, I wouldn’t accept this kind of suspension or tires on any rig unless it’s making its one and only trip to a seasonal site where it’ll stay long term. In that case, who cares how cheap the tires and springs are?

Some campers will really like the bedroom in the Kodiak Ultimate 3301BHSL, where there’s a king-sized bed. Something I’m also seeing more of are cubbies behind the closets in the bedroom. This has them—nice. There’s also a hanging closet at the foot of the bed that’s prepped for a washer-dryer.

This would certainly make a decent destination trailer.

In summary

In these reviews I try to point out the things that will matter long term as you travel and enjoy this wonderful lifestyle. 

But there are also different classes of trailers. I know a lot of people buy the larger trailers to be more destination trailers where they’re at a particular spot on a semi-permanent basis and you go and vacation there. The Coachmen Kodiak Ultimate 3301BHSL might be a good choice for that. 

If you’re going to haul it around a lot, I would consider upgrading the tires and suspension right away. And that makes me sad, because I hate the thought of throwing away stuff just to put the stuff on an RV that should be there in the first place. 

Cheap fans, small ovens, lousy tires and all of those are things I wouldn’t accept if I were buying a new RV, quite frankly. But they are common items. 

Yep. This is a nifty floor plan, all right, with some great attributes. Those include a really usable bunkhouse area, enormous pass-through storage and really good cargo carrying capacity.

I don’t have info on the accessibility while in transit mode, unfortunately, which is why that paragraph is missing from this review. 

*****

More from Tony

I would love to read your comments and suggestions over on our new forums, where you can weigh in and start or join a discussion about all things RV. Here’s a link to my RV Reviews Forum.

If you’re RV shopping here are some tips on RV shopping from a former RV salesperson—me!

Tony comes to RVtravel.com having worked at an RV dealership and been a lifelong RV enthusiast. He also has written the syndicated Curbside column about cars. He also works closely with a number of RV manufacturers to get an inside look at how things are done and is a brand ambassador for Rockwood Mini Lite with his wife, Peggy.

You can also check out his RV podcast with his wife, Peggy. 

These RV reviews are written based on information provided by the manufacturers along with our writer’s own research. They are based on information from a single unit and may not reflect your actual experience. Shop your RV and dealership carefully before making a buying decision. We receive no money or other financial benefits from these reviews. They are intended only as a brief overview of the vehicle, not a comprehensive critique, which would require a thorough inspection and/or test drive.

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Steve H
2 months ago

Another one of those travel trailers with solid steps that must be dropped during road trips every time the kids required to fill that big bunk room need to use their bathroom! With no slide on the road side, that access would have been easy with an outside door into the kid’s bathroom or a rear door into the bunk room, equipped with a set of “real” RV steps.

Then of course Dutchmen had to put in an expensive, but trendy, windshield above the head of the bed. Hope the buyers enjoy having a cold draft on their heads and necks all night if they camp anytime but summer. And is that king-size bed a real king or a too short “RV king”?

Saving that windshield cost, the solid step cost, and making the outdoor kitchen optional might have paid for 14″ vent fans with remote controllers, a 22″ oven, and perhaps even a wet-bolt suspension and decent tires!

Dutchmen couldn’t pay me $63,000 to take that trailer off their hands. Too many problems to solve right off the dealer’s lot!

Jay
2 months ago

Wow that’s expensive for what it is. And ‘destination trailers’- I’ve seen lots of seemingly new trailers permanently sited in RV parks and wondered if people really bought new for that purpose. Unless money is no object a used trailer for a fraction of the price would make more sense to me.