thank you all SOOO much for your quick & informative responses!!! i really appreciate it!!!
the reason i'm looking for a tow vehicle first, before purchasing a trailer, is because our current car is kind of on its last legs & it's about time to start looking for a different one-- we'd like to just buy the vehicle we're going to tow with instead of buying a different car & then swapping that out for a tow vehicle in just a few months.
(definitely can't afford two cars at once, plus a trailer!)
i'm trying to get a general price range of what we should expect to spend on this new vehicle so that if our car does unfortunately go to car heaven soon i'll be a little more prepared. (i work out of town a lot, so it's important that i have reliable transportation.)
we're not so sold on the veggie oil idea at this point, although it's still a possibility.. ideally it would be awesome, but neither of us are very handy so it might not be the best idea, haha.
it definitely does seem smarter to get the trailer first, so hopefully my current car will last an extra couple of months.
i do plan to live in the airstream indefinitely, but DEFINITELY not in a kansas winter, you're right about that, dkottum! for the winter i will either go south or southwest.
my general plan is to leave kansas & go northeast next summer, then travel along the coast (or wherever the road leads), ending up in a very warm region for the winter months.
i'm going to be traveling through all kinds of terrain so i really want to make sure i get something big/strong enough to pull whatever trailer i end up with! (to be safe, i want to make sure whatever i get can tow 7000lbs & ideally i would like to get a 27' trailer.)
does anyone tow with/have a dodge dakota?
i'm looking at extended cabs around 1998-2004ish.
i also have a giant dog that would be riding along in the backseat.
thank you SO much for your help!!!