Blanco County News
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Outdoor with Tripp
One Heavenly SUV
Wednesday, May 13, 2009 • Posted May 12, 2009

I had just left the bait shop. Stuck in traffic, an old hearse caught my eye. Pondering what becomes of old hearses, it struck me – the ultimate sportsman’s vehicle!

That sled would put an SUV to shame, I reasoned. Isn’t a hearse actually an upscale SUV? A Sport Undertakers Vehicle with leather interior and smoother ride.

SUV’s cost more than Noah would have paid to fill the ark via guided hunts. Since no live person would be caught dead in a hearse, they’ve got to be affordable.

Great for camping, I bet. Plenty of room to stretch out. They’ve all been field tested. No camper to pull, no bed-cap to buy. Who needs a campground or Wal-Mart? Just find a funeral home.

I can’t touch a state park for under fifteen bucks with my camper. Probably pay nothing with a hearse. I’d just explain I was picking up, and cruise in, no problem. Just couldn’t say I was making a delivery – too many questions. Bet they even come with curtains.

And perfect for fishing, I mused. Room for the longest poles … or the tallest Irishmen. No broken rods, no roof-rack to install.

Probably hold a jon-boat and motor with room to spare, I concluded. No trailer needed. Just back down to the water and slide the rig out. I’d just have to let folks know it was a boat I was unloading.

Terrific for lake traffic, I decided. Headlights on, you’ll pass everyone. Go pretty fast with folks pulled off the road. Maybe even pick up an escort.

Best hunting vehicle ever made, I surmised. Pack supplies, several feeders and a gaggle of trophy bucks. Camo’d up it might make a great blind…or camp house.

My hunting gear would be safe, no doubt. Who would steal from a hearse? Crooks don’t fear prison but they sure don’t want to go to hell.

Perfect for waterfowlers; carry that thousand decoy set with ease. Great for stand hunting; haul a tower blind or two. The ultimate night rig for calling coyotes; already painted the perfect color.

No four-wheel drive? No big deal! With that fear-of-hell thing working for me, who would pass a stuck hearse? Better gas mileage too.

How to convince the wife? I wondered.

Most women become soccer moms, hauling a pile of kids around to God knows what. An SUV carries eight kids tops? A hearse would carry the whole soccer league, as long as they all lay down. Plus, it’s the Cadillac she’s always wanted!

Everyone and their dog borrows my truck. Not a hearse — no sane person would borrow one. People wouldn’t even ask for a ride, and if they did, I’d just say: “Sure, but it’s had an odd smell ever since I bought it; hope that doesn’t bother you.” They’d never ask again.

Finally, traffic moved, and a whiff of stinkbait brought me back to reality. I shoved my old 4x4 into gear and watched the hearse pull away. It was then I realized the ultimate sportsman’s vehicle wasn’t for me.

“Don’t worry old girl, you’re safe,” I sighed as she lumbered ahead. “I’ve never looked good in a suit.”

Tripp Holmgrain is an avid outdoorsman who may lengthen his garage. Email him at

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