Straight haul vs slant trailer for one horse

I am looking into downsizing my 3 horse slant bumperpull to a 2 horse. I’m just trying to decide on whether I should go with a straight haul or another slant. I like that straight hauls are designed for bigger horses, and will be able to fit my warmbloods better (my current 3 horse is “warmblood size”, but I still find it a tight fit).
I regularly only haul one horse at a time. Is it a concern that in a straight haul the trailer would be off balance with only one horse in it?

No, it’s not an issue. Many, many people only haul one horse much of the time.

1 Like

In a nutshell, no, it’s not a problem. People have been hauling one horse in a 2H straight load for as long as we have had 2H straight loads on the market.

I own a 2H slant. It’s fine, but I’d much prefer a nicely designed 2H straight. While my horses are fine in the slant, I feel like they are noticeably more comfortable in a WB sized straight load. I also feel more comfortable allowing friends to hitch a ride with straight loads, because if two strange horses have issue together in the slant, you can’t easily access the front horse without removing the back horse.


I removed a divider in my 3-slant and sold the rear tack, so I have two big slant stalls for big horses.
I do prefer straight loads but I got this awesome trailer for a heck of a deal.

But hauling one horse in a straight is fine.
The horse should always be hauled on the driver’s side to account for the crown of the road.


I’d vote for a two horse straight load. Ours is configured so we can swing the back of the divider over. If you’re only shipping one at a time it’s nice to be able to give them some extra room.
But you still have the advantages of the straight load, such as being able to get to each horse when hauling more than one.


Allow me to be Devil’s Advocate for a stock trailer.
I owned straightload 2H, slant 2H, BP & GN before trading for a 16’ stock BP.
I will never go back to enclosed or GN.
My old knees demand the BP, but I have found the stock perfect for my needs.
It has a center gate that can be pinned back.
I can haul all 3 of my horses if necessary & most often use it to haul my mini & his cart.
Cart goes up front where there is a full-length escape door. Mini goes behind the gate.
I have also hauled my 16H TWH by himself.
I never thought I’d want a stock, now I won’t go back. :hugs:

1 Like

I have considered a stock trailer, as I also drive a mini and have thought that a stock would be handy when I trailer him and need a place for his cart (however, his cart is super light, and I don’t have a problem getting it into or out of the bed of the truck). But my current riding/ show horse prefers loading with a ramp. So I do like that straight hauls come standard with a ramp and that I wouldn’t have to get one installed.

I do like stock trailers a lot too, the ones with the middle divider to make two box stalls. I couldn’t find one that also had a tack room, though.
I personally am not comfortable hauling multiple horses loose without dividers between them.

1 Like

I have had all three:

Slant load- least favorite, really tight for long horses, pain for mares and foals, pain for bad hauling horses. Rear tack was useless. Seems like I had it out more than it was in.

Stock Trailer- Loved this one, you could get anything on and off it, but preferred 4 horse, so could load crazy :crazy_face: horses up front and slam the gate shut before they could escape, super for all horses and they could ride as they liked, loose. Problem was not a ton of tack/feed area. I hate having hay in my dressing area/ tack room. It gets all in my clothes and saddle pads (pet peeve). I learned a long time ago that bale bags do not keep hay dry in the bed of the truck. With one horse you have to unload anything in the back stall before horse gets off. I always had the horse in the front stall for a smoother ride.

Straight Load- My current trailer. I am like you, one horse at a time. I have a draft/warmblood size straight ramp load. Extra tall, wide, long, Front dressing room, gooseneck, with full size escape doors on both sides. I have the center partition somewhere… I had the a custom height adjustable butt bar fabricated to fit across the entire width. The front chest pads are pin in, leaving a 2.5’ space in front of the horse for hay, shavings, grain bin, my porta potty in a box, buckets, with the snap in mangers and hay bags above. Basically I can park, lower the ramp, open the windows, open both escape doors and with fans running, it is a stall with tons of air flow. My guys prefer to stand in trailer, they are free to move, the have air flow and food, so they are happy. I have no fear of them getting loose. I do have to snap in a water bucket. My dressing room (she shed as DH calls it) is just my fridge, lounge chair, ottoman, closet and tack. This trailer also offers a 100 gallon water tank, awning, outside spigot for washing up, hosing off.

Makes trips to the vet a pleasure. The vet loves it because he can do exam in the breezy trailer. If I have to wait I will be in the lounge chair, the horse chilling in his stall.

For events it is a home away from home, comfy, cool and convenient. It has very good balance, pulls awesome, not to long.
This trailer was custom built in 1992 is all steel and is headed out for sandblast and paint, new pinstripe, new awning and wiring. I am changing all the padding from black to light gray so it will stay cooler in the summer sun. I am the second owner and snagged it for 4k about 8 years ago.

When my new horse came and I thought about buying something newer. I just did not find anything that had a set up I liked as well. It was an easy decision to spend the additional 3k to have it upgraded. This one can handle my 14.1 pony to my 17.3 warmblood with just lowering the hay nets and adjusting the butt bar. The warmblood has a little more trouble turning around, but he has figured out how, :laughing:


I use the front half as my tack room.
I have a hanging tack rack - made to slip over a stall wall - that my harness goes on.
Plenty room for a bale or 2 or 3 of hay, muckfork, various rubbermaid totes for the Etcetera.
My carts are both light enough that OldLady Me can lift them into & out of the trailer by myself. They go in shafts first, then I lift into the trailer.

The only Caveat for me was learning NOT to use pelleted bedding for the mini on a long haul. We arrived to find everything in front of the gate covered in pellet dust & since I don’t put a flymask on the mini, he had ridden in the duststorm :roll_eyes:

1 Like

I’m sure a two-horse straight load would be fine. I currently use a two-horse stock trailer for my only horse and have had no problems so far.

1 Like

I dimly recall that the one thing you always want to do when trailering a single horse in a straight load trailer is to place them on the driver’s side. If I recall correctly, it has to do with the camber of the road’s crown, it makes it easier for the horse and better on the trailer’s tires.
I hauled a single horse for years in a straight load, on trips up to 14 hours in length. He never seemed bothered, but he was a saint in so many ways.


Which would work great when only hauling one horse. But if I wanted to haul two, I’d have no tack space, so it wasn’t ideal for me. Maybe next time!

1 Like

On the topic of stock trailers with a dressing room:

Mine is a 2H stock combo. For all intents and purposes, it is a 12’ stock trailer. But it has a swing wall to make a good sized dressing room with saddle racks and bridle hooks in the front. It has a slant load divider so it can be used as a 2H slant, but generally I use the trailer for 1 horse with the divider removed. That way the horse has a good sized box stall, like they would in a regular stock trailer.

It’s a decent compromise, not my dream trailer but very functional. I wish mine were wider-- it’s painfully narrow for a slant limiting its use as a 2H, but I knew that when purchasing.


Thanks for the replies, everyone! I’m definitely leaning more towards a straight haul. Looking forward to going trailer shopping!

Practically everyone here hauls with stock trailers, many larger ones, all GN.

Decades ago there were no gn trailers, all were bp.

In stock trailers, every horse there stands themselves at a slant and head to the left, hind end to the right, as if in a slant.
One horse, a trailer full, all prefer to ride like that, maybe the influence of the crown at play?

I have asked those hauling for a living, commercially and for competitions and all here, where distances are multiple day hauls, prefer step up slants/stock trailers.

With that information, I would say, other than people’s preferences, slant may just be a little more horse friendly, if we can believe our horses when they have a choice?
Maybe not enough to get a slant if we prefer straight.

You could get a straight load with a side ramp, that might be enough to fit the mini cart in, or enough room for the mini, with the cart in the stall area (that would be super easy if you got a center divider on a sliding track.

I have similar, but a three horse. I took the middle divider out so the front slot is large enough for my big horse and I can haul a second horse if it’s more average sized. Like you said, not my dream trailer but very functional!

1 Like

we did competitive trail for a very long time, two advantages to the step up was a horse naturally drops its head when entering and if the horse could not step up into the trail it was worthless as a trail horse

1 Like

Interesting observation.
Head position as a regulator of mental functions.

When horses lower their head, their “alert” system also seems to dampen down.
That generally means they are more amenable to listening and learning.
One more reason some trainers use the head down cue to relax a horse.

Not sure that works with cutting horses, when they get down on a cow, maybe an exception there.