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2009 Forester XT Limited
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31 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone.

My wife and I are moving from NYC to NorCal. Most of our things will be shipped, but whatever can fit in our 2009 Forester XT limited will make the trek with us.

What recommendations do you all have for storage? Do I need to purchase the cross bars for the roof to attach a basket or cargo carrier? Which do you all recommend, a cargo carrier or basket?

Are there any other accessories that are out there that you all think we should get?

Any help and advice will be greatly appreciated.

Regards.:discomonkey:
 

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2002 S
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58 Posts
I have used a soft sided Thule cargo carrier on several long treks across the county. It is weather proof and relatively cheap and you don't need to buy the cross bars. The one I have is the Tahoe model.

Good luck moving

Cheers!
 

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Premium Member
2008 XS 4EAT
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9,878 Posts
Either a Thule hardtop box carrier or Yakima will be my recommendation.

You'll find people here are pleased with whatever brand they've purchased, so I'm not going to take a side. The reason I'm suggesting this is to look at your purchase for the long term. Sizes vary but you may want it to accommodate skis/snowboards or camping gear for your adventures in Cali if that's something in your plans. Fuel mileage will suffer very little (never bothered to compare) and you have to select only items that will fit. On some models the boxes open on both sides, which I like.

Yes you will need to get the factory bars or the appropriate bars from the brand you choose. I will say Thule mounts to my factory cross bars very easily, but my model came standard with them so additional cost was not an issue. Price may be a deciding factor on which bars you choose.

Again depending on the size of box carrier you get you can always add other products to the crossbars, kayak carriers, bicycle racks, etc .
Don't forget to purchase a small folding step stool to aid in getting things up there. The one I've got is probably a foot tall and is very compact, I put it behind the drivers seat when I have the box on.

Others will chime in as to the advantages of a basket shortly I'm sure.
 

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2009 Forester XT Limited
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31 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thank you! After looking online, I see that there are a few options for the factory cross bars: an aero and a round. What is the difference? Also, I see that the hardtop box carriers by Thule and Yakima are pretty expensive; much more than expected. Are there brands that are durable, but more affordable?

I appreciate all the advice.
 

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01 Forester S
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65 Posts
aero xl

I've heard a few good things about the Sportrack Aero XL. They are cheaper than the thules and the yakimas. I don't own one but you might want to research that one...it is MUCH cheaper than the big two brands! Does anyone have any experience with this carrier??
 

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2001 Forester Slushbox
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1,784 Posts
I have used a soft sided Thule cargo carrier on several long treks across the county. It is weather proof and relatively cheap and you don't need to buy the cross bars. The one I have is the Tahoe model.

Good luck moving

Cheers!
You wouldn't believe how much stuff my wife can cram in one of those soft carriers.

 

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2008 OBXT
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101 Posts
Thank you! After looking online, I see that there are a few options for the factory cross bars: an aero and a round. What is the difference? Also, I see that the hardtop box carriers by Thule and Yakima are pretty expensive; much more than expected. Are there brands that are durable, but more affordable?
Maybe check craigslist for used gear? I got my loadwarrior w/ extention for $60 that way (they retail for ~$300+ new), and a number of other members here have reported similar finds.

Sears also has the x-cargo boxes that are less expensive than the Thules and Yakimas, not sure if they're quite as good though.
 

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99 Forester S
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685 Posts
I have traveled many a miles in my Forester the longest being about 4,000 mile round trip. A word of advice, take photos!

I always kept a cooler with soft drinks, energy drinks and other easily accessible snacks in the back seat strapped down.

As for storage, I kept it about the height of the headrests all the way back and then got a hard case that I bolted to the cross rails. I think it was from Sears and was about 200 bucks. MPG went down to about 22 on the highway at avg. speed of 65-70 mph. I really couldn't feel a difference in acceleration and it didn't bounce around, leak or anything bad.

Here's a photo from my long journey about half way through. It took forever to wash that thing back home.

Best of luck to you.

 

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2006 XT
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675 Posts
Ask yourself:
Do I need to get into this storage thingy each day of the trip? If so choose case. If not bag or rack will do.
Do I want ease of access to various items in the storage thingy? case
Will it be raining/snowing when you access the storage thingy? case
Am I going to use the rack weekly for the rest of it's life? Yak/Thule not the cheap ones.
Am I not made of money. Sears Xcargo all the way! Using your existing bars.
No bars=bag with the paint marks

YMMV:huh:
 

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2009 Forester XT Limited
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31 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Hi all,

I think we're going to go with a roof rack paired with a soft carrier like frogstar7055. I think we can get more use with a rack over a hard case.

How noisy is a soft case? Also, how weatherproof is it? I realize it's not as waterproof as the hardcase, but will my things be totally soaked if driving through some rain?
 

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Premium Member
2007 XT Sport 5MT
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24,101 Posts
The soft cases are rather weatherproof. They appear to be made from similar material to that of the "textile" motorcycle jackets.
Depending on how much your combination ends up weighing (basket, rack, bag, etc) you may want to look into a setup similar to mine. I've got the extended Yakima LoadWarrior with a 3-crossbar setup. It allows me to haul about 200lbs worth of whatever I can strap to the basket with the setup and not max out the crossbars which are only rated at 75lbs each from the factory.

Here is a picture of my setup with my tires loaded on the roof. The wheels/tires weigh around 40 pounds each.
 

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13 BRZ Limited 6MT
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971 Posts
I did a SF -> MI move, and will probably move from MI -> SF. I'm planning on getting a hitch and run a basket up top, and renting a trailer from Uhaul. Is there a better alternative than a uhaul?
 

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2008 2.5x ll beaner
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634 Posts
Def hard top carrier..I would utilize a small trailer also..MAster the art of packing your ride too!!
 
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