How We Used a Ram 3500 Heavy Duty for Rocket Photography


After comparing the 2011 Ram 3500 Heavy Duty vs. the Delta IV Heavy rocket, we drove the one-ton Ram to Vandenberg Air Force Base near Lompoc, Calif., to snap photos of the Delta's maiden launch from the West Coast on Thursday afternoon.

While other members of the media jockeyed for position at ground level around us, we set up our gear with the best field of view we could find — in the Ram's cargo box. It had all the space we needed for our tripod and camera, and it put us well above the crowd.

The Ram goes back tomorrow. We didn't have time to tow or haul with it. Please read the 2010 Heavy-Duty Shootout for an in-depth review of its work capabilities.

However, we continue to be impressed with the Ram 3500's unloaded ride, thanks to the new hydraulic body mounts positioned under the cab's C-pillars. There were only a few patches of California freeway where the road surface's expansion joints overcame their dampening capabilities and made us wish for a heavy trailer to hang behind the wide dually.

We also put the Ram's UConnect hands-free system to good use for tunes, navigation, safely staying in touch with the office and keeping our mobile devices charged.

But enough of that. We know you want to see rocket photos!




Now all you need is a 1D body to hang off that lens :)

Mike, these are awesome. i'm glad the 400mm lens could be put to use on something other than sports. The rocket-smoke-trail-through-the-sun photos is nothing short of spectacular. Cheers.

hahaha I love how you compare a ram truck to a huge rocket. This is the best website ever. Awesome pictures. Keep up the good work!

Great photos. Nice to have fun with a story. That is one of my favorite things about this site. Very entertaining.


Looks like you had a blast :-)

@johndeerrm: LOL. I was feeling pretty good about the 5D. First time I've ever put a camera on a lens instead of a lens on a camera.

@BlueTacoMan: Rockets and pickups. That's an awesome combo. :-)

A 2007-2009 Ram, with those "rocket booster" looking taillights, would have fit in nicely with this rocket story.

Awesome pics Mike. The last one is now my background picture.

Kool pics and glad to see the Ram getting some show time. However, you probably could've used a Dakota to load that gear. :)

Good deal - such a sweet rig.

An aftermarket 8' box conversion would be a nice enhancement - otherwise, perfection.

Wow! Those are some phenomenal pictures Mike!

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