O.K. . . so I will let you know that . .
-the van was working well, we just didn't want to take the trailer to the mountains, without something stronger. We never had a single problem pulling the trailer with the van, but I was also having to be obsessed by how much we packed etc. to keep the weight down. We still have the van and can use that if needed.
-The reason we didn't research a lot before buying the Durango is that my husband is a used car dealer, and he got an amazing buy on this Durango at the auction and so we figured if it is good for the trailer fine, if not he will just sell it. That is why I was asking questions , so we could decide whether to keep it and hook up the electric break, or sell it . . .
-Lastly the dry weight on our 21 ft shamrock trailer, is actually 2550 pounds . . that was a typo . . . As to the 2500 pounds (some people think thats not acurate either, we have had it confirmed, and there were no modifications done to the trailer to increase the weight. The year that our trailer came out, (2003) Forrest River seemed to be doing an experiment to see how actually ultra-light they could make these things. The 21 ft ranged in weight from 2500-2800 pounds that year depending on the layout. There are no slide outs on this model.
Thanks to all for your advice . . . I guess we will just try it out and see how it does. I am encouraged that the one other person who has pulled a small (23 ft) trailer with a Durango has a good report about it. Also we do have a sway bar (equalizer hitch) etc. so hopefully that will help.
2003 21 ft Forrest River Shamrock