Have you ever felt the urge to go off the beaten track with your car and experience off-roading? If so, you are in good company. Plenty of people from all over the world enjoy the rough and ready experience.However, there are a few things you need to think about first.
In this guide, we’re going to talk you through some of the basics that will help you get started on your new hobby. So, strap yourself in and prepare for a bumpy ride. Let’s get started right away.
The best vehicle for the job
Your first step is an obvious one, but it’s a point worth explaining. You will need some form of 4×4 to go off-road and stay safe. And, preferably, a 4×4 that is designed to be taken cross-country and over muddy trails and steep hills. Forget about taking your SUV – they are built for the city and won’t last you five minutes in an off-road environment. Now, it’s fair to say that off-road vehicles can be expensive, and they tend to be high on power and low on efficiency. So, we would suggest getting one to accompany your normal wheels, rather than use it for driving around all the time.
Finding your off-roader
Where can you find an off-road vehicle? Your best bet is to start looking online at websites set up by off-road enthusiasts. You will find out about the best vehicles to use and also learn about the basics of modding your car so that it improves the performance. Once you learn about the best makes of off-road vehicles, you can look at the new or second-hand markets to get a car that fits into your budget. For example, Land Rover have often been a name associated with off-roading. So, you could find what you are looking for from Hunters, or another approved Land Rover dealer.
Choosing your tyres
Once you have bought your new off-road vehicle, you will be desperate to take her out for a spin. But, before you get started, make sure you check your tyres. You will need to invest in a few variations to allow for the terrain you will be traversing. All-terrain tyres, for example, can be used in a variety of situations such as loose gravel and small rocks and boulders. However, if you are going out over wet mud, you should look at specialised off-road tyres that will give you the extra grip you need.
Of course, you don’t want to have an accident on your first adventure, so take it easy and don’t take on too much. You should bring some company with you – especially if you are travelling to a remote area. And, they will be your second – and third, if necessary – pair of eyes on the roads. There will be lots of hazards to look out for, do the more people you have with you, the better. Also, you should take it slowly at first. Stay at a low speed and keep your vehicle in a low gear. When you are going slowly, it’s easy to speed up. But if you are going fast, it’s a lot harder to spot hazards and slow down.
Enjoy your first trip out off-road, it will be a blast! But always remember to keep yourself safe.