Off-roading is thrilling. It can give you the adrenaline rush that nothing can. However, it can go terribly wrong if you do not follow its rules judiciously. You can get stuck with your prized SUV indefinitely or get injured terribly while seeking thrill.
There are a few ground rules that you must follow always.
Speed thrills but kills
While off-roading, always remember the rule of “As Slow As Possible, As Fast As Necessary". You may need some extra speed while climbing an uphill or to cross a pit or stone. However, the speed may always be lesser than what you have thought. Doing off-roading at greater speeds always means the risk of damaging your vehicle - be it scrapping its underbelly or hitting the bumper in the ground.
Find an easier route
Sometimes it is far easier to find an alternate route instead of just getting stuck. Always tread on a route that you think you and your vehicle can handle. Getting stuck with an under equipped and waiting fro someone to come and rescue you will not look cool.
It is advisable to follow the trail and try driving on used paths. Never over push. Somebody else was able to make doesn't mean you can also definitely make. May be they had a better vehicle, skills, or equipments.
Walk around your obstacles
If you are not sure about the kind of mud, obstacles, or sand you are going to cross then you should take a walk. And if you can't negotiate those obstacles on your feet then it highly unlikely for your vehicle to made it through. If you haven't seen any other vehicle to cross the hurdle then you should not take the risk. Always be willing to walk back!
Even the most advanced four-wheel drive systems can compensate for normal tyres in your vehicle. Without adequate tread depth, you might not clear any obstacle on the off-road terrain. So, if you seriously want to climb rocks and cross pits full of slush, install pairs of real off-roading tyres in your vehicle.
Get all the equipments
Roads less travelled are always unpredictable and can make you stuck indefinitely. Hence, it is essential to travel with all the help you can afford. Always carry off-road essential equipments including hand winch, high-lift jack, tow strap, wood blocks, first-aid kit, tyre inflator, and more to keep yourself covered from any unpredictable situation.
If you are going deep into the jungle from where you can't walk out then it is advisable to also carry a few extra clothes, sleeping bags, water, and food that would last until you get some help.
Keep someone informed
Always tell someone wherever you are going and when you will be back. This will help them easily search you if something unfortunate happens. On top of that, CarInfo always advises its readers to never go alone on an off-road trail. Second vehicle can always come in handy in situation where you are stuck. And having some company is always good.