With Memorial Day just around the corner, chances are you have the itch to take your 4×4 off the beaten path. Offroading can be great fun and lead to amazing adventures with the unexpected around every corner, but safety can also be a concern. Below are several tips for keeping your 4×4 safe, upright, and ready for action as the weather warms and that mud looks enticing.
1. Is it legal? – It’s just good sense to ensure that the track or field that catches your eye is legal to drive on. No need to accumulate fines for a day of testing out your 4×4. Take the time to do your research, then crack your knuckles and tear up that path.
2. Bring a healthy dose of respect – Consider the wildlife in the area you are driving in. Stick to paths cleared out by those who rode before you. Chances are, significant wildlife will avoid paths that are frequented by offroaders, but if you wander too far off of those paths, disrupting dens and other animals homes is a definite. Take care when opening up your 4×4 and respect the environment.
3. It’s time for that 4-wheel-drive – Engage the 4-wheel-drive before the path gets messy. This will help when entering the rough stuff and keep your driving experience fun, but safe. Getting stuck in the mud or terrain is no picnic.
4. Need for speed? – Take your time and it will be even more of an adventure. Most vehicles get stuck or damaged because their driver overestimated speed capability and no one likes getting stuck without a means to get home.
5. Consider your limits – Each 4×4 driver has varying levels of skill. Know your limits and your offroad excursion will be a blast! Push yourself too far and it may require a rescue and quite possibly, a repair. If the conditions of the trail have you concerned, find another. There are plenty of places in the great state of Colorado that will match your skill level.
6. Stay connected – If you are traveling miles from civilization or offloading alone, be sure to take some means of communication with you on the drive. It also pays to let others know of the route you are taking just in case your 4×4 gets stuck in the mud or stranded in some other way.
7. Be prepared – Accidents happen. Even the most experienced driver has a mishap every now and then. Consider taking warm clothes, rations for a day or two, and tools. In case of emergency, you will not have to immediately worry about food or keeping warm.
Keeping a clear head isn’t easy to do given the excitement of taking your 4×4 offroad, but in the name of safety, it’s worth it. If you have a question about your 4×4’s preparedness for a summer excursion, bring it by Advanced Four Wheel Drive & Auto Repair for a diagnostic test. We are the experts in 4×4 repair, so ask any question and we are sure to have the answer for you.