If you are going Off-Road Driving, whether it's your first time, or you are a seasoned pro? and you have some questions. We have put together the below information to get you started, which includes some interesting facts, frequently asked questions, as well as some basic tips. If you are looking to go off-road driving then we recommend that you either do one of the fantastic experiences around the UK or take a training course.
We have included for you below;
- Our Top Tips for Off-Road Driving
- Did you know information about Off Road Driving
- Off-Road Driving Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)
Our Top Tips for Off Road Driving
Off Road Driving Basics
Off-Road driving is a skill, and one you have to learn over time, just because you can drive a car on a road does not mean you can drive a car off road as they are completely different. It is highly recommended that you know how to drive before you start driving off-road as you will then have an understanding of the controls before you start, having a driving licence is not always required, so before you book any off-road driving experience make sure you check what the requirements are as those can vary from between different venues.
We have included below some off-road driving tips;
Driving Up-Hill - When you are faced with a steep hill in front of you that you want to drive up, then it's impact that you keep full control of the vehicle as you do not want to start driving up the hill and then start to roll backwards. It's also important to remember that once you start driving up the hill you will not be able to see the ground and all you will see if the sky and clouds. It's recommended that if you are not driving on a designed off road track, that you step out of the vehicle to have a look at the ground to make sure that's it's clear and safe. Once you are happy to start driving up the steep hill it's recommended that you select second gear and remain in this gear until you reach the top as this will give you the power you need to get to the top, also remember that you want to take it slow and steady.
Driving Down Hill - If you want to drive down-hill then it's recommended if you are not on a designed off-road driving track that you get out of the vehicle to check that it's safe for you to continue and that you are not going to end up driving off an edge. Plan your route down the hill to avoid any obstructions on your way down, once you are happy place the vehicle in first gear and remain in this gear until you reach the bottom. The reason for this is that the first gear will help you to safely make your way down the hill with engine braking.
Driving though Water - If you are faced with water on your off road driving adventure then you should try to avoid it if you can, if you can not do this, then you do need to be very careful as you do not know what hazards lie beneath the water that you can not see. You also want to cross the water with 1 car at a time, this is to make sure that the first vehicle crosses over the water with no issues, and also stops you all from getting stuck behind each over if the car in front of you stops for what ever reason. Once you are happy you want to enter the water slowly to stop the engine from flooding, and then drive at a continuing steady speed to create a small wave in front of the vehicle as this will help to stop the engine from flooding and cutting out. Please note that you should never try to cross fast flowing deep water, and always remember to check your brakes when you get to the other side.
Driving though Deep Mud - If you are going off-road driving then you will come across mud at some point unless you go in the summer when the ground is dry. The technique to driving though deep mud is to try and keep your wheels straight and pick up some speed, but not too much. You want to stay in control as you go over the mud, as well as keeping in mind what is on the other side, also if you are following another vehicle then you want to go over the mud one at a time to make sure that they do not get stuck and then you drive in to the back of them as you can not stop on the mud. As you drive over the mud if you find that you start to get stuck and your wheels start to spin, then you ease your acceleration and start turning the steering wheel to the left and right in quick bursts as you accelerate. This should hopefully help to create traction and get you moving again, also if you do start to slide to either side then turn your steering wheel in the opposite direction to regain control.
Did you know information about Off Road Driving
Who invented the first Off-Road 4x4 Vehicle
The first 4 wheel drive vehicle was developed by a British engineer called Joseph Diplock in 1893. Joseph Diplock only ever patented the idea of a four-wheel drive, and also a four-wheel steering system for traction engines. Then in 1903 Dutch brothers Jacobus and Hendrik-Jan Spijker designed and built the Spyker 60 H.P, which was designed as a hill climb racer and was said to have a top speed of 80mph. As well as being the worlds first 4x4 off road vehicle it was also the first internal combustion engine, and also the first car to have 4 wheel braking due to it's speed. It's a sad fact that most people have never heard of this vehicle or the brothers, this car is now on display at the Louwman Museum in the Netherlands.
The Longest Journey in a 4x4 Vehicle
This record has to go to Gunther Holtorf from Germany as he travelled 560,000 miles over 179 counties from 1989 to 2014. When Gunther Holtorf first started the trip it was planned to only be for 18 months with his third wife Beate as a career break to discover the African countryside in his 1988 G-Wagen, but then after their divorce he started another trip with Christine in 1990, the coupe then travelled for a few months each year for the following 10 years. Then had a break from the road from 2000-2001, and then from 2005 started to travel non-stop after Christine developed cancer. Christines son Martin would then start to sometimes travel with Gunther Holtorf as his traveling companion. After Christines final trip in May 2009 she settled down in Bavaria, where they decided to get married before her death in June 2010. The 1988 G-Wagen used is now on display at the Mercedes museum in Stuttgart, Germany.
Off Road Driving World Records
There are a lot of different world records recorded in an off-road driving vehicle from the greatest number of Land Rovers together at the same time, to fuel economy, or even the one we have mentioned already about the most countries visited. The one that stood out for us was achieved in December-2010 with the fastest crossing to the South Pole of just 108 hours in 2 modified Toyota Hilux off road vehicles which travelled 1,434 miles across Antarctic. The aveage speeds works out to just 13 miles an hour, but when you take in to account that this was all off road, and also in the South Pole, then this is a fantastic achievement, both vehicles were modified to carry a whopping 285 gallons of fuel, 74 gallons in tanks and the rest in the bed of the vehicles.
Off Road Driving Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)
What is Off Road Driving
Off-road driving is taking a 4 wheel-drive vehicle on either a off-road track experience day or training course. So that you can learn how to handle a vehicle off-road, with either the experience of a course this will involve you driving the vehicle over terrain such as mud, rocks, sand or snow, as well as driving though water, which off-road vehicles are designed to do as they produce power at all 4 wheels to help you move over obstacles that a normal 2 wheeled drive vehicle is unable to get over
Do you need a Driving Licence for Off Road Driving
You do not need to have a driving licence as long as you are driving on private land with the permission of the land owner, then you will be ok to drive any vehicle. Do keep in mind that a 4x4 is not a toy and this is the same for any vehicle including quad bikes. As a lot of people use those for off road driving and having fun. It is always very important to make sure that who ever is driving the vehicle has full control at all times, and understand where all of the controls are and how they work. This is no different for off road driving vehicles, and is one of the main reasons people choose to experience this at a local venue which you can find on our website, or on a days training course. If you do not have a driving licence for the experience or course, then it is recommended that you speak with the venue to make sure that you are still able to book the experience.
We hope that you have enjoyed reading our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's) for Off Road Driving, you can find even more frequently asked questions (FAQ's) about different activities - Here. If you think we have missed something off from the above, please let us know - Here
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