Bogged - it's just part of the FUN
It's just one of those things. No matter how experienced you are and how advanced your 4WD is, there are times when you simply end up without traction and are going nowhere FAST!
In Australia, we are lucky enough to enjoy a huge range of terrains, but like any outdoor lifestyle activity...preparation is your best and cheapest insurance policy. Your 4x4 can have all the accessories under the sun, but it's typically planning and commonsense that will help you out more.
Here's some simple but proven ways to improve your recovery chances:
- Stop Accelerating if you are bogged - you'll only make the hole deeper
- Reduce friction on the vehicle underbody by digging around the exit points of your tyres and any part of the vehicle touching the ground
- If you haven't already, reduce tyre pressure if you're in sand/mud as this will significantly increase your traction
- Use some traction aids (small logs, Max Trax or anything that creates a solid base for your tyres to engage with). Traction and Clearance are your friends when Bogged!
- Remove weight from the Vehicle
- If you/your partner vehicle have a Winch, ONLY USE rated recovery points and always use a Dampener on the recovery gear to maximise safety
- If using a Snatch Strap/Winch - always stand clear and use a dampener
- Always try to recover your vehicle by going forwards, as 1st and 2nd gear are far stronger than Reverse
As with any 4WD Adventure, preparation is the key. Ensure that you have your Shovel, Rated Recovery Gear, Communication aides and always travel with a partner vehicle. We developed a whole design series of cool T-Shirts for the 4WD crew titled the "Brotherhood of 4WD" - it's not a fashion trend, but recognition that we are all part of a large family and that we all can and will "help each other out".
Our range has grown quickly over the past few years, from T-Shirts, to Hoodies, Caps and even our latest Sisterhood of 4WD T. If you are hitting the tracks, might as well do it in style!
Before you depart on your next Adventure, always inform close friends/family where you are going and what time you expect to return. As simple as it sounds, NEVER leave your vehicle and try to walk to safety unless you are absolutely certain of the direction and proximity of help.
If you are going to walk it, ONLY do it if you have ample provisions (Water, Food, Medical Kit) to match the expected time to reach your destination. Otherwise, if you don't - FORGET IT.
Top 5 "Bogged" Locations:
If you were going to put a list out of some of the most likely places to get bogged in Australia, we think the Top 5 looks something like this:
- Inskip Point - QLD - a Soft Sand nightmare in holiday times
- Moana Beach South Oz
- Bornholm Beach - one of the countries toughest 4x4 tracks
- Anywhere up north after the wet!!! Be warned
- Pardoo Station, Western Australia - Salt Marsh country
From our experience, it's when you try to rush your recovery that things can go from bad to worse. There's no busting hurry (unless the tides coming in FAST), so you really need to think through your circumstances and the most logical way of getting out.
If you're on your own, well that presents it's own challenges, but again, if you're fully prepared and stay relaxed, you've got a good chance of getting out and heading home without damage or injury.
PLAN, PREPARE, RECOVER