There’s nothing better than getting away from civilisation for a few days, or weeks, and exploring the little-known tracks that weave through the outback.
And there’s no end to them in Albury Wodonga and the surrounding regions with areas like Woomargama National Park, the Mitta Mitta Valley and the Upper Murray Region beckoning the avid camper.
If you are up for this sort of adventure, it pays to be prepared and know what you are in for as four-wheel-driving can be very different depending on who you talk to.
Some take it easy and just find a nice caravan park or camping spot for a weekend away from the world, while others race through water, drive up (or down) the steepest hill they can find and try and get through bogs.
No matter how you like to four-wheel-drive there are a few rules that should be followed to ensure you have a safe and fun weekend – without getting stuck out in the middle of nowhere.
- Never go alone. If you’re going off the beaten track there is chance you could get stuck, no matter what time of year it is or how well you think you know where you’re going. Having another vehicles means you can get the car out or if worst comes to worst you can at least go and get help.
- Make sure all gear is in working order. There’s nothing worse than getting hours from town and realising you’ve lost a vital part of your winch or there’s a rip in your awning. Quickly checking everything works how it should a week or two before your trip can save a lot of heartache down the track.
- Check over your vehicle. Does it need a service? Are the tyres in good condition (don’t forget the spare)?
Along with staying safe there’s plenty of gear on the market you might need. Just some items include:
- Winch, snatch straps
- Bullbar, scrub bars and side steps
- Bash plate
- Tyres - specific for where you’re going
- Tyre repair kit
- Suspension, lift kit
If you’re new to four-wheel-driving some of the gear may seem foreign while seasoned four-wheel-drivers will have all this and more.
The amount of gear available is always growing with new toys always coming out for four-wheel-driving enthusiasts.
Start with the basics and work up from there. Get advice from friends, staff at your local four-wheel-drive store, friends or go online.