Written by Muddies, for Muddies...

Recently we asked our Facebook community to share some of their tips and advice on Beach Driving. Here is what the Muddies had to say:

Recommended gear:

  • snatch strap
  • shackles
  • compressor
  • UHF
  • Shovel
  • Max Trax
  • Sand Flags

Driving tips:

  • Keep the momentum up and your speed at a steady level.
  • 2nd gear and around 40kph are a rough guideline, but adapt this to the conditions.
  • Avoid sharp turns.
  • Keep hubs locked in and turn your diff lock off.
  • Turn your traction control off.
  • Try to drive in the existing ruts.
  • Be mindful of your centre of gravity and do not attempt to drive sand dunes on a side angle.
  • Keep clear of the water level and out of the water at all times.
  • Stay away from seaweed drifts

Tyre Pressure

Most people seemed to agree that reducing tyre pressure is important while beach driving. However, when it came to the optimal tyre pressure opinions were mixed. Responses ranged from 10-18psi.

Photo by: http://www.4-wheeling-in-western-australia.com/

Photo by: http://www.4-wheeling-in-western-australia.com/

Paul Kennedy outlined that there are many variables at play when choosing optimal tyre pressure, including the conditions of the sand, the type of tyres you are using and your vehicle. Your best bet is to know your vehicle and adjust to the conditions.  Also, ensure you are not lowering the pressure so much that your tyre rolls off the rim. Mitchell John Sanson recommends giving your manual a good read as most manufactures mention vehicle weights, clearance and tyre width. This info can help when choosing your tyre pressure.

As well as adapting pressure to meet conditions, remember to inflate tyres as soon as you get back on the road, as significant damage can result from driving on deflated tyres. 

Be prepared:

  • If possible organise a tag along or at least for a mate to accompany you.
  • Know the tide times for the beach you are driving. And avoid high tide. Many of the information centres in town will have tide information.
  • Use tide markers if they are available.
  • Find out before hand if the beach you will be driving on requires a permit and that it is legal to drive on that particular beach.
  • If possible increase your ground clearance.
Photo shared by Mick Brinkley, Mud Map Facebook Fan.

Photo shared by Mick Brinkley, Mud Map Facebook Fan.

Common sense also goes a long way, use indicators when passing, overtaking and turning.

Great Beach driving Spots:

  • Fraser Island
  • Robe South Australia
  • Stockton Beach
  • Blacksmith Beach
  • Stradbroke Island
  • Bribie Island
  • Moreton island
  • Straddie, and Iluka.
Photo: Australiantoursrus.com

Photo: Australiantoursrus.com

Glen Smith and John Knight also threw in a good reminder to be respectful of the environment. Keep clear of the marked No-go zones as often they hold vegetation that is crucial for holding the sand in place.  Damage to beaches can lead to increased restrictions and closures. So respect the beach now, so you can drive it again tomorrow.

Most Importantly Have Fun!

Thank You to the muddies that helped write this blog:

Christian Knights, Nathan Tutton, Christopher Goulding, Jack Horner, Bj Wells, Paul Kennedy, Darren Dowey, Shaun Clark, Al Cooper, Brett Gambrill, Ian Don, Sean Wogo Dahlin, Guy Fenton, Michael Becker, Mitchell John Sanson, Michelle King, Peter H Brown, Mick Colbran, Stuart Freer, Glen Smith, Frank Shanley, SteveTurner  Ashley Lipus, Rick Neilsen,  Chris Gifford, Joanne Bertone Dijkstra, Mitch Lee, Chris Lovelace, John Knight, John Johnston, Colin Starke, Terry Orchard, Frank Patterson, Patrick Kurtz, Jarrad Bosenberg, Andrew Hall, Brenden Filbey, Brent Roberts and Daniel Whitbread.

If you are interested in contributing to our blog, drop us a line. Or simply comment on any of our “Your Tips” or “Have Your Say” Facebook posts.  


Mud Map Robe Trip 2012


AuthorMaria Oanca