Overlanding lessons learned the hard way

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CR-Venturer

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Member III

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Telkwa, BC, Canada
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J
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S
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16340

The case of which I was thinking was this one:

- 67 Km to cross the Biosphere Forest Reserve on an alleged "road"
- local advice (Forestry Ranger) - "no problem in that vehicle"
- 10 minutes in - a couple of vehicle tracks, a few motorbike tracks
- 45 minutes in - one set of bike tracks left
- an hour in - no more tracks
- an hour and a quarter - long section of deep mud, then a much longer section of deeper mud
- an hour and a half in - thunder from behind us, "road" deteriorating
- two hours in - only 11 Km to go to reach the river
- two hours and a minute in - tree fallen across the road, now the thunderstorm is approaching from behind
- four and a half hours in - tree removed from "road", now dark, starting to rain, continued into the growing darkness
- 5 hours in - arrived at river - beer and sleep.
Oh I bet that beer was extra tasty!
 
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leeloo

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Luxembourg
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Mihai
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Doros
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good for you that you can still joke about it :) .

I am lucky because my wife is very cautious and fearful, and best of all - she hates driving more than getting wet or dirty. I don't even need to ask, she just jumps out of the car and goes to scout, pokes with a stick mud holes, goes ahead of the car in the river .etc...
I offered several time to go scout and for her to do the driving but she is not having it :) And I don't insist much either.. :)
my adventure was something like this :
-in Albania, I start at 7.00 am what was described in 2013 ( last entry ) as moderate trail on the wikiloc app., about 3 h tops.
-After 30 min in - the trail becomes more difficult, but still doable. I dawns on me that now we are in 2019 and things might have changed since 2013 :)
-2h in - very slow progress, but I see a 1980 Hilux coming from the opposite side driven by a local woman and I think for sure it will be easier., she is a local, knows the road and other alternatives probably are worse. I am on mountain in august, temp is rising already to 35 C - about 95 f and it is only 10.30 in the morning.
-1 h later I am still on this moderate trail that was supposed to be done in 3 h. Very narrow, huge drop on a side. No room to turn unless I go in reverse for 30 min easy . This is when I see a huge fallen tree that I need to go around. One wheel goes in the air over the drop and at this point my wife grabs the kid, says a "screw you with your moderate trail " and gets out of the car. I pull out the maxtrax but even with them under the back wheels and rear locker engaged I can't back down. The only way is forward.
I calculate a bit the trajectory and with some luck I realize that I can be with 3 wheels on the ground at any time - as one goes in the air over the drop the other will come to the ground. That was my theory at least.
- I am a atheist but a miracle happens and I find faith, say a short prayer and move forward.
-2h later back on asphalt, we find a nice village with a restaurant . We reach the conclusion that we had enough off - roading and adventuring for the day, we set google maps to take us to a nice comfy sea resort, 120 km away, not so far. I put the destination in google maps and off we go.
-google maps takes us on some of the most remote roads I ever seen in my file. Literally nothing - 60 % off road and out of that another 60 % some really rocky difficult terrain .
- I discover a new feature of my Landcruiser - at 40 C - 105 F when you climb some steep hills on 2 low for hours, the AC cuts off to divert all cooling fans to engine cooling only . Smart cookies this Japanese engineers.
- last leg of the trip - some easy gravel road we meet a Fiesta with some italians, going the opposite way asking us of the road ahead gets better. I try to convince them to turn around and make a mental note to watch the news for the next couple of days . It dawns on me that Google must have a top legal defense team hired there until they come up with a special nav route finder for Albania.
-new record set. 120 km of "national road " in Albania took us 6 hours.
 
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Jay McClellan

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Adventure

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Saranac, MI, USA
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The case of which I was thinking was this one:

- 67 Km to cross the Biosphere Forest Reserve on an alleged "road"
- local advice (Forestry Ranger) - "no problem in that vehicle"
- 10 minutes in - a couple of vehicle tracks, a few motorbike tracks
- 45 minutes in - one set of bike tracks left
- an hour in - no more tracks
- an hour and a quarter - long section of deep mud, then a much longer section of deeper mud
- an hour and a half in - thunder from behind us, "road" deteriorating
- two hours in - only 11 Km to go to reach the river
- two hours and a minute in - tree fallen across the road, now the thunderstorm is approaching from behind
- four and a half hours in - tree removed from "road", now dark, starting to rain, continued into the growing darkness
- 5 hours in - arrived at river - beer and sleep.
That sounds like a great trip! I've had a similar experience with advice from a ranger - they are generally well-intentioned but not always well-informed.
 

LONO100

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No matter if it's 88 degrees F outside and the forecast calls for sun and fun for your entire trip, don't forget to keep your boots either in your vehicle, or in your tent!
 
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