[Off Road Driving] Mud
When you get to 'MUD' here's what you need to do:-
If the mud can be walked over without breaking through, you’re in with a chance. If you stand on the mud and sink in your boots or ‘welllingtons’ there’s no chance for the vehicle (install chains)!
Basically, “If you can’t walk it – You can’t drive it”, unless your highly modified.
Reducing tyre pressure can help in ‘bottomless’ mud whereas it can make things worse when a hard surface is below the mud
Check on foot, the depth of mud or water in the bog hole. Use a wading stick. It can be left in the mud to indicate danger spots such as, unseen large rocks, tree trunks, deep holes etc. Walk down one intended wheel track prodding the ground for depth, and then return down the other track.
Set up recovery gear before hand. Attach winch cable to a point on the bumper that’s going to be easily accessible. There’s nothing worse than groping around under the mud looking for your winch cable or ‘D’ shackles.
Engage diff lock, and lockers (if fitted).
Select appropriate gear, usually 2nd or 3rd high range depending on the depth of the mud. Too low a gear will dig the tires into the mud.
If forward travel is a must and the mud is over a long stretch, deflate the tyres to around 20 psi, otherwise, fit chains. Do not fit chains to deflated tyres.
Turning on the windshield wipers before plowing through a big mud puddle does help.
As you get underway, STEADY POWER and MOMENTUM must not be lost.
Keep wheels in tracks of previous vehicles. If no previous tracks, travel on the crown of the road if possible. If the ruts become too deep, dig away one of the sides to help the wheel to drive out where straddling is a reasonable alternative. If beginning to get stuck, swing the wheel from side to side, this works just as well in reverse.
If the wheels begin to spin, ease off the throttle.
If stuck, try reversing immediately and stay in your own tyre ruts as these will be already somewhat compacted.
If there is an incline ahead, approach with more speed.
If the wheels on one side are higher, the lower wheels will generally have better traction, as they have more weight.
Descending very steep muddy inclines use:- low range, 2nd gear, chains on (if carried).
Ascending steep muddy inclines use:- low range, 1st gear, diff lock on, lockers engaged (if fitted), chains on. Do not attempt these except in an emergency unless you have aggressive tyres.
Use gentle steering inputs, as a heavy correction can cause the vehicle to slide.
When you have cleared the mud, check if any mud is caked onto the driveshaft or radiator. If there is, clean it off before driving home as it could throw the drive shaft out of balance causing damage or overheat the engine.
No hand signals, driver playing with his transfer Knob.