Staying on forest roads and treading lightly is something we like to do. It is probably the least “macho” of the 4×4 world but that’s okay. You don’t need 4 wheel drive 98% of the time and even cars could probably make it, (you would probably even have a better ride in a car but most cars are not built to take the constant bouncing and shaking and they don’t have skid plates covering their oil pans,(spitting lose rocks up into the oil pan can be a common experience on forest roads)).
You still need to go prepared. Tools, extra water, cb radio, etc., and go with a second vehicle or at least a second person. You don’t want to break down 20 miles from anywhere plus you don’t want to get into a predicament alone. The other reason to go with someone else is to figure out which way to go, (two heads, two maps, compasses, gps and a coin to flip) to figure out which road is the one you want to continue on. Gps alone is no good on forest roads but coordinates and a good topo map together works for us. There is generally no cell phone service that’s why the cb, (citizens band) radio, it has an emergency channel (channel 9 in most areas) even though your range isn’t very far in the trees, you can still talk to each other, alert each other,……sing to each other (on real long trips)
We took what looked like a truly boring forest road trip yesterday about 6 hours of driving in dirt and on the part we thought would be a snoozer, we came up on and witnessed some of the most beautiful and amazing spots and views we’ve ever witnessed off road. We will post a bunch of pics in “Fun Photos” soon but here below is a secret spot we came up on which made this trip completely worth while.
Photo by GCP