Training for an Overland Trip
Not only your body should be (at least a little bit) trained for a longer overland trip. But there are other things we recommend you to train before you leave.
First Aid training
Your driver’s licence days might be way in the past. And you might not be a nurse or a doctor. Before we talk about the technical, car related stuff, we advise you to do a First Aid training. Actually, there is not more to say. It is always, not only but also on an overland trip, essential to know how to resuscitate a person, how to bandage a wound and how to call for help.
You can find courses nearby you online or just ask your doctor or your local hospital.
We highly recommend to get familiar with your vehicle, the common problems and their solution before you leave for traveling. We gave Willie, our Landcruiser, to a workshop for maintenance and getting him ready for the trip. And Heiner just went with him. So he could watch, help and learn during these days and ask all the questions. The guys from Allrad Keba were friendly, patience and super helpful. Heiner learned a lot that was useful throughout the whole trip.
Of course, while traveling, you will learn the most. After a while, you will notice every weird sound or rattle. And eventually, you will be able to fix most of the stuff by yourself. Or to recognize when you should find the right mechanic.
Offroad drivers training
The second thing, we highly recommend and what we enjoyed a lot, is a proper offroad training. We spent one day in the offroad park in Langenaltheim with a group of four vehicles and one instructor. We had never done any offroad (with a car) before and we learned a lot. Probably the most memorable sentence was: Usually, the driver sets the limit, not the car.
So, if you have a new car, never done offroad driving (with this car) before, then go for it. Even though you do not plan to leave the road on your trip, you will eventually end up on a steep/muddy/rocky/sandy track somewhere.
See a few pictures from our weekend at the offroad park here.
Test your equipment before you need it
In Australia, we had met several people that needed to get towed for different reasons. They all put out their boxes of recovery gear – and only a few had used it before or even knew how to use it.
So, the last advice from our side for your preparations at home:
Test your equipment before you need it!
Not only but especially: your HiLift or other jack, your towing ropes and shackles, your winch if you have one, your emergency equipment like your sat phone.
It is way better to test it with a clear and relaxed head.
Not that urgent but also advisable: test all your outdoor equipment like your cooker and your tent. If something is broken or doesn’t work, it is easier to repair it when you are still at home.
It might seem to be a lot to train for. You don’t have to overdo it. Some totally unprepared situations will happen. But with these trainings, you should be able to help yourself out of most of them.
What do you think? Too much training, not enough? What do you train before you leave?