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vehicle extraction when you're by yourself


AZMark

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There is going to be a lot of good advise on GPS, gear, food and water and letting others know where you're going and when you're coming home.

      I don't always venture out by myself. However, sometimes I do. In a Kia sedona  mini van. I will always do my part to look ahead or walk the road before I venture too far. Then its all foot work.

Inevitably, there will be a time to get out the shovel, put it in neutral and make anyone passing by wonder what kind of relationship I'm having with my car. :idunno:

  If it's been discussed already, shame on me and I'll go digging through the forum. But if your bored and have a minute to humor me...

Thanks, Mark

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Good topic.  I mostly go it alone in the desert but I also leave detailed info on where I am heading and when I plan on being back. 

Of course I take most of the basic essentials, food, water, tools, shelter, first aid, etc.  

I have a 4 wheel drive but if going off road in a narrow wash or trail I sometimes walk ahead to check out the area to make sure I'm not going to get my self into a bad situation. Although that does not always work.  :idunno:.

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LOL, Go no place without three days of basic needs.  Triple up on the water.

Had to do the Bivouac more times then I wanted just to wait until light to figure out how to heck to UN DO what I done did. 

Worst thing that ever happened was blow a timing belt .  That one required a LONG AZZ WALK to catch a ride to town and get a belt.  LOL, Had all the tools for the job.  I had  a spare just about everything but a timing belt.  Fuel Pump , Water Pump, Hoses,  all OTHER BELTS and even a alternator.  LOL

Any other time I rendered my self STUCK just took lots of time to UN DO. 

Yep, if your going to get stuck at least be comfortably STUCK  . 

No matter how new or well maintained your ride is your going to get STUCK some time if you get out often enough.   So just Except it and be prepared.

 

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I carry carpet strips to lay down for traction. Just 2' wide x 6' long and sure have helped out myself and quite a few folks over the years. Use them to keep dirt out of the tent and back of the truck plus stripping out of my wetsuit. I try to multi purpose as much as possible. John John

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As having ventured too far in my 4 WD pickup an my first time out with it, I got stuck axle deep in a wash with soft sand.  To get out I jacked up the truck and put rocks under the tires and built a "mini road."  Loneliest three hours of my life.  When I jacked it up, the tire would only reach a couple inches off the ground, and I would need to start over to get the next two inches and over, and over, and over again.  In those three hours no one drove by.

On the way home I purchased tow straps and metal buckle attachments to get me out if someone had drove by.  I also like the idea of if you're putting it in 4WD low to get somewhere, it's time to turn around.  I want to get some 2 X 12's or something like that to put under the tires for traction, but I think HJ's suggestion of carpet could be better.  I don't have it yet, but I want to get a ji lift 4WD jack.  You can jack that from the tow hitch and push the car sideways to get it somewhere.  I've got nothing to attach the cable from the winch to in the desert, no strong trees or large boulders.  There's a device that looks like a boat anchor that attaches to a winch.  One suggestion that would not work is to take a tire and bury it three feet deep, and use that to pull yourself with a winch.  Although it would work, it's not all that practical.  I've dug a three foot deep hole and it took forever.

I think the most important thing you can do is look underneath your van to see what you're nearly ripping off.  That's what finally convinced me to get a 4WD pick up.  I had been to the Aqua Fria River in my Dodge Gran Caravan  minivan off of table mesa road, and after looking at the bottom, I will never know why my transmission cooler never got torn off.  The 4WD off road packages come with some "armour" and skid plates to protect the bottom of the truck from rocks and branches dragging on the bottom of the truck.

Edited by chrisski
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We've rescued dozens of people from both the deserts and mountains over the years for a variety of reasons. Once in 30+ years we had to hike out 12 hours due to a variety of problems; however, being prepared it was really just a long walk with a friend and a chance to explore. Have been injured badly enough that if was not for friends with me it would have been 2 or 3 days of recovery before I could hike out, at least having the gear to sit it out alone was in and of itself comforting. Only problems with hiking injured with friends is they purposely make you laugh when you're in pain - haha :-) 

Have no issues hunting alone but mostly hunt with long time friends, I have spent weeks deep in the gold fields by myself. It helps if you grew up outdoors in the sticks.

My basic plan: (used in the lower 48 and Alaska)

  • Let friends and family know where I'm generally going and might be back - tend to wander and explore
  • Always carry a large caliber side arm 
  • Always have at least 3 liters of water with me while hiking (miles) - a weeks worth of water back at the rig
  • Have at least a week's worth of food at the rig, a few basics with me (Epic bars, nuts and seeds - Protein focus, no or little sugars) (http://epicbar.com/)
  • Have a fire starter and know how to use it - in backpack (plus lighter and tinder) (Fire Steel http://firesteel.com/firesteel-armageddon-jr-scraper-lanyard-magnesium)
  • Have a small tarp in backpack
  • Have a two way radio 
  • Carry a Delorme In-Reach Explorer (allows me to text anyone in the world via satellite with zero service or internet). Text include GPS coords. (https://explore.garmin.com/en-US/inreach/)
  • Various other items in backpack (not all inclusive) - knife, multi tool, bandanna, para cord, duct tape, whistle, life straw, small stainless cup to boil water if needed, a solar powered flashlight, a battery operated headlamp with extra batteries, more small items. (https://www.kabar.com/most-famous-knife) (http://www.leatherman.com/rebar-8.html?)

Now that might sound like a lot to carry but it's not and does not weigh me down, just used to it. Normally, I hike into an area and just find a safe spot for my backpack to rest and then detect the general area with just a liter of water, sidearm and Delorme in Reach on me. I've never seen the need to keep my backpack on all day unless it's an all day hike + camp somewhere. At the end of the day, for me anyway, you will always find a way to get your rig out. Priority one is get you out or in touch with those who can. 

 

Edited by Rod
Added At the end of the day, for me anyway, you will always find a way to get your rig out. Priority one is get you out or in touch with those who can. 
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AIR COMPRESSOR...

Besides everything else mentioned  ,shovel, wood blocks/plywood ,of several sizes, to help with jack placement and shimming, 6 ton  bottle jack.

Sooner or later  we bury a wheel and need to jack it out and fill the hole...

 Prior to running in sand, get a LOW pressure air gauge , deflate a tire to 75% ride hight in the driveway. At that pressure, you now have effectively twice the ground contact patch and can use that pressure as a set point for sand running... which is about 8-12 psi.

 Strong rope and ETHER(starting fluid)  help with setting busted tire beads if you go too low or hit the brakes or gas( a nono when aired down for sand).

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On Dodie's and my first trip into LSD nearly 20 years ago,  we had a tie-rod break ... We hiked to the windmill to get some bailing wire but it was about 115 degrees and difficult to lie on the ground ... Plus I was having multiple small heart attacks but didn't realize what was going on.... Someone finally came along and begrudgingly gave us a ride to Morristown hotel where we could call for a tow truck ...  Could have turned out a lot worse! ... Cheers, Unc

 

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1 hour ago, Uncle Ron said:

On Dodie's and my first trip into LSD nearly 20 years ago,  we had a tie-rod break ... We hiked to the windmill to get some bailing wire but it was about 115 degrees and difficult to lie on the ground ... Plus I was having multiple small heart attacks but didn't realize what was going on.... Someone finally came along and begrudgingly gave us a ride to Morristown hotel where we could call for a tow truck ...  Could have turned out a lot worse! ... Cheers, Unc

 

Dang Uncle Ron,

You're one tough hombre. Glad you made it out.:yesss:

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1 hour ago, Uncle Ron said:

On Dodie's and my first trip into LSD nearly 20 years ago,  we had a tie-rod break ... We hiked to the windmill to get some bailing wire but it was about 115 degrees and difficult to lie on the ground ... Plus I was having multiple small heart attacks but didn't realize what was going on.... Someone finally came along and begrudgingly gave us a ride to Morristown hotel where we could call for a tow truck ...  Could have turned out a lot worse! ... Cheers, Unc

 

 Good point on the bailing wire, old tomato cages can be a good source from scrap

Has anyone mentioned cardboard, yet? A foam camping pad could help, too in messy, uncomfortable( sticker/thorn rock gravel,ants,e tc., or hot situations. I know carpet's been mentioned for double duty.

 Someone in the group'll usually brings a spare cloudhook or left-handed smoke shifter for use in camp,,, no sense in everyone bringing their own.

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3 hours ago, Uncle Ron said:

Someone finally came along and begrudgingly gave us a ride

Wow Unc, that totally sucks in the worst way. I've gladly helped stranded people out in LSD and other places. I always figured that they would do the same for me. Most folks out in the boonies are willing to lend a helping hand and then again there are the other types. Sad.  Glad you and yours made it out. Sorry to hear about the heart issues.  You're a tough ole prospector for sure!   :4chsmu1:

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