Essential Off-Road Gear for Beginners

Embarking on your first off-road adventure is exciting, but it’s crucial to be well-prepared. Leaving the pavement can be expensive, but you don’t need to have a built-out rock crawler to have some fun. We’ve put this list together for some bang-for-your-buck accessories to consider taking with you on your first outing.

  1. Come Along

A Come Along is essentially a hand-powered winch. Using a similar mechanism to a ratchet strap, it gives you a mechanical advantage to pull your vehicle or obstacles to where they need to be. While a powered winch is very nice, it’s unnecessary when starting out. You can find a cheap Come Along for under $50 and have peace of mind that you can pull yourself out of a ditch. A tow rope or recovery rope also works well with a Come Along, but the steel cable of the Come Along should be sufficient for most scenarios you might find yourself in when starting out. 

  1. A Friend

Four-wheeling alone might sound Thoreauvian, but we recommend bringing someone along. Having another set of eyes for spotting your approach and someone to ask, “Is this a bad idea?” is invaluable out on the trail. Hard to put a price on friendship, but in most instances being invited along for the ride is payment enough.

  1. First Aid Kit

A first aid kit is a good thing to keep in your car both on and off-road. Some general bandages, gauze, and items like tweezers can make your adventure much more comfortable and help ensure you return home in one piece. 

  1. Air Compressor

Airing down your tires is a great way to get more traction on the trail. A slightly deflated tire has more surface area than a fully inflated one. Having an air compressor handy allows you to reduce your pressure but put it back for the ride home. Be careful not to release too much pressure, though; you don’t want to break the bead of the tire. Typically, 25% off your recommended PSI is a safe amount. 

  1. The BungeeBoard™ MOLLE Panel

When the trail gets tough, your suspension is only so effective at keeping your gear stationary. The BungeeBoard™ MOLLE Panel gives you a place to secure all your favorite gear without worrying about it coming loose and causing a problem.