How To Start Overlanding: A Beginner’s Guide

How To Start Overlanding: A Beginner’s Guide

There are plenty of excellent sites in the world. So many of us dream of traveling to a new location one day, enjoying the memorable experiences, and taking in the scenery. But for some, it's more about the journey than the destination.

What Is Overlanding?

For years, overlanding has been a hobby and practice of adventurers of all ages. It's more involved than camping or traveling and more exciting than sightseeing; it's an activity that combines of all of these and focuses on life on the road instead of going to a specific destination.

And although this may seem as simple as buying a truck or RV, loading it with snacks, and going out on the road with no destination in mind except onward, there is more to it than just a lot of enthusiasm. There are multiple steps to consider when learning how to start overlanding.

Stretching back to the Silk Road in 114 BC, overlanding has had a long history. This exploration practice was widely known in the 1900s when railways became more popularized.

The most notable form of overlanding is the exploration of the Australian Outback in the 1950s and 1940s. Len Beadell led the charge to traverse the expansive Outback and construct roads still used today.

Essential Gear

For an expedition that could go on for weeks or months, you must pack multiple items and gear for setting up. Like any plans to travel, you will need a map and a compass or a reliable navigation system to start your journey. When learning how to start overlanding, you may not have a particular destination, but you do have to know where you are in comparison to other places.

A map can also tell you where you can go in an unforeseen emergency. However, in the event of an immediate crisis, it's also good to have these items as a general precaution:

  • A fire extinguisher
  • A fully stocked first aid kit
  • Extra blankets
  • Emergency flare
  • Spare container of clean water
  • A swiss army knife

Maintaining Your Vehicle

To ensure your journey doesn't come to a standstill, you also want to have tools to maintain your vehicle. For proper maintenance, it is a good idea to carry these items:

  • A jack
  • A toolbox with various wrenches and screwdrivers
  • A filled gas canister
  • A winch to attach to a vehicle
  • A rack to have your materials

You'll want to bring spare parts for your vehicle as well, so make sure you have enough room for things such as:

  • Two spare tires
  • Fan belts
  • Fuses
  • Light bulbs
  • Wheel bearings
  • Spark plugs

Certain fluids such as engine coolant, transmission and brake fluid, and oil will also ensure your car will support you throughout your travels.

The type of car you have will also determine if this trip is more manageable or challenging. One reputable truck for multiple terrains is a Toyota Tundra. With the right vehicle at your disposal, you can go to many places with little fuss.

Why a Toyota Tundra?

As a solid and stylish car with the ability to carry multiple heavy items and store even smaller ones, the Toyota Tundra can help in any expedition. The truck bed has a tie-down system with four points and deck rails to keep your gear secured, or for a tarp that can cover anything. There is a tailgate release bump switch located on the driver's side for easy detachment of any trailers, and a tailgate reverse light helps when you are in a group of cars.

All-season tires come available for most models, so moving through the snow, mud, or dry ground will be easy. The Toyota Tundra truck roof rack system is lofty and has plenty of room for a rack system. You can be on the road with little concern with all of these features and more.

Paths To Tread

With so many uncharted paths in the world, it's easy to get lost or run into trouble, and the GPS can only do so much. It's always a good idea to scout ahead and look into an area you plan on overlanding.

It would be wise to consider what weather conditions will occur around the location. If you expect snow and ice, chains on your tires would be handy to ensure you do not get stuck.

Where To Stop and Rest

After a long way of driving, you'll want to find a place to stop and get some rest. You'll want to rest in an area that's clear of undergrowth, trees, or areas where falling is more likely. It would be a good idea to find a place in advance of your arrival.

Researching campsites or scouting ahead can help you plan the best place to call it a night. If you're using a tent, you'll want to make sure the ground is solid and deep enough that the stakes won't come out of the bed easily. Ideally, an area surrounded by trees and a canopy of branches would work well to maintain a fire protected from the natural elements.

For those sleeping in a vehicle, be sure to place a tarp over the equipment if you expect rain or precipitation. And regardless of the area, always make sure that it is safe from unwanted visitors such as large cats or other predators.

In Case of Damaged Gear

Regardless of planning, accidents can occur at any time. It will help if you carry as many spare supplies as possible if any of your gear is lost, broken, or burned.

Traveling in a group with multiple cars would be helpful to this situation, as each vehicle can have its stock of supplies and share with the rest of the group. Bringing extra first aid supplies, water, and clothing can help you out during dire situations.

The recreation of overlanding has created many fond memories for the people who travel and the people who follow the paths they leave behind. It can be challenging for those just learning and take long preparation periods. But so long as you have the knowledge, passion, and skills, overlanding can become one of the best experiences you can have.

How To Start Overlanding: A Beginner’s Guide

Reading next

The Different Types of Roof Rack Systems
Cliff Hanger Trail in Moab, Utah (Our Favorite Trail)

Leave a comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.