Ah, Queensland – from the challenging water crossings of Cape York to the famous sand driving of Moreton Island, taking your 4WD on one of our epic off-road adventures is almost a rite of passage for the Aussie road-tripper. Here are our favourite tips and tricks. Get bogged – there’s nothing quite like being stuck (and then triumphantly unstuck) to learn about your 4WD, but do it with a mate. Or do it on a professional course. Or join a 4WD club. Experience is your best 4WD friend. However, getting bogged on a beach with an incoming tide is not, so …. Check the weather – we’re not only talking coastal weather. Rain on our outback tracks can make them impassable and you could also be fined a whole lot of moolah if you’re caught on a closed road. Ask a local – you’ve Googled your destination to death and are ready to rock. Are you? Ask a local before you go. They are familiar with road conditions and 4WD requirements and may even tell you about that secret spot Google is yet to discover. Drop the pressure – want to go sand driving? Lowering tyre pressure to around 16psi is a good place to start. This gives your tyre more contact length with the ground – think of it like walking through sand wearing boots rather than high heels. But beware – low pressure puts a bulge in your tyre wall, making it more susceptible to punctures. Don’t forget the shovel – recovery gear such as a winch, recovery tracks, a jack and/or snatch straps is important. But most of all don’t forget the bloody shovel. It’s your second-best 4WD friend. Wash your vehicle – sure, it may look cool to show everyone you’ve been off-road in the mud but a dirty vehicle masks problems, encrusted salt leads to rust and embedded seeds create biosecurity risks. Remove your tow ball – unless you’re actually towing, the tow ball is just an extension that is likely to get your vehicle hung up. Keep your thumbs safe – Four-wheel driving is bumpy and thumbs on the inside of steering wheels have been broken with sudden vehicle lurches. Keep your thumbs on the outer edges of the steering wheel. Suck up the dust – most people fit a snorkel on their 4WD for water crossings, but a snorkel is perhaps more important on unsealed roads as it helps keep the dust from your engine. Corrugations will unbolt anything – check and tighten nuts regularly. Repeat. Image credit IG/@mid_nomads