I love absolutely everything about my truck (1991 Chevy 2500 with 112k miles on it)...except that it's a two wheel drive. I plan on a 4WD for my next truck, but that's several years away.
I have never gotten well and truly stuck somewhere either drivig solo or hauling my trailer, but I also haven't done a lot of parking in fields, either. This spring and summer, I plan on getting out and about quite a bit more, and I'm terrified that I *will* get stuck.
Does anyone have ideas for things I can carry that would help get me unstuck? Sand, plywood, anything I could keep to stick under the wheels if that happens? Chains juuuuust in case I need to ask someone to haul me out? I'm trying to be as prepared as possible to set my mind at ease - kind of like carrying an umbrella to make sure it won't rain.
One thing I will definitely suggest is - when in doubt, pull the trailer out before the horse is on it. My friends did this at shows all the time. they would pull the trailer out of the field onto more sturdy ground before loading the horse.
I have a two wheel drive truck also and I am just really careful where I park it and how I drive it. I went to a show the day after a big rain and almost got stuck in the bottom of the little valley driving out...it was a bit tense. Drove down the hill of the parking area, through a drive gate and the other side was essentially a driveway through a field. It was a bit scary when I hit that mud patch at the drive gate, but I made it. Practice driving in muddy areas also, so you get a feel for what you can and cannot do.
A good, heavy-duty tow rope. As a fellow 2wd truck owner who "goes places," I need that rope about 2x a year. Sometimes to help someone else who got stuck.
I try to plan ahead-- avoid the muddiest places, TRY to park on gravel or at least the best ground possible. Sometimes this means getting there very early, or parking a lot farther away. An extra 10-min walk is well worth waiting an hour for a tractor to pull you out! Do not park uphill-- go downhill if you can. Just be smart about where you go, and if you aren't sure, DON'T!
If you *do* happen to get stuck, STOP before you make it worse-- spinning the tires just digs them in deeper. Sometimes unloading the horses can help get you off a slick spot, sometimes you just have to wait for help. Sometimes backing up and getting some momentum helps-- other times it's best to just back up and go around altogether. Use a low gear, go in a straight line, and try to maintain a consistent pace when you're in unstable footing. And pray. lol
“A clever person solves a problem. A wise person avoids it.”
? Albert Einstein
I have a million 5 gallon buckets I can fill with gravel...I just worry about then leaving a patch of gravel in someone's field! I've been to a few horse trials where parking is an unused pasture. Does anyone have experience laying down some gravel to get up out of mud - is this a faux pas, or would an organizer not worry about it that much?
That's one of the reason I was thinking of some long strips of plywood - just get up and out of the mud rut and then pick the plywood up again.
The gravel in buckets is the best idea I have ever heard about that. I have a 2wd, hae never owned a 4x4, though I want one. Not counting in my own driveway turn around (because it is just horrible awful and nasty), I hve gotten my truck stuck 1x in nearly 5 yrs. Totally my fault, not payng attention, and slid....wanna hear embarrassing? My dh brought the 11 yr old mini van out and pulled my quad cab out wih my 18 yr old dd videoing it on her cell phone.
There are ways to not get stuck. Get out and check the footing of where you're going, park on hard packed ground, STAY AS FAR AWAY FROM HAY ON THE GROUND AS POSSIBLE, and stay off hills. Park as far away as needed if you have to. Plan your times. I have to haul water and hay, so I watch the weather obsessively and plan accordingly.
My daddy never owned a 4x4, and he could park anywhere and come out without being stuck-except over a high terace in our pasture in a lower clearanced, vehicle, bless his heart. I think he did that on purpose so I could play with the tractor.
Ive had 4wd jeeps and now my truck is a 4wd but that doesnt mean i dont carry around certain things in case i do get stuck.
here is a good article about some recovery gear, mainly straps. I really prefer the recovery straps with NO hooks, as they stretch like a rubber band but you can get them rated to 40k lbs. anyhow, check out this article.
Just keep a good tow strap in your truck and you will be fine. I actually traded in my 4WD for a 2WD -- I got tired of the extra weight, extra fuel, extra maintenance, and extra wear. When I am trailering to a show, there is always another truck or tractor somewhere (although I have never been stuck) and when we go to a trailhead, there is usually good parking or other trucks around. If all that failed, well, I have USRider as well. But by just parking intelligently (away from slippery hills or mud patches), it's pretty easy to just...not be stuck.
get USRider coverage www.usrider.com They saved my butt once and almost needed them another time, but some locals with 4WD pulled my rig out. They were surprised and pleased when I pulled out my own tow rope and happy to see the tow hooks on the front of my truck.
Deep dry sand is the main culprit in Fla, but we do have some mucky areas as well.
As for tow ropes, i personally have a procomp brand tow rope. i dont think brand matters just make sure its from a type of place that is an "offroading/fourwheeling" place. really any strap that is rated to 20k lbs and about 30ft long will be plenty. just remember NO HOOKS!
Something else I remembered which helped a lot the one time I did get stuck in a muddy fairground parking lot with my F-250 and GN trailer is this: If you drive a Ford, always approach the owner of a Dodge or Chevy for help w/ a tow. Likewise, if you drive a Dodge look for a Ford or Chevy guy and so on.
A truck loving Guy lives for the bragging rights of having HIS brand of truck drag yours out of mud.
As for the gravel, in all these years I used it once when I was parked on grass, facing downhill no less. One rear tire couldn't get a grip. Put half a bucket of gravel down and that gave the tire what it needed then off we went.