If you’re looking for some real 4-wheeling excitement, rock crawling can be one of the most exciting off-road activities you can do with your truck.
The feeling of accomplishment when you successfully negotiate those rocks makes it all worth it.
Use these tips from those who know their way over those big rocks so you can safely challenge yourself and experience the thrill of crawling the right way.
1. Crawl - Don’t Drive
The key element in rock crawling is - yes, the crawling part!
This type of trail riding is especially treacherous even at lower levels, so it’s critical that it be done at very slow speeds.
You literally want to crawl your truck over things so you can maintain control, think out your approach, and get your tires where needed to safely clear the rock obstacle.
Of course, that 4WD-low gear was made for crawling. Put it to good use so you can safely scale those rocks and gain the experience you need to crawl over even bigger ones next time.
2. Make the Right Modifications
The possibility of banging your Jeep up while rock crawling is high.
That’s why, if you’re serious about rock crawling and want to get the most from your 4x4, you should protect its vulnerable components and give it the capability it needs.
Above the undercarriage, modifications like a lifted suspension and open fenders will give you the performance upgrades you need for safe, capable rock crawling.
3. Air Down for Better Traction
Airing your tires down to reduce tire pressure when you’re driving through mud, sand, and snow increases the size of the contact patch, which means more rubber to gain traction.
You can crawl more effectively with a softer tire because it gives your tires the ability to flex and gain more traction on uneven surfaces like rocks.
To get maximum benefit from airing down, it is essential that you have a high quality tire with strong sidewalls that can withstand the flexing.
4. Know Your Truck and Your Trail
Another key to safe effective rock crawling is knowing what to expect from your truck and understanding what the trail will demand from it.
Specific knowledge of your truck comes after some time of driving it off-road and gradually doing more with it over time.
You’ll learn how it responds in different situations so you can gauge how to handle new ones and safely crawl those rocky trails.
Similarly, take some time to explore and inspect trail obstacles before you attempt to crawl them.
Know what to expect from the trail, what the biggest challenges are, and come up with a plan of approach before you actually start.
5. Have A Spotter
Many times, it’s difficult to see what’s happening outside of your truck while trying to precisely place your tires to crawl a rocky trail or climb boulders.
As you gain experience, having a spotter to help you by being your eyes on the ground is invaluable.
Your spotter can help take some of the worry out of what you’re doing and correcting you when needed so you can learn as you’re going along and successfully crawl the trail without damaging your good-looking open fenders.
Rock Crawling Done Right for the Best Time
Rock crawling can really put you and your off-road truck to the test. It’s an exciting activity that will really get your adrenaline pumping.
As long as you go about it the right way with a truck that is ready for the adventure, you’ll find rock crawling is one of the most challenging yet appealing things you can do off-roading!