There’s overlanding, and then there’s hard-core overlanding. Hard-core overlanders are not afraid of much. They boldly go where weekend warriors and casual campers would never tread. Difficult-to-access locations aren’t threatening. They are an integral part of the excitement when you’re hard-core.
Does this mean you have to put yourself into difficult situations to be a true overlander? Absolutely not. According to the folks behind the Rollercam cam buckles and tiedown straps (they are avid overlanders, too) overlanding is about the journey rather than his destination. A journey doesn’t have to be through nearly impossible terrain to qualify as legit.
The More Impossible, the Better
The Rollercam team says that, for some of the most hard-core overlanders, impossible terrain is the goal. The more impossible it is, the better the adventure should be. But hard-core overlanders don’t go into it blindly or foolishly. They make sure they are prepared for whatever the environment may throw at them.
Being prepared is one of the keys to overlanding regardless of how difficult your intended locations are to access. Whether you are planning a day in the Utah wilderness or several weeks traversing uncharted regions of Central America, you need to have a good idea of what you’re getting into so that you can prepare for what you might encounter.
Overlanders and Their Rigs
Have you ever noticed that some overlanders seem to go overboard in modifying their rigs? Some people do it just for show. But the vast majority of rig customizers do what they do because they want to go places that are inaccessible with standard vehicles.
Customized rigs can be outfitted with heavy-duty suspension and lifters for traversing rocky environments. They can be equipped with extra fuel tanks for longer trips, additional storage for tools and parts, protective elements to keep them running even in the harshest environments, and so much more.
It is interesting to step back and observe overlanders while they show off their rigs. You discover soon enough that rigs are often a reflection of their owner’s personalities. It is a lot like pet owners and their animals, to tell you the truth.
The Tools and Equipment
Hard-to-access locations usually demand customized rigs. In addition, a nice collection of tools and equipment always helps. Overlanders who look for the most challenging environments tend to carry with them everything they need to keep their rigs running.
Basic hand tools are just the start. Overlanders are known to carry everything from heavy-duty jacks to torches to winches capable of pulling them out of any spot. It is part of the game when you’re taking a journey through an area normally not fit for human travel.
It is also interesting to note some of the not-so-glamorous tools hard-core overlanders carry with them. Take the humble cam strap. It seems simple enough as a tiedown. But cam straps are so much better for most overlanding applications than rope, chains, and bungee cords. Cam straps are a staple for overlanders.
Out There on Your Own
Overlanders go to great lengths to be prepared for hard-to-access locations because they know they will be out there alone. The hardest locations are not just avoided by campers and RVers, they are avoided by more casual overlanders too. The most difficult locations are reserved for a small number of people who look at the challenges and laugh.
When overlanding involves difficult-to-access locations, it is a whole new ballgame. It is a game that hard-core overlanders embrace with zeal and passion. But such journeys are not for everyone. They can even be dangerous for overlanders who don’t know how to prepare.