Everything to Have in Your Offroad Recovery Kit
It will probably happen to all of us at some point – we’ll get a flat tire, get stuck in the sand, or have to help someone else out of the ditch. An offroad recovery kit is essential if you travel often, travel off-road, or in the winter.
Deciding what to have in your truck as part of your kit can be challenging. There’s the constant battle of overkill vs. underprepared while trying to keep everything organized. After years of building 4×4 truck campers, here are our biggest recommendations for what to put in your offroad recovery kit:
1. Traction Mats
Traction mats are vital if you get your truck camper stuck in mud, sand, snow, or ice. Many of those who have a Four Wheel Camper opt to attach their traction mats to their exterior gear tracks on the camper to save storage space inside. If you overland often, you’ll likely use these a handful of times.
2. Tow Strap
A tow strap is vital to a recovery kit because even if you don’t need it, it allows you to help someone else who may be stuck. If roads are icy and a car has slid off the road, your truck and tow strap may be precisely what is needed to help. The American West is full of roads without cell phone service, so if you or someone else gets stuck, you will be happy to have it on hand.
3. Trail Jacks
A trail jack is an essential piece of an overlanding recovery kit. The tool is a motor stand that can be used to lift the front or rear wheel of your vehicle if you unexpectedly need to examine or repair something in a remote location. Here is an example of one we love on Amazon.
A shovel is handy for many reasons, from digging out a stuck tire to digging bathroom holes or putting out a fire. It’s one of the cheapest & easiest tools to add to your recovery kit and probably the one you will use the most. We recommend investing in a compact one, such as this shovel from Harbor Freight.
5. Tire Patch Kit
This one is self-explanatory. Drivers get punctured tires daily, but the risk is even more present when overlanding on 4×4 roads with many jagged rocks, potholes, and roots on the road. If the leak in your tire can be patched until you can make your way to the nearest repair shop, a tire patch kit will make everything.
6. Tree Straps
A tree trap, often called a tree saver, is a piece of gear that is often forgotten but can be incredibly important in certain recovery situations. If you are stuck, the tree strap can be tied around a trunk to help pull you free. The tree straps are specifically designed for this and help ensure the tree isn’t damaged when used for reinforcements. Here is an example from Amazon.
7. Soft Shackles
Shackles are used to connect recovery equipment. They are threaded through the recovery point and connected to a rope or snatch strap. There are two kinds of shackles for recovery kits: steel and soft.
8. GPS Emergency Locator Beacon
Even though we never expect things to go wrong with your truck camper, expect the unexpected! An emergency GPS beacon is a safety backup if you get stuck or in trouble and must be rescued. The beacon is for emergencies but can provide life-saving help when everything goes wrong. The Garmin inReach Mini is the most common emergency beacon.
9. Standard Toolbox
You’d be surprised how much a small, standard toolbox is handy on the road. It can fix things as simple as a loose screw in the truck camper or help with major mechanical fixes. Whatever the reason, a toolbox filled with a screwdriver, hammer, pliers, and wrench are all handy to have with you on the road. Here is a small toolbox that is the perfect size for a truck or car.
We should say that these items aren’t listed in order of importance. If you overland or explore often, you should have every item on this list! Even if you never need them, you’ll likely run into someone who does. You will use them sparingly, but it will be incredibly worth it when you must.
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