My alarm went off at 6am for a 6:55am start at Bribie Island 30mins away.
I can’t remember when I was this excited I could barely sleep, thinking about the previous days training and what driving on the sand would be like today.
Brian and myself drive to Bribie Island carpark to meet the instructor and the same 10 people we trained with yesterday. The weather was brisk but not a chilling as the previous day, there was some nice cloud formations starting to develop over the sea.
We are given our Bribie Island beach permits, as you need to pay to drive on Bribie Island as its a national park. Also we are given a souvenir hat, which is excellent as my hair seems to be disappearing at an alarming rate.
After a brief we head to a second carpark where we change to low range, activated our diff lock and commence to drive off on to the sand.
The morning is simply stunning and I’m like a little kid with a new toy, I can’t remember how long I’ve wanted to drive on the sand in my very own 4WD vehicle.
We stop to take some photos of our cars all in a line with the sun beaming through the clouds and dolphins swimming beyond the waves, its a magical scene.
After a 15 – 20min beach drive we headed over into the soft sand to start our real training. We are given a task to drive around some witches hats on normal road tyre pressure, this was supposed to get us stuck in the sand.
My car and a Landcruiser are the only ones that don’t managed to get stuck, which I’m rather impressed with. The instructor made me work my car until I was buried in the sand, which took a while and deactivation a few buttons.
Then I’m given the task of using Maxtracks under my front wheels to free myself, success.
After this demonstration we are shown a rocking motion incase you didn’t have any equipment with you. Where you drive forward an inch, then back a few inches and repeat this for about 6 times going further back each time and eventually driving back down the beach in a straight line.
After this you drive forward and hopefully out of the hole where you were stuck in the first place.
After this we deflated our tyres from 38psi down to 25psi this gives you a longer footprint in the sand. We are then told to drive around the witches hats once more, this was so much easier to control on the beach with much lower tyre pressure. You now have to try really hard to get stuck in the sand now.
The next demonstration is a back to back snatch strap recovery, which Brian nominated me to do.
I managed to pull the other car out of the sand no problem at all, I just have to work on my stopping and not slam on the brakes. As this almost dug me into the sand and then I would need a recovery.
The Landcruiser doing a forward snatch strap recovery, this was good to see how much the snatch strap can stretch and sling shot the other car out of the sand.
This was another excellent day of training and I can highly recommend the guys from Australian 4WD Driver Training to give you the confidence you need to drive in the bush or on the sand.
They are very knowledgeable and excellent teachers, it was a good mix of theory and practical exercises. Every question was answered and I couldn’t have asked for more.
On completion you earn a certificate that’s nationally recognised and a requirement for further training in advanced courses, which I’ll look at doing further down the track.