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Drive your own vehicle off-road

          This is an entry level introduction to off-road driving class that is designed to give drivers intensive and immersive driving experience in a variety of off-road driving situations. Trust our instructors when they say, learning to drive off-road the hard way can be very expensive! We've all done something new at one point or another, and having a basis of understanding before you jump in can go a long way. We'll share the techniques that make off-road driving easier, smoother, more efficient, and safer. With proper training, and some practice, we'll turn these techniques into skills.

In this class You will learn

  • Basic principles of off-road driving techniques and safety.
  • Have an instructor give your vehicle and equipment a once over for readiness.
  • Learn about vehicle dynamics and how to manage the traction of all 4 tires.
  • Appropriate tire pressures.
  • Master the art of driving up and down steep slopes.
  • Control your vehicle on low traction surfaces and avoid getting stuck.
  • Vehicle preservation through the use of routine maintenance and strategic driving.
  • Onboard electronic vehicle controls (traction control, stability control, hill descent control)
  • Vehicle recovery technique.

What you can expect

     This course is for SUVs like Jeeps, Land Rovers, the new Bronco, and 4 Runner as well as compact trucks like the Gladiator and Tacoma; we're sorry but full-sized trucks are just too large for these trails. The day starts with a classroom session that breaks down and simplifies the vehicle mechanics, driving techniques, and gear needed to operate a 4x4 vehicle off-road. From there we head out into the "warm up area" where you drive one of our Jeeps for an hour with an instructor in the passenger seat. The warm-up area is 30 acres of purpose built obstacles where students can see what the driving techniques feel like on relatively high-traction surfaces. Along the way, participants learn how to work with a spotter, identify a vehicles vulnerable points, and can ask questions. Your ability to navigate the vehicle around this area reinforces the tips and helps you learn how to read the trail. After all, getting from point A to point B requires a plan and when off-roading, it's not as simple as pointing the steering wheel and hitting the gas.

     Once comfortable in our Jeeps, each participant will apply what they have learned to get their vehicle ready for the trail ride (air down, recovery gear check, vehicle readiness check). When everyone is ready to go, we will form a convoy and drivers will pilot their own vehicle on one last practice lap before heading farther up the mountain, into more natural and challenging terrain. On the trail ride we will have aproximately 1 instructor to every 2 vehicles which provides ample time to ask questions, receive tips, and experience driving your own vehicle. Along the trail you will traverse dirt & gravel trails, ditch crossings, ravines, rock, and off camber situations. The challenges you encounter will be appropriate for beginner level learning, to establish your comfort in driving on a variety of surfaces.

This class is limited to 6 participant vehicles.

Sample Agenda for the Day

  • 8:30am - Arrival, Check In, Waivers, Safety, & Overview of the day
  • Classroom driving techniques and safety procedures.
  • Split into two groups
    • One group will receive a driving demonstration followed by behind the wheel training in the warm up area.
    • The other group will learn to perform safety inspections of their vehicles and recovery equipment. Also a good time to ask questions about your vehicle.
  • Trail ride in your own vehicles.
  • Lunch (bring your own lunch, we will eat along the trail)
  • Continue trail ride.
  • 3:30-4:00pm - Wrap up and certificates.

*Two day classes add a second day of driving which includes more time behind the wheel with more difficult trails and recovery training.

Available Dates

  • Private Classes
    • The 4x4 Training Center is open Monday - Friday, with the ability to schedule private classes on Saturdays. Interested in scheduling a class? Use the form below or give us a call to let us know. It can just be you, you and a friend, or a group of friends! Contact us for scheduling & pricing.

Important Details

Minimum Vehicle Requirements

To safely travel the trails we require each vehicle to have:

  • 4WD Low Range.
  • Tires: 32" tall All-Terrain or Mud-Terrain.
  • Securely mounted tow points, front and rear.
    • Tow points should be attached to the frame or part of an integrated bumper system which, is properly attached to the frame using grade 8 bolts.
    • Front tow points may be hooks properly mounted to the frame with grade 8 bolts
    • Use of manufacturer installed bumper mounted tow points with clevis or D-rings.
    • Rear tow points can be the same as the front and may also include use of a 2″ receiver with pin.
  • 1 Tow strap with no metal hooks or loops.
  • Compact pickups and lower SUVs without a lift may encounter some contact with the ground and rocks - proper skid plates or a 2" lift should minimize this issue.
  • Arrive with a full tank of gas.

Waiver of Liability

  • Participation in these classes is at your own risk and each person will sign a waiver before beginning class.
  • The 4x4 Training Center will do it's best to keep you and your vehicle safe however, OFF-ROAD DRIVING IS AN INHERENTLY DANGEROUS SPORT THAT PRESENTS A SERIOUS RISK OF VEHICLE DAMAGE OR INJURY/DEATH RESULTING. In some cases, damage cannot be anticipated, controlled, or avoided. Therefor we do not assume any liability of personal injury or property injury from participation in these classes. Due to the ever present danger associated with off-road travel we cannot guarantee the safety of participants or their vehicles.
  • Do not bring pets. While this is fine on your own time, pets provide a distraction from the course of instruction which can cause accidents to occur.

The Trails

  • The code of off-roading stipulates that you care for and respect the trails upon which you travel. The 4x4 Center owns, operates, and maintains the private network of trails upon which these classes are held. The trails are only usable through one of these classes and are, private property. We ask that you do not try to access the trails on your own. The land is not posted as others enjoy the trails, such as hikers, skiers, mountain bikers etc. Please don’t ruin the fun for us and others.