A Mountain Man’s Advice for 8-Wheeling in the Great Valley

The Great Valley

The mountain men or frontiersmen in American history are known for achieving epic survival feats in the wilderness. Their narrative has inspired many explorers and outdoor enthusiasts to recreate life and survival in the great outdoors.

Luckily, we now have the machines and tools to assist us in tackling the rugged landscapes and waterscapes of the Great Appalachian Valley. The 8×8 utility terrain vehicle (UTV), a four-seater amphibious beast, is designed to travel off-road, on water, and other intermediates like snow, ice, marsh, swamp, and more.

Modern-day mountain men say it’s the best vehicle choice and might be the only one standing between you and survival in the harsh landscapes of the ridge and valley region. But it’s not enough to just know how to drive.

Get the Lay of the Land

Waze can’t save you when you’re in mountain country. You need to know the lay of the land fully well and how to tap your hard-wired survival instincts when you need them.

Know that the topography of the Great Valley is quite diverse, from steep ridges, dramatic water gaps, marshes, woodlands to valley lowlands. As it follows the ridge of the Appalachian Mountains, expect trails strewn with rocks. This is why high-maneuverability is a trait to look for.

Choosing Your 8-Wheeler

There’s a whole range of 8-wheel, off-road vehicles out there, but since you only have to choose one, it better be the right one. More than the all-terrain abilities, there are other factors to determine which vehicle is the best.

A GPS tracker is a must-have, as well as an up-to-date survey of the region, for accessing extremely remote places. Shanksargo.com has a fine collection of UTV accessories to help with navigation and safety and to customize your ride to perform extraordinary tasks.

Every person dreams of exploring the great outdoors. But to be a true explorer, you must choose the right vehicle that will take you there. Like Marco Polo’s vessel or Lewis and Clark’s keelboat, your choice of off-road vehicle will pretty much determine how the expedition goes. Given the current pace of our lives, your off-road vehicle should let you escape into the heart of the great outdoors in a shorter time, so choose wisely.