Off-Road Discovery


Descending Hills and Slopes

Driving steep terrain is exciting but can also be dangerous, worst case you can roll and keep rolling.

This content was developed by and owned by Paul Sinkinson, Xplorability owner. Paul is a 4wd Defensive Driver Training Consultant/Trainer and Programme Developer.

Driving Steep Terrain - having fun & being safe

10 Tips for Descending Hills and Slopes While Off-Roading

  1. Carry out Hazard ID and Safety Margin checks.

  2. Check for safety run out area, approach and departure angles and other under body clearances.

  3. Engage low ratio 4wd.

  4. Select 1st Gear well before approaching the crest and remove your feet from the pedals. This will allow the engine braking to take effect. If you commence your descent directly on the crest the vehicle will descend quickly for a short distance before the engine braking takes effect and could begin to slide.

  5. Utilize wheel tracks if available to aid directional control

  6. Slowly drive over the crest with the engine at idle.

  7. Always drive straight down. Avoid traversing!

  8. Use brakes gently if surface conditions permit.

  9. If vehicle starts to slide, gently accelerate.

  10. When traction is re-established, gently decelerate.

Remember to check your tyre pressure, low tyre pressures will increase available traction in most situations. Tire pressure recommendations are usually found on the inside panel of the driver front door.

Steep hills require diligence

Learn how to descent safely

12 Tips For Descending in Vehicles Fitted with Hill Descent Control (HDC)

  1. Carry out Hazard ID and Safety Margin checks.

  2. Check for safety run out area, approach and departure angles and other under body clearances.

  3. Engage low ratio 4wd. Switch on Hill Descent Control Yellow Button on facia panel and verify Green Dash Light is on.

  4. Select 1st Gear well before approaching the crest and remove your feet from the pedals. This will allow the engine braking to take effect. If you commence your descent directly on the crest the vehicle will descend quickly for a short distance before the engine braking takes effect and could begin to slide.

  5. Should the vehicle reach a speed in excess of circa 6 to 8mph, the HDC System will cut in and work independently on each wheel to maintain traction. It will release wheels that lock up accordingly as it does this and you will hear the system engaging or disengage the wheel brakes as required which may sound alarming but this is normal. DO NOT TOUCH EITHER THE BRAKE PEDAL OR THE ACCELERATOR PEDAL WHEN USING HDC OR IT WILL DISENGAGE.

  6. Utilize wheel tracks if available to aid directional control

  7. Slowly drive over the crest with the engine at idle.

  8. Always drive straight down. Avoid traversing!

  9. IF NOT USING HDC SYSTEM - Use brakes gently if surface conditions permit.

  10. IF NOT USING HDC SYSTEM - If vehicle starts to slide, gently accelerate.

  11. When traction is re-established, gently decelerate.

  12. Low tyre pressures will increase available traction in most situations.

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Copyright

This content was prepared for the Off-Road Discovery Website by Xplorability 4wd Training

The Content - All Photographs and Photographic Copyright and All other Rights other Reserved October 2017. S.W. France This content may not be copied or reproduced without the written consent of Paul Sinkinson – Xplorability Training.

For Use Only in 4wd and Light Vehicle Driver Training.

Not for Re-Publication, Distribution or use outside the Xplorability Training Programme