How To Start Overlanding – Essential Guide

Most likely, you know about what it is but do you are aware of what it is? The concept of overlanding is a type of self-reliant of adventure travel, which includes the combination of road and off-road trips to remote areas. This means that in order for anyone to begin, they should be prepared.

I have been traveling overland for the past seven years. The majority of my travels are to destinations that are not explored or documented, or even existing places.

Overlanding is typically mistaken for car camping. Car camping can be carried out in any moment with only a minor modifications. Overlanding could be a camping experience in the car however the distinction lies with the purpose, preparation and the travel.

Over-landing is continuous. It is designed to test the endurance of one’s body while enjoying the trip. Exploration and discovery is the main objective. This can be accomplished with motorcycles, automobiles or bicycles. The type of accommodation is camping, and it can last from several months or even years. Sometimes, it is necessary to cross international borders.

USA is embracing trends of overlanding in recent years than other nations. There are many overlanding groups. It’s great to be with your family on the weekend, but it’s enjoyable and satisfying to embark on an adventure with others.

How To Start Overlanding

It’s not every person that can find family members or friends with the same passion. Finding an overlanding community isn’t difficult as you will find them on social media via Facebook groups and Twitter, or Instagram. You could also go to forums such as Expedition Portal or Overland Bound Forum.

A club membership is an excellent way to meet those who share the same interests like 406 Cruiser Expedition Utah and many other clubs.

The most important thing you should be aware of is that overlanding comes with two kinds of needs: the requirements of a human (your personal requirements) as well as the needs of your vehicle or machine. It is simple to navigate between these two types of needs.

What Do You Should Do to Begin Overlanding

Mentality and Mindset

You need to be mentally prepared as there are numerous difficulties that arise with the top. You could go days without showering and go in a secluded area for a few days, and rely on food and drinks.

The vehicle of a person can suffer mechanical damage and this typically occurs frequently. It is possible to be out in the wild, or in extreme conditions and be in danger due to predators, and help won’t be available in a hurry. There is nothing like being at the comfort of your own home.

Administrative Preparation

Due to border crossings you must complete administrative preparation. You should have the necessary paperwork ready as well as international travel documents and also insurance.

Camping Gear

You must be equipped with all the camping equipment. This is to ensure your survival in remote areas in which there isn’t convenient access to convenience stores and supermarkets. The most popular form of accommodation is camping. Check out our extensive camping equipment checklist.

Bring enough drinking water in accordance with the number of people traveling with, food and snacks should be packed in large quantities. You could also carry a fridge or cooler in your car should you be able to. This will help preserve food that is perishable.

Also, you will require cooking equipment, such as stoves. This is to be used in the event that you find yourself in a remote location for a period of two weeks or more with no sight of other people and other cars. But did you know that you could cook without a stove? Yes, you can. I learned it by trial and error, which is why I came up with this cooking without fire recipe guide.

There are a variety of options for camping. There are rooftop tents for vehicles and ground tents. It is not necessary to spend a lot of money to purchase the equipment. You can make use of their budget to purchase a certain style of tents for camping, and also their personal comfort requirements.

For those who are scared to sleep on the ground in tents because of wild animals as well as two-legged it is possible to purchase an outdoor tent to put in your vehicle. Rooftop tents tend to be costly but there are some affordable roofing tents (below 1000 USD) I have reviewed.

If you’re a novice at this point, it’s an ideal idea to begin with by taking a few camping trips. Start by taking a weekend camping trip before moving on to 10 days, a week in two weeks, and then at least a month. This provides the necessary experience to be able to cross the country.

You will require beddings, mattresses or sleeping bag, as well as blankets. Showering requires the right equipment to bathe, regardless of whether it is possible to install it in your vehicle, or any method you require to shower. This guide will help you for what to do to shower while camping, without relying on showers that are public..

Wet wipes are handy

Don’t forget to carry a bag or two in case you encounter dirt and don’t have water. When you are in hot environments and after things like climbing mountains, you’ll get very sweaty and require the use of wipes. You’ll also require comfortable and light clothing based on the location you’ll be traveling to.

Don’t forget to bring a first-aid kit

You may do not need it but having one is extremely blunt. It is possible for anything to happen while engaging in various outdoor activities.


The most crucial aspect of over-landing is that you be aware of where you’re heading, even an approximate idea. This will help you avoid getting lost since the areas that you’ll visit are most likely to be foreign to you.

It is possible to look up an outline of the map every often. Make note of the places that will assist you with replenishing your supplies or seek help in case of emergency such as the grocery stores, supermarkets stores, and hospitals. You’ll require more fuel and food items, as well as spare parts, and other essentials of the overlanding.

A mobile phone that has mapping software, a dedicated GPS and an compass are essential. It is used for communication and navigating your way. The most important thing to remember is that you don’t want to be lost in the wilderness. Knowing the difference between the latitude and longitude of your location is essential. It can help you navigate the way you want to go without a map. This is your guide for overland travel on each trip.

There are many ways of getting back to your destination when you are lost.

It is also possible to read books on this subject in order to build your survival capabilities. There are numerous guides to overland travel and trail guides which you can purchase so that it will be easy to navigate through the wilderness. Here are a few trails for beginners or routes people living in the US could start exploring:

  • Smoky Mountain Highway, Southern Utah and Northern Arizona. It is a beautiful drive and is full of dirt roads.
  • Death Valley National Park is an excellent place to go off-road driving, and it is the hottest, most dry and least populated area of North America.
  • Naranjo road, Baja, California Sur, Mexico. Beautiful views, beaches that are empty, and vast deserts, Rocky Mountains. They are connected with dirt roads. Views of water sports and gray whales.
  • Mojave Road there you will traverse across Mojave National Preserve, the desert landscape. The long heritage of the trails that were once trade routes. Make sure you are aware of road closings.

Skills Skills One requires certain abilities for survival

You’ll be traveling to remote areas and there are bound to be difficulties such as barriers to communication, road closures and the use of different currencies creates challenges when converting, navigation, and mechanical issues. Ability to solve problems is a crucial ability.

It is possible to conduct some studies about the people living there and the locations you’ll be visiting to understand their language, their currency and the weather at the time you are there.

This is crucial for registering in language classes. You will also need medical and mechanical training since you’ll be able to only take care of your own.

Assistance can be expensive or even distant.

Also, you should consider your safety and your camping skills are crucial. Make sure your vehicle is upgraded to ensure security.

What Car or Jeep Do I Need To Overland?

First Overland Vehicle- To understand this you should look back in time a little. The first ever overland journey in the world was made with the Land Rover from London to Singapore. A book titled called ‘The First Overland: London to Singapore” is an excellent read since it teaches you that the way you land your vehicle not matter. It also contains excellent tips for landing and tips to avoid.

The car could be used vehicle, modified from an older model or a brand new one, or even rental. While a vehicle with four wheels will make it more efficient off-road, there’s no ideal vehicle. The comfort and usability for everyday use are essential.

Start with an off-road vehicle that is regular. I personally have a used 1st Generation Toyota 4-Runner but has since been upgraded to different cars over the years.

The basic idea behind choosing your motorcycle or vehicle and then altering it to make it as simple as possible. Maintain simplicity. Don’t over-build your car. This can lead to more issues and accidents when driving. The aim is not to impress, and there won’t be any people driving off the road anyway.

Maintenance and Upgrade of Vehicles

The main thing to do is Make sure you are taking preventive maintenance in order to prevent frequent breakdowns. You must have the knowledge to repair your vehicle in the event an engine failure. You must be able to fix your the tires, replace them, as well as fix any other issue. Attend a mechanical class.

In line with your passion for adventure If you’re looking to take on the toughest or be gentle down on your own, you car must be able to tackle the off-road terrain. Make improvements to your car. Select the right tires based on what kind of terrain you are driving on.

Roof racks are required and the storage of cargo systems.

The vehicle should also have the capability to withstand extreme weather conditions and natural phenomena like tornadoes, strong winds and sandstorms. This is dependent on the weather conditions and the season you’ll be traveling to.

To keep one’s privacy, you can make use of blacked-out windows. Air cooling and air ventilation are also heating systems. You can also have an array of solar panels on the over the top of your vehicle.

Extra Fuel

Fuel is a source of depletion within the jungle or in the mountains, assistance is not readily available and therefore, extra fuel can be beneficial.

Tools for Repairs Tools for Repair

Sometimes the vehicle can break down because of the terrain or the strain. A tool box is required. A good set of spare tires, a sturdy suspension, snatch strap , and an tow strap. A compressor with air is essential for trips into mountainous areas because you’ll need to deflate your tires not to inflate them later. An extinguisher for fire is essential due to the fact that engine overheating could cause fire.

Roundup of Starting To Overland

It is my wish that I’ve answered your query about how to begin the process of landing. As you can see, it’s not an easy procedure, however, it is not difficult in any way. It is strongly advised to collect all necessary equipment for overlanding prior to starting an overlanding adventure.

Don’t forget the essentials of overlanding, such as joining relevant communities, both offline and online and get your first vehicle Plan your trip, and enjoy the trip.

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David Meyers

David Meyers

Hello, I'm David, and I am an outdoorsman with over 20 years of experience hunting, camping, and backpacking around North America. I love writing, reading, and contributing here at Dens Camp Guide.