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Solo Greenlaning


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In the beginners post, people have sensibly advised against solo greenlaning, however in the mags and forums the advice of never solo greenlaning is often given out irrespective of experience. Now as general rule it's prudent to state this, but I personally think that stating 'never solo greenlane' in the UK is going over the top. If you think otherwise let me know your reasons..

As you can guess, I'm personally ok with sensible greenlaning and often go out on my own, even on lanes that I haven't driven before. Being sensible and prepared is more important. My reasons for this are..

  • I can go out more often, rather than limiting it to organised trips
  • The majority of lanes in the UK are driveable without getting stuck
  • All lanes in the UK are no more than an hours walk away from civilisation
  • Good Mobile coverage throughout UK, so it's possible to get a signal by walking 30 minutes or so
  • A high-lift, spade and a pair of waffles will get you out of most green lane stuck situations
  • A working winch and ground anchor even more



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I totally agree with you Steve. I wouldn't advise a 'newbie' to go laning on their own, but if you are a bit more experinced and equiped then it's up to you to make the call once you have weighed up the the risks. Knowing your and your vehicles abilities, and being able to read the ground should help avoid most stucks. And if you do get stuck it's not as if you are in the middle of the Outback, no big drama even in remote UK places if you're properly prepared. Most of the lanes we done on the recent forum trip to the lakes I had done on my own, and that was the first time I done them.

It's like don't brake going downhill. It's a good 'newbie' rule, but once you understand things a bit better you can start breaking the rules a bit.

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I agree as well.

I often go laning on my own, usually just a little bit when I'm heading somewhere and have some time to spare. Most lanes are not that challenging, you just need to think things through and be smart enough to turn back in time.

A winch will get you out of most situations, a cell phone and a few good mates even more so.

In Belgium, phone coverage is hardly ever a problem and civilisation is never more then a couple of miles away, undoubtely even more so then in the UK.

I do enjoy laning with a bunch of friends very much, but going out solo is just a little bit more adventureous and gives you a more in depth experience.

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I go out without another vehicle, if that's what you mean by "alone".

As far as I can see, the worst thing that can happen is that I have a an hour or two's trek (or catch bus/train/taxi if I'm further out), then I have to convince another mate with a 4x4 to come and help me out.

If you're not prepared to leave your motor / pay for train fare / pay for farmer to get you out / risk letting stalled landie get washed down river, then don't do it. But each situation needs to be evaluated on it's own merits.

When I started green laning, I wouldn't take any risks at all. I now know I can get myself out of certain situations, so I'm not so worried. However, if after getting out and checking the ground / ford myself, I'm still not sure, I'll just go a different way. Never risk more than you can afford to lose.

If I'm out with other vehicles, it's a lot easier to make those decisions if you have a decent back-up plan for recovery.

As far as going on my own in a vehicle, I know I'd be ok on most of the lanes I've travelled. Of course the risks are higher - if you rolled it (extreme example) and you got stuck, you'd be screwed until you called someone to come and help - assuming you were conscious. Whereas, another person in the vehicle spreads the risk a bit.

At the end of the day, there's no law against going out on your own. They are part of the highway network. As long as you're not being stupid, you take your own risks - just like you do every day on normal roads.

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I think it depends on what lanes you drive as much as how much experience you have. Howevere, I know people who have a huge amount of experience and still not fit to drive accross a grass field

It's often easier with two and usually more pleasant. I am lucky that I have friends I suppose.

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  • 2 years later...

I am a newbie to Landies and had a bit of experience off roading in the army many years ago.Took my standard disco 1 L reg out to try three greenlanes around the Newark area last Sunday, and remembered that the car is also used for HWMBO work transport. with that in mind on all three greenlanes a risk assessment was made and we took all three on with absolute success and no breakages. we did not have a back up vehicle, winch or suspension lift so we did not take too many risks. both my wife and myself are booking ourselves into a course for greenlaners to gain some more experience so we can enjoy the greenlanes more. the most important thing that I have learned in life is to know your limitations and also the machines limitations.

looking forward to this weekend.

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I have always gone out on my own, I work funny hours which often don't fit with others, whilst it is great to go in a group, Iyou often find yourself taking more risks in group situations when others are around to laugh and video!! I think there is a lot to be said for going out alone, I do like the solitude.

I think the two main things are being prepared and knowing your/cars limitations, I don't think you ever need to get stuck, but if you do you need a way out.

I went over the Pyrenees last year and we went alone (one Landy) there were two of us, who are both experienced drivers and both have military backgrounds, the Landy was fully equipped and has recovery equipment (HiLift, Trifor strops etc) waffle boards although no electric winch, but plenty of tools and spares.

The only other things we took that would I would not normally take in the UK, were two survival kits including first aid/Burns kits 24hour ration packs manual compass etc. These were packed into two grab bags on top of this we had an EPIRP (Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon) and were happy with these precautions.

Again it is a personal thing, we were happy with the risks involved and the most important thing is we both understood the risks, and what to do if something went wrong, and both knew how to use the equipment and had a plan for most situations.

It goes back to the basics if you fail to prepare you should be prepared to fail or back to the military basics of 5 P’s Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance, although as most on here know there was often another P put in for effect!!!


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I do go out by myself, did on Thursday for example. However that was on a nice gentle lane local to me that I know and have driven often before. Was nice to get under the shade of the woods and trundle along on tickover in 2nd enjoying the scenery.

I think it depends on:

The lane itself, and how "difficult" it is.

The weather- has it been raining? - Shouldnt really be out on lanes anyway if its too boggy...

The experience of the driver

The condition and or setup of the vehicle- have you got road based tyres, AT's or Muds?

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I go out on my own from time to time as I have no friends locally to play with :(:lol:

I generally only do lanes that are pretty simple to drive but I've had a few worrying moments on slightly more complicated terrain and have ended up sideways in a deep ditch, propped up against a tree with no hope of getting out.

Fortunately, a group of lads came along the same lane an hour or so later and fell down the same ditch in their Disco. All five of us pulled my Defender out with ropes and hand-puller winches. It was a mission and a half but we did it. The Disco was too heavy tho but we found an obliging farmer to come along in a tractor to pull it out.

Since then, I've not been laning on my own. Until I have a winch and some better equipment (ie some decent tyres to start with!) I will only go laning in groups. However, if you are prepared and not in the middle of nowhere, I think that you can do a certain amount without risking too much.

IMHO of course :)


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