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Congratulations to our eleventh and penultimate #SA4x4OverlandImages Instagram competition winner, Dimitri Fogg! He’s been submitting images of his new Suzuki Jimny for a few months now, and he’s finally cracked it. Well done, Dimitri!   View this post on Instagram   Sometimes all you need to do is take a drive away from the concrete jungle, just to find yourself and test yourself amongst the giants in the 4×4 world. Nothing can hold this little beast down. #suzukijimny #jimny #jimny4x4 #jimnylovers #jimnyoffroad #jimnylife #jimnyjapan #jimnyclub #jimnygram #jimnygrams #sa4x4overlandimages #jb74 #suzuki #suzukiuk #jimnysierra #スズキ #ジムニーシエラ #ジムニー #新型ジムニー #新型ジムニーシエラ #overland #lilbeasty #SuzukiSA

Recovery tracks work on the same principle – no matter whether they are the steel or aluminium ‘sand ladders’ that overlanders have been using since WW2, modern composite versions, or a host of other fold-up or roll-up contraptions. Quite simply, when you are on a soft or slippery surface, these all spread the load under your wheels to provide a grippy platform that helps you to get going again. At SA4x4, lightweight plastic recovery tracks are our first go-to recovery aid, and we never leave on a four-wheeling trip without them. The Australian company, Maxtrax, was one of the first

With its coarse dark fur, and long ‘hangdog’ face the Chacma Baboon (Papio ursinus) is an easily recognisable bushveld inhabitant. Less well known is the origin of its name. The word “chacma” is derived from the Khoikhoi name for baboon, choa kamma, possibly onomatopoeic for their barking call; whilst the word baboon is derived from the French babouin, a name given to them by French naturalist Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon (Whew! No wonder he is referred to only as Buffon in most literature!). Modern baboons evolved as a distinct lineage prior to 2.5 mya. However, only with the advent

Many people believe that sleeping in a tent on the ground is more dangerous than sleeping in a rooftop tent. That, I think, is a bit of a misconception. Whether venturing into the bush in a 4×4 or on my motorbike, I always either ground-camp, or simply sleep beneath a tarp. Apart from being bothered by the odd bug or two, and mosquitoes, I never really feel vulnerable. But, if you do, here are my top tips for ground camping. Location Select a site away from animal activity. If there are footprints, droppings, recently flattened grass, or trees with huge

In part one, published in the March 2019 edition, we learnt some of the terminology used in tracking. In this installment, let us look at the nitty-gritty of interpreting tracks. Before we begin, bear in mind that when tracking an animal, only 50% is actually working with the tracks: the other 50% is working with supplementary signs − what we call “sign tracking”. This includes things such as disturbed foliage, and dew on grass which has been disturbed. The latter is a sign called “dulling” – as an animal passes by, it wipes away the dew and leaves a dull

Following on from last month’s article about the Spotted Hyaena (Crocuta crocuta), I thought I would deal this month with another amazing animal that has also been long misunderstood – the African wild dog (Lycaon pictus). “Wild dogs are nomadic animals and can traverse 50km in a single day. As a result, their territories may range anywhere from 400 to 1 500 square kilometres” A distant cousin of the wolf and domestic dog, the wild dog split from the ancestor of other canids two to three million years ago. The Painted Wolf – the other name by which the African

From the purple low-riders of Los Angeles to the blinged-out SUVs in rap videos, we’ve all seen the trend. Huge wheels are now an intrinsic part of motoring culture and modern car design. While giant rims with painted-on tyres may look great stuffed under a wheel arch, they have several drawbacks which are most obviously highlighted off-road. Take the new Land Rover Discovery, for example. Its standard fitment wheels range from 19- to 22-inch, a trend echoed on many premium four-wheel-drive SUVs. This makes a mockery of the 4×4 capability of these vehicles. From personal experience and simple common sense,

Congratulations to our tenth #SA4x4OverlandImages Instagram competition winner, Michelle Vooght. With this image of her Landy alongside the Orange River, she becomes our first email submission winner!   View this post on Instagram   Camping on the Orange River 🏞 – – – 📸 Michelle Vooght 📸 – – – Thanks for your #sa4x4overlandimages submission! 🙏 – – – #4×4 #overlanding #instagood #southafrica #namibia #LandRover #defender #africa A post shared by SA4x4 Mag (@sa4x4) on Feb 6, 2019 at 4:22am PST Check out some more of the month’s best entries below:   View this post on Instagram   Alone at

One of the reasons I enjoy teaching bush craft/survival techniques, is that it encompasses so many different skills sets. There are innumerable ways of starting a fire, we can use animals to find water, we can use nature to navigate, we have a host of ways to improvise shelters, and the bush is a veritable supermarket if we know how to identify the edible plants. And, of course, another skill we use is tracking. There is always something new to learn when it comes to tracking, no matter how long you’ve been doing it. I’m still learning after all these

Sociable and smart are not words that usually come to mind when Spotted Hyaenas (Crocuta crocuta) are mentioned. If anything, hyaenas are seen as sneaky and vicious, cringing scavengers that inspire a queasy mixture of fear and disdain. Yet, after spending 20 years studying them, Professor Kay Holekamp from Michigan State University came to view them as “smart, biologically and socially complex, jam-packed with surprises”. Having had the opportunity to observe a den first-hand, I, too, have become fascinated with these multifaceted predators and their unique biology and behaviour. First among their Pandora’s Box of surprises is that although they

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