What are your Overland equipment must haves?


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good clear goggles like these: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000BQUTQS/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I can't tell you how many times I have had to crawl under a vehicle in the middle of nowhere; dirt and debris raining down on me. Safety glasses are not enough because your head is always turned so that dirt can get in your eyes. It can lead to a serious back country emergency. Get a case too=



Expedition Leader
Eat, sleep, wash and fresh clothing. I like food I can scarf. Nuts and rasions are great fast foods as are prepackaged hard boiled eggs. 1/2" thick steaks cook in a fry pan and with a bag of prefab salid you have a square. Cereal, real milk and whatever berries or fruit....yumm. Cookies and milk is heaven when you need a snak. Think food that you can eat and not about being a chef. Next is sleeping. It's hard enough to sleep on the road and your generally worn out. Do not skimp on bedding. I use almost a real bed, goose down quilt, real sheets and my favorite pillow from home. There is nothing like waking up in the morning in the same position that you fell asleep in. A good wash rag in a pot of warm water with a smidge of dish soap works great. Rinse the rag with fresh cold water before you dunk in the pot again. A sponge bath and wet wipes after a dump is as good as it gets. Fresh shoes in the evening are nice. People spend thousands on the rig and gear and skimp on the basics. Eat, sleep, wash then put on fresh cloths everyday and you will be happy. Go hungry, tired and sticky and you won't have fun.


Hillbilly of Leisure
Must have a method to store a steak. Grill a steak. Burbon to go with the steak. A comfortable place to sleep after.

But the Inreach is pretty important IMO. Might avoid spending a day or two in a place you don't want to be if you have one.

Over the top

New member
I just keep the essentials in the vehicles;
Frame mounted tow points (10,000 lb. 2 ea.) front and rear.
Aggressive Mud tires,
Matching spare tire with an adequate jack (NOT a Hi-lift)
Mechanical tools, including a DVM and list of vehicle error codes.
A high pressure fuel injection pump.
snatch strap and 2 shackles (if winch equipped; tree strap, snatch block and log chain in addition)
Jumper cables
a Svensaw (large)
A mini pick mattock or matt-ax
a USGI (NOT Chinese) trifold e-tool... only if wheeling in bumper deep snow; a full sized spade and sand shovel...
An axle u-joint (Spicer if possible)
A driveshaft u-joint (Spicer if possible)
A portable air compressor,
A first aid kit capable of treating significant injuries (NOT an ouch kit)
Extra tubeless tire valve stems (and cores)
A tire plug kit with extra tire plugs
Toilet paper in a waterproof container.
Never yet needed "traction" boards.
Gave up carrying the hi-lift after not needing it for 10 or 15 years...
Haven't needed a winch, for myself, in more than 10 years so the newer vehicles don't have them
all vehicles have at least one selectable locker
... I drive moderate to difficult, not extreme trails.

'prolly forgot some stuff... (edit; like the fire extinguisher and long runtime water resistant LED flashlight)
Good list it's a keeper!


I carry a hi-lift. Have for 20yrs. I have used it twice to change tires on my vehicle(s). However I use it regularly on others rigs. I carry a readywelder too. Many times I have straightened steering links with MY hi-lift and re-welded or plated with some angle iron. It's a tool.

Tire repair kit, beyond a plug and stick tool. tire spoons and irons, hi-lift to break beads, etc. Air to power the impact (unless u have a really cool cordless!!) and air back up, set a bead, etc.

Shovel, I carry two(ish). One is a mid length D handle and the other is an old MAXX.

First aid and the training to use what you carry. Many EMT's, Dr.'s and nurses say only carry what you know how to use. Good advice, but what if more is needed and someone capable is on the trail with you?? I keep my basic trauma bag in reach. My specialty stuff Is usually in my rotopax first aid kit.


New member
The best saw I own, and cuts like a middle school insult. Don't bother with the chainsaw, or bow saw. This is about 22" and you can buy it on Amazon. Easy to stow and easy to use.


Gentleman Adventurer
You can always rent a Sat phone. Last off road trip with a group there was a SAT phone.
Most of the PAC Cup boats have the SAT Phone these days also. Costs have come down its comparable to the Eperb in cost.
I ended up buying an Iridium sat phone for our Alaska NWT trip.
If you are going to rent from more than 30 days it's actually cheaper to just buy the phone.

I also have an inreach device which is also very handy.


I recently bought a new chainsaw. Forgot how great a tool it is. Mine is a Stihl MS250 with a 16" bar. Big enough to drop small dead standing trees and cut any trail blocking debris and firewood but still small enough to handle easily. I won't be doing any multi day back country trips without it from now on.

Naturally, a good axe is an essential as well. I'm partial to Gransfors Bruks, but I'm an elitist prick when it comes to my gear. LOL.

As for tools I don't do rock crawling, mud bogging or hardcore off road. On extended trips I have a small tool box with basic sockets, wrenches, ratchets, hammer, pry bars, screw drivers etc in it. Just the basics routinely needed to fix or tinker with small things that go wrong. I'm not replacing a drive shaft, u-joint or whatever out in the bush. Unlikely I'll ever break something big enough that I couldn't limp the truck back to pavement and use AMA (AAA equivalent) for a tow back home.
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I'm beginning to amass all of the essential gear in which I believe I need in my rig for overlanding adventures. I've got the big items down like a winch kit (recovery straps, shackles, etc.), battery jumper, Maxtrax, fuel and water containers, air gauge/airdown tools, air compressor/OBA, and storage containers, cook stove and cutlery/utensils. I've considered bringing along my 20" bar chainsaw should we be in a wooded area along with an axe and shovel, but I am not yet convinced that they are essentials 100% of the time.

So where should I look next or what do you use/recommend as essentials?
A road map to find your way off your driveway? J/K.

Most trips will be in Texas this year, out west to Marfa and Big Bend, down to the Padre Island National Seashore
You can do all those in a stock 2WD car. Maybe not every inch of those places ,but 90%. Seriously, go, go, go.

The best thing I ever did is STOP over-planning and just go. Now I preach it.