#tripping: 5 ways to indulge in an awesome weekend SUV getaway

There’s no feeling quite like hitting the road and getting out of town. Desert off-roading, monsoon getaways, mountain drives, camping in the forest or stargazing around a fire, each experience is one of its kind. Any extraordinary journey requires the right vehicle, but driving off-road without fully understanding how to approach different conditions can be intimidating. Even dangerous.

Here are a few things you could do, to make the most out of your getaway:

1. Feel the sand between the tires.

As Robert Frost once opined, sometimes it’s taking the road less traveled that makes all the difference. But the trouble with roads less travelled is that they are often less paved, less comfortable, and sometimes covered in sand. When driving in deep sand it’s important to maintain momentum and keep engine RPMs high. If you don’t, you run the risk of sinking. In SUVs like the Endeavour, Sand Mode in the Terrain Management System helps avoid this in a few ways: upshifting later and downshifting earlier so the engine RPMs remain high; reducing traction control intervention to allow your wheels to keep spinning; and dramatically increasing the sensitivity of the throttle so that small foot movements elicit greater response. All this helps keep you moving smoothly through the dunes.

2. Get muddy.

We aren’t talking about a day at the spa. When heading through extreme terrain with deep mud, you want to avoid wheel slippage and keep momentum to avoid getting stuck. But mud and rocks shouldn’t stop you getting where you want to go. On slippery surfaces like mud and melting snow, it’s vital to keep the vehicle under complete control to avoid breaking traction. The Endeavour’s Snow, Mud and Grass mode dull throttle inputs, upshift earlier and downshift later to help keep the engine from revving too high. It can also be used in conjunction with the Electronic Locking Rear Differential, which locks the rear axle when necessary. The Torque on Demand system ensures torque is sent to the wheels that still have traction, so you keep moving forward, no matter how slippery the situation.

3. Go star gazing.

Gazing into the night sky is like locking eyes with the universe. There are few better ways to end a day of tough off-roading after escaping the city. An SUV with a panoramic moon roof surely helps. It can be the ultimate HD display.

4. Enjoy the sounds of nature.

Life isn’t all about traffic jams. When in the wild, put your windows down, smell the air and enjoy the sounds of nature. The swell of a mountain top wind or the burbling of a rolling river, it can be an exhilarating experience. And an SUV with a more than decent water wading capability can certainly be an advantage.

5. Rock out on the rocks.

Bumps in the road are often what makes a journey memorable. Real and metaphorical, both. When it comes to challenging off-road terrain, it’s wise to know your vehicle’s dimensions, capabilities and its ground clearance. Once you are sure, find an ace place to go rock crawling. It can be much fun. And the Endeavour gives you a head start with 225mm of ground clearance which is quite adequate to tackle the toughest off-road environments.

Be sure that you are in complete control while negotiating tough slopes, winding roads, or wading through water. Choose your drive carefully. Preferably an SUV that equips you with all the technology that can assist and ensure your safety while you indulge in some thrills.

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