Trail Gradings





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Thread: Trail Gradings

  1. #1
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    Default Trail Gradings

    Most outings; whether organised by a club; or 'socially' on this forum etc will have some sort of grading. Trail Gradings normally go according to the 5 grades below:

    1. Complete novice soft dirt road trail, no low range required. Suitable for softroaders with good ground-clearance.

    2. Limited low range required but suitable for the novice driver. Suitable for most 4x4's with certain trails not suitable for softroaders.

    3. Low range and limited off road knowledge required. Suitable for all 4x4's with good ground-clearance.

    4. A low range technical trail suitable for the experienced. The inexperienced will be able to do the trail, as assistance will be available from the more experienced members. Suitable for all 4x4's with good ground-clearance.

    5. Extremely technical, suitable for the experienced only with the possibility of vehicle damage. Only suitable for 'bush-ready' 4x4's.



    I've tweaked it a bit, but you get the message.

    It goes without saying that proper recovery points and basic gear is a requirement for all trails - unless otherwise stated.

    Mods, could you please make this one a sticky?

    Opinions welcome...
    Last edited by Maml; 2009/08/05 at 05:03 PM. Reason: grrr. format error
    Mike

  2. #2
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    Default Grading

    Hi black 90,

    Havent met you but have heard a lot about you, been on the dirt a bit with Pierre and ColinD lately.

    Gradings are difficult, one has to be so objective, and is surely based on the graders experience/capabilities.

    It requires somebody with great all round experience to make a call on a particular trail.

    So here goes.

    I know you have been to Gwahumge so would you agree that.

    Most of the track is Grade 1, with some Grade 2 sections.

    Sani Pass section is Grade 3.

    The steep decent to the river/cave has a Grade 4 decline.

    At my level of experience, this is the way that I see it.

    Any coments.

    Hope to see you on a trail soon

    Cheers
    Fluffy

    BTW - I know for you this is all baby stuff.

  3. #3
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    Default

    I actually think it is a good idea for guys organising events or trails to maybe add a grading to it for people interested in joining so that they have an idea what they are in for.
    I will most definitely do this from now on.

    Thanks.

  4. #4
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    Default

    like fluffy said its the perception of the driver

    Places like hennops and dewildt are a 2 for me, Chloorkop has a few 4s in. A grade 5 to me is where you need to dig, winch and then also have a serious 4x4. I will go as far as to say a std dc cannot do a 5. If it can its not a 5
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  5. #5
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    Default

    I agree with you Engel.
    I think Black 90 has his 5 rating pretty good.
    Also, weather can change the rating quite easily.
    Hennops or even Dewildt can go from a 2 to a 3 just after some rain!
    But also as you say, the perception of the driver.
    For example the first time I ever did Hennops, it was like a 4 and 5 to me!

  6. #6
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    Default

    Sorry for the late reply, haven't been near my PC for a bit.

    I tried to find a grading scale that I saw a while back, which instead of 'scales' like I mentioned above, included the likes of size of rocks & depth of water/mud likely to be encountered - that I think puts everyone on the same playing field & takes into account type of vehicle driven...

    e.g.: Baboon's Pass (I was a co-pilot in a D90 Puma end of last year) - normally a grade 5+...but if you have good weather, front and rear lockers, underbody protection, big tyres, experienced drivers, etc etc etc it becomes more like a really fun / challenging grade 3. BUT, same day, same conditons, different vehicle - it goes back up to 5+! Okay, so I'm exaggerating a bit, but I think you get the message.

    Maybe we (or rather the more experienced drivers) should come up with a grading system used across the board on this forum?? Just a suggestion...but using the likes of size of rocks, depth of water, stickyness of mud, condition of escape routes etc etc...still keeping it from 1 to 5, or maybe 1 to 10??

    ...
    Mike

  7. #7
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    Havent met you but have heard a lot about you, been on the dirt a bit with Pierre and ColinD lately..
    Hopefully good things?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    Gradings are difficult, one has to be so objective, and is surely based on the graders experience/capabilities.
    It requires somebody with great all round experience to make a call on a particular trail.
    Going on a pre-trip also helps make judgement calls, like probabiliity of sills taking a knock - or 'EISH-factor' of the results of rain...

    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    I know you have been to Gwahumge so would you agree that.
    Most of the track is Grade 1, with some Grade 2 sections.
    Sani Pass section is Grade 3.
    The steep decent to the river/cave has a Grade 4 decline.
    At my level of experience, this is the way that I see it.
    Any coments.
    Agreed.
    We went after the rains had messed up quite a bit of the track, so only did 1 water crossing and had to leave quite a bit of trail out - unfortunately. There is a good mix though, as you mentioned...

    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    BTW - I know for you this is all baby stuff.
    Hmm, no; I try enjoy a good range of it, but like using my vehicle's abilities...I tend to wuss out of obsticles the first time, then try them the on next visit. Scared of major damage, not worried about scratches or getting stuck.
    Mike

  8. #8
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    Default

    Thanks to Shavaun at the 4wdc kzn:

    1. Good gravel roads, less than 75mm water crossings and gentle climbs. Suitable for 2wd with full recovery gear.
    2. Rutted gravel roads, max 10° climbs, suitable for 2wd with full recovery gear.
    3. Rutted gravel roads, water crossings max 150mm, passable mud with small rocks and holes.
    4. Rutted/rocky road, rocks less than 250mm, hub deep water crossings, passable mud and inclines and side slopes of less than 15°
    5. Rutted/rocky road, rocks less than 300mm and frequent, water crossings max 300mm deep with side currents, inclines and side slopes of less than 20°.”
    6. Frequent rocks (max 300mm), deep ruts, water crossings exceeding hub depth with strong currents, mud requires checking (minister of “I told you so”) inclines of max 20° and side slopes of max 30°
    7. Frequent rocks (max hub height), holes frequent max 300mm deep, mud max 220mm deep and on up-hills, inclines of max 25° and side slopes of 30°, water crossings of 450mm with strong side currents.
    8. Heavy rock and severe ruts, deep muddy uphill sections, severe loose rocky inclines and side slopes, water crossings greater than 750mm. Diff lock front and rear helpful. Body damage imminent.
    9. What the “mmwc” (Main manne wot count) would rate a 1-2 grade trail.

    The last one is for Engel...
    Mike

  9. #9
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    Default Hi Black 90

    Hi, Black 90. Nice meeting you on Sunday. Sorry we didnt chat properly but I was in sensor overlaod at the time.

    From what I could see the description of you truck is a little misleading.

    How about "Pipe car with a Defender 90 insīde"

    Hope you had fun. To stay on topic we, ColinD, Pierre and klein Pierre, Dynamo D, PGJ, BaldyC and Fluffy, found a nice little dam on a cattle track. Softroader/Level 1 compatible.

    Also learned a few more things. If your chassis is on the ground, (breakover angle, ground clearance) then you are going nowhere, whatever mechanical/electronic aids you have.

    Cheers
    Fluffy

  10. #10
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    From what I could see the description of you truck is a little misleading.
    How about "Pipe car with a Defender 90 insīde"
    Hehe, smoke and mirrors my friend, smoke and mirrors...Was good to meet you too, now to go on a trail together so i can see that RRS do its thing.

    Keep well.
    Mike

  11. #11
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    Default Long before

    Hi Black 90,

    I will stop LONG before the RRS gets to it's limits.

    I would love to see somebody who knows what they are doing , with no fear of damage put one of these thru its paces.

    BUT, I am still having fun.

    Cheers
    Fluffy

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