To gain access to 4wd passes and beach permits click here
Important tips for driving on sand
- Ensure your vehicle is engaged in 4WD when on sand.
- Select low gears or low range in steep sections or very soft sand.
- Avoid sharp turns and sudden braking.
- Always adjust tyre pressures to the surface your driving on, the softer the sand the lower the tyre pressure but keep in the manufactures specifications. And don’t forget to re-inflate your tyres when on harder sand or surfaces.
- Make sure your tyre pressure gauge works.
- Click here to check out the tide times Australia
What to take
- Tyre pressure gauge
- Air compressor or pump
- First-aid kit!
- Puncture repair kit
- Tow rope
- rated bow shackles
- Snatch strap
- Traction boards
- High lift jack
- Do not over load your vehicle.
- Load your vehicle evenly, with heavy items stored low.
- Vehicles with too much stored on roof racks can overturn or become stuck.
- Remember! The weight and balance of a 4WD is different than a normal car.
- Park well away from traffic areas.
- Park at an angle to the water, this way approaching traffic can see that you have stopped.
- They will not hear your vehicle over the sound of the surf and wind.
- Always slow down and drive carefully where there are pedestrians.
- Be aware of all wildlife.
- Drive around flocks of birds, do not drive through them.
- Never approach dingoes or encourage their attention. Stay in your vehicle and allow them to pass.
- Tracks are usually single lane and can become busy.
- Never drive off the track.
- Use the passing bays provided if any.
- Be courteous. The closest vehicle to the bay should move off the track. The other vehicle should wait until the move is complete.
- Give way to traffic coming downhill. Heavy vehicles and vehicles with trailers have the right of way in any situation as they are more difficult to manoeuvre.
- Use well established tracks to reach the beach.
- Never drive over vegetation on dunes as it illegal.
On the beach
- Some beaches are quiet narrow between high tide and the sand dunes, so travel at low tide or two hours either side of low tide.
- Stay on the harder sand between the waterline and the high tide mark to get the firmest surface.
- Avoid the salt water as you may get stuck, also salt spray doesn’t do your vehicle any favours.
- Remember! Beach traffic is two-way, so keep to the left and keep below the speed limit.
- Normal road rules apply on beaches and on inland tracks.
- Use indicators only to overtake or turn.
- Keep to the left of all oncoming traffic.
- Wear seatbelts at all times.
- Never sit outside the vehicle – people have suffered serious injuries doing this!
- Keep to speed limit at all times
- Be aware of all road signs.
Watch out for
Creek crossings - Walk across the creek first to check the depth. Engage low range second gear; drive at a constant steady pace not too fast or too slow. Never stop mid-stream or you’ll become stuck.
Rocks - Do not attempt to pass them if tide is too high. If there is an inland bypass use it.
Pools - left by the falling tide which can hide dangerously soft sand and should be avoided. Vehicles stuck in these are difficult to rescue, pass on the high side close to dry sand.
Washouts- ditches in the sand created by the surf and creeks are extremely dangerous if hit at high speeds, so slow down when approaching them.
Landing aeroplanes – obey signs at the beach landing zones. Drive higher up the beach if necessary as planes need the wetter, harder sand to land.
Remember! Go slowly; hazards are harder to see at higher speeds