PACK IT IN
GRAB your shovel again and get back to work. As backwards as it sounds, you’ll want to pack as much loose sand as possible behind the wheel first – the idea being to keep the spare tyre pushed against the hole’s still firm front sidewall. As you shovel the sand in, push it down into place. The tighter packed the sand, the less chance your spare tyre will pop out before you do.
WITH the spare tyre properly buried and your tree-trunk protector poking into the trench, grab your recovery kit and rig it up. If you’re using a hook, keep its open end up, so it shoots down if it breaks. You’ll also need to fit a winch blanket; although, it should be halfway between your vehicle, just where your line enters the sand. Avoid handling straps and rope while they’re covered in sand, as the abrasive particles can work their way into the webbing and cut it to pieces over time from the inside-out.
GIVE IT A WHIRL
WITH passengers and eager spectators standing well clear, jump back in your 4x4 and pull the winchline tight. The spare tyre should be deep enough to pull you out but won’t stand a chance against the dead weight of a fully loaded 4x4, so give it all the help you can. Make sure there’s as much sand cleared away from in front of your tyres as possible and, in first gear low range, drive with the winch without spinning your tyres.
CLEAN THE MESS
WHEN you’re back on solid ground, it’s time to reach for the shovel one last time. Before you disconnect your winch line, drive over the top of the hole and winch in. The spare tyre should have no problems pulling up through the recently disturbed sand. It’ll leave a mud-tyre-sized hole that could catch out unsuspecting beachgoers, so fill it in before setting off. Don’t forget to thoroughly rinse any recovery gear to remove ingrained sand.