July 2014 Issue of 4×4 Magazine
It’s fair to say that each month that I receive the copy and photographs from regular correspondent Robert Pepper, my well of resentment begins to fill. Once again he tells us of loading wife, kids, a few steaks and even some cold beer into his Discovery and just driving off into the Bush. The pictures show the family’s campsite in some wonderful remote location, and you know he’s had a great off-road drive to get there. The only saving grace is that Robert’s an ex-pat, a nice bloke and not a freshly grown Australian; otherwise the resentment might overflow completely. Of course there’s also the email I might get from America asking if I want a story of someone driving their Jeep through the desert, and the excitement of rock-crawling along some National Park trail. Then you learn from somewhere like Portugal that it is completely legal to follow dirt tracks into the mountains without worrying about whether you are actually allowed to be there, because you can…
Here in jam-packed Blighty, any greenlaning trip is best done with a fully qualified High Court barrister on-board to argue the case should you bump into Mr and Mrs We-know-our-rights, out ‘rambling’ with their best friend and spinster of the parish, Ms I-know-even-better who will doubtless expound that you ‘and your massive dirty horrible four-wheel drive machine’ shouldn’t be on this track. Even if legally, you have every right to be there. Let’s face it, off-roading in the UK is not as easy a task as the one that confronts Mr Pepper each weekend!
It is a relief, therefore, that we have been able to find such a brilliant variety of 4×4 adventure options available in the UK. OK, so we don’t have the freedom of a desert on our doorstep, or the ability to get lost in the Australian Bush for a few weeks without bumping into another human being, but that doesn’t mean we can’t get stuck into some great off-road fun. Our review this month just scratches the surface at what is possible out there, but we hope that it gives you some idea – and some encouragement – as to what is available. It may only be a taster off-road session, great fun to take friends and family to show them why you love the world of 4×4 so much, right up to a bespoke package where you can have a terrific off-road adventure designed just for you. And let’s face it, should you do this in places like North Wales, the Lake District or up in Scotland, a little extra investigation and you’ll probably be able to find yourself a great little pub to stay in. At the end of the day, you can enjoy a few drinks, in a wonderful British pub, regaling the stories of the day. Now you can’t do that in Australia, can you Mr Pepper, huh, huh…
Here’s hoping that some readers take up the options reviewed here, and if so, do let us know. Send in some details and photographs and we can certainly include them in our Your 4×4 Life section. We’d love to hear from you.
Here’s hoping that you enjoy the issue.
Nigel Fryatt, Editor
Buy your copy of the latest issue of 4×4 Magazine