Jump to content

Sand driving


Recommended Posts

Before you attempt driving on sand, check with the local towing companies for an estimate on a pull out. A trailer puts a lot of load on the tow vehicle's drive axle, which will cause it to sink quicker. Probably best to avoid sand if possible.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There's no way I'd take a fifth wheel (or any RV, really) onto sand...unless I KNEW there was a hard surface right underneath. I've seen several motorhomes stuck axle-deep in the sand of Tyson Wash in Quartzsite. I have no idea how they finally got extricated, or how much it cost, and I'm wondering if ERS, such as Good Sam's or CoachNet's, would even pay for such a tow.

2014 Winnebago Aspect 27K
2011 Kia Soul


Link to comment
Share on other sites

If the sand is dry stay off. If you are near a beach and the sand is wet you should be OK, but would feel better with a 4WD. I got stuck on Daytona beach one with a 2WD when the front hit the dry sand and the tow company wanted $300.00 just to show up.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Last fall we camped out on Pismo Beach for 4 night's. While we are not a 5th wheel (27' TT), we did see a TON on 5th's and toy haulers out there! For Pismo you have to drive about 3 miles down the beach just to get to where dispersed camping starts. It certainly was a new level of excitement towing down the beach :o For use there were pretty defined "lines" where people drove just up from the high tide line. I tried to keep my speed up (momentum is your friend if you hit a soft spot) and stay in the tread. I also camped VERY close to the tread, worried if I got to far off I'd get stuck. Happy to report we had 4 amazing days and then pulled out no problems! We did see a few others who go pretty far off the track and bogged down. Lucky for them there were friendly people all around with HUGE diesel pick ups more than happy to lend a hand!

As others said, it's a roll of the dice. I'd certainly not even think about it if you've never see another out there but in our case (pismo) it is done daily.

Good luck and have fun!

Randy Charrette

2014 Kodiak 240BHSL

www.pedaladventures.com (our travels)

www.axelproject.com (our non-profit)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We also camped at Pismo Beach. I towed a 33' 5th wheel with a 2WD. I aired down to about 20 lbs and I would find a spot I wanted and drove into it and that's were we stayed. I could drive in the sand with my truck aired down, but would have to be pulled out to the wet sand when it was time to leave.

If you drive in sand you can go quite a ways by airing down your tires, the problem is you have to have a compressor to air them back up when you want to hit the road.

"It is better to have more truck than you need than to need more truck than you have"

2001 Volvo 660, Cummins 400 ISX, Eaton 3 Peddle Auto Shift    
2014 Fuzion 40' Toyhauler
2015 Smart Car                                                                                                                                                                          



Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've been thinking about getting one of these:




Do you think it would help? Possible along with one of these?





Apologies in advance for the slight hi-jack.


You don't really use a winch too often, but when you need one.. you REALLY need one. I wouldn't travel without one, but then again, I usually stick pretty well of the beaten track. I probably wouldn't invest in one if my time was spent strictly on asphalt/concrete.


I don't know if a pullpal is really worth it. You can almost always anchor to something or other (even another vehicle) and they can be pretty tricky to get a good bite. I've only seen them in use on three occasions. Twice they did more "plowing" than pulling, and the one successful time the fella had his pullpal pretty far up the side of a hill. It seemed like the downward pull helped set the anchor better than trying for an anchor on level ground.


A winch and a tow cable as an extension is my personal poison. I've yet to not be able to reach an anchor point.


I guess I should add... more times than naught I've used my winch getting OTHERS out of trouble rather than clearing road or getting in a bind myself.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have a 6000# winch mounted on a plate with a 2" receiver drawbar. I have a front receiver so I can place the winch in the front or back of the truck. I have never had to use the winch when towing the trailer, but have used it a number of times for just the truck. A couple of spade foot fence posts driven in at an angle away from truck with a sledge hammer have served me well as an anchor point when there was nothing within reach of the winch cable.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

You might chose otherwise...

we never drive on a surface we couldn't pogo stick on.

Mark & Sue---SKP#86611
'06 International 4400LoPro DT570 310hp 950ft-lbs.-Allison--3.70 gears
'05 36' Teton Liberty
'12 BMW F650 twin

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 months later...

I realize this is an older post and it may be too late to answer your question, but maybe it will help someone else down the road. As a long time Florida resident, I'll offer this....wet sand good, dry sand bad. Wet sand is hard, dry sand is like quicksand. The best way through dry sand is an aggressive approach, meaning fast, and that's for a 4x4, without a trailer, and even then its iffy. Don't know of any way to take a 5th wheel into dry sand and be able to get out without a tow.

Ya just can't RV without a hitch.....!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 months later...

Our experience with sand camping last year at the Oregon Dunes was awesome because we had someone who knew what he was doing. The trick is in some pre-set tire pressure relief valves that we screwed onto all of the tires (RV & TV) and lowered the pressure to something around 12 - 20 psi. Then, just drive slow in 4 wheel drive and its easy peasy. The only "downside" is the amount of time it takes to re-inflate all of the tires before getting back on the road. A dear friend of ours out there said he learned about it in a group he belongs to called STRD (Save The Riders Dunes) and seemed to be the common fix.



It is a blast out there and we can't wait to return next year. Anyhow, hope this helps.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just make sure your battery is charged and don't park below the high tide line. :)



Jim & Vickie
'07 F150
'10 Chalet XL1935
Chimacum, Wa


Evergreen Coho SKP Park Website:


Evergreen Coho SKP on Facebook:


Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 months later...


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

RVers Online University


RV Destinations

Find out more or sign up for Escapees RV'ers Bootcamp.

Advertise your product or service here.

The Rvers- Now Streaming

RVTravel.com Logo

  • Create New...