American Rifleman - September 2017 - 52

getting there

Vehicle Self-Recovery: It's In Your Hands
S

tuck: It's a feeling of helplessness that most anyone who drives a truck or SUV off the beaten path
has come to know and will not soon forget. It's
that sinking sensation, pun intended, when the wheels
spin, the engine races, mud flies in all directions and
you suddenly realize that there is absolutely no chance
of regaining your forward momentum. In other words,
it's the point at which you comprehend that your journey on wheels may be over and that getting back to civilization may require the use of your legs instead. You
could call for help, of course-that is if you have the
right communications gear and can get a signal-but
why depend on someone else to get you out of a bind?
Why not simply plan for such an eventuality beforehand
and pack along one or more pieces of self-recovery gear?

Sure, it involves a bit more advance planning and no
small expenditure of funds, but, frankly, it's the only
way to confidently venture cross country.
Hunters and wilderness explorers have been driving
off-road for decades, and in that time some of the
more enterprising invented self-recovery devices that
have since been refined and proven in nearly every
conceivable circumstance. Today's rough-road travelers
can simply purchase these tools off-the-shelf. In no
particular order, and admittedly incorporating some
redundancy, the following five products are widely
considered the best of their respective types. All are
absolutely devoid of gimmickry, built to last and
require no more power to operate than your own two
hands can provide.

MOVE IT

One piece of gear that has become so commonly associated with vehicles at least intended to go off-road, enjoying nearly ornamental status on bumpers and hoods everywhere, is the Hi-Lift Jack (hi-lift.com). That's not at all to
suggest that this incredibly versatile device, which is somewhat reminiscent of an old-fashioned bumper jack, is itself a
poseur. In fact, quite the opposite is true, as the U.S.-made Hi-Lift is brutishly strong. Its solid cast steel construction
makes it capable of lifting up the entire end of a vehicle, allowing the surface under it to be built up with tractionbearing rocks and branches. Oriented horizontally, it also serves as a manual winch-albeit with less efficiency than
a true come-along. If that weren't enough, the Hi-Lift can be used as a clamp or spreader. With an upright of specially
processed 80,000-p.s.i. tensile strength high-carbon steel, a rated capacity of 4,660 lbs. and a weight of around 30 lbs.,
it is efficient as well. Various lengths are available, but the feature-packed 60" X-Treme ($128) shown here may be the
best choice if space allows. Considering its incredible capabilities and relatively low cost, there is no good excuse to
leave the Hi-Lift behind.

52

September 2017

american rifleman


http://www.hi-lift.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Rifleman - September 2017

Contents
American Rifleman - September 2017 - CW1
American Rifleman - September 2017 - CW2
American Rifleman - September 2017 - Cover1
American Rifleman - September 2017 - Cover2
American Rifleman - September 2017 - 1
American Rifleman - September 2017 - Contents
American Rifleman - September 2017 - 3
American Rifleman - September 2017 - 4
American Rifleman - September 2017 - 5
American Rifleman - September 2017 - 6
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American Rifleman - September 2017 - 8
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American Rifleman - September 2017 - C1
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American Rifleman - September 2017 - E1
American Rifleman - September 2017 - E2
American Rifleman - September 2017 - MW1
American Rifleman - September 2017 - MW2
American Rifleman - September 2017 - S1
American Rifleman - September 2017 - S2
American Rifleman - September 2017 - SW1
American Rifleman - September 2017 - SW2
American Rifleman - September 2017 - W1
American Rifleman - September 2017 - W2
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American Rifleman - September 2017 - Cover3
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