When out exploring the Australian wilds and wonders in a car, you’re bound to run into a rough spot where you get stuck. Again 4×4 or other off road cars are the best for traverse the varied terrain of Australia, but even these beasts will get stuck or swamped, even drowned.

If you’re driving one of the 10,685 beaches and your car gets stuck in soft sand, the first thing to do is not panic, it never helps anyone and it wastes energy. The actual first rule of getting stuck in the sand is don’t keep spinning your wheels, you’ll only dig yourself deeper.

The first plan of attack to get yourself free is let some air out of your tyres. This increases the width or footprint of your tyre, which means you have more space trying to climb up the sand meaning you might have a more stable surface that will actually grip the treads. It’s careful to note that once you’ve done this avoid sharp turns so you don’t roll the tyre off of the wheel.

The second is carry some maxtrax, something that’s not going to break under the weight of your vehicle and wedge them in front of the wheels, giving them a nice solid surface to grip. Once you’re set with the boards, be careful not to get the wheels on there and floor the pedal, otherwise you’ll damage the boards; the trick, strangely enough, is to idle your way up onto the boards, then give it some momentum, maybe a push, and you should be right as rain. But always keep in mind rule one: if your tyres start to spin, stop or you’ll dig yourself in.

Granted if these don’t work, just wave someone down, see if they can help. If their car has a winch you can pull your car out. If not, a good rope or cord and they could try drag you out of the hole.

Getting stuck on a trip is bound to occur, it happens to the best of us. For soft sand, remember this tips, take your time, and just consider it part of the adventure.