Its funny how a few bottles of suds can make a bad situation into a good one
Ed, back years ago when I tried that it always went from bad to worse! KGB
Keith - With you fellers down South, there's quite often a statement like,......."hey, hold my beer and watch this!"
I really like that clear, third photo of the center door sedan in the deep mud. I'll be saving that one to show people what the T was all about.
Dave- yep that is what all that ground clearance was for! My favorite demonstration for new friends is how I can lay on my creeper and go from one end of my "T" to the other without getting stuck!
The place hasn't changed a bit. Good old Hyperion.
The road in front of my house, about a hundred years ago.
The last big picture of a touring car going down a dirt road, is Palos Verdes, California, and that is the Pacific Ocean at the top.
Aaahh, that's better....
That photo was surely taken in the late 40's Look at the electric poles. We had roads and ditches all over Missouri like that in the late 40's and early 50's.
Joe! mo. still has a lot of roads like that!!!!!!!!!!! charley
Joe, I believe the poles are telephone, not electric. By the forties the road was graded and graveled.
I have to drive two miles on this dirt / gravel road every time I take one of my T's out to before I get to a decent road. It is the worst in my county and if it isn't driving through the mud it is driving through 6" of dust and dodging the pot holes.
What surprises me most about pictures like the 3rd. one shown is that some people seemed to drive in the existing ruts no matter how deep they were. I suppose it's just that the driver's with 1/2 an ounce of brains stuck to the right or left and never got stuck and so never felt the need to photograph a non-event. I remember seeing a modern African expedition on TV and there was a dip in the rutted road that had water in it. Vehicle after vehicle ran into the low point and got stuck in the ruts and had to be pulled out. Not 1 driver stayed on the slightly higher ground. Amazing.
One thing you have to remember is that a lot of people were just learning to drive back then & didn't have a lot of experience, so it might have seemed natural to "stick to the path" instead of avoiding the deep ruts.
10 years ago when I was going to china on business a lot, I was amazed at how congested the traffic was, yet no drivers ever got upset about being cut off or squeezed off of the road. I was told that 75% of the drivers had been behind the wheel for less than 3 months & they simply didn't know any difference in "proper" road etiquette.
There is, not far from me, roads that when it rains, have so big holes that would almost bury a car.
This could be wrong, but I have always thought that the reason drivers stayed in the ruts, as in Erich's third picture, was because the deeper ground was harder. Cutting a new path just made it easier to get stuck while using the ruts put the tires on more solid footing and made the going easier. In fact I've heard or read that this is why tires remained relatively narrow until there were more paved roads.
Could be just a load of BS. Any one else ever hear this?
We have 1/4 mile of dirt road in front of our house. Our road association is loosely charged with keeping the road in "passable condition". I chuckle when the neighbors begin to gripe about pot holes and how we need to re-grade and patch. My T has no problem and never bottoms out. When I end up driving around the pot holes is about the same time the Toyota owners really start the "modern roads" push!
It's amazing how bad "modern cars" are at handling any road surface which is less than perfect. If we had the current designs, say a Prius, in 1909 then I think we would still be using horses! In fact there is a horse arena on our road and the horse haulers with huge 2WD trucks are the worst at spinning their wheels and tearing holes in the road. Then they complain that their horses get jostled in their trailers... so even horses in modern trailers can't cope with a slightly worn road!
I doubt you have had much experience driving in the conditions where deep ruts are a problem, it is easier to say stay out of the ruts than it is possible to do, Henry also has a point, if the ground is soft, the traveling is better where the soft mud has been opened up to the bottom. But even if the road has good base between the ruts, if you get close to a rut, it will eventually pull you in, and then you are high centered if they are deeper than you clearance.
The general rule is, if the ruts are not too deep, it is better to stay in the ruts, the third photo is not of a stuck car, they just stopped to photo the condition of the road, if you look closely, you will see that there is still clearance between the front axle and the road, and the rear wheels are not in as deep, so the differential is not high centered either.
Some good pictures. I am afraid that this picture if I can get it posted is a newer road, at about 10,000 feet. Its a road above sheep meadows in Rocky Mountain Park. The wide white line down the middle of the picture is one of the old sky runs for what used to be Hidden Valley Ski Area.