Introduction to Vehicle Recovery: Learn the concepts, tools, and strategies for recovering a stuck vehicle.

Watch Intro Video


with Matthew Sargent

Course Description

Matt combines strategy and dynamic thinking while demonstrating vehicle recovery using multiple scenarios including sunk in mud, high-centered, in a ditch, or on slick ground such as clay or snow. He explains why a solid understanding of your vehicle and basic maintenance could be the difference between a quick recovery and hours of manual labor. You’ll learn why often a shovel is your best friend, and why extra safety precautions are needed when setting up pull systems. Matt will address the two main ways vehicles get stuck, the techniques and strategies for solutions to each, and how to stay safe along the way. Before you head out on your next adventure, find out which five recovery tools should be in your vehicle, and what maybe isn’t worth its weight.

What are other students saying?

  • Good overview. Basics but really all you need for simple ...

    Keith Whatley

    This course is great for those that want a basic overview of how to recover a vehicle from the situations that normal driving can lead to. It is NOT a full c...

    Read More

    This course is great for those that want a basic overview of how to recover a vehicle from the situations that normal driving can lead to. It is NOT a full course on recovery or recovery for people doing hardcore off road travel. However, those are situations in which you put yourself at above average risk for getting stuck. Normal driving on back roads where you are not purposely just seeing if you can make it without getting stuck are what most people encounter and this course explains how to prepare for unexpected situations where you do get stuck. Sarge is very straightforward and clear in instruction. If you need to know how to get a jeep out of knee deep mud you purposely drove through for fun, this isn't the course you want. But if you are just trying to learn how to get out of the kind of situation you might get into going up a muddy trail to camp, hunt or fish, etc and run into a problem, this course is great.

    Read Less

Course Objectives

What can you expect to learn?

  • Learn why the Y in RECOVERY stands for YOLO

  • Learn how to use items that may already be in your vehicle

  • Understand the failure points in pull systems

  • Learn how proper equipment can save you time and effort

  • Discover improvised methods of recovery if you are without tools

  • Learn some tips on how to capture progress to keep you moving in the right direction

  • Learn what to do when your vehicle no longer has all four tires on the ground

  • Learn how a seatbelt and a stick might be what gets you out of the mud

Who is this course for?

This course is for anyone that drives a vehicle, especially on outdoor adventures, and wants to be more self sufficient.  You’ll feel much more confident in trekking further from the beaten path in your vehicle for your next adventure after learning to address issues that could arise on the way.

Meet Your Instructor

  • Matthew Sargent


    Matthew Sargent

    Matt’s connection to the outdoors started at a young age. Spending much of his childhood on his grandparents’ farm and following his dad on photography expeditions that took them as far from home as Kenya. He attended college in Nashville, TN where he studied Automotive Collision Repair and Refinishing Technologies. After a few years in the automotive field, Matt made a shift to pursue a career in physical security. He also became involved in Search & Rescue, where he obtained Search Team Leader and Operational Tracker certifications from the Commonwealth of Virginia. After meeting his wife Alex, Matt stepped away from his security career and founded Mountain Marrow. He is now a full-time educator, teaching practical outdoor skills and safety for Search & Rescue as well as the general public. When he’s not teaching or training, Matt spends much of his time studying Appalachian heritage skills and drinking coffee.

Course Curriculum

  • 1
    Welcome & Safety
    • Terms & Conditions, Disclaimers, and Waiver of Liability
    • Welcome & Safety
  • 2
    • Drive it Out: Driving Techniques
  • 3
    • Assessment- R.E.C.O.V.E.R.Y.
  • 4
    • TRACTION ISSUES: Traction Boards
    • TRACTION ISSUES: Improvised Traction Techniques
    • TRACTION ISSUES: Even More Improvised Traction (and some fails)
  • 5
    • CLEARANCE ISSUES: What are clearance issues?
    • CLEARANCE ISSUES: High-Centered
    • CLEARANCE ISSUES: Cross-Axled
  • 6
    • PULLS: Concepts and Failure Points
    • PULLS: Proper Systems
    • PULLS: Primitive and Improvised Winches
    • PULLS: Primitive Concepts revisited
  • 7
    Bonus Tip: Capturing Progress
    • Bonus Tip: Capturing Progress
  • 8
    • Tools
  • 9
    • Wrap Up