Driving off-road can be a great way to enjoy the outdoors while still staying safe inside your vehicle, but of course not just any car or truck can handle the demands of being driven in mud or through thick brush. Before you take your truck off-road, note some changes you'll want to make and accessories you should consider purchasing. This will ensure your vehicle is protected and you're safe no matter the conditions.

1. Bull bars

Bull bars are like a front grill only they slide under the truck and also protect its front end. Before you take your truck through brush or small trees, you'll want to have bull bars installed. The curve of the bars under your truck's front allows for an easier drive through the brush, as this curve helps to push the brush down and flatten it as you drive. The bars also protect your trucks engine from being damaged by larger pieces.

2. Winch

A winch is like a towrope that you install on your vehicle and which can be used to pull you out if you should get stuck in mud or soft soil. The winch can be attached to a larger vehicle or you can pull it out and wrap it around a sturdy tree. As you retract the winch, it will gently pull your vehicle to safety.

3. Trail armor

Trail armor refers to thin but sturdy metal plates that get welded or taped onto the corners of your vehicle, where it's most likely to suffer damage from brush, trees, rocks, and so on. This armor keeps it from getting scratched and dented when off-road. Many models also have ridges or diamond textures, and these can help your truck to maintain traction if it should scrape against anything when you drive off-road.

4. Off-road lighting

When you take your truck off-road, you can't expect to have streetlights guide your way. Your own headlights will also be very limited as to the illumination they can provide, whereas off-road lighting is not only brighter and wider, it can also typically be trained in certain directions. Like police lamps that attach to the sides of their patrol cars, off-road lighting lamps can swivel in any direction and provide a perfect spotlight for your off-road adventures.

Keep in mind these four changes and additions you'll want to make for your truck before you take it into any type of rough terrain. Talk to suppliers such as J & J Bullbars for more ideas of add-ons for your truck.