After you get used to it a little more, you can start pushing down on the handlebars, raising the mower way up in the air and lunging into the briar patch. Be careful though.
I always think about what someone said on here one time, that if you are using a Gravely and trip and fall and it gets away from you, be sure to get up and out of the way as fast as you can, because before long it's going to be coming back out of the briars headed your way.
I am getting pretty good at getting into the big bushy prickly stuff. I just nibble at it until I can safely get to the trunk, then I let it have it. I find this thing will decimate roses even at just barely above idle.
+1 on all that.
An issue with going after the big brambles is getting on top of them. Around me we have these terrible 12 foot high wild roses. Trying to just mow over them won't work, the stems are too sturdy. But if you pick up the leading edge of the deck about 18", you can chop them off, then drop the nose to chew up the remaining parts. You want the front guard off for this exercise.
Do use care at all times. It's tempting to let the machine go and bull its way through a wad of vegetation. I've done that a number of times <img src="https://www.mytractorforum.com/images/smilies/smile.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Smile" class="inlineimg" /> But there's no guarantee which way it will head in there.
The other thing to watch when brush hogging, esp when the front guard is off, is what's nearby. That heavy blade is perfectly happy to launch debris at warp speed. I've seen beer-can sized chunks of wood fly 75 feet. If you're near a building, esp one with windows, take care to orient the machine so that you won't take out anything you care about.
I am very careful, I won't use it anywhere thee are other people, livestock or pets. Also nothing needs brush hogging near the house. Tall thick grass seems to be the only thing that will slow this thing down. I have a 9' flail and a 70 hp tractor for that, so no worries.
About 15 years ago we were living in a little town north of here. The town hire a city manager we were way to small for a full time manager. Young guy let's the position go to his head . He decided to be a grass Nazi 😞 but was only picking on our elderly. I had a friend that worked for the city that kept me informed. I ruined his plans to change people $75 an hour to mow their high grass on several occasions with a Gravely LI and brush mower. He made the comment now one else could mow because it was to high for a mower so the city would have to do it. I took that as a challenge ! I would mow the yards with the Gravely brush cutter then go over it with a lawn lawnboy I had or the finish mower deck.
Good on you for putting the grass Nazi in his place. Too much of that in .gov , I think those positions attract those people. Enough said I think.