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Old 12-05-2010, 10:51 AM   #1
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Winter kit for 2WD

Hi --

Weather Gods willing, I'll be wandering around the Colorado Plateau for three weeks over the holidays. My rig is 2WD and I intend to stick to paved/well graded roads for the most part. And I will be keeping an eye on the weather forecast each day, natch, and avoiding heavy snow.

That said, what should I have in my winter kit? Sleeping bag, food and water are covered, of course. Other items that I always carry are:
  • weather radio[/*:m:1wy77xqf]
  • jumper cables [/*:m:1wy77xqf]
  • flares [/*:m:1wy77xqf]
  • triangles[/*:m:1wy77xqf]
  • window scraper [/*:m:1wy77xqf]

For winter I'll add:
  • snow chains[/*:m:1wy77xqf]
  • shovel[/*:m:1wy77xqf]
  • grip ramps or sand or kitty litter[/*:m:1wy77xqf]

What else?

Thanks,

GreyDawg
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Old 12-05-2010, 11:23 AM   #2
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Re: Winter kit for 2WD

A way to recharge your cell phone? Not a winter story but I bought car charger for my cell phone and it wasn't till I was on the road, when I needed it, that I found out it wasn't compatible. I thought any 5 volt mini-usb connector would work. Even thought it was the right connector my cell phone didn't like it.
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Old 12-05-2010, 11:35 AM   #3
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Re: Winter kit for 2WD

Yep, that's a year-round item. And I actually have two cellphones -- one on Verizon (mine) and one on AT&T (work), with car chargers for each. It's quite useful at times to have two networks as some places I've been able to get a strong signal on one network and zilch on the other.
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Old 12-05-2010, 11:52 AM   #4
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Re: Winter kit for 2WD

You've got a good start on the van necessities, but don't forget about yourself too. Are you prepared to hike out if needed (not generally a good idea unless the circumstances are really bad)?

Waterproof boots
Waterproof jacket/pants
Extra socks
Thermals
Hat (over the ear)
Sunglasses/goggles
Sunscreen
Small backpack
Portable food/water

For the van, add plenty of reading material, and I'd go for strips of scrap carpet over the ramp/sand/kitty litter. No mess, and they make for a good pad when working on the underside of your van (especially if the ground is muddy).

Oh, and most important, a camera with lots of available memory (you know Bill Wilson will ask for pics).


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Old 12-05-2010, 12:28 PM   #5
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Re: Winter kit for 2WD

Quote:
Originally Posted by BroncoHauler
Oh, and most important, a camera with lots of available memory (you know Bill Wilson will ask for pics).

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Old 12-05-2010, 12:32 PM   #6
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Re: Winter kit for 2WD

Gloves
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Old 12-05-2010, 12:51 PM   #7
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Re: Winter kit for 2WD

Quote:
Originally Posted by billwilson
Quote:
Originally Posted by BroncoHauler
Oh, and most important, a camera with lots of available memory (you know Bill Wilson will ask for pics).

Herb
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Bill Wilson - artistic content admin


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Old 12-05-2010, 01:16 PM   #8
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Re: Winter kit for 2WD

Might want to consider a tarp to put on the ground when putting on the chains, and a "dirty" set of gloves and maybe rain coat. I found that if I have these things I'm more likely to actually use the chains...

May want to practice putting the chains on and off at home to make sure they fit and you know how to do it. Conditions won't be perfect when you need them.

Maybe some spare chain tensioners and repair links for the chains.

Chains work much better on the tires than in the van!
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Old 12-05-2010, 01:58 PM   #9
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Re: Winter kit for 2WD

Thanks, all.

I've got everything on Herb's list in my winter hiking/cross-country skiing duffle, so that's taken care of.

I like the idea of carpet scraps, and I've got quite a few around here from the van remodel, so they go on the list.

Yep, digital camera (in fact, one of my challenges may be to keep it warm enough!). Wouldn't want to make Bill grumpy...

Tarp for wallowing on the ground when putting on chains...good idea, I'll add that. I've got a spare pare of work gloves with the chains. I'll add my old scruffy parka.

On the matter of chains, oddly enough they don't sell chains down here in central Texas -- go figure -- so that will be a purchase as soon as I hit snow country. Alas, my planned route doesn't take me near a Les Schwab. Any recommendations for good chains for a 2WD van?

My trip objective is to hike/photograph Bryce and Zion when they are lightly dusted with snow, not buried!

Thanks!
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Old 12-05-2010, 04:26 PM   #10
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Re: Winter kit for 2WD

In my experience any type of cable chain won't last long on these heavy vehicles. Recommend real chain-type chains, with rubber tensioners.

The chains are made to fit several tire sizes, so there are usually 3 to 6 "extra" links when installed. It makes a tidier installation to cut off some of the extra links. But not too many, because the chains need to be installed loose, driven 50 feet, and tightened.
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