How's it handle in packed snow?

Shdwdrgn

Original poster
Member
Dec 4, 2011
568
My old Jimmy was actually bad about high-centering itself on packed snow, requiring me to dig it out a couple times while sitting on the street. I often attributed this to the fact that the underside was practically smooth due to all the skid plates.

I know our (stock) vehicles don't have quite the same surface are from the skid plates, so how do they handle in deep snow? Any experiences with what you can plow through, and what will get you stuck?

(We are under a Winter storm warning tonight - expecting 6-12 inches of snow by tomorrow, so I figured this would be a good time to ask :biggrin: )
 

barron03

Member
Nov 20, 2011
960
Mine is great in deep snow with my G80 and Blizzak tires.
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
Just supposed to get rainy leftovers from you tomorrow night here.

I'll probably kick myself later for saying this, but I want some snow. Too bad we'll have a green Christmas this year :sadcry:
 

Ghoster

Lifetime VIP Donor
Member
Nov 18, 2011
1,444
Sparky said:
Just supposed to get rainy leftovers from you tomorrow night here.

I'll probably kick myself later for saying this, but I want some snow. Too bad we'll have a green Christmas this year :sadcry:


:iagree: I want some snow.


As for a TB in the snow.... 6 inches won't phase it. 12, you may get stuck in the slippery, but I doubt it. Common sense driving and you shouldn't have any issues. Just like a water crossing, be sure you know how deep it is before you drive in it. If you get ice under the snow, traction will be a bigger problem.:cool:
 

Chickenhawk

Member
Dec 6, 2011
782
Just be aware that the brake rotors will be very wet and stopping distances will be increased considerably for the first stop or two until they dry out. Wet rotors from deep snow are FAR worse than wet rotors from rain.

On the other hand, having four wheel discs mean that water won't get stuck inside the rear brake drums for days after going through 12 inches of snow for two hours straight like the old Blazer. (Ask me how I know.)
 

v7guy

Member
Dec 4, 2011
298
I didn't have many problems in the snow in the NE last year and I was completely stock. The biggest issue was getting hung up on the spare while backing up, but we're talking a couple feet of snow. In 4WD I was able to get through everything. This was also a function of tires as well. This year I'm lifted with some tires that did great last year according to the jeep guys. We'll see how it goes. I hope it goes well since I have a 40 mile drive to work.
 

snowyredenvoy

Member
Dec 5, 2011
52
Chickenhawk said:
Just be aware that the brake rotors will be very wet and stopping distances will be increased considerably for the first stop or two until they dry out. Wet rotors from deep snow are FAR worse than wet rotors from rain.

On the other hand, having four wheel discs mean that water won't get stuck inside the rear brake drums for days after going through 12 inches of snow for two hours straight like the old Blazer. (Ask me how I know.)


How do you know? haha I want to hear this story...:rotfl:
 

Shdwdrgn

Original poster
Member
Dec 4, 2011
568
Well this is by far the worst snow we've had since I got my TB two years ago. We've easily got 8-10 inches on the ground, and its supposed to continue snowing all day. I had no problems plowing through, though. Days like this when I'm out so early, I like to make trails near the shoulders. The plows had made a pass already, but they had managed to leave the outside lanes half covered in snow, forcing most people to drive down the center of the street, so I do my part in helping show people where the road is actually at, and maybe it'll be helpful to someone in a couple hours when the morning traffic starts to roll. Also I like playing in the snow, and this gives me a good feel for how the truck is going to handle when I hit something unexpected.

So... no problems at all driving this morning, and its deep enough that I pretty much packed the underside and wheels full of snow. Definitely had wet brakes, but that's not much concern when you have this much snow on top of a layer of ice. I *know* what my stopping distance is. I'm usually much more worried about the guy trying to stop beside me who has all four wheels locked up and is turning sideways.
 

Fire06

Member
Dec 18, 2011
7,223
Glad the snow adventure went well. We will be green this year so no snow playing yet.
 

Gray Ghost

Member
Dec 4, 2011
8
Shdwdrgn said:
Well this is by far the worst snow we've had since I got my TB two years ago. We've easily got 8-10 inches on the ground, and its supposed to continue snowing all day. I had no problems plowing through, though. Days like this when I'm out so early, I like to make trails near the shoulders. The plows had made a pass already, but they had managed to leave the outside lanes half covered in snow, forcing most people to drive down the center of the street, so I do my part in helping show people where the road is actually at, and maybe it'll be helpful to someone in a couple hours when the morning traffic starts to roll. Also I like playing in the snow, and this gives me a good feel for how the truck is going to handle when I hit something unexpected.

So... no problems at all driving this morning, and its deep enough that I pretty much packed the underside and wheels full of snow. Definitely had wet brakes, but that's not much concern when you have this much snow on top of a layer of ice. I *know* what my stopping distance is. I'm usually much more worried about the guy trying to stop beside me who has all four wheels locked up and is turning sideways.

My kids are going to coming from west Denver today so that was helpful info.

05 Envoy here with firestone transforcers could manage more snow then you would expect!! Always got us there!! Merry Christmas:smile:
 

MichEnvoyGuy

Member
Dec 3, 2011
523
Ok Im going to be the odd one here because I always LOVED the way my 2000 Jimmy handled the snow. It would almost never get stuck, and really impressed my friends a few times in some really deep snow up north. However, my 'Voy gets stuck much easier despite having A/T tires on it. I also had A/T tires on the Jimmy, FWIW.

I suspect the running boards on my 'Voy have something to do with it. :undecided: It seems every time I get the 'Voy stuck, Im shoveling out the running boards because snow gets packed up there and it suspends all 4 wheels off the ground...lol
 

walterc4553

Member
Dec 5, 2011
69
My experience is that we do pretty good in snow bit keep your wits on you.

Two I will share. I have the G80 and stock tires.

On leech lake two years ago there was 12 - 14in. of snow with wind swept drifts being higher. Went out to the ice house on the lake and had to create the road through the new snow. Led the way with a F150 behind me. Had good speed 25 mph or so. Had to break through two drifts that were pretty big. When we got to the fish house we drove around the house in circles to pack the snow down and had no problems getting back out.

Later we went to another fish house and had no room to pack the snow due to all the sleds around. So I had to park on unpacked snow. Was hung up for a second when we tried to leave and the F150 had to give a slight pull to get me started. I was in 4Lo but tires where on the ice because of the fresh snow. I always bring a tow chain, rope and shovel.


The other one was last winter in North Dakota. It was literally a blizzard for 4 days. I-94 from Fargo to Alex was closed for 3 days, open for 8 hours one day then closed for 2 days again. The wind swept snow was over my truck on on side where I was parked next to my inlaws house. My father in law and I used two bobcats to unbury his house, my truck and the road. Before we came home I had to tow out a trailer with a sled that was stuck by his storage shed a way from the house. 10in of snow i would guess but frozen dirt ground. Went in hooked up and pulled right out. Didn't even need to dig out the trailer with the sled.

I am actually suprised on what I can go through with this vehicle if you use the correct mindset.
 

Arock

Member
Dec 8, 2011
22
I've never had an issue in the TB unless it came to a worn set of tires. This morning’s drive was fun! No plows in my neighborhood, until I hit the main drag, 10-12” of fresh stuff on the ground. Heck, I was having a good time. I wish I would have had the day off so I could have played in it. And, I pulled another car out before heading to work, guess I got one last chance to be good before Santa comes. :biggrin:
 

Shdwdrgn

Original poster
Member
Dec 4, 2011
568
MichEnvoyGuy said:
Ok Im going to be the odd one here because I always LOVED the way my 2000 Jimmy handled the snow. It would almost never get stuck, and really impressed my friends a few times in some really deep snow up north. However, my 'Voy gets stuck much easier despite having A/T tires on it. I also had A/T tires on the Jimmy, FWIW.

I suspect the running boards on my 'Voy have something to do with it. :undecided: It seems every time I get the 'Voy stuck, Im shoveling out the running boards because snow gets packed up there and it suspends all 4 wheels off the ground...lol

My Jimmy was a 1983, so they had a number of years to change things between our models. Mine did pretty good for the most part, the only time I got stuck was when I was using it as a ram to blast through deep snow in front of someone's house to clear parking spaces for them.

I took my running boards off the first week I had my TB. My ex had a Dodge Durango for a few years, and I always hated the running boards on that thing. I've got some decent tires this year, plus I have a tow strap and a ring for my hitch in case I have a chance to help someone out. I ran across someone stuck this morning (slid into the fresh snow on the shoulder and got high-centered), but she had no place for me to tie off to, so I ended up just digging her out and pushing by hand. Some day I'll get to use the tow strap...
 

Shdwdrgn

Original poster
Member
Dec 4, 2011
568
OK, now I'm even more impressed... In my sleep-deprived state this morning, I failed to realize that I had only switched to A4WD, rather than 4HI. I did feel the bump of the 4WD engaging a couple times, but it never really soaked in until I was switching to 4LO to pack down the snow in front of my driveway this afternoon.
 

UncleMoney

Member
Dec 5, 2011
20
I just made a 1700 mile trip and the first 1/3 or 1/4 of my trip was through Colorado and Kansas were the roads were heavily snow covered! My 03 lifted envoy with bigger all terrain tires performed great and I had no slippage or clearance issues! I'm very happy with its snow performance!
 

plaen

Member
Dec 4, 2011
55
Shdwdrgn said:
My old Jimmy was actually bad about high-centering itself on packed snow, requiring me to dig it out a couple times while sitting on the street. I often attributed this to the fact that the underside was practically smooth due to all the skid plates.

I know our (stock) vehicles don't have quite the same surface are from the skid plates, so how do they handle in deep snow? Any experiences with what you can plow through, and what will get you stuck?

(We are under a Winter storm warning tonight - expecting 6-12 inches of snow by tomorrow, so I figured this would be a good time to ask :biggrin: )

I've been through 12 ish inches and not had a problem In my stock 07, drove 30 miles through the 10 inches we have down here, what's it look like in longmont?

I'll be out having fun later tonight when all the other people get off the roads, so I can try to get the lifted one some use, and maybe stuck. Lol :wootwoot:
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
I seem to do well even without using 4x4.

These trucks are surprisingly balanced if they do slide though. I spent a whole winter with no swaybars and was never worried.
 

gmcman

Member
Dec 12, 2011
4,658
barron03 said:
Mine is great in deep snow with my G80 and Blizzak tires.

+1

If you think these are good in snow without dedicated snow tires.....put on a pair of Blizzaks and try to wipe the grin off.

What probably the greatest attribute is with these tires is the braking ability. Hard packed snow, practically ice, and it will stop unbelieveably fast. This is what changes the game when the cars in front start to pile up and slide everywhere.
 

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