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Old 08-26-2002, 07:15 AM   #1 (permalink)
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TOTW: Winter wheeling

Welcome to the next installment of the

Topic of the Week

Summer is coming to an end. Fall will be upon us soon and Old Man Winter is just around the corner.

Are you gonna put the rig into cold storage for 3-5 months? Or or you gonna wheel?

Put your mittens and ear muffs on and let's talk about winter wheeling.

Safety
Flotation vs digging to the bottom?
Snow recovery/extraction techniques
Not falling through frozen lakes

You know the routine.
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Old 08-26-2002, 07:40 AM   #2 (permalink)
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1) don't go by yourself
2) go prepaired to stay the night even if it is supposed to be a short day run
3) have a way to rebead a tire if it comes off because they do quite often snow wheeling
4) with those covered have a good time
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Old 08-26-2002, 08:06 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Make sure you take along a teenager or two to climb up the trees with the wench line. I used to hate being said teenager!
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Old 08-26-2002, 08:43 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Regarding flotation. The picture Dean posted was from a day of 3+ feet of fresh snow while we were there. We shoulda gone skiing... Dean was running 14.5" tires and I was running 12.5s. We both got through just about everything, but when climbing something steep Dean could get a little further. My 12.5" tires would just dig to the icy granite and spin.

And another - dress for the occasion.

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Old 08-26-2002, 08:44 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I wheel more in the winter than the summer. Heat sucks

These are a few years old
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Old 08-26-2002, 01:43 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'm no pro, but I have found that All-Terrains or even street-type truck tires (Wrangler GSAs and the like) typically do better than digging tires (boggers, swampers, claws) on snow runs because of the flotation factor. If you know the snow is gonna be shallower than your axles then go for digging, but it gets hard to plow a path when the snow is 3' deep. ATs and street tires also generally do better on ice due to their siping, but you could always sipe your mud tires.

Wheel spin is generally the enemy, once a tire starts spinning it starts digging. Once you stop forward progress don't punch it, just stop, roll back a foot, and then try to rebuild your momentum again without spinning tires. Sometimes you may need wheelspin and a lot of momentum to make an icy climb, but I'll generally try the no wheelspin method first.

Next, for hill descents: stay off the brakes!! Try using engine compression (although not too much cause it can also lock em up) and lightly pumping the breaks so that you can do some steering correction.

If you slide off the trail, try snatch blocking to a tree a little ahead of where you are on the side of the trail you want to get back to. Hook the winch cable to your rear bumper, but make sure it isn't hitting your tires. Start driving forward and winching and you should be able to get yourself back on the trail.

I like wearing multiple layers. Start with my long johns, followed by waffle shirt and a thick cotton shirt, and a pair of jeans. I wear some cold weather thorlo socks (wool works well, too) in my hiking boots and then top it off with my ski pants and jacket with a pair of gortex gloves, scarf, and hat. This is good because if I get warm I can start taking off layers, and it is also still possible to move. (Unlike the kid in the christmas story )

I usually pack extra clothes to change into if I do get some of them wet (at least socks, gloves, and hat, usually jeans and shirt). We usually pack extra blankets and food over what we have for summer trips.
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Old 08-26-2002, 01:48 PM   #7 (permalink)
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in south Louisiana we see MAYBE(<--stressed) 4 inches of snow in a century, we dont have the pleasure of wheeling in snow but it can get colder than a witch's titty, always bring thermal under-wear!!!
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Old 08-26-2002, 02:35 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Bigger, wider, softer tires are needed. the wider the better. You don't need much flex in the winter for the most part since the trails you are running will most likely look like a highway in the summer.... The lighter the Jeep the better.

As for the guy who suggested wearing cotton. You Dipshit. your gonna freeze your ass off if you end up having to rely on that system for ALL your insulation.

Your layers should be like this. NO COTTON (this includes your briefs) silk or synthetic silk for the first layer. Light polypro for the second. Gortex or other wind rain blocker. That is all you need for 90% of the time. This is all I wear and trust me it is longer, deeper and colder here than were you are in the lower 48.

For additional body layers I carry a Goosedown vest and a long sleeve Polarfleece Jacket and Pants.

Smartwool are the sock's of choice. They come in different thickness to deal with different circulation abilities.

Boots should have 400 grams of Thinsulate in them at least (mine have 800). A FULL gortex liner. Vibram or Airbob sole (I like the Vibram since it seems to grip in the slush better). Whatever outershell you want but I like leather.

Where a stocking cap. duh.

Gloves, Gortex, qualofill. Mittens are better.

Take and eat, Powerbars or the like. It goes without saying while driving but drinking alchohol will lower your body temp and should be saved for when your standing by the bonfire at night (I personally like BUtterscotch Snaaps in the winter).

Now onto the vehicle.

Antifreeze. Use it and make sure it is correct.

Basic upkeep should suffice but foreseeing a problem and fixing it early could save you some cold fingers.

Vehicle recovery. WINCH. You will need and use it A LOT. Be careful winching to smaller trees as they can actually get really brittle and break a lot easier than one would think.

Don't go alone.

Bring snowshoes incase you have to walk out.

Bring some nice dry wood to start a fire.

Bring enough food and sleeping bags for everyone in your vehicle. Food should last you 3-4 days worth (one MRE a day is just barely enough food, I just take a case of them and call it good).

Pot to melt snow in and make water.

Flare's you can start just about anything on fire with a flare.

That should get you all going. Most importantly is to not go alone and to HAVE FUN! WInter is 9 months long up here so think of me!
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Old 08-26-2002, 03:33 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Old 08-26-2002, 04:58 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by 66CJdean
[2) go prepaired to stay the night even if it is supposed to be a short day run
Probably the most important one if you ask me! With dont go by yourself a close if not TIED second
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Old 08-26-2002, 10:47 PM   #11 (permalink)
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we dont see much snow in OKLA but when we do it only lasts about a week at the most. most wheeling i do is pulling people out of ditches.

i think Alaska ZJ has good advise (hell he lives in alaska) i would proly do every thing he said except i always under dress like a dumbass...even hunting i am always ass cold.

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Old 08-27-2002, 08:56 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Alaska ZJ

As for the guy who suggested wearing cotton. You Dipshit. your gonna freeze your ass off if you end up having to rely on that system for ALL your insulation.

Sorry you caught me on that one. I forgot to mention that my long johns aren't the k-mart cotton types, but a synth blend that keeps me comfy from about +40 and below. I'd have to look at the label to see what it is but it isn't silk, i've had them for about five years and I'll be bummed if they ever wear out. I picked them up at the sporting goods store in Sweden, and so far my ass hasn't frozen off after three winters an hour south of the circle in Sweden.
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Old 08-27-2002, 11:49 AM   #13 (permalink)
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you mean you can really drive in deep snow?
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Old 08-27-2002, 12:00 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
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you mean you can really drive in deep snow?
We can....You cant
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Old 08-27-2002, 01:36 PM   #15 (permalink)
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OMFG you clown.
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Old 08-27-2002, 01:41 PM   #16 (permalink)
 
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Damm that's gonna leave a mark
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Old 08-27-2002, 08:47 PM   #17 (permalink)
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What about the river crossings the only thing I know is to go slow or else it builds waves under the top ice under and in front of you which when they hit the shore can damage the top ice from the impact and down you go. Why not just wear snowboarding bibs thats what I use. I found a pair at costco for $25. Plus we all know cold hands can't work on a broken rig much less undo a zipper. Latex gloves will do in a pinch
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Old 08-28-2002, 08:44 AM   #18 (permalink)
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What about the river crossings the only thing I know is to go slow or else it builds waves under the top ice under and in front of you which when they hit the shore can damage the top ice from the impact and down you go. Why not just were snowboarding bibs thats what I use. I found a pair at costco for $25. Plus we all know cold hands can't work on a broken rig much less undo a zipper.
The greater risk is to those behind you. Driving on ice can create pressure waves in the ice itself, and if the guys behind you hit a crest with their tires, it can send them into the water. This is why you don't follow close when driving on a lake. (It's an icefishing thing)
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Old 08-28-2002, 12:38 PM   #19 (permalink)
 
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Tell the truth you guys saw this on the discovery channel special about Alaska ice Truckers right?
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Old 08-28-2002, 08:04 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Tell the truth you guys saw this on the discovery channel special about Alaska ice Truckers right?
Uh, no - 32 years of living in MN and you learn a lot about ice
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Old 08-28-2002, 11:06 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Damn it Brentt! I was going to make a nice informed post here since I have lived in AK my whole short life, but you pretty much killed the thread. I don't have much to add other than a person might think about carrying a small plastic sled for dragging their gear out on. Much easier than carrying it, and it only weighs a pound or less, so you don't really have an excuse not to carry one.

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Old 08-29-2002, 05:05 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Bring kitty litter

KITTY LITTER! Throw it under your tires if you get stuck!

Well, I guess that's probably not the best tip for wheeling, but it works well on a car if you just need that little bit extra to get moving again. Ashes work too, but not as well... Or floor mats.
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Old 08-29-2002, 07:10 AM   #23 (permalink)
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All this talk about snow.
Down here the only snow we get is imported.
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Old 08-29-2002, 07:58 AM   #24 (permalink)
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as far as driving on a frozen lake, I personally wouldn't do it with my jeep unless I saw someone do it with a comprably heavy veichle, but having said that up in ny where I go snowmobiling, when the lakes freeze the forrest rangers check thickness and if it's thick enough, they divert the roads across the lakes. So, having said all that I would just use extreme caution when going over ice, I've seen too many snowmobiles, which are less than half the weight of a jeep end up on the bottom of the lakes. Ohh yeah, and as stated above, take double the supplies you'll think you need cause freezing to death ain't a fun.
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Old 08-29-2002, 09:01 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Quote:
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in south Louisiana we see MAYBE(<--stressed) 4 inches of snow in a century, we dont have the pleasure of wheeling in snow but it can get colder than a witch's titty, always bring thermal under-wear!!!
Colder than a witch's titty in south Louisiana???

When winter hits I always throw in a "kit" of disposable handwarmers, blanket, flares, dehydrated food and a flask of JD.
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