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Old 08-17-2011, 03:27 PM
 
216 posts, read 478,556 times
Reputation: 182

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I've done lots of searching and read lots of posts here. The majority of them seem to say things like "Well, take Rt 10 for the least chance of snow, 40 for a better chance, and 70 if you want to get stranded somewhere." And that's great information, but I'm hoping for something a little more specific.

I've got a 2007 Saturn Sky. It's a little lightweight RWD sportscar. It is not a snow car, and can't get itself out of situations very easily. A few months ago, at the tail end of this past Winter, I ended up stuck in a hotel's parking lot because they had an incline at the exit, and the snow on the ground meant I couldn't get out. I know how to *drive* in the snow, and I've done a lot of snowy driving, but since it doesn't weigh much and it's RWD... well, situations happen.

I'm going from Virginia Beach to Las Vegas, starting Jan 2 and ending Jan 9. In other words, Winter. Here's the path that Google gives us:



I'm thinking that, based on research, this might be a Very Bad Idea.

Here's our ideal path, because we know people at each stopping point we can stay with / visit:



And finally, here's one that keeps us as far South as possible:



We'd prefer the center option, but aren't averse to the last one. The first would save us about 600 miles, but if it's potentially dangerous driving for an RWD, I don't really want to chance it.

Any opinions?
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Old 08-17-2011, 04:11 PM
 
Location: Moscow
2,080 posts, read 3,065,930 times
Reputation: 2564
I grew up in Montana. Drove under all kinds of conditions with a rear wheel drive car. I don't see alot to worry about.

My advice:
Put 100lbs extra weight in the back. Carry some sand and a shovel to put under your wheels if you have a problem. Be prepared to go slowly. Take your preferred route.

If you are really worried buy some snow tires.
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Old 08-17-2011, 04:31 PM
 
Location: MMU->ABE->ATL->ASH
9,126 posts, read 17,137,876 times
Reputation: 9980
Option B looks, good, I would just stay in I20 if the weather look bad, in the next day just cut south to I10 at that point.
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Old 08-17-2011, 05:01 PM
 
216 posts, read 478,556 times
Reputation: 182
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keim View Post
I grew up in Montana. Drove under all kinds of conditions with a rear wheel drive car. I don't see alot to worry about.

My advice:
Put 100lbs extra weight in the back. Carry some sand and a shovel to put under your wheels if you have a problem. Be prepared to go slowly. Take your preferred route.

If you are really worried buy some snow tires.
Saturn Sky is a 2-seater convertible with no trunk space. We can fit some clothes in there and a gallon or two of water in case of an emergency but that's about all. Carrying a shovel, sand, etc is not an option unfortunately. Heck, I'd be happy if I had a spare tire for the trip, but... nowhere to put one.
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Old 08-17-2011, 05:13 PM
 
Location: Moscow
2,080 posts, read 3,065,930 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeromus-X View Post
Saturn Sky is a 2-seater convertible with no trunk space. We can fit some clothes in there and a gallon or two of water in case of an emergency but that's about all. Carrying a shovel, sand, etc is not an option unfortunately. Heck, I'd be happy if I had a spare tire for the trip, but... nowhere to put one.
Gotcha. Think about getting a pair of chains. They don't take much space at all. Some stores will let you return them at the end of the season if unused.
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Old 08-17-2011, 06:29 PM
 
Location: Prescott Valley,az summer/east valley Az winter
2,042 posts, read 3,627,724 times
Reputation: 7884
I really see now huge problem with any of the routes posted~ would probably plan on option 2 as you wish to do some visiting while you drive. Its kind of early to check the weathercast this far in advance~ if it were I I would leave third option open to weather conditions at last moment but plan on option 2. My traveling always allows for last minute changes!
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Old 08-17-2011, 09:09 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 74,251,141 times
Reputation: 36087
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keim View Post

My advice:
Put 100lbs extra weight in the back.
.
Instead of carrying 100 pounds of sand across the country, just find a bystander to sit on the rear deck if you get stuck. Then drive away and leave the 100-pound bystander there.
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Old 08-17-2011, 09:20 PM
 
Location: FLG/PHX/MKE
7,288 posts, read 13,498,100 times
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Take your preferred plan, Option B. You will probably be fine, but as already recommended, watch that weather VERY closely. The issue is the high desert. We get some storms that are *bad*. But, they are generally predicted storms, so if you have a little flexibility, you could go option B to option C pretty quickly. The Vegas to Phoenix route will keep you a little lower and usually, away from the nasty stuff.
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Old 08-17-2011, 09:22 PM
 
Location: Moscow
2,080 posts, read 3,065,930 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
Instead of carrying 100 pounds of sand across the country, just find a bystander to sit on the rear deck if you get stuck. Then drive away and leave the 100-pound bystander there.
That pre-supposes people being around. Not always guaranteed in some of the more remote areas during a snowstorm.

Additionally, the sand doubles as traction for the wheels if they are slipping. Moot point, however, as the OP doesn't have trunk space.
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Old 08-18-2011, 07:20 AM
 
3,161 posts, read 8,095,036 times
Reputation: 2385
Two words: snow tires.

I would never, ever drive a rear wheel car in snow without them. This is coming from a person who grew up in snowy climates and is currently living in one. Snow tires will ensure you aren't stranded on a highway if a few un-plowed inches fall. Weather predictions are just that-predictions. Especially with snow fall, they never seem to get it right in my neck of the woods and I certainly wouldn't plan a road trip in winter, with a car that isn't good in the snow, all based on a weather forecast. I would be very leery driving without them if I were you.
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