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Old 11-17-2011, 11:14 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 74,305,504 times
Reputation: 36087

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Proper snow tires (not all-season) are mandatory on all four wheels in Quebec during the winter months, but the law is not enforced on cars with US plates.

Most tires nowadays are all-season. Look on the sidewalls for the designation "M+S", which means it has a tread design providing fairly decent traction in moderate snow. Don't try to drive in any snow without M+S tires. Nothing will help on ice.

Personally, if it were me, I'd get on I-26 and then I-77 in South Carolina to Wytheville VA, and then I-81 through Harrisburg and Syracuse to Canada. It's about 50 miles longer (1700), but avoids going through the Washington to New York nightmare.

If you run into an actual snowstorm with new accumulation, check into a motel. It'll be clear within 24 hours. You probably do not have any survival gear in your car, so don't take any chances on roads that could leave you stranded. Make sure there is anti-freeze washer fluid in your windshield washers, you'll go through a gallon a day on cold wet interstates. And see that your radiator coolant is safe down to at least 30 below, before you leave. As you go north, buy a snow scraper for your windshield the first time you see one for sale at a gas station, you will need it every morning if you stop overnight.

Having said that, you are traveling fairly early in the winter, and there is a good chance that you'll have summer driving conditions all the way, on bare roads with no precipitation.

As you get closer to Montreal, you'll see Quebec plates flying past at insane speeds in the left lane, even in a blizzard. Do not try to keep up with them, they have a death wish.

Last edited by jtur88; 11-17-2011 at 11:42 PM..
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Old 11-18-2011, 05:03 AM
 
Location: Texas
14,078 posts, read 17,674,292 times
Reputation: 7720
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
Proper snow tires (not all-season) are mandatory on all four wheels in Quebec during the winter months, but the law is not enforced on cars with US plates.

Most tires nowadays are all-season. Look on the sidewalls for the designation "M+S", which means it has a tread design providing fairly decent traction in moderate snow. Don't try to drive in any snow without M+S tires. Nothing will help on ice.

Personally, if it were me, I'd get on I-26 and then I-77 in South Carolina to Wytheville VA, and then I-81 through Harrisburg and Syracuse to Canada. It's about 50 miles longer (1700), but avoids going through the Washington to New York nightmare.

If you run into an actual snowstorm with new accumulation, check into a motel. It'll be clear within 24 hours. You probably do not have any survival gear in your car, so don't take any chances on roads that could leave you stranded. Make sure there is anti-freeze washer fluid in your windshield washers, you'll go through a gallon a day on cold wet interstates. And see that your radiator coolant is safe down to at least 30 below, before you leave. As you go north, buy a snow scraper for your windshield the first time you see one for sale at a gas station, you will need it every morning if you stop overnight.

Having said that, you are traveling fairly early in the winter, and there is a good chance that you'll have summer driving conditions all the way, on bare roads with no precipitation.

As you get closer to Montreal, you'll see Quebec plates flying past at insane speeds in the left lane, even in a blizzard. Do not try to keep up with them, they have a death wish.

An ice scraper is excellent advice. It'll come in handy.

Washer fluid: If it's really cold, you may have trouble keeping the spray jets ice free, but that can be solved by pouring a bottle of rubbing alcohol into the reservoir.

I-77/81: Yes, that route avoids the Megalopolis, but it goes through much higher terrain too, which increases the chance for wintery weather. It's also pretty close to Lake Ontario and it's possible to run into lake effect snows, which can be very, very heavy. The drive from Syracuse to the Thousand Island crossing can be a miserable experience. Moreover, you come out on 401 in Canada a good bit away from Montreal.

So, it's basically a trade-off. To avoid one bad thing, you might run into another.

I-95/287/87: You should know that some of that is toll road, so take some extra cash. You'll pay tolls in Delaware, New Jersey and New York. One thing I forgot to mention is that when you get to Wilmington, DE, don't stay on 95 up through Philadelphia and Trenton. Follow the signs to the NJ Turnpike. You'll rejoin 95 before you get to I-287.
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Old 11-18-2011, 07:17 AM
 
3,161 posts, read 8,099,044 times
Reputation: 2385
Quote:
Originally Posted by burgler09 View Post
Have you ever driven in Miami?
Yes, which is why I found your comment hilarious!
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Old 11-18-2011, 11:08 AM
 
Location: Miami, FL
6 posts, read 14,216 times
Reputation: 15
The advice is extremely helpful, thank you so much! My BF and I will consider the routes suggested carefully and see which one seems the easiest/less dangerous. I have to make sure the tires have the proper marking and have them checked out as well. Thanks!

By the way, jtur88 you mentioned survival gear...what does that entail exactly? In my trunk I have a spare tire and jumper cables. Is there something else I should be keeping in there that is conducive for winter? I will be working in Plattsburgh so will be driving quite a bit, and would like to have anything that may come in handy in severe or winter weather.

Quote:
Originally Posted by burgler09
Have you ever driven in Miami?
Quote:
Originally Posted by mels View Post
Yes, which is why I found your comment hilarious!
Lol, sheesh. Next time I'll say I'm from Tampa
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Old 11-18-2011, 01:22 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 74,305,504 times
Reputation: 36087
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lancered View Post

By the way, jtur88 you mentioned survival gear...what does that entail exactly?
Snow shovel, tow cable, blankets, food, to name a few of the more important ones. Probably not essential if you're just on the Interstate, but people die out there in winter.

http://downloads.newsok.com/knowit/CarChecklist.pdf
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Old 11-20-2011, 09:56 PM
 
Location: Viña del Mar, Chile
16,411 posts, read 26,250,996 times
Reputation: 16497
Quote:
Originally Posted by mels View Post
Yes, which is why I found your comment hilarious!
ohhh i thought you were saying that you didnt agree with the driving in miami part ! hahah
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