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Old 01-05-2011, 07:51 PM
 
Location: Mississippi
3 posts, read 5,588 times
Reputation: 10

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Howdy Folks,
Well I'm from Mississippi headed to Wamsutter to work in the oilfields on 1/10/2011. Yes I asked to transfer there from the Gulf Of Mexico after 30 yrs. As I have never been out of the South what can one expect there? I have been reading the forums and haven't got scared away yet. Neither am I naive enough to know I won't have a learning / living curve to go through. I am not moving just working a rotation. The only instructions I got were go to Wamsutter and check in at the office. How are driving conditions at this time of year being I will have to drive from Rock Springs. Any pointers on what I'll need to carry in 4 x 4 like survival items, just in case? I have arctic gear to keep with me and i am also well versed in outdoor survival. Any pointers anyone can give a newbie it would be appreciated. The best advise I have found is from the people who have lived it. As I am not very experienced at driving in snow / icy conditions I sure would appreciate help here. I know drive slow which I usually do, I don't believe getting anywhere 10 minutes faster is the way to go. Hope to hear from someone soon. Cheers & happy New Year. Oh yea almost forgot, get ready for the most snow less season you ever had. I seem to drive it away - LOL
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Old 01-05-2011, 08:31 PM
 
Location: Spots Wyoming
18,696 posts, read 38,025,912 times
Reputation: 2147483647
You need a Wal-Mart, K-Mart, or any large shopping area that closes at night. You need a country road (close to town) with curves, steep ditches and 2 locals with a chain. Then....

Go to the local large parking area and practice. Put the pedal down and practice steering into the turn. Practice braking. Practice taking off. Remember that 4 wheel drive helps take off, helps go up hills, but does not do a thing for stopping. Brakes are brakes. All vehicles are 4 wheel brakes.

Then head out to the county road and head into and hopefully, out of drifts. Stop in them. Approach slow, then fast.

Practice practice practice is what it takes to drive on snow and ice, navigate drifts, and be able to call two friends with a pickup and a chain to pull you out when you misjudge. hahaha

I'm serious. When I was 9 or 10 my dad used to let me drive out into the field. Then he'd run the gas pedal and make me steer. Didn't take long before I could keep it going straight. Then he'd make me run a particular speed and when he said stop I had to stop or run through the fence. I'll tell you, I fixed a lot of fence before I figured things out. But I did figure things out.

You need two things. You need to know your capabilities and you need to know the vehicles capabilities. If you can get a good hang of those two, you'll do just fine.

Take a look at the weather alerts thread. I just posted about getting text messages about highway conditions. Take a look at that and if you can't find it, let me know.

Welcome to Wyoming.
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Old 01-05-2011, 08:57 PM
 
Location: Mississippi
3 posts, read 5,588 times
Reputation: 10
Thanks ElkHunter, I know I have a lot to learn. Maybe I won't tear up to much before I do. I don't plan on getting out to much but not quiet sure of living arrangements they have set up there. If I can get from the airport to location safely then I'll be happy. I will check out your weather alert post and again thanks.
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:25 PM
 
Location: Spots Wyoming
18,696 posts, read 38,025,912 times
Reputation: 2147483647
I haven't lived where you have, however, I've done projects and lived in Pee Cola', Charleston, Norfolk, Dallas, Grand Prairie, etc. Each of those area's, snow was a foreign word. To us up here, it's kinda normal.

Some people look outside and at the thermometer and say brrrrr and bundle up and go back to bed. I look at a thermometer and determine how many layers I'm going to put on today. Cold should not deter you. Neither should the wind. They are part of living up here. You don't have to be cold, you just need to dress right. You will learn. Layers layers layers. I've went outside in 5 hoodies, insulated Carhart bibs, bluejeans and denim shirt over long johns. Gloves and hat top off my New York onsomble. hahahaha I've had my hands get cold, I've had my feet get cold, that's it. Both can be remidied with prior planning. Learn to dress in layers, even your hands and feet.

We have a list of "Must need" articles in your vehilce. It's a little overboard as far as I'm concerned, but the great people of Wyoming ganged together and put together the list of what you should have while traveling. Remember, this is a list of everything you might need, not necessarily what you will really need. But then again, you get caught in the middle of nowhere and you'll wish you had everything on the list and more.

Parka
atlas
basic first aid kit
bic lighter
Blankets
Breakfast bars
Candles 6-8
Chain or Strap
Chains or Cables
duck tape, neon orange
Empty Cups
Energy Bars
extra socks
flairs
Flashlights
Fuel
GPS
gun
hand/foot warmers
Ice Scraper
Insulated Bibs/coveralls
Jumper Cables
Leather gloves with liners
Matches, waterproof
Paper Towels
reading books
Relfective Triangles
Road Flares
Sand/kitty litter
Shovel
Snow brush
Toilet Paper
Watch caps or Balaclava
weather radio/cb handheld
whistle
Yellow Rotating Light
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:33 PM
 
Location: North Dakota
8,442 posts, read 10,168,291 times
Reputation: 12844
If you are living in Rock Springs be sure to take things in the car with you like a sleeping bag, blankets, water, non-perishable food, and a small shovel. Interstate 80 is closed frequently in the winter and it is a $750 fine if you go past the gate. When driving, be aware of black ice that you can't see. Also we get frequent ground blizzards where the snow blows across the road and can hamper visibility. Be aware that this will cause a sheet of ice on the pavement as well. Call 511 before you go out and check out the site: WYDOT Travel Information Service (Laramie). If you are here during the summer keep in mind we get the other extreme here!
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Old 01-05-2011, 10:43 PM
 
Location: Wyoming
9,729 posts, read 18,560,589 times
Reputation: 14670
I don't have one in my current car or truck, but I used to have a remote temperature gauge -- the kind that sets in your dash but gives you the outside temperature. That was a very good warning for ice formation on the roads. Slamming on your brakes tells you right away if the road is slick, but by then you might be "cutting donuts" down the road.

EH, I like your stories about driving in the snowy fields as a kid. I did the same thing, and I took my kids to the high school's over-run parking lot to practice. It was sloped and paved and didn't have any curbs to slam into. It was just a couple blocks from our house so was very convenient.

And when I was a kid we'd load up a couple chained-up cars with guys and grain shovels -- usually 6 guys and 6 shovels per car. We'd head for the country and bust snow drifts. We'd get so much snow packed under the hoods that when you opened them you couldn't see the engine! What fun we had!!

2Canoes
I live in the opposite end of the state but used to travel through Wamsutter a few times each winter enroute to Steamboat Springs for skiing. I always felt like it was pretty much at the end of the Earth. But it is close to Steamboat, which is one of the finest ski mountains anywhere. It's also a pretty nice summer resort for golf, hiking, biking, etc., etc. Be sure to check it out, both in the summer and winter. I interviewed for a job there once but didn't get it. I shoulda got it, hoped to get it, but only got a "thanks anyway".
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Old 01-06-2011, 07:45 AM
 
Location: SE Wyoming
24 posts, read 49,847 times
Reputation: 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by WyoNewk View Post
EH, I like your stories about driving in the snowy fields as a kid. I did the same thing, and I took my kids to the high school's over-run parking lot to practice. It was sloped and paved and didn't have any curbs to slam into. It was just a couple blocks from our house so was very convenient.
That must be an official midwest/snowy area trend to take your kids out and make them purposely drive on ice and snow in a big parking lot. Mine was the big school parking lot that was iced over. When I was a couple years out of high school I took my roomate to the interstate rest area which has very few things to hit and a big area and taught her how to drive a stick shift. After about a 1/2 hour of that she got the hang of it and we started to head out to the road for her to drive back to town. Unfortunately a police vehicle had seen us driving erratically (remember first driving a stick shift?) and was waiting for us to pull out onto the road so he could pull us over. She was nervous and peeled out in front of him when trying not to stall the car. After the officer ensured that we were not drunk or taking drugs we were finally on our way!! (no ticket, just some head scratching)
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Old 01-06-2011, 05:57 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
16,780 posts, read 43,326,415 times
Reputation: 9357
Vehicles in 4WD at 50+MPH behave drastically different then they normally will in 2WD. Take it easy, if you don't feel safe traveling at 50MPH in 2wd you probably shouldn't be trying it in 4WD either.

I remember spinning around 270 degrees once when I tried doing this in a new 3/4 ton 4WD GMC truck that I had bought. Even after a lifetime of driving on icy roads in Wyoming I was surprised when it suddenly got out of control, and steering into the slide did not help, seemed to make it worse.
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Old 01-06-2011, 06:40 PM
 
Location: Spots Wyoming
18,696 posts, read 38,025,912 times
Reputation: 2147483647
Quote:
Originally Posted by CptnRn View Post
Vehicles in 4WD at 50+MPH behave drastically different then they normally will in 2WD. Take it easy, if you don't feel safe traveling at 50MPH in 2wd you probably shouldn't be trying it in 4WD either.

I remember spinning around 270 degrees once when I tried doing this in a new 3/4 ton 4WD GMC truck that I had bought. Even after a lifetime of driving on icy roads in Wyoming I was surprised when it suddenly got out of control, and steering into the slide did not help, seemed to make it worse.
I know what you mean. My truck is posi track (NOT limited slip) front and back. It's a whole new rodeo on the road.

That's why I travel in 2 wheel drive only. I use 4 wheel drive to get out of trouble or for short durations of going up a drastic hill. The rest of the time, it's 2 wheel drive. I leave the hubs locked in, and just switch the transfer case back and forth when needed.
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Old 01-06-2011, 08:34 PM
 
Location: Mississippi
3 posts, read 5,588 times
Reputation: 10
It looks like I'll get a crash course Monday. I will have a rental 4 x 4 but won't have time to practice.. I arrive in Rock Springs 2:30 pm and have to drive the 60 miles to the office in Wamsutter. I'll be the slow poke on the road until I can get time to find a crash free area to practice. I will be able to carry a few survival items like food ,water, lighter, etc but will have to upgrade once settled. It will be an adventure for sure but looking foreward to it. what do people do when the interstate is closed.? Grab a hotel and wait it out?
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