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post #1 of 17 Old 02-05-2015, 01:14 PM Thread Starter
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SNOW , ICE & HILLS

So. I have to go up a friend's interesting steep driveway - Gravel. About 1000 foot long.
It is steep enough that a normal front wheel drive vehicle has trouble coming up either without momentum or without technique even in the summer.



Apply winter snow and at times winter ice (rains + freezing overnight temps)

So - what you have is a layer or frozen slab of ice with a foot of snow on top.

I just wanted to share my experiences with it.

Any one of my friends with KM2 mud terrains simply doesnt make it past the first 10-15 feet. They just slide back down. Lockers or not. Same deal.

A snow plow with chains slides back down. The steepness doesn't really allow the chains to be effective.



So effectively this is what i have resorted to :

- with just ice and no/little snow, i drive up with 1 wheel in the drainage ditch + lockers. It manages to crawl up in 4 lo.

- with ice + lots of snow (1 foot plus) - that technique no longer works. I slide back. The drainage ditch now also allows almost no traction.



Tomorrow i am going to attempt reducing pressure in all 4 tires to 18 psi and go up on "tracks".

I have chains but wont put them on given the snow plow experience.
I have studded tires as spares but wont put them on given the snow plow experience.

Will report back on findings ...

Question : without beadlocks, how low can i go on tire psi on 37" ATs before i am risking coming off the rim ?

2007 JK 2DR 6 Spd RUBICON - Silver.

New York, NY
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post #2 of 17 Old 02-05-2015, 01:30 PM
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Some wheels will hold a bead better than others. I wouldn't hesitate to go down to about 8 psi and you may even be able to go lower depending on the wheels. Not sure what a/t tires you're running but sidewall flex will also factor into the equation.

Oh... I seriously want to see this driveway and better yet- video!

Good luck.

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post #3 of 17 Old 02-05-2015, 01:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StubEXrube View Post
Oh... I seriously want to see this driveway and better yet- video!

Good luck.
Ditto!

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post #4 of 17 Old 02-05-2015, 01:43 PM
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This is a pretty common scenario here in the mountains of western Montana. People with steep icy driveway usually keep a barrel of sand at both the bottom and top. When it gets too icy, simply go to the barrel and throw down some grit.

If you're just playing, diamond tread chains, studded tires or aired-down snow-rated tires are your best bets, but there is a point where steep and slick is just plain dangerous, especially if you hit it hard with lots of momentum and don't make it. A runaway Jeep sliding out-of-control back down an icy slope can really bring the pain.

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Now back to a 2013 JKU Rubicon with "stuff", planning 37's with minimal lift.

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post #5 of 17 Old 02-05-2015, 02:07 PM
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Quote:
A runaway Jeep sliding out-of-control back down an icy slope can really bring the pain.
true words to consider right there. this past hunting season I slid across a snow/ice covered grassy field in my jeep roughly 250 feet. talk about putting the fear of god in you...complete and utter lack of control. should have known better and just walked to my hunting spot, but as soon as turned into the field it was game on gravity. in the pic you can see the top of the field and my jeep in the brush. what you don't see is a large drop off about 25' in front of my jeep. whatever you do be careful


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post #6 of 17 Old 02-05-2015, 02:28 PM
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Are there any intermittent winch points along this steep 1,000-ft long driveway? If so, winch yourself along, then before releasing the winch, tie yourself with a recovery strap to the winch point, release the winch and move to another winch point. Repeat until you've cleared the driveway.

Be safe (and warm).

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1985 CJ-7, 4-speed, 258 I-6, 3" Springs, 33" BFG AT, Gunmental Gray
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post #7 of 17 Old 02-05-2015, 05:48 PM Thread Starter
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So the drainage ditch acts like a slot. If I do slip I stay in the slot. That being said, it's a 16 degree slope so sliding even in the slot won't be too much fun.

There are trees I could use to winch up but they're offset to te right by 10-15 feet. With a 125 foot winch line I am thinking to winch up 50 feet before the line angle is too steep. Then strap release repeat.

I'll dig up some pix.

Oh I started using the ditch cuz 2 yrs ago I didn't and went for a ride already. Went off the right side of the road 20 feet down into a tree. Then drove down through trees down the mountain to the road below. I thought jeep was done. Only damaged my hard top by laying into a tree.

So the drainage ditch is salvation..

Btw the property sits at 700 feet. The base of the driveway is 500 feet. Just to give some perspective ..
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post #8 of 17 Old 02-05-2015, 07:48 PM
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The limit of how low you can drop the air pressure depends on the specific tire, its size and the rim width as well as the terrains. Rocks pushing the sidewalls sideways also make a big difference. The other factor is you are talking about snow so the tire is colder and stiffer.

18 PSI is not really risky in most cases. Things usually start getting interesting below 10-12 PSI. The taller sidewalls on your 37s will help the tire flex instead of breaking a bead loose.

Good luck on your climb. Often you don't get to prepare in advance for this stuff.
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post #9 of 17 Old 02-06-2015, 07:38 AM
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I think your best bet is winter tires.

My MTR's are crap on slippery roads. I tried running them for a season but after a week I installed Yokohama Geolandars and the difference is night and day.
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post #10 of 17 Old 02-06-2015, 01:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mtljeep View Post
I think your best bet is winter tires.

My MTR's are crap on slippery roads. I tried running them for a season but after a week I installed Yokohama Geolandars and the difference is night and day.
Agreed
I have family with a steep gravel drive thats pretty windy (think rollercoaster) and last winter was a PAIN

Ended up having to heavily salt and shovel their driveway and it was only a temp fix.

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post #11 of 17 Old 02-06-2015, 05:07 PM
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find different friends.
i live on a fairly steep dirt road, some ice on that and its really bad, few weeks ago i slid down it in my work truck (18,000lb F650 rollback tow truck) with absolutly no control, only thing that saved me was loose gravel at the bottom that was on the side of the road.

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post #12 of 17 Old 02-06-2015, 11:56 PM
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Run 5lbs. We do that in snow in bc all the time. I don't have bead locks.
Rocks I go 12lbs. Just don't find much benefit to go lower and in rocks your risk running off the bead more so more air is better vs 5lbs psi IMO.

Tires make all the difference. I have run many. Goodyear MTR with kevlar are good in deep snow and cold conditions. As temps warm up and the snow gets slushy there are much better tires out there. Like INTERCO SUPER SWAMPER IROKS. I have run many tires - goodyear ats, GY mtr (before kevlar version), BFG km2, GY mtr with kevlar, and now SS irok. I may run the GY mtr with kevlar again for summer and may go to a different tire for winter and studded.

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post #13 of 17 Old 02-07-2015, 05:05 AM
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I agree.

In deep snow, aired down, the MTR's rock. However, your chances of getting to trail are slim to none because you'll be sliding all over the place on the road.

Studded winter tires work great around here as well.
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post #14 of 17 Old 02-07-2015, 02:07 PM
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Question

So here's my question...If this is a friends place, what does he/she drive everyday to and from the house? Helicopter? Serious, what vehicle is used to go back and forth during normal days of the year?

~Ed~
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post #15 of 17 Old 02-09-2015, 07:38 AM
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After going from stock Rubicon tires to Duratracs this year it is an amazing difference. At some point I will probably get some studded Duratracs just for when its really icy.
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post #16 of 17 Old 02-09-2015, 03:42 PM Thread Starter
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so - i'll post video in a couple hours.

Attempt 1 :

Lowered tire pressure to 15 PSI. Running BFGoodrich 37" ATs on AEV wheels.
Result : Jeep went up about 15-20 feet but got bogged down (ice underneath snow). Started slipping.

Attempt 2 : Threw the winch line on a pole. After 15 feet the line angle was too sheer. Plus jeep got pulled into deeper snow in side of ditch.

Gave up on winch idea. Backed down the driveway.

Attempt 3 : Put on chains on back tires.

Jeep pretty much clawed up the driveway on chains. Got stuck a couple of times but backed up 5 - 6 feet and powered through some snow drifts.

So - conclusion : with ice underneath, chains worked with a foot of snow on top. With no ice underneath, the 12-15 PSI should have worked ....


Did 4-5 trips up and down that driveway using chains.

2007 JK 2DR 6 Spd RUBICON - Silver.

New York, NY
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post #17 of 17 Old 02-09-2015, 05:54 PM
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I'd find a new friend with a flat driveway.

2018 JL Rubicon Unlimited, 6-speed, White
1985 CJ-7, 4-speed, 258 I-6, 3" Springs, 33" BFG AT, Gunmental Gray
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