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Idiots without / who can't put on chains & think winter tyres will be ok

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
The snowflake button will get me out of here I'm sure, yes its an auto and yes it seems to select 3rd to start off ...



Last edited by Poster: A snowHead on Sat 30-12-17 13:01; edited 1 time in total
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
endoman wrote:
Had an XC90 once, drove it once in the snow here, terrible. 20 years ago Jeep Grand Cherokee with mud and snow tyres coped with a foot of fresh snow on the way to Val D with no bother at all. Now I simply wouldn't go anywhere without winter tyres. Have a rear wheel drive merc, fine in the snow here, have chains for alps, but not needed them yet. May get a chance to try on some fresh stuff tomorrow if the forecast is correct, or may be sensible and walk to dog to the pub instead!


I am very surprised by this. I have had several XC90s and all have been superb in the snow. My guess is you had summer tyres on it, the only reason other than incompetence that I can imagine would lead to this conclusion. Snow is a constant where I live, I am driving on snow for a fair part of the winter each year and I can tell you categorically that an XC90 with winter tyres handles snow and cold better than almost anything else I have driven. I can't count the number of times I have had to rescue neighbours and friends in severe conditions, and mostly they also have winter tyres on their cars. All in all a very strange conclusion that the XC90 is terrible in snow! It is simply not true.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@cameronphillips2000, you haven’t seen the chaos in Chamonix this morning.

Frick, even the chaos in my drive when one of the clients got stuck and the snowploughed landy almost didn’t get him out!
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Almost Japanese snowconditions for the amount. Madeye-Smiley
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.


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@boredsurfin, we had a car with one of those when we went to our place by plane for a short trip as few years ago. We were assured at the airport that there was no snow expected, but the Lauteret was almost closed by the time we got there. I don't think hubby believed me that the snowflake button did anything.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Hells Bells wrote:
@boredsurfin, we had a car with one of those when we went to our place by plane for a short trip as few years ago. We were assured at the airport that there was no snow expected, but the Lauteret was almost closed by the time we got there. I don't think hubby believed me that the snowflake button did anything.

No, no, no, you've misunderstood. The purpose of the snowflake button is to make it snow. If you are in Morzine and it's looking all green and grassy and you want some snow then you push the button.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Guy that owns the bar nearest to us just got his Landcruiser stuck blocking access to his bar! Obviously we rushed to help/laugh/offer advice...then we realised he doesn't even have winter tyres on it! - Well he is from Brittany! snowHead Laughing
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zikomo wrote:
endoman wrote:
Had an XC90 once, drove it once in the snow here, terrible. 20 years ago Jeep Grand Cherokee with mud and snow tyres coped with a foot of fresh snow on the way to Val D with no bother at all. Now I simply wouldn't go anywhere without winter tyres. Have a rear wheel drive merc, fine in the snow here, have chains for alps, but not needed them yet. May get a chance to try on some fresh stuff tomorrow if the forecast is correct, or may be sensible and walk to dog to the pub instead!


I am very surprised by this. I have had several XC90s and all have been superb in the snow. My guess is you had summer tyres on it, the only reason other than incompetence that I can imagine would lead to this conclusion. Snow is a constant where I live, I am driving on snow for a fair part of the winter each year and I can tell you categorically that an XC90 with winter tyres handles snow and cold better than almost anything else I have driven. I can't count the number of times I have had to rescue neighbours and friends in severe conditions, and mostly they also have winter tyres on their cars. All in all a very strange conclusion that the XC90 is terrible in snow! It is simply not true.


Yes it had summer tyres on it. Hence why I now have winter tyres even for UK driving.
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Having seen the 2wd vs4wd vs winter vs summer tyres at the snow dome and from personal experience 2wd and winter tyres easily beats 4wd and summers
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
[quote="cameronphillips2000"]
red 27 wrote:
The most important technique in winter driving is to remember to call everyone else a numptie/muppet on a regular basis


I never worry about tyres. When it gets a bit snowy I put on a helmet and in 83 years of driving it to the Alps my Allegro’s never been stuck yet. Statistics show that 97% of drivers who have traction problems on ski roads were not wearing helmets.

When the road gets steeper or snowier, I make my passengers put helmets on too. Just to be sure.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@Big Paua, sage advice old chap.

By helmet, I do presume you mean proper tanned leather? None of these new-fangled “plastic”s?
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@under a new name,

They make helmets out of plastic????? Like my biro???
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
In the short drive to the lift today seen some crazy sites where snow tyres or chains etc will not help.

The main ones that stand out are the cars that were left on the side of the main road as they could not get up the hills to their various residences and are now encased in snow driven against them by the snow ploughs going up and down along with the heavy snow fall!

Then tomorrow temps are due to hit double figs in the valley, the snow will melt and then refreeze very quickly turning the soft snow into hard packed snow / ice which will be a mare to dig the cars out!
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
I don’t take any chances, I keep my snow tyres on all summer.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I'm a little confused. If everyone manages quite happily on winter tyres (and it seems they do), does that mean that snow chains are really only needed/intended for people on summer tyres?
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
foxtrotzulu wrote:
I'm a little confused. If everyone manages quite happily on winter tyres (and it seems they do), does that mean that snow chains are really only needed/intended for people on summer tyres?
I've had to fit chains to winter tyres a couple of times, but that's on 2WD not AWD.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
People that drive on summer tyres are more likely to get stuck on inclines and then need to put on chains than those that drive on winter tyres. And if you have winter tyres and 4WD you will be better still, but there are still occasions that might require chains, usually the last part of a long journey and just accessing accommodation that might be up a steep drive.

About 7 years ago we had a Berlingo, what an ugly car, front WD and winter tyres. Only once in three years did we need to put on chains to get round a rather tight bend when there was very odd snow one morning in Les Gets. Now we both drive 4WD cars and also put the winter tyres on in November even for driving in the UK. We are a bit belt and braces, have the lot for the car and probably over insure for travel and health!

And my OH reminded me that I am the one who will often put my helmet on in the car if I am getting a bit nervous coming down steep hills. With him driving I hasten to add.
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@jbob, we usually see about 15cms of snow in July in Cham, so, you know, can’t be too careful... wink
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
foxtrotzulu wrote:
I'm a little confused. If everyone manages quite happily on winter tyres (and it seems they do), does that mean that snow chains are really only needed/intended for people on summer tyres?


It depends how slippery the road is, if it is ice you will need chains or studs. It is fairly rare to get conditions that slippery though... but vehicles compressing then polishing the snow into ice can make conditions difficult, as can freezing fog and rain.
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@davidof, that has been all I have seen so far this season, 2 days after snow the road is covered in compressed snow / ice add a little bit of rain and it is game on!
@Pamski, that is spot on, even if it is only once in 3 years, if you are there that week then without chains you are stuck. People can drive in the mountains many times but the snow conditions can vary so much that no one can say they have seen it all.
I drive a 2 wd car with spikes and carry chains I am living 200m above resort level on an untreated road with a 17% max gradient 14% most of the way , I use chains once or twice a season but would not be without them. In my experience 2wd with winter tyres is no where near good enough for this, 2wd with spikes is ok apart from soft wet snow when chains are needed. 4wd with winter tyres is fine for getting up the hill but less successful going down. 4wd with spikes, so far I have never come across a problem but never say never!
I bet there are hundreds of Brits caught up in Snowmageddon calling all of the 'numpties' that have caused the jams but would have been at least as ill equipped themselves!
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
foxtrotzulu wrote:
I'm a little confused. If everyone manages quite happily on winter tyres (and it seems they do), does that mean that snow chains are really only needed/intended for people on summer tyres?


The only vehicle I haven't ever had to fit chains on to in our seasons is a Land Rover 110 Defender with proper snow tyres, all other cars have had chains on at some point and a mix of 2/4WD and Summer/Winter Tyres (X Trail (4WD Winters), RS6 (4WD Summers), Renault Traffic (2WD Winters), C Class Merc (RWD WInters), X3 (4WD Winters) Focus (2WD Winters).
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Had a couple of hils to negotiate this morning ferrying LynnX to various chalets we run so slapped the chains on our Duster 4x4 with snow tyres, still not easy on the inclines, but, omg, the idiots everywhere and I mean every where, spinning wheels, trying to fit chains in the middle of the road, morons overtaking me because I was at 50kmh only to nearly ram the car in front when they pulled in, ffs, they must have magic dust in their tyres to drive like that, or maybe they think "got snow tyres so I can drive as normal" ie, like a tw@t.
Rant over, back to the Provence rosé Very Happy
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Chris_n wrote:
@davidof, that has been all I have seen so far this season, 2 days after snow the road is covered in compressed snow / ice add a little bit of rain and it is game on!


I can well believe it. I always have a pair of chains in the boot.
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@KenX, glad you got the rant out of the way Smile

Some of the arm chair warriors on here should have actually been out here to see what the mayhem was / is like rather than try to advise from the comfort of their key boards Smile

Van stonked it up the hill only to find a seasoned chalet tour op with chains on his mini bus blocking the road as I came round the corner.

And pleased that van got going from a standing start, though not too sure if it had been black ice which we could we’ll see tomorrow!

Driving to Turin tomorrow feckin dreading it!
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Quote:

Some of the arm chair warriors on here should have actually been out here to see what the mayhem was / is like rather than try to advise from the comfort of their key boards

Can you expand on this ?
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
My points of the day,

- experienced driver with Landy and chains on rear wheels struggling a little in admittedly fine manoeuvres to get in position to tow client out of car park, then struggling a little to tow said client

- van diagonally across our hill descending at pace entirely out of control with hand on horn to get people out of the way. (We live on a very steep hill) ... Shocked Shocked
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@Frosty the Snowman, see post above ehich pretty well encapsulates where I was coming from.

If you don't understand my tone and inference then maybe read the thread title again Smile

Basically throwing advice out from back in the UK when out here are some of the most crazy conditions for a long time, like the biggest snow fall in many a year and crazy temperature swings creating demanding driving conditions ?
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@Weathercam, I hope you weren’t referring to me as an armchair warrior (although you are very welcome to do so). My point, from the comfort and warmth of West Berkshire was that it makes sense to use whatever traction aids you need to ensure you have plenty of grip, not just the bare minimum, and to fit them before you actually need them. Whether those aids are snow tyres or snow chains or whatever is up to you, but the point remains..... go ugly early.

p.s. I rather expect the van in the post above yours had snow tyres on, don’t you?
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Sounds like the driving conditions in the French Alps over the last day or so have been rather tricky! I saw this snow traction tip which may help:



Madeye-Smiley
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
By the by, I usually take the car when going skiing in France and carry both chains and snow socks (because the latter take up next to no space, as @rob@rar said and I carry them in the UK anyway, where they have always been sufficient). For anything heavy duty, I use the chains. Although these are fairly easy to fit (RUD easy 2go), DB’s video clip of the Thule CU-9 chains got me interested, so I’ve bought a set of these from the Roofbox people as they were on offer at £150 for my tyre size. They seem like the best of both worlds (hopefully)

... and even more by the by, I was with a TO for my week in Italy last year. The transfer bus got stuck in snow and had to chain up. I offered to be his assistant and he had an interesting technique. Basically, he carried a wooden wedge which he placed behind the inner rear wheel, reversed the bus up on to it and fitted the chains to the outer wheel, which was really easy, given that it was about 10cm off the ground - rinse and repeat for the other side. It seemed a bit like cheating to me but was effective, although I don’t know if it was too good for the hub loading
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Kooky just got the Thule / Konig CU9 chains (cheers for the tip DB) which simply loop round then you flip out a lever and step down on it. They self tighten as you drive, apparently you can get one on in 12 seconds but in reality she has found a minute per chain easy to do. Taking them off is a little more convoluted as you need to make sure that the lever action part is vertical. She has needed them quite few times on our steep Austrian road with hairpin bends.

But with my Forester fitted with Nokian tyres I have never needed chains in all my Alpine winters.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Yep absolutley loving those chains, I can confirm they really are TOTALLY idiot proof Blush
Just going off on a tangent here, what really pisses me off is the people who dont clear the roof of their car properly.
I have almost come off the road by lumps and blocks of snow blowing off peoples roofs and hitting my windscreen, just last week I saw a group of 3 German families all in big SUVs, perfectly cleared windows but all with a good 6-7 inches of snow packed on their roofs Mad
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@Kooky, @Scarpa, Thanks for the user experience stuff on the CU-9s. Looks like I won’t be regretting my recent purchase. And again, thanks @DB, for posting the video
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
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Weathercam wrote:
In the short drive to the lift today seen some crazy sites where snow tyres or chains etc will not help.

The main ones that stand out are the cars that were left on the side of the main road as they could not get up the hills to their various residences and are now encased in snow driven against them by the snow ploughs going up and down along with the heavy snow fall!

Then tomorrow temps are due to hit double figs in the valley, the snow will melt and then refreeze very quickly turning the soft snow into hard packed snow / ice which will be a mare to dig the cars out!


Dear, dear and I thought you were experienced in these sort of things rolling eyes You just use one of these :-

Laughing

Mind you, on the next one he tried it on he did not spot the detachable towball which he caught with the blade, ripped it off the car and sent it flying about 50m down the car park Toofy Grin
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Looking to replace my snow tyres (Cooper WM SA2+) with Nokia Hakkepelitta R2's when needed, seem the dog's dangles, anyone got experience? They're Nordic compound rather than Alpine so are designed for extreme conditions......
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
I put on my chains in the UK once. Every other driver hated me.
I noticed a lot of studded tyres in Sweden last year. I guess there's not enough permanent snow on in the Alps to warrant their use.

A serious question ; I'm thinking of taking my 5 series to the Alps as its great for the Autobahn bit. I've never driven rear wheel drive with chains. Do you need to chain up the front too to give reasonable steering or will just the rears do?
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!

http://youtube.com/v/4Pcdg9m7Dao. Or go in this bus
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cameronphillips2000 wrote:
I put on my chains in the UK once. Every other driver hated me.
I noticed a lot of studded tyres in Sweden last year. I guess there's not enough permanent snow on in the Alps to warrant their use.

A serious question ; I'm thinking of taking my 5 series to the Alps as its great for the Autobahn bit. I've never driven rear wheel drive with chains. Do you need to chain up the front too to give reasonable steering or will just the rears do?


If it is rwd then rear only (assuming it is not an x drive). My former 5 serries (e60) was great on snow with pirelly sottozero winter tyres, even going up from a standstill in AT on a steep road fully covered by a compacted snow.
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I have Mercedes e-class estate with 4matic AWD and user manual mandates chains on the rear wheels.
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