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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Alright dont yell at me to search cause I have read all of the Winter tire threads. Those threads are for people living in the snow daily. I ski every weekend in the winter. I Drive from San Jose to either Tahoe or Dodgeridge. Now San Jose to Tahoe is like 200 + miles only the last 20 miles or so is chains or 4wd required. The house I stay at usually has packed snow and ice leading to it unless its raining at Lake level. Dodgeridge is about 170 miles and usually you only need 4wd to get up the last 10 miles or so. If I got seperate wheels and snow tires would driving on freeways that much make the snow tires useless quickly? How many miles can you get out of snow tires driving on the freeway alot? Will the stock tires be ok for California snow (which is usually wet and heavy)? thanks for the help
 

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good question i live in Colorado Springs where the conditions are similar. I have been looking for the same answer but the search on this site isn't helpful.
 

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unless you're planning to stay in tahoe for more than 1 day at a time, then you don't need winter tires. all seasons + chains is good enough. shoot, i plan to go up there with my summer tires + chains. just gonna take it easy because summer tires will freeze and lose traction.
 

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in regards to the stock tire in the snow- Depends on he type of driver you are. everyones gonna tell you they dont work in the snow. but last winter i went to VT (killington) every week. and it was tough but i made it out of the season alright. Now you say chains or awd, umm in VT you can make it without chains. So in your case i say get new tires. I dont know how many miles they last cause this is the first your im using winter tires. If you only drive 1/10 of your time in the snow id go with the Pirelli Winter 240 Sottozero. just my .02 cents
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
unless you're planning to stay in tahoe for more than 1 day at a time, then you don't need winter tires. all seasons + chains is good enough. shoot, i plan to go up there with my summer tires + chains. just gonna take it easy because summer tires will freeze and lose traction.
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I think the owners manual says you cant use chains or cables because of clearance issues?
 

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I guarantee the snows won't last shorter than the stock tires! I've used the Blizzak LM22/25s on my Prelude the last few years and had good results wear and performance wise-they feel a little less secure than summer tires but don't wear any worse than maximum performance summers. And since it's darn hard to find a 215/45 snow tire, you can take the opportunity to go to 225/45 which may make up for the performance loss due to the tread compound... A little depends on how you're pushing the tires in the dry-if you're running at 8/10ths all the time, snow are going to put more of a crimp in your style and you might want to go with all season Pirellis for the winter-not ideal but WAY safer than the summer compound tires.
 

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I think the owners manual says you cant use chains or cables because of clearance issues?
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you can use chains as long as theyre the cable type. theres plenty of clearance as long as your car is not lowered. do not use actual "chains" because they cause problems with the tcs and abs.
 

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Thanks for the info guys/gals
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Stay away from chains if at all possible. I carry wrong sized chains in my 4WD (4Runner) because there is no way in hell I am ever going to put them on my vehicle but cops sometimes ask to see them. The roads will close well before you cannot make it in a real 4wd without chains!

Wisdom: Get the best tires for ice because with AWD you will be fine in snow with anything that is designed for ice. You may have to slow down but you will almost certainly make it. Of course, if you get a 2 foot dump, nothing but clearance is going to help you...

IMHO: snow usually causes temporary problems but ice can kill you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Stay away from chains if at all possible. I carry wrong sized chains in my 4WD (4Runner) because there is no way in hell I am ever going to put them on my vehicle but cops sometimes ask to see them. The roads will close well before you cannot make it in a real 4wd without chains!

Wisdom: Get the best tires for ice because with AWD you will be fine in snow with anything that is designed for ice. You may have to slow down but you will almost certainly make it. Of course, if you get a 2 foot dump, nothing but clearance is going to help you...

IMHO: snow usually causes temporary problems but ice can kill you!
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Totaly agree with you. In Cali after a storm it usually warms up and melts during the day then freezes at night. Ice is the only thing that scares me over the sierra passes, ski resort roads. Iam just afraid that if I dump money for Dunlop M3's or something that all the dry freeway driving to get to the ice will have worn the special grippy ice layer on the tire off to quickly. Most of the snow tire reviews say they have snow indicator bars or something and when they wear down you are just left with an all season tire. None of the reviews indicate what the wear rating is though? Can you drive like 30,000 miles on them if you do nothing but drive on snow and ice covered roads like in Finland? But only 1500 miles on dry California freeways? By the way I plan on mounting them right after thanksgiving and keeping them on untill about end of March. I will drive like a little old Lady untill I switch back to summer tires just to make sure I dont wear them out any quicker.
I cant Ask the tire shop people around here cause they dont know. The last time snow stuck to the ground in San Jose was 1976 and I wasn't even born then :)
 

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Shit, I drove up there from San Fran to Truckee and theres no way in hell I'd go on those roads with out chains in the snow and I've been driving in some of the worst new england weather my whole life.
 

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Shit, I drove up there from San Fran to Truckee and theres no way in hell I'd go on those roads with out chains in the snow and I've been driving in some of the worst new england weather my whole life.
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I agree. I visited Reno/Tahoe recently and after driving around in the middle of summer, I'd be afraid of driving around there with 'feet' of snow. Hell, I love driving my awd car in the snow here (blizzaks), but when I saw the 'Right turn 0 mph' sign I decided if I visit tahoe during the winter I'll let someone else drive who is seasoned with the conditions there.

Jason
 

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I agree with what some folks above have posted. There is NO WAY I would spend weekends in Tahoe without snow tires! I lived in Incline Village for the winter/fall/spring season a few years back and the roads can get really nasty. Summer tires will get you in an accident there, no questions asked. You might want to try and find some winter tires that have a harder compound than the Blizzaks. I think Hankook makes a winter tire with a more durable compound, I actually have some semperit ice grip tires on my 6s that have a harder winter compound and they work great in the snow, pretty good on ice and will last you a few seasons. I actually had them on from November to April back here in NH and they did not wear any where near as badly as the Blizzaks I had in Tahoe, with only somewhat of a sacrafice in ice performance.

I cant tell you how many times I saw Bay area dorks (no offense) with BMW x5's stuck in the snow bank around the lake...
 

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Shit, I drove up there from San Fran to Truckee and theres no way in hell I'd go on those roads with out chains in the snow and I've been driving in some of the worst new england weather my whole life.
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MS6 has no clearance, so if there is lots of fresh snow and no tracks do not even bother. MS6 is a fair winter vehicle but it is not a great one: you need much more clearance and skid plates if you want a real winter/snow car. In fact, I recommend studded tires if they are allowed in your neck of the woods.

However, I am certain that studs are a no-go in the Bay area! If I was driving to Tahoe every week, I would get a truck based SUV like a 4Runner (I am biased) and put some serious off-roady but narrow tires on it. If you are unfamilar with skidding and sliding, take a lesson, it might save your life! Good stability control is also key to survival...

However, I said it before and I will say it again: go for an ice tire! Did you know that snow tires typically do worse on ice than most all seasons? I am currently running Michelin LTX which are very good on ice but only do ok in snow. I have driven right after a 2 foot dump and the vehicle did ok. If it snows more, you should just wait it out if you life is worth a dime, they will clear the roads within a few hours...

I cant tell you how many times I saw Bay area dorks (no offense) with BMW x5's stuck in the snow bank around the lake...

SUV drivers often give away their advantage by driving like there is no snow. 4x4s do not brake much better than regular vehicles... Dorks do not count!


Personally, I am still more worried about ICE! I grew up in AB!
 
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