Snow Belt in UP of MI, driving on snow packed roads? - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV

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Old 09-29-2015, 10:05 AM   #15
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Name: Linda
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I'm in the UP of MI above Northern WI near Boulder Junction WI. Traveling south to Florida or maybe southwest to Arz or Nevada? Haven't really decided. What are the best places to go to when a snowbird? I haven't gone away in the winter before. Suggestions welcome.
If I go straight south there shouldn't be any mountains but hills probably. Will go thru northern suburbs of Chicago to see friends for 1st night. Then south??

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Old 09-29-2015, 10:08 AM   #16
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If you equip your Escape with the foam spray, double pane windows and extra insulation plus solar and dual six volts, you can stay anywhere as long as the roads are safe to be on. I look forward to the empty cg's in January and February for peace and quiet.

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Old 09-29-2015, 10:23 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by nrthwds View Post
Where would I camp on the way south? Lots of things to plan. Anybody who has done this and suggestions please let me know.
How far south do I have to go before it warms up above freezing? Where do you spend the winter in the south?
The first time we went to FL we worked to spend a minimal amount of time in Florida. After the first time we learned the foolishness of our approach. FL is a marvelous place in the winter.

If you never want to see freezing weather you have to get into FL a little way though most of the freezing that occurs in northern FL is of short duration and can be survived easily by any trailer.

As to freezing weather during your trip one never knows. We've had freezing weather in January all along from the Texas border all across the southwest. You just don't know what the weather Gods will deliver.

We plan to spend the entire winter in FL, if you're in central FL PM and stop by. A good experience in FL is to attend the February Scamp Camp held in Highland Hammocks State Park.
There are two FLs, where the tourists go and where they don't. The first is busy and fast, the second is not busy, really rural and slow. We choose the latter.

On our route south we have a network of RV parks that stay open all year long. I'm sure there's a similar group on your way south. In general we do not camp at any of the free places heading south, like Cracker Barrel, preferring to be connected to electricity in cold weather.
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Old 09-29-2015, 10:41 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Jack L View Post
Linda, You also need to be aware of elevation. For me heading south means going over mountain passes. If I go south 300 miles I run into a much greater possibility of snow.

If you tell us what your destination is we could offer more help
What mountain range would you have to go over in the middle of the country?

Yes from WA or OR going south might mean going over the Siskiyous, but there's an alternative route along the coast. Most freeways including over Donner Pass are clear pavement except when it's snowing. We go over the Siskiyous every winter, either late December or early January. One of the nice things about being retired I can delay my departure if there's a snow storm.

We've been over the continental divide several times in the winter, however that was not in WY or MT.

When there's a will there's always a way, and with a little research and use of resources it can be safe.
Byron & Anne enjoying the everyday Saturday thing.
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Old 09-30-2015, 12:07 PM   #19
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I live in the UP of Mi but am 2 miles from Wisconsin and the nearest town. I'm right on the border of the two states. I'm on a lake that borders both states.
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Old 09-30-2015, 05:49 PM   #20
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Lucky you to have a 2016 escape on order. Am waiting to call 1/2016 to order for 2017. Love the 17b!

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Old 09-30-2015, 07:43 PM   #21
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You're due south of the Porkies, I see. I have a sister 20 miles north of Menominee/Marinette.

Do you have 4WD on your Rav? It would be helpful at times. Growing up in Michigan (LP), I well recall how the snow on the dirt roads becomes hard-packed and slick as ice at times. Yet the school bus still came down that road and picked me up.

You may have to simply arrange your trailer's exit from storage on a day when the road is not too bad. Weather is weather, it's unpredictable and chancy. If it's a sunny day and the snow is slushy, or if you make it out while the road is still relatively bare, you'll be fine. If you decide you simply must leave on one of those slick-as-ice days, though, depending on how steep the hills are, you may be in for a ride. 4WD will help going uphill, of course. Coming down... not a bit of help. At any rate, on a really slick road and towing a trailer you probably should only want to go about 10-15 mph.
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Old 09-30-2015, 10:07 PM   #22
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Hi, Linda,
Can't recommend any towing on snow-packed roads. You need a longer time gone or another plan. Norm has good comments.

Your Escape is being delivered to you late in the year? Or when? You can have it delivered to southern Arizona or elsewhere and meet it. I would not even think of leaving home in the snow with the car, much less the trailer. I have traveled south in recent winters and the cold alone is more than enough to worry about.

Snowbird favorites are southern Arizona, Texas and Florida.

Originally Posted by nrthwds View Post
Thanks for all the good suggestions and feedback. My Rav4 does have the tow package. I don't really want to use chains. I will have a WDH from Escape.
I did think of asking the guy that plows our road to pull the trailer out and take it to town which would be past all the big hills and only 2.3 miles. Funny how you don't think of these things until you get a trailer. I live in a very pretty hilly area. If I get the snow off the trailer roof occasionally, every time there is a foot or two will it be okay storing outside. I'm still looking for inside storage near the HWY.
I know snowbirds fly away when it starts to snow but I don't want to leave in oct/nov and not return until may. Yes, we have snow for 6 months. I would like to go for a couple of months and come back when the snow is gone. I would need to dry camp on the way and would try to time it for when there are no storms. No snow or ice on the major roads. Where would I camp on the way south? Lots of things to plan. Anybody who has done this and suggestions please let me know.
How far south do I have to go before it warms up above freezing? Where do you spend the winter in the south?
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Old 10-01-2015, 05:34 AM   #23
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[QUOTE Real snow birds head to Florida before the snow hits the ground in the north.[/QUOTE]

That was my plan but my truck was snow-covered on the night of September 26th. It didn't last long but it was a bit of a shock.
S D.
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Old 10-01-2015, 08:22 AM   #24
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Name: Linda
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Yes my Rav4 has 4 wheel drive. I am lucky to have an Escape on order! Due to hatch end of next Sept. I am planning and gathering info ahead. Watching weather this year for pickup next year at this time. Which way to come home without snow in mountains.
Return home in Oct and then leave again for the winter. I don't want to be gone 6 months. I have never left my home for that long and not in the winter. Maybe I could leave in Dec and come back in March. Will have to watch when roads get snow packed and then when the snow melts enough to get home. Many things to think about and all of you have given me lots of info to comtemplate. Much to research, storage near the HWY or have my plow guy pull the trailer into town past the big hills.
SD, you had snow already this year? We have had frost but no snow yet. Are you heading to Fl for the winter? FL and AZ sound wonderful.
I'm 32 miles from Ironwood MI and 32 miles from Minocqua WI in the middle of the woods in the snow belt in Gods country.
ETI just had a 21 new that sold in 2 hrs.... maybe one will be cancelled. ETI is expanding so maybe the production schedule will speed up.
I am getting the Escape with foam spray, double pane windows and extra insulation plus solar and dual six volts and inverter/transfer switch so I should be all set.
Driving steep snow packed hills is what made me nervous.... will I make it up the hill or will the trailer pass my car on the way down the hill. Once I make it past those hills it flattens out. No other road out.
Thanks to all, I appreciate all the info... keep it coming.
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Old 10-01-2015, 02:16 PM   #25
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Not necessarily towing advice but winter travel advice. The Town of Presque Isle is in a different league for dealing with snow than many parts of the country. Your local guys are the pros, the further south you get, a bit of snow gives you snow removal from the bush leagues.

I put the bush leagues starting 1/3 of the way down the state of Illinois.

The lesson is, if you can outrun the bad weather, do it. If not, plan for sitting much longer. Often 48 hours of waiting is not enough.

Again, the odds of good travel occurs more than poor travel. Time, and taking travel slow is your friend.

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