Preparing for mid November

Ben Sellers

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Joined
Oct 29, 2018
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64
I am going on a Colorado 4th season hunt in the Gunnison basin this year and want to be prepared. We will likely be in the 7 to 10k ft elevation range. I went on a 3rd rifle hunt last year but we took a friend’s truck. I think we were lucky with the snow from a driving perspective since we only had a couple of light snows. This year I will have my truck too. I’m planning on having chains for all four. I have 4wd but oddly my truck has no skid plates. I plan on getting skid plates too. Maybe a snow shovel. Is there anything else a guy from Alabama who sees snow every three or four years should plan on? Thanks
 

rideold

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Oct 28, 2015
Messages
419
Location
Front Range of Colorado
Enough equipment and food/water left in the truck in case you get stuck. Even if you are setting up camp it's nice to have backup in the truck if you are using it to day hunt out of. A good tow chain or strap is handy either to pull someone else out or to use to have someone else pull you out.
 

Ben Sellers

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Oct 29, 2018
Messages
64
Good deal. I will add food, water, blankets, and a tow strap to the list. I would love to get a winch, but it looks like it’ll be that or skid plates. Don’t see myself going far if I break that plastic oil pan ford uses these days.
 

tnywragge

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Feb 22, 2019
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44
Location
Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas
Literally, bought a short handled shovel for this upcoming hunting season. Also, a woodsman axe. But yes, a chainsaw would be better. 4 wheel Drive is a must that time of the year. Chains too. A heavy set of chains help big time.
 

Addicting

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Jan 19, 2017
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2,394
Location
SW Michigan
I’ve never seen a skid plate get anyone out of a snow drift.

If your choice is a either or, your better off with a winch and driving smartly on the trails. The only advantage of a skid plate is if you have to cross icy water, there is a chance of the ice doing some damage as it is forced around under the truck.
 

Ben Sellers

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Oct 29, 2018
Messages
64
Good replies! Thanks to all. Am I better off with a snow shovel, a spade type shovel or both? I will have a chainsaw on the trip, so I’ll keep it in the truck. I’ll think hard about a winch over skid plates. I will definitely choose high quality chains. Any recommendations?
 

JLS

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Mar 26, 2012
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6,509
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Somewhere in the basalt rocks
I'd take a winch any day over a skid plate. Plastic skid plates aren't worth much besides marking the trail where they got torn off.

I'd also get some sort of battery booster pack, and throw some sand bags in the bed of your truck. HiLift jacks can be a wonderful asset if you know how to use them, but they can also be incredibly dangerous.
 

ElkFever2

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Joined
Mar 4, 2019
Messages
467
Location
Iowa
Echo what others have said about a winch for this type of trip.

Living in CO, MN, IA, ND - 95% of winter weather truck issues can be solved with kitty litter, tow chain, short-handled spade shovel, sandbags over rear wells, and short-handled ice scraper. Flip your wipers up when you leave your truck so they don't stick to the windshield.
 

Ben Sellers

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Joined
Oct 29, 2018
Messages
64
Flip your wipers up when you leave your truck so they don't stick to the windshield.
Solid advice from the few times I’ve been in ice. I’m guessing the kitty litter is for extra traction? I really appreciate all the responses.
 

Mason326

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Joined
Aug 21, 2016
Messages
124
Location
Midland, TX
Make sure your truck is actually able to run chains on all four. Many (most?) modern trucks specifically state only to run them on the rear due to all the funny business they have up front now. Exception being some 3/4+ ton trucks with solid front axles.

Chains, tow strap/chain, shovel, hand saw and/or ax to remove fallen brush/trees, and winch or hi-lift and I feel comfortable. I used all of these but the hi-lift last year.

Winch vs. hi-lift is debatable. I take a hi-lift right now as it serves multiple purposes: need it to change a tire, vehicle recovery, obstacle removal, and general purpose tool. They are cheaper, more versatile, and lighter but much more dangerous. Winch can only do vehicle recovery and obstacle removal, more or less, but is somewhat safer to use.

I'd disagree, somewhat, on the GripTrax. Chains will do the same job plus you can leave them on. However, if you get stuck without them on, then GripTrax are better as it can be hard to install chains in a bind (did it last year on a rocky icy grade, not pleasant or safe, but got it done with helpers). I am a huge fan of consolidating gear/weight and having things that can do multiple tasks (thus the hand saw vs. chainsaw, chains vs. traction pads, shovel vs. snow shovel, hi-lift vs. winch).
 

std7mag

Active member
Joined
Aug 23, 2016
Messages
687
Location
central pa
Instead of a spade, i have a surplus military E tool.
Essentially a folding spade. Blade can be straight out like a spade, or 90 degrees. Also is kinda sharp on one side for a swinging cut (hatchet), and a pick.
Folds & stores easily behind your seat.

Duct tape, Gerber multi tool, electric tape, some wire, extra fan belt, oil, antifreeze tire plug kit & a bottle of fix a flat.
Lights!!
Lighter/ firestarter.

With chains, good tires with lots of tread!
 
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