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Thread: Snow Chains

  1. Default Snow Chains

    Hello people!

    I am on a road trip around America for a month. We have the first part planned and leave Vegas on the 3rd November and have to be back at Newark on the 19th. I will post this in the relevant part soon!!

    I realise that some states will require us to have snow chains. It is FAR to expensive to rent them so how easy and where do you buy them?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default chains

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Chains are often required, but only in the mountain areas of the west. Its never a bad idea to have them, but where you plan to specifically go will be a big factor on how badly you really need them. You should also check with your rental company, because often times you are not allowed to put chains on a rental car.

    As far as buying them, they will be pretty readily available in areas where chains are required. Most auto parts/hardware stores will carry them. Cable chains (made of steel wire instead of actual chain) for a sedan cost $30-50, if I remember correctly. Rentals will be available, but usually only for specific area - like if you are going into Yosemite National Park for example.

  3. #3

    Default Sightseeing or travelling?

    Hello iainskye,

    I'm a bit confused about your need for chains. Will you be spending extensive portions of your Nov 3 to Nov 19 in the mountains or will you instead be lower elevation travelling and/or sightseeing en route back to Newark?

    The reason I ask is that only at fairly high elevation is snow and ice LIKELY to be a problem and chains required at that time of year. I emphasized the "likely" since anything is possible.

    The other observation I have is that state law requirements for chains are normally for brief durations at the height of heavy storms and on designated stretches of highway, usually a few miles each side of a pass. It seems that you have lots of time for the trip and that you might have time to and choose to simply avoid high-elevation travel if an unusually heavy snowstorm crosses your path en route.

    If acquiring chains is something you which will benefit you in the long run, so be it. If not, perhaps you can avoid this expense altogether.

    Have a safe and enjoyable trip. You might see some late-season aspens along the way!


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Most western states require "traction-control devices"

    Most western states require the vehicles carry chains or "traction-control devices from November to April in mountainous regions whether snow is falling or not. I carry chains 12 months a year. Because, I have them, I rarely ever use them. Foy is correct, its unlikely you will really need them -- but I would still purchase a set of light-weight steel cables and carry them.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    Vegas to Newark in November - about the only place you might need them is going up through Flagstaff. If you do decide to buy them, buy them in an area where they are common, you will find the best deal on lightweight cables at Walmart. I have a set, and have yet to use them.

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