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Old 11-19-2013, 09:22 PM   #1
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Toad towing in ice and snow

We have an Itasca Meridian 34B and will be heading South from Northern Illinois in January. I've had some experience with our 5th wheel in ice and snow- I should add: terrifying experience.

I would like to hear from members who have driven their MH's, with toad, in ice and snow. Especially any driving cautions and hints.

Thank you for any help you can offer.
CBT
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Old 11-20-2013, 09:16 AM   #2
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When you are towing a toad behind the MH if either start to swerve the momentum of the toad will be like a 4,500 lb pendulum. This kind of weight would be hard to control. If you have a way to break the toad independent of the MH that would help. I have never towed our toad in ice or snow this is just my opinion.
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Old 11-20-2013, 06:38 PM   #3
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I have no experience towing in snow but I have read that when flat towing a car behind a motorhome on unpaved surfaces such as sand and gravel that the front wheels of the toad may not turn in the correct direction of travel and may not straighten out after the turn is completed. I would think this effect would be even more pronounced on snow and ice. Which would mean you may want to drive the car separately until the roads are clear of snow and ice.
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Old 11-20-2013, 06:58 PM   #4
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We pull a toad in the winter on our way south at the end of Jan each year.
The only problem was when a new Patriot brake system decided to lock up all wheels. Because of all the slop and slush ,it generaly just follow along no problem.
So I do not connect the break away switch, as I can see it and run the brakes from
the dash control. Re connect when it's dry conditions and out of the cold and ice.
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Old 11-20-2013, 07:52 PM   #5
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We towed a Honda Accord and then a Chrysler Mini Van in the snow for several years going to and from ski areas. Never had a problem.
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Old 11-21-2013, 05:14 AM   #6
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Hoping it is a while before I experience that type of snow on the road. Still getting used to having a coach! Did hit snow once in the 5th wheel but the highways were good. Hoping I get as comfortable as you seem in all weather. Take care and thank you for posting!
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Old 11-21-2013, 05:33 AM   #7
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I have towed in the snow and slush. No problems with either a tow dolly or 4 down. Will require you slow down. Biggest problem is salt spread on road creates a mess under motorhome.
Ice is another thing. Do not do it.
We watch weather and use a trip planner web site to show predicted weather along our route. Weather Underground/planer is one. There are also Apps that do this.
Be flexible and be prepared to move your date for leaving to fit the weather.
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Old 11-21-2013, 07:59 AM   #8
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I have towed in the snow and slush. No problems with either a tow dolly or 4 down. Will require you slow down. Biggest problem is salt spread on road creates a mess under motorhome.
Ice is another thing. Do not do it.
We watch weather and use a trip planner web site to show predicted weather along our route. Weather Underground/planer is one. There are also Apps that do this.
Be flexible and be prepared to move your date for leaving to fit the weather.
ronjhall hit the nail right on the head. Slow down, increase your distance from everyone around you, plan carefully, and expect the unexpected especially with other drivers doing some crazy things. I've got to say I was really impressed on how well the coach did going up and down the steep West Virginia Appalachian Mountains roads, especially in that campground. My biggest problem was keeping condensation from forming on the inside of the windshield. I had to tell my DW to stop breathing so hard!

Side note: the snow got so deep that night we had a hard time opening the door the next morning. My Black Lab loved it; however all we could see of him was his head and tail as he ran......or plowed through the snow.
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Old 11-21-2013, 11:17 AM   #9
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I have never had an issue towing on slick roads, adjust your brakes accordingly, slow down, and try and brake as little as possible. DO NOT use cruise control.
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Old 11-22-2013, 01:07 PM   #10
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Thanks to all on the advice. Thanks for the link ronjhall! I will download it to my phone and favorites. Safe travels!
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Old 11-22-2013, 03:18 PM   #11
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My best advice is this: If the conditions get too white and scary, PARK, in the first rest area and wait for morning.

Freeways get priority attention from the road comission.. Back when this MH was new, my first major trip, I drove straight into a blizzard.. Pulled off, in a Utah "Cooporative Rest Area" had dinner and breakfast at the assoicated eatery.. And watched the news about all the cars in the ditch.

By the time I got done with breakfast the freeway was back to black, and yes, the ditches were lined with cars.

You have brakes on the towed when towing right.. Well, adjust them down a bit if on ice. That, Slow down and No sudden moves, is the only advice I can give you.
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Old 11-22-2013, 06:59 PM   #12
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This past year we went down I-5 and in Northern California weather got a bit nasty. Blowing snow made the highway kind of hard to see so we dropped behind a big semi tractor trailer that wasn't trying to set speed records and followed him many miles. It made that portion of the trip easier. I was about ready to pull off and wait for the weather to lift but thanks to that trucker - who ever he was. Yes, there was snow and ice and we were towing.
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Old 11-22-2013, 07:20 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigd9 View Post
We towed a Honda Accord and then a Chrysler Mini Van in the snow for several years going to and from ski areas. Never had a problem.
That looks like some pretty deep snow in the first picture. I hope the campground came to help plow you out, and you didn't have to dig outta' your spot!
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Old 11-23-2013, 07:04 AM   #14
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That was Canaan Valley State Park in West Virginia. They would keep about a half dozen spaces open and cleared of the worst snow for fruitcakes like us to camp. We had electricity, but as you can imaging no water hookup because of the temperatures. One night it got down to -5 degrees Fahrenheit. However the snow skiing was top notch that winter.
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