Snow trap

The warmer temperatures have created some interesting conditions, and it is a direct consequence of our lack of a snow blower during parts of the winter.

Snow traps. That trap tires. 😀

I got stuck a couple of times yesterday, in our own driveway. Here is why.

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The first time I got stuck was just outside our garage. I’d backed out and started for the road when the van stopped and just wouldn’t move anymore.

At all.

Usually, I can rock it out by going back and forth, but there was zero traction. I was just spinning in place.

What I ended up doing was using the ice scraper/chipper in front and behind my front tires (no point in trying to use a shovel!), getting down to the ground, so there would be at least some traction. The tires had sunk through the softened snow and were directly on ice. Ice with a layer of melt water on top.

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While headed for the driveway, I tried to drive where the grass is exposed. I was spinning the whole way, and my tires on the snow kept sinking. Here, you can see some of that, as well as my tracks from coming back.

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The packed down remains of the plow ridge was an issue, too – here you can see where I sunk down and had to spin my way through, both coming and going!

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When my daughter and I got to the driveway, I stopped on the road while she dropped the chain, so I could go through without having to stop on any of the snow. I got through the softening plow ridge well enough, but in passing through the gate, I lost all traction again. I had to back and forth it several times before I could get to the grass and had enough traction to continue down the driveway.

While The Beast was out of commission, we did use shovels and the electric shovel to clear enough to drive through. Not being able to clear it completely meant hard packed snow anywhere we drove. The parts where you see grass is where my brother used his snow blower to widen the driveway, the day they came to pick up The Beast to fix her. He did go over where we’d cleared before, but once that snow was packed smooth, there was nothing for the snow blower to clear away.

Now that the warmth is finally here, the areas that were cleared are melting faster, but the packed areas are too dense to melt way. Instead, they soften. Then, when it goes below freezing at night, a layer of ice forms at the base. End result: when it softens again, the tires sink through to the ice and the next thing I know, I’m stuck in my own driveway!

Thankfully, so far, only once have I actually had to get out and dig/chip my wheels free.

It definitely makes coming and going a challenge, these past couple of days!

The Re-Farmer

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