December 31, 2010: Denver Colorado

 Ski Vacation: How To Drive In Wintry Weather

Ski Vacation: How To Drive In Wintry Weather

A vacation to Vail, Copper Mountain, Beaver Creek, or Breckenridge, Colorado can be a dream come true for families who love to spend time enjoying winter activities together. Skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling and all that unique ambiance that Colorado ski towns offer are great ways to experience a week during the winter months. But, if you are not used to driving in those conditions, you will want to make sure you are prepared for driving on wintry roads.
According to one Denver car accident lawyer, in one year alone the Colorado State Patrol reported over 5,000 accidents on snowy or icy conditions. By following a few safety tips, you can ensure that you are not one of these statistics.

Four-Wheel Drive
Navigating wintry roads in a car can be challenging, especially in the Rocky Mountains. If you fly into Denver and make the scenic drive from the city to Breckenridge or one of the other mountain resorts, make sure you rent a car with four-wheel drive. An SUV is a great idea for a ski vacation car because not only will it hold all your gear, but also having four-wheel drive will come in handy on snowy mountain roads.

Navigating Wintry Roads
As with any type of winter driving, you will want to keep in mind a few of the most important driving tips.
1. Keep a larger distance between vehicles. When you are driving in snowy conditions, always stay further away from the car in front of you. That way, should that car stop suddenly, or skid on ice, you will have ample time and space to control your own vehicle and avoid a crash.
2. Brake gently. Avoid slamming on the brakes when you are driving on snowy roads. There may be ice underneath that could cause your car to spin or skid if you hit the brakes too quickly.
3. Use low gears on hilly mountain roads. Lower gears can help you have more control over your vehicle when navigating up and down hilly mountain roads. A lower gear can also help you have better traction in slippery conditions.
4. Keep your windshield and car clean of snow. Always clean the snow off your entire car before driving for the best visibility, and also so you can prevent snow from blowing off of your car onto the car behind you.
5. If you begin to skid, take your foot off the accelerator. Steer the car in the direction you want to go. Apply gentle pressure to the brakes and wait until you regain control before applying pressure to the gas pedal.

Be Prepared
It is a good idea to have some essential supplies on board with you when you are traveling on snowy, mountain roads. A first-aid kit is a great idea to have on hand for minor cuts and scrapes. It is also a good idea to pack some extra gloves, scarves, hats and even a blanket or two for your ski vacation, in case you are stopped on the side of the road for a long period of time and have to turn the car off while you wait for help. Always have your charged cell phone with you, too, should you need to call for assistance.

Remember, it is cold outside. If you cannot use the heat in your vehicle, having an extra blanket and warm clothing with you will keep you comfortable, should the situation arise. And, if the conditions become too severe for driving, pull over and wait until it is safe to continue.

While snow is falling over the north, Denver being a popular ski destination means more people are on the icy roads than normal. Writer Melanie Fleury has driven in snowy conditions and knows just how quickly it can take a bad turn. She found valuable tips on the website of a Denver car accident lawyer that helped her form this article.

We want to thank our guest author Melanie Fleury for sharing this information about your ski vacation and driving safely on icy roads.


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