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Thread: Towing on Ice

  1. #1
    Member patrickL's Avatar
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    Default Towing on Ice

    There is a chance of moving to Homer over the winter. My concern is how to get my boat down to Homer. I have a 4-wheel drive truck but as you know, 4-wheel drive doesn't help when trying to stop, particularly with a trailer. So my question, is it safe to pull it from Anchorage down to Homer? There's a pretty serious pass just south of Turnagain Arm. What recommendations would you have for towing it safely?

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    Member Blue Thunder's Avatar
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    I would find a place to store it until spring and then bring it down when the road is good.
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  3. #3

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    How big is the boat?
    If it's big and you decide to tow it this winter, give me a heads up so I can plan on not being out on the road

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    Member patrickL's Avatar
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    Good answers. That's what I was figuring but I thought I might be missing something since I haven't lived up here long.

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    Chain on all 4 tires.

  6. #6
    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Default People bring boats down in the winter

    Some go winter king fishing. I've seen boats pulled through town (Soldotna) in almost any given month except when the Homer Harbor is frozen. Big boats too, it isn't unusual for Russian guys to bring their bowpicker boats from Whittier to Homer in the winter.

    My friend once brought a cat over on a trailer from Anchorage with his F350. He had no studs and the roads were icy. He told me that his... ummm... butt hole was permanently puckered after the trip.

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    Member tjm's Avatar
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    how big is your boat/trailer?....lots of folks haul 10,000+lbs in winter with no issues....
    ------------------------------------------------
    pull my finger....

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    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    If it's an easy trailerable boat, then it won't be a problem. T-Pass isn't that "serious". The only long steep will be an uphill pull for you. Just pick your day. Don't go while it's snowing or within a day after a heavy snow to give DoT time to clean the roads for you. Drive slow. Run it mid-week in the mid-morning hours to avoid heavy traffic. Put the truck in 4WD and leave it there. Downshift and use engine braking when going down the few steep grades.

    People tow fully enclosed trailers with a half dozen snowmachines in them all winter long. That's a more complicated and heavier haul than a typical trailer boat. This is really a non-issue.
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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    I agree the feasibility of this depends on the boat and tow rig as well as weather. W/ good weather it is quite possible that you would be able to get it done well before spring.

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    Member patrickL's Avatar
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    I have a good half-ton truck, 4x4 and such. The boat is a 22 Hewes Ocean Pro. Its probably in the neighborhood of 6500lbs with a tandem axel trailer. I've hauled it all over the Kenai over the last summer to fish. Never had any problems getting around.

    I've also hauled boats all over the rockies and such and I realize T-pass isn't that big of a deal. That being said, add some ice and such and any pass can become a big deal. I guess the only thing I worry about is corners and trying to stop. I don't want to end up jack knifing my boat in the middle of the highway.

    I didn't think about snow machine guys and their trailers. Good point.

    Anything else?

  11. #11
    Member tjm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by patrickL View Post
    The boat is a 22 Hewes Ocean Pro.
    the drive should be a piece of cake with that boat...
    ------------------------------------------------
    pull my finger....

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    Quote Originally Posted by tjm View Post
    the drive should be a piece of cake with that boat...

    I agree. I drive that all the time in the winter. It is usually dry pavement a few days after a snowfall once it has been plowed and there is some time for traffic to wear down any remaining ice.

    I would not leave the boat in Anchorage for the winter, I would just pick my day and tow it when the road is in good condition. The DOT really does a good job at keeping that road in good condition.

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    Quote Originally Posted by patrickL View Post
    I have a good half-ton truck, 4x4 and such. The boat is a 22 Hewes Ocean Pro. Its probably in the neighborhood of 6500lbs with a tandem axel trailer. I've hauled it all over the Kenai over the last summer to fish. Never had any problems getting around.

    I've also hauled boats all over the rockies and such and I realize T-pass isn't that big of a deal. That being said, add some ice and such and any pass can become a big deal. I guess the only thing I worry about is corners and trying to stop. I don't want to end up jack knifing my boat in the middle of the highway.

    I didn't think about snow machine guys and their trailers. Good point.

    Anything else?
    Trailer have brakes? If surge make sure they are working well, no wheel lockups.

    My enclosed sled trailer loaded is heavier then that. Yours will not trailer much different then my sled trailer. Just go easy and take breaks. No big deal.

  14. #14

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    If your worried about jacknifing and stopping a decent load in the bed of the truck will hell the jacknifing, as for the breaking slow and easy will help when approaching a sharp turn or stop.

  15. #15
    Member Vince's Avatar
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    ticket home i will come pull it for you... driving blizzard or not... to many years to many loads...
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

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  16. #16
    Member broncoformudv's Avatar
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    That is an easy load to haul like everyone else said just pick your day around snow fall so the roads have been graveled and plowed. Take it easy coming downhill around corners that is the only place I have seen people get in trouble with trailers during the winter. They seem to forget then the trailer gets in front of the truck.

  17. #17

    Default Pretend it a Snowmachine trailer

    They seem to do it all the time!

  18. #18
    Member Vince's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by patrickL View Post
    I have a good half-ton truck, 4x4 and such. The boat is a 22 Hewes Ocean Pro. Its probably in the neighborhood of 6500lbs with a tandem axel trailer. I've hauled it all over the Kenai over the last summer to fish. Never had any problems getting around.

    I've also hauled boats all over the rockies and such and I realize T-pass isn't that big of a deal. That being said, add some ice and such and any pass can become a big deal. I guess the only thing I worry about is corners and trying to stop. I don't want to end up jack knifing my boat in the middle of the highway.

    I didn't think about snow machine guys and their trailers. Good point.

    Anything else?
    the important thing to remember when towing something nearly as heavy as your ride.. or heavier...


    you have towed it in the summer time... and know what speeds you can pull up the hill at...

    well in the winter you can still pull up the hill at the same speed...

    but going down the hill you need to be at less then that speed before you drop over the edge and start down it... usually by 5-10 mph

    i pulled doubles for years up and down the state and about every piece of heavy equipment you've seen along a road.. speed management is your NUMBER one responsibility. not over heating your brakes, causing them to fail...

    winter driving..


    Remember the center line and shoulder is where the sand and gravel stacks up off folks tires... when they sand the road...

    those places are where your tractions to slow down comes in....

    loose snow is better traction then hard pack ice and will slow you down faster...

    trailers fish tail on the down run due to improper brakes and brake timeing...

    if your trailer brakes are kicking in late, your rig is slowing before your load knows it..

    high center of gravity loads have more chance of swinging out on corners when the roads are slick. slower speeds are necessary to control it...

    in short.. a winter run to home should take you a few extra hours unless you get good dry roads...
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

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    Wow. I guess all of us with big enclosed snowgo trailers should stop heading to the Caribou Hills? I don't think so. Hauling a trailer in winter is no problem at all. At least no more so than driving in winter. I prefer studs all around but I pull a 6000# trailer every week all winter. If I was moving the boat only once without studs I'd wait for a clear weather week and go then. The roads should be good enough.

  20. #20
    Member Vince's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Pid View Post
    Wow. I guess all of us with big enclosed snowgo trailers should stop heading to the Caribou Hills? I don't think so. Hauling a trailer in winter is no problem at all. At least no more so than driving in winter.
    dont see any one saying NOT to tow... but rather giving some one with a little less experinace some tips....

    what you and i do with out a second thougt; many can not do in a dry driveway....
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

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