Minnesota Winter RV Driving 101

The winter months are starting to arrive bringing those unexpected snow storms that can put a damper on your RV travels. On average, Southwest Minnesota gets about 35 inches of snow a year and Northeast Minnesota usually sees around 70 inches. While many Minnesota RVers decide to winterize their motorhomes during the cold season, others enjoy utlilizing their RV for the duration of the winter season. Most full-timers out there would say that driving a motorhome, fifth wheel or travel trailer during the winter is highly difficult due to the snow and ice on most Minnesota roadways.

If this is going to be your first Minnesota winter in your RV, it’s good to know how to handle your RV in snowy and icy conditions. Follow these tips below and you’ll be able to weather the storm with no problem.

Use your low beams and windshield wipers. Snow contributes to low visibility and reduced traction, so be sure to use your low beams and take it slow.

Accelerate, brake and steer smoothly to avoid skidding. Although a skid is almost inevitable in icy conditions, keeping focused and taking it slow and steady can help you keep the skids to a minimum.

Don’t forget that RVs are rear wheel drive. Most passenger cars are front wheel drive and for the past two or three decades, most of you have been trained on how to regain control in a skid. When you’re in an RV though, remember that you steer with the slide and pump the brakes lightly in order to regain control.

Turn off your exhaust brake in icy conditions. If you are driving a diesel RV, shut off your exhaust brake; otherwise, if you let off the accelerator, the back-end of your coach could “fishtail” and land you in the ditch (rvtoads.com).

Keep a full tank of gas. This is very important in snowy conditions. If you come across an area you can’t pass or you would rather throw in the towel all together, you’ll definitely want to have enough fuel to park it for the night and wait for the weather conditions to improve.

Always have a set of snow chains handy. There is nothing worse than driving your RV to higher elevation, and experiencing an unexpected storm without chains for your motorhome.

See? It doesn’t sound too terrible, does it? If you follow these snow safety tips, I’m sure you can weather those Minnesota winter roads. If you need some reassurance or just want to talk to an expert before you head out, come by Pleasureland RV and chat with the RV experts. We’re always happy to help.