4 Tips for Winter Driving in the Mountains

Driving up to the mountains can be scary!  I think everyone has a story of a white-knuckle, hold your breath kind of driving experience- here’s what you can do to drive safely and confidently on the roads this winter.  If you are renting a vehicle when heading up to Colorado Ski Resorts, be sure to ask for one with 4-wheel drive if it’s available!

1. Be Prepared and Winterize Your Vehicle
Invest in snow tires, regardless of the type of vehicle- car, truck or SUV. Make sure your brakes are in proper working order and that your windshield wipers are in good shape.  Also be sure to top off the wiper fluid before you hit the road, because there is nothing worse than a thick dirt curtain over your windshield and not being able to see!

2. Pay Attention
The number one thing you can do is pay attention while you are driving; hand your phone to someone else to answer texts or look at the map and have the passenger side be in control of the music.  Always keep a good distance in between you and the car in front of you.  Use turn signals when switching lanes and slow down when you see brake lights. 

3.  Stay Calm
If you hit an icy patch of road or someone suddenly slams on the brakes, stay calm.  Don’t jerk the wheel or slam on the brakes yourself.  Gently turn the wheel in the opposite direction of the car’s skid and be sure not to over-correct! You can always downshift to a lower gear to help you slow down, softly pump the brakes versus slamming on them.

4.  Invest in Roadside Assistance
For just a few dollars a month, you can have peace of mind with roadside assistance.  Many insurance programs have an add-on roadside assistance option, making the service seamless.  If you ever do need a tow or jump, this will be a life-saver!

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