Winter camping can be peaceful and cozy—the silence of a winter forest, the crackling of a roaring fire, the warmth of a hot cup of cocoa. But, Mother Nature loves to be unpredictable. Think ahead in the event of unexpected snowfall. Brush up on winter weather towing best practices, and outfit your rig with essential safety tools if you plan RV towing in cold either. Remember, if the weather worsens, stay put and wait it out.
Think Like a Scout
Be prepared by keeping your vehicle and trailer well maintained. Annual service checks help spot brake repairs and electrical disconnections. Replace older batteries, which struggle to hold a charge in cold temperatures. Outfit your rig and tow vehicle with snow tires. Keep a set of snow chains on hand so you don’t get trapped anywhere where chains are required to pass.
Cold weather towing requires some additional tools in your toolkit. For travel trailers, invest in an anti-sway hitch. Snowy conditions, signal wind gusts and blustery weather, so keep trailer sway to a minimum with this essential tool. A well-prepared camper always has a first aid kit on hand. Add some flares, water, food, blankets, and batteries to your stock for a winterized safety set up.
Know Your Route
Be prepared with stopping points and fuel stations along your route in case the weather takes a turn and you need to stop. Know how near you are to the next pull off. Avoid routes with steep grades that could be iced over and treacherous.
Master Brake Control
Become familiar with your tow vehicle’s trailer brake override. Before heading out on the road, dial down your brake control sensitivity a few clicks. This will prevent lockup and skidding. As you’re driving, if the trailer starts to sway, pinch or squeeze the brake controller first while lightly tapping the gas. The trailer should pull itself straight behind the vehicle.
The same rules apply for snow towing as snow driving. Take it slower than usual and double your driving distance. Allow more time for coming to a complete stop. Take caution when crossing bridges and go slow around corners. Before leaving the campground, clear snow off the top of the RV so it doesn’t fall off mid-drive and harm others on the road. Think of your slowed travel pace as an opportunity to enjoy the winter wonderland around you!