Need advice on my winter vehicle emergency kit

Winter is coming. I hate my commute during this time of year and always dread getting stuck. So I’m trying to prep now before it gets cold and miserable.

I have snow tires on my car, am up to date with repairs, and have my normal everyday get-home-bag that has maps, fire starters, food, first aid kit, etc… But I wanted to get your advice on my Winter additions. And The Prepared has a pretty nice Kit builder that I thought I would try out. Here is a link to my kit:


My budget is kinda small so these are things I just had around the house, but is there anything you recommend that I add or replace? Tell me the why behind your suggestion too.

Thanks guys!!


  • Comments (47)

    • 8

      This looks pretty good! And I’m perpetually kitting my car out so thank you for putting this kit together. Something jumped to my mind: have you thought of adding some flares in case you get starnded, and some traction pads for the snow or slosh etc? Or are they already part of your normal car kit?

      • 8

        I’ve never thought about flares before. From what I see on TV they are water proof and provide a long hot burn, which could also double as a light, fire, heat source. Great idea!

        I haven’t heard about traction pads before. I get what you are talking about, but could you maybe share a link with an example? Are they just giant rubber mats?

      • 7

        For flares I was actally thinking about something like this https://www.amazon.com/Stonepoint-Emergency-LED-Road-Flare/dp/B000LQ78YY/ but I like your thinking! 

        Re traction pads: yes, something like that. My partner keep these bad boys in his jeep https://www.amazon.com/BUNKER-INDUST-Off-Road-Traction-Ladder-Red/dp/B07NV71XVB/ but I think for a normal car they are a bit of an overkill. Unfortunately, I don’t have a specifc reccomendation – this convo is actually helping me figuring this kind of stuff myself. I know that some peole keep cat litter in their car for the exact same reasons.

    • 7


      Ooo. I thought of something I could add to my car kit that I need advice on! 

      So I used to have those lifeboat rations in my get-home-bag, but it expired this year and I ate it. So I need another calorie source in my bag. 

      Should I get another lifeboat ration, MRE, or a freeze dried meal? I kinda want at least 2-3 days worth of calories in my car, and I live in a winter climate so freezing is an issue. I also don’t want to boil water and such if possible. What would you guys choose?

      • 6

        I would stick to the lifeboat rations, for the exact the same reasons as you’ve highlighted: they pack more calories in a smaller space, and you don’t need to cook or boil water.

      • 7

        The SOS lifeboat rations have sugar as their primary ingredient, followed by flour and fat. That’s it: sugar, flour, fat. Three days @ 3,600 calories per day = 1.6 pounds.

        I prefer Probar meal bars (wholeberry is my fav). Three days @ 3,600 calories per day = 1.8 pounds. I’ll take the tiny extra weight for–>

        Ingredients: Brown Rice Syrup, Oats, Dates, Sunflower Seeds, Cashew Butter, Almond Butter, Cashews, Raisins, Flax Seeds, Sesame Seeds, Almonds, Crisp Brown Rice, Dried Cane Syrup, Apple Juice Concentrate, Blueberries, Blueberry Puree, Strawberries, Expeller Pressed Canola Oil, Dried Cane Syrup, Vegetable Glycerine, Dried Pineapple, Dried Papaya, Rice Syrup, Unsweetened Chocolate, Oat Flour, Pumpkin Seed, Molasses, Natural Flavors, Non-Dairy Cocoa Butter, Sunflower Oil, Citric Acid, Salt

      • 6

        Also, specifically for me–I don’t have enough mass to run through 3,600 calories a day, even when working hard, so I don’t calculate at a 3,600 calorie rate. ymmv

      • 1


    • 8

      What a great list!  One thing I’d suggest to add is a good pair of heavy-duty jumper cables.  I recently learned the hard way that the typical, cheap jumper cables you often find aren’t always up to the task.  Look for something that’s 6 gauge or thicker (and remember that when speaking of wire gauge, the lower the number the thicker and more heavy-duty the cable).  I see you have a portable power pack, and those are awesome, but if your car battery is completely drained, and your power pack is running low, it might not have enough umph to start your car. 

      Another suggestion, also learned the hard way, is to upgrade your tire-changing tools.  The lug wrench, jack, and other tols that came with your car will probably be on the cheap and minimal side.  While you are at it be sure you have a few basic tools as well (wrench, screw-drivers, etc).

      And finally, a head-lamp!  Changing a tire or any type of car maintanance at night in the dark is no fun, but a head-lamp will help immensly!

      *I recognize these aren’t necessarily ‘winter’ items, so it’s likely you already have all of this stuff covered.  I’ve had terrible luck with my automobile the past few months and have been forced to confront just how ill-prepared I was to deal with them.

      • 4

        Yes! I need to have a good headlight in my car. Thanks for the suggestion. Also, I need to practice changing a spare on my Jeep. It has one of those weird contraptions where you have to lower the tire from below the vehicle by unscrewing something. Definitely something I need to figure out before I need to do it for real.

      • 8

        Note from having living in serious snow areas in the past (Taos, Colorado, New York)–practice changing those tires in good weather to get an idea how things go…then practice in SNOW. There’s a world of difference.

      • 1

        True that.

      • 3

        That’s how it works, you learn from your situations.

        Good stuff there about the cables (mine are 2 gauge, 25 feet), and the tire tool upgrade. Minimum upgrade would be four way lug wrench w/cheater bar. I have a geared 16:1 torque enhancer. That was kind of pricey for a lug nut tool, It came from Garrett Wade about 65 dollars or so. The headlamp is solid advice.

        All my gear is because something happened to me and I was thinking “I wish I had a ________.”

        Now, I  have a ________.

      • 1

        That’s how my car kit has developed over the years.

        Through much trial and error.

        And it probably has many more revisions to go.

    • 8

      MY CAR KIT

      Emergency ID card
      Ainope car charger (lighter-to-usb adapter)
      VicTsing 2-pack safety hammer

      2—1-gal. F-style HDPE water jugs (filled 85%)

      Snow Brush–Hopkins 80037 SubZero 60″
      Prestone 15.5-oz. AS240 windshiled washer fluid/de-icer
      Chains–Size and type depends on vehicle and state laws
      Portable Tow Truck traction mats
      Cat litter–Non-clumping
      Snow shovel, folding–Lifeline 4004 Aluminum Sport Utility
      Cold-rated sleeping bag (best) or SOL Escape Bivy (1-2)
      KARECEL Rechargeable Hand Warmers, 5200mAh
      Yaktrax for shoes/boots & Qteclor or Unigear waterproof snow gaiters
      Marmot Precip Shell Mitts (4.2oz.) Over OZERO -30 Winter Gloves
      N-Ferno 6823 Thermal Fleece Wind-Resistant Hinged Balaclava
      Carhartt’s Arctic Quilt-Lined Coveralls

      SlimK 3-pack LED road flares PLUS signal flares and/or snapflares
      Rand McNally 2020 large scale road atlas
      RHINO USA tow strap (3”x20’)
      EPAuto 4 Gauge x 20 Ft 500A Heavy Duty Booster Jumper Cables
      HydroBlu Versa Flow water filter system
      Gerber E-Tool Folding Spade, Serrated Edge [30-000075]Boulder Tools – Heavy Duty Tire Repair Kit
      Torin Big Red Steel Scissor Jack, 1.5 Ton (3,000 lb) Capacity
      CARTMAN 16″ Universal Anti-Slip Cross Wrench, Lug Wrench
      4Monster Microfiber Travel Towel
      Cyalume SnapLight Red Light Sticks – 6” / 12 Hour

      + GET HOME BAG

      • 5

        Wow! This would make a lot better kit than mine. Thank you for sharing. 

        You said that you use “KARECEL Rechargeable Hand Warmers, 5200mAh” 

        How do you like that? How does it compare to the disposable or reusable handwarmers?

      • 4

        I like them a lot because I have a problem with cold hands and I’ll always choose rechargeable over disposable. That said, I have a few disposables in my glove box that my husband bought. He values impulse buys over strategy, mostly because he’s only slightly interested in prepping for unforeseen events.

    • 7

      The list from everyone is really good. I applaud you for the winter bag, 75% of people don’t know what it is. I like your list. Try an army/navy surplus store. You can find gear that the military uses for cheap. Good stuff. I would suggest a change of clothes. 2 pair of socks, silk layer (buy at TJ max or military supply) waterproof boots, waterproof jacket, snacks, spam, canteen, contractor bag, kem light (buy at the dollar store for cheap) Vaseline, gloves from Costco or sams club (on sale now $10), a tarp from harbor freight, tactical knife from harbor ( $9). Just make a list of stuff from the group and for what you would need. That will secure you for any major issues. Oh yeah people laugh, but throw some underwear in a ziploc bag. I also have a hygiene kit in a duplicate bag. Basic first aid kit. My winter bag is similar to a tool bag, and holds a lot. It’s in addition to my edc back back that will act as a secondary bag. 

      • 8

        One problem I haven’t solved–my town/city has an ongoing problem with vehicle break-ins in shopping area parking lots. During the pandemic we’re getting our groceries and other goods delivered, but at some point we’ll go back to shopping and then my car bag/box will be visible. In my suv I can hide things under the cargo area’s cover (which seriously cuts down on cargo space), but the pickup truck doesn’t have that option. The pickup has a shell, but that doesn’t seem like it’s a deterrent from the police reports I read. 

        Any ideas?

      • 4

        Having worked for a police department, I have seen so many stolen vehicle and vehicle break-ins. Here are some tips that I can think of.

        1. Try to park where people are. Don’t park in the very back area of the parking lot where the bad guy will have your car all to himself.
        2. Park under a lamp post at night
        3. Look for the store’s security cameras and where they are pointed at and park there. Don’t rely on this if your car gets broken into though. The cameras are usually old, don’t produce clear video, are far away, and if it is night, the video is almost always to dark to see anything. But maybe the bad guy will think they are smart and only target vehicles out of the camera’s line of sight.
        4. NEVER leave your car running. During the winter there was always 2-3 stolen cars from driveways that were stolen from the owners letting them warm up. We called them “puffers” because the bad guys would just walk down streets looking for which car is puffing out exhaust and doesn’t have a driver in it. 
        5. Always roll up your windows and lock your doors. 
        6. If you have a car alarm system (might need to read owners manual) learn how to use it. 
        7. Tint your rear windows in accordance with your city’s laws to make it harder for them to look into your car.
        8. Use a steering wheel lock. Even if they are just going to smash-and-grab, this might show that you are serious about security. Our PD would give these out for free to owners of the top 10 most stolen vehicle makes if they called in.
        9. Don’t think of your center console or glove compartment as a safe. This is where bad guys look most of the time for valuables.
        10. Get a dash camera that will not only help you and the police out incase of an accident, but many nicer ones have motion detection and parking modes that will start recording if they sense someone walking around your vehicle or if they bump your vehicle. One like this records the outside and inside of the vehicle.  
        11. Another out of the box idea is to place a fake security sticker on your windows. Amazon has some. 
        12. And my number one tip, DON’T leave your gun in your car! So many guns get stolen out of vehicles by criminals who steal your car or just break into it. They do sometimes get recovered, sometimes they don’t. I’ve seen guns get recovered from a car break in from like 40 years ago and the gun is on the other side of the country. Many times you won’t get your gun back because it might have been involved in a crime and needs to be used as evidence. 
      • 5

        Your #12 made my sphincter clench. It amazes me that people will be that neglectful.

      • 2

        I was leaving work one morning, as I was getting in to my truck, I casually glanced into the car next to me, I saw a coworker’s handgun just casually stuffed between the seat and the console.

        I couldn’t believe it. I notified the individual involved, I stressed my concern anout the gun being in plain sight. The person told me that their firearm was secured, I pointed out that if it had been properly secured, I wouldn’t have seen it.

      • 1

        You are correct, that definitely is not secure.

        Some people….

      • 5

        Thanks for the insights and tips! I’ll be adding a steering wheel lock and dash cam to my kit list.

      • 8

        My truck has tinted windows in the cab area. Throw a black fabric (like a balaclava) over your gear. It’s difficult to see inside on a good day, next-to-impossible to see at night.

    • 4

      @Liz, I’m diggin’ the kit. I’m in a similar mode now, too. At least the vehicle prep gets easier every year. Winter coming? Remove winter pack from storage, add to standard kit. Spring coming? Remove winter pack to storage, keep standard kit. I think the only real upkeep I have is checking batteries for flashlights, emergency LEDs, radios.

      While I’m here, I have a few suggestions for folks on a much tighter budget:

      – Invest in one really good pair of winter gloves. Make sure they’re warm, comfortable, waterproof, windproof, temp rated. Ditch the fleece gloves and get only the snow gloves. If you need to work on your vehicle, use your roadside kit gloves (eg., MechanixWear).

      – Instead of fancy plastic traction pads, use kitty litter to help gain traction if you get stuck. Bonus, the additional weight in your vehicle can come in handy on slippery roads.

      – Instead of the NeverWet (to keep snow from sticking to your shovel), try spraying it with Pam (or other aerosol cooking oil). Unfortunately, this doesn’t do much for your clothing, so, there’s that. 

      Okay, this part may seem kinda weird, so, let me preface. I’ve gotten to the point in my prepping where a lot of things are going to do double- or triple- duty. What I use for hiking, I use for camping. What I use for camping, also doubles as prep gear. 

      – Instead of the collapsable shovel, consider something with fewer moving parts. Check out something that’s unibody construction, lightweight, strong. Like this… camping… shovel. Also comes in handy if you have to poop. Just sayin’. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07BFHMX3K/

      – Ski goggles are a good add. I like that. I currently have a pair of safety goggles (for gtfo situations), but I wonder if there’s safety glasses with anti-glare, sunglasses like feature…

      – If you’re the kind of person that needs it (like me, the human radiator), make sure you have several various layers of clothing you can don or remove as needed.

      -Consider a mummy sleeping bag, in case you’re stranded in the middle of nowhere. You can stay sheltered in your vehicle but you may want to conserve energy and fuel.

      • 3

        I have no issue with most of your recommendations, with the exception of the cat litter.

        In certain situations (slight down grade, building in front, two wheel wheel drive vehicle, ice under the wheels, being solo, oh, and raining hard) clay based, cat litter is next to useless. Under those conditions all you get is a POed ex girlfriend (she gad to come out and drive, so that I could push) and a nasty wet slimey mess. Since then I have always carried sand.

        I do have a small amount of cat litter for its absorbent qualities.

        I do not know if clumping litter gets the same results. The above mentioned incident happened over twenty five years ago.

      • 1

        Have you heard of or tried sticking your car floor mats under the tires to gain extra traction? I’ve seen people recommending it as a snow extraction option.

      • 2

        Good Afternoon, Supersonic,

        As regards, floor mats in front of/under the tires for traction, I would classify, the floor mat tip in the “might work, under the right conditions” kind of thing. 

        however, I will say that it has never worked for me. Usually they just become airborne and your still stuck. I believe the problem is that the floor mats aren’t long enough. I would expect the traction boards/sand ladders to be much more effective. I have no experience with the traction boards.

    • 3

      Probably mentioned and I just didn’t see,

      1. snow chains
      2. tow strap
      3. Large Garbage bag (for installing #1 & #2 and 100 other reasons  ;^)
      • 1

        Ayuh, that’ll work.

      • 2

        Having similar thoughts.  The Garbage bags are always in my kit, but hadn’t considered them here – you’re sharp!

        Anyone with real winter have any experience with tire cables vs. chains?  They were required for winter entry into Yosemite NP and cables are the only options for the low clearance tire/well of my vehicle.  Definitely easier to install than the chains I recall from my youth and so much smaller to store when not in use.  

    • 4

      I really like kits for the sake of kits but also because I have used mine several times when I broke down or got stuck. The problem is I start to think I really need a 1 ton, 4WD box van to be ‘really’ ready. That’s when my wife says ‘what is wrong with you?’ and I come back to earth. As I said, I really like kits and while the solutions to unexpected problems often are kit, I have learned more of my unexpected problems are solved with habits, skills and risk management.

      What habits solve problems?

      My spare food freezes solid or melts into a puddle in my car 6 months of the year around here. So I have the habit of keeping food I really eat (water bottle or thermos, Cliff bars, apples, homemade granola, figs and instant coffee) in my ‘lunch’ bag that I take into my house at night and into work during the day.

      I keep my raincoat with me at all times. I take it into the house at night and always take it in the car. My raincoat has a hood and extends below my hips. Why? I once changed a tire in the rain with a waist-length raincoat and cursed myself when I was squatting to change the tire and the cold rain ran down into my backside. Short raincoats without hoods and meaningful length are noob mistakes.

      Skills are what you get when you practice your response to a problem with your kit. So what skills? Start simple and solve the most likely risk.

      I have changed a tire many times and my kit and method now suit those requirements – they are borne of experience. Change your tire in the rain and mud for practice and you will be very enlightened to your needs. (changing your tire on concrete or blacktop doesn’t count). A 12″x18″x3/4″ plywood is a lifesaver!

      I have gone to a school parking lot during an ice storm and used cat litter. Lesson learned: only good for cat crap. I transitioned to chunky construction sand and retested. It works. I needed a small coffee can to distribute it properly.

      I have been stuck for 12 hours and eaten my emergency food. That experience taught me to carry real toilet paper and wet wipes (to avoid my shop rags) and a mini-mattock to make a cat hole (instead of a screwdriver and hammer).

      I have learned that when road conditions are so bad I have to get off the road I do so safely and immediately turn off my lights! I learned this after seeing another car, well off the road with his lights on, rear-ended by someone ‘following the guy ahead of me’.

      Risk Management. This is key. My ‘kit drama’ will lead me to put so much stuff in my car that I don’t have room for some groceries. That temptation is solved with risk management.

      I commute 85 miles round trip in a semi-rural area. If I breakdown I will not be on the side of the road for days at anytime of the year. I can call a spouse, sibling, adult child, neighbor or AAA and have assistance within a few hours. But if one cell tower is down I may not have comms and the delay would increase considerably. That is my real risk, not zombie hoards or 1,000 year blizzards. To solve this problem (that can reasonably occur anywhere I drive) I boost cellphone signal with a Wilson booster. wilsonsignalbooster.com These are expensive but eliminate the need to carry several hundred dollars of kit and solve many other problems. I use these at work for Continuity of Operations (COOP) and have relied on them repeatedly this past year. Reliable comms solves many, many problems.

      I am ‘mission essential’ at work and must come to work regardless of the weather and may need to stay for a few days. That risk is mitigated by my habit of leaving 2 hours early during bad weather so I can travel on the roads without other traffic thereby reducing my risk of being hit by a noob. I also have a kit with a few days clothes, toiletries, coffee and food in my place of work.

      What have others learned that allowed them to reduce their kit?

      • 1

        I have a small work light and headlight that I keep in the glove compartment instead of using the car built in lights that would drain the battery. The headlight has a red light mode as well which is helpful to preserve night vision. 

        Having a knee length raincoat provides significantly more protection than a waist long one. I won’t use anything else either.

        I store a roll of toilet paper under the passenger seat inside of a quart sized ziploc bag to make it water proof. It has helped many runny noses and even been an emergency fire starter before.

      • 4

        I’ve completely changed my kits because of health issues. I got Covid, then Long Covid, and now have a sorta 24/7 asthma attack going on. Meaning, I can’t breathe well. At all. So any expenditure of energy leaves me gasping. 

        As a result, I now focus on just communications, keeping warm/dry, and the ability to walk out (slowly, carefully) in rainy or snowy conditions (Pacific Northwest) + a few tools if there happen to be some helpers on site.

        —Hiking poles, headlamp, paracord bracelet

        —Cell phone charger, Baofeng walkie talkie 

        —Rain: Long, tough, hooded rain poncho (doubles as privacy: a place to change clothing or go to the bathroom), gaiters, tough waterproofed walking shoes.

        —Snow: Down jacket, knit wool cap, snow gloves, snowboarding goggles, (gaiters here, too), crampons (btw, the goggles are good for heavy smoke, too)

        —Ziplock with hygiene items, toilet paper in ziplock, backpack shovel, fixed blade knife, N95 masks, first aid kit.

        —Bottled water, Probar meal bars, two days of meds, everyday carry stuff.

        —The usual chains, tow strap, jumpers, emergency flares, traction mats, heavy duty tire repair kit/wrench, work light, etc. Mostly for other people to use, alas.

        —I threw a down mummy bag into the back of my SUV, as well. Just in case it’s wiser to stay with the car.

      • 3

        A2, I am sorry you have Long COVID. That’s a tough row to hoe.

        I work with a man in his 30’s that had COVID a year ago. He too recovered but has Long COVID; he is plagued with blood clots in his legs and now his arms. Quite painful and they require constant monitoring and tweaking his meds.

        It is very encouraging that you have adapted to your condition.

        I have a neck injury that prevented me from carrying a pack (or using a rifle) for a few years. I adapted my winter load by putting a kids poly sled in the trunk so I could pull my bag behind me with a carpenters tool belt and paracord. I never needed it but was glad I had it.

      • 2

        Thanks for your kind words, Shaun. Adaptation is the rule for survival, isn’t it?

        Your poly sled idea is brilliant! 👏👏👏

      • 1

        We do have to adapt and change how we prep when we are afflicted by sickness or disability. You seem to have created a solid plan for yourself though and are aware of your capabilities and limitations now. Keep up the great work!

      • 1

        Good evening A2,

        That is a nice kit,

        I threw a cycling poncho in my vehicle emergency bathroom kit, for privacy when utilizing the vehicle emergency bathroom.

        I thought crampons were for climbing?

        A sleeping bag/blankets in the vehicle is not a bad idea. My understanding is that unless it is too dangerous to do so, it is always better to stay with the vehicle.

      • 2

        I have some ice crampons/cleats that are used for any icy conditions (link below), but Yaktrax make some that are easier to get on and off.

        I’d probably leave the car and walk home if I was within two miles or so, otherwise I’d stay put.


      • 2

        Wow, those are intense. My wife would kill me if I came in the house wearing those. That is why I am such a YakTrax fan.

        I own four and a half acres, no flat and level anywhere outside, I mean everything in my yard is up or down hill from anything else in my yard. I am also on ledge, in the winter my driveway is a sheet of ice. Once or twice a winter someone has to be pulled from the ditch.

        Point being, if I am outside in the winter, I am wearing YakTrax.

        Sometimes, like lugging groceries, firewood, whatever,  when I am going in and out frequently, I don’t have to remove and replace them each trip. If I come in with the YakTrax, I just have to be real care not to bust my a**. I don’t need to worry about damaging my wife’s floor.

      • 2

        Yeah, they’re heavy duty. That’s why they’re in my SUV, for emergency situations. I got em when I was living at altitude, in a place with heavy winters. They aren’t very quick to get on and off, but they’re super tough. I have a pair of lighter cleats, sorta Yaktrax knockoffs, by the front door for the few icy days we get in Washington state. And my husband would kill me if I wore EITHER inside!

      • 3

        I saw a recommendation for NEOS overshoes in another forum.  I’ve alway been curious about them for this sort of prep and also because winter is only during travel for me.  I got Yak Trax for a trip and found that they didn’t come large enough for my husband’s shoes even though it was listed as doing so.  Anyone with experience with NEOS?  And then with NEOS and Yak Trax? 

        Moving this question to the Winter Kit Thread from Ranger John. 

      • 2

        I have experience with both NEOS and YakTrax.

        I don’t think YakTrax come large enough to be used with NEOS at the same time. They both are good products, for different circumstances.

        The YakTrax are great on ice, deep snow not so much. The NEOS are better with deep snow. They aren’t quite as good on ice as the YakTrax.  I don’t know if the NEOS come large enough for your husbands feet.

        I have a straight up size 9 foot, easy to fit, if I can find them in stock.

      • 1

        Thanks for the info.  Size 13 was a stretch for Yak Trax (pun intended 🙂 ). They were easy to put on and served me well on an icy hike while on vacation.  

    • 4

      High Five to everyone adding garbage bags. We have three contractor bags in each of our winter bags. Some people are not fans of kitty litter, but is a go to option, if you don’t have ice melt or sand. You can also go with a five pound bag of salt.

      There are environmental concerns, but a small bag should not damage the earth beyond its current state. We also have balaclavas, which work very well in a snow storm. You can wear as a full face version, hat, mask and it protects from breathing in cold air. Budget conscious wise, they are at TJ Max for $10. The expensive ones are at REI. We bought ours at Costco years ago, 2 pack for $20. The winter gear is out right now at Costco. 

      • 2

        I am going to be adding a bag of salt to my car kit now, it has additional uses beyond kitty litter or sand such as it’s ability to lower the freezing point and prevent ice if I need it. Thank you for the idea.

    • 2

      Lots of great suggestions here (+1 on car and boot traction, head lamp, jumper cables, flares or super-bright flashlight, and more).

      Tire cables are fine for emergency use—that’s what we had for our low-clearance wheel well vehicles until we found these, which are even more low clearance: https://autosock.us/snow-socks-guide/ (However, I can’t believe how expensive they’ve become; ouch! Also they’re allowed in most, but not all, jurisdictions.) We have all-weather snow-rated tires on everything so we’ve not had occasion to use chains/cables for a long time; snow tires are even better if you can afford to keep a set and live where you’ll be mostly on snow and ice for a good chunk of the season.

      The ham radio is fine—but as I just noted in another thread, the satellite communication devices now available (Garmin InReach, ACR Bivy Stick, etc.) are superior for almost all use cases (other than voice communication). You can send and receive texts and emails (with or without your smartphone), and also send out an SOS, with coverage pretty much everywhere on the globe at this point. Nothing wrong with carrying the ham radio, but if and when you’re able, I highly recommend a satellite communicator.