Driving in the winter can pose risks, such as slick roads, traffic delays, road closures, and unprepared drivers. This is especially true in Tahoe, where roads like Interstate 80 see high traffic volume, and big winter storms. How can you be safe? Follow this guide

  1. Check the weather.
  2. Carry Chains. 
    • During storms, CalTrans will typically set up chain control checkpoints. Depending on conditions, you may be able to get away with snow tires, especially if you have a 4WD or AWD vehicle. If you get stuck on the road during chain controls without proper tires or chains, CHP can and will tow your vehicle away and fine you – even if you get waived through a checkpoint. 
  3. Charge your phone. 
    • Not only can your phone be a source for information, you may need it to coordinate with friends and family in case you’re going to arrive somewhere late. It’s also a must-have in emergency situations. A car charger or portable battery pack can be your best friend. 
  4. Have a winter supply kit. 
    • Having a winter kit is crucial in the event of a road closure or other emergency. Include items such as:
      • Blankets or sleeping bag
      • Extra food and water
      • Ice scraper
      • Jumper cables
      • Flashlight
      • Phone charger
      • Multi-tool
      • Shovel (foldable shovels can be easily stored)
      • Sand or cat litter – for traction if you get stuck
      • Flares or road reflectors

Following this list will help you have a more enjoyable and safe Tahoe snow vacation.