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Driving into Snowshoe

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Miami, Florida
posts: 2
reviews: 2
Driving into Snowshoe

I'll be traveling with my family during christmas break from Miami. We'll be staying at Rimfire in the village. I keep hearing these horror stories about US 219. I have an SUV, but no 4X4. I'm purchasing snow chains. Is it safe for us travel without having 4X4? Please keep in mind we are from Miami where it's flat & hot. Any advice would great!

14 replies to this topic
Any Beach
Destination Expert
for Myrtle Beach, North Myrtle Beach
posts: 4,760
reviews: 30
1. Re: Driving into Snowshoe

Is the vehicle All-wheel drive? If not, then chains would be a good idea. The road crews do a good job of keeping the roads as clear and dry as possible, but they can only do so much. Even if you are just parked on a patch of snow you could get stuck unless you have a 4-wheel or all-wheel drive vehicle.

Of course we have no clue what the weather will be this far out. One year (2010) we had 20+ inches of snow fall one weekend. People got stuck on the Interstate overnight! Awful. But...since then it hasn't been bad at all. You just never know. Bring the chains...better safe than sorry.

Virginia Beach...
posts: 1
2. Re: Driving into Snowshoe

I HATE driving in to Snowshoe....that said, anytime i've gone it's been pouring down snow. The road leading in to Snowshoe is LONG, STEEP and WINDEY. As Beachlady stated, though, they do do a pretty good job of keeping the roads clear, but if the snow is coming down really hard, it sometimes doesn't matter what they do. I'd suggest the chains and watch the weather days leading up to your trip. There is absolutely no cell service about an hour before you hit Snowshoe and I dont know where the resort has WIFI. It is a beautiful resort, though....I don't want to deter you. Just be safe!! Have fun!

Edited: 3:54 pm, December 02, 2013
Miami, Florida
posts: 2
reviews: 2
3. Re: Driving into Snowshoe

Thank you both for the advice. I'll definitely be purchasing snow chains & praying that it only snows once I get to the top, lol! I'm scared of heights, so this should be interesting. Thanks again

Washington DC...
posts: 2,586
reviews: 51
4. Re: Driving into Snowshoe

If it makes you feel better...of all the times I have driven into Snowshoe (and it's been a bunch!) I have never had an issue. Roads are clear of snow and well treated.

It is true about the lack of Cel service. Snowshoe is in the United States National Radio Quiet Zone. This supports the Sugar Grove research facility, and the work of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in nearby Green Bank. The largest fully-steerable radio telescope in the world, it really is an incredible thing. Tours are available of the telescope, and their visitor center is very nice. I recommend it, especially if you have nerdy family members or kids who are interested in STEM.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Green_Bank_Telescope

Edited: 7:38 am, December 05, 2013
Lynchburg, VA
posts: 139
reviews: 46
5. Re: Driving into Snowshoe

If you get chains, I highly recommend: 1. The Thule self adjusting chains because they are very easy to put on and tighten by themselves. 2. Practice putting on your chains while you are at home in Miami. It's difficult to figure them out by the side of the road in the cold/snow and 3. Have a flashlight and waterproof work gloves in the SUV. Also, remember that you must drive slowly when using chains, so don't put them on until you need them.

Any Beach
Destination Expert
for Myrtle Beach, North Myrtle Beach
posts: 4,760
reviews: 30
6. Re: Driving into Snowshoe

I hope you can find chains in Miami!! And yes, you may not even need them until you get to the bottom of Snowshoe Mountain. Interstate driving should be fine. Maybe when you get to Lewisburg, WV you can stop and ask the locals about the road conditions heading to Snowshoe. Like I said you may not even need them until you get right to the Resort entrance. (the entrance is at the bottom of the mountain....lodging and resturants and everything are at the top...it's an "upside down" resort)

Raleigh, North...
posts: 212
reviews: 2
7. Re: Driving into Snowshoe

I've been coming up for years and many times including the middle of snowstorms and after dark. They do a good job clearing the roads and all I've ever needed was a front wheel drive car. Be prepared to go slow, sometimes agonizingly so, and you won't have an issue. Most people I've seen go off the road were traveling too fast. Also if you are driving up a snowy/icy slope go slowly and consistently but don't stop or you'll have trouble getting started again.

Raleigh, North...
posts: 212
reviews: 2
8. Re: Driving into Snowshoe

Also US219 is very winding and has areas where you are just a guardrail away from going off the mountain. Not to scare you but just to let you know you shouldn't be going that fast along that route anyway despite snow or not. Often at night or when the temps are very cold if you see a spot that looks wet, it is actually black ice.

Raleigh, North...
posts: 212
reviews: 2
9. Re: Driving into Snowshoe

Sorry to triple post but if you get to the bottom of snowshoemtn. it is not that bad to get to the top. They are operating shuttles to the top of the mountain from the inn at the bottom again this year so if you were very uncomfortable driving you could likely park at the inn and take a shuttle up but you'd have to carry all your stuff (I'd verify that is ok with the resort prior to leaving my car.)

Also it is a very scenic drive up with lots to see on the way. The Droop Mountain Battlefiled gives a whole new perspective to what fighting was like in the Civil War. The terrain there is very rough and at that time the soldiers were on foot or horseback.

Raleigh, North...
posts: 212
reviews: 2
10. Re: Driving into Snowshoe

We've never used chains.

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