chains for snow, what do you use, especially 4runner or tacoma people

rockwind1

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May 11, 2016
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Vegas
had 2 storms this hunt, each storm dropping 6" of snow in the hills, my '16 4runner trail worked very good but there were a couple spots i chickened out on. i've heard if you have anti-lock brakes you should use cable chains but that is for general highway use. do cable chains, even the thicker ones, work as good as the real chains in snowy, or muddy conditions? a few places i saw side by side tracks go in the snow where i would have liked to go but did't have the traction of their super knobby tires, chains might have helped.

just curious what others use for chains, thanks
 

5MilesBack

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Colorado Springs
I've got regular big thick chains for my Toyota, but it's 31 years old so plenty of clearance. The chains are as old as the truck is. But I haven't used chains in years since I don't hunt any of the rifle seasons anymore. Haven't needed them during archery. I can't imagine cables doing much at all in the slop.
 

Elkslayer67

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Apr 1, 2019
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Western Washington
I have used chains and cables for years. Both on my private and commercial rigs. I recommend the chains. Cables are for light duty application. The gravel roads will eat them up if you get serious. Properly tightened you will not have clearance issues. Just remember to take them off if the road clears up. Biggest failure of either happens when used on clear roads.
 

realunlucky

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Jan 20, 2013
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Eastern Utah
Chain chains for sure but also carry some mechanics wire and the new spider bungees to maintain tightness and avoid loose ends.
I have some nice cam lock chains but don't use them all that much. I still carry rubber spiders and a set of pliers with tie wire in the bag with them. Keeping the chains tight will save dramas.
A few days ago I got out hurried and slopply chained up quickly to just turn around so didn't use any wire and ended up with a broken a brake line. User error for sure for not getting the chains tight but hell was just going to take them off in a couple minutes. Holiday weekend so no replacement in my small town until Tuesday, real bummer for my daughters late season cow tag.

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rockwind1

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Joined
May 11, 2016
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Vegas
I have some nice cam lock chains but don't use them all that much. I still carry rubber spiders and a set of pliers with tie wire in the bag with them. Keeping the chains tight will save dramas.
A few days ago I got out hurried and slopply chained up quickly to just turn around so didn't use any wire and ended up with a broken a brake line. User error for sure for not getting the chains tight but hell was just going to take them off in a couple minutes. Holiday weekend so no replacement in my small town until Tuesday, real bummer for my daughters late season cow tag.

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that does suck, i broke 2 atv's during this mule deer hunt and had to rely on my 4runner, which behaved awesome. i had heard that about chains on the front wheels of 4runners.
 

Fatcamp

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May 31, 2017
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Sodak
I have some nice cam lock chains but don't use them all that much. I still carry rubber spiders and a set of pliers with tie wire in the bag with them. Keeping the chains tight will save dramas.
A few days ago I got out hurried and slopply chained up quickly to just turn around so didn't use any wire and ended up with a broken a brake line. User error for sure for not getting the chains tight but hell was just going to take them off in a couple minutes. Holiday weekend so no replacement in my small town until Tuesday, real bummer for my daughters late season cow tag.

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What year? I have the clearance on my 2001, but the consequences are steep.
 

realunlucky

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Eastern Utah
What year? I have the clearance on my 2001, but the consequences are steep.
Sorry I don't have a newer Toyota, was just commenting on keeping chains tight in general. I have a Rubicon with 37's so plenty of room for properly installed chains. Got lazy and paid with broken parts.

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WTFJohn

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May 1, 2018
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CO
V-bar chains if you have the clearance and need the traction off road. Regular chains with clearance for all-around use, cable for anything else. Carry extra spiders, you'll break or lose some. I carry V-bars, an extra pair of spiders/tensioners, and run M+S rated AT tires. None of that will keep me from getting stuck if I get dumb behind the wheel.

Use chains to get you out of hunting places, not get you into them.
 

Headwatermike

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Sep 11, 2019
Messages
35
Location
MT
The v bar chains help with lateral traction for side hills. I wouldn't bother with cables. And try them out before you go counting on them to make sure they fit. The spider bungees are great.
 

rob86jeep

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Dec 19, 2017
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Colorado
What/where is the best place/way to buy chains for vehicles with oversize tires? I've never needed them before, but am considering getting a set for my jeep in case of emergencies.
 

nrh6.7

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Oct 10, 2016
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854
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Fort Worth, TX
What/where is the best place/way to buy chains for vehicles with oversize tires? I've never needed them before, but am considering getting a set for my jeep in case of emergencies.
Pewag in Boulder if you want heavy duty and don't mind spending the money. Having some made for my tire size since they don't make the ones I want in my size or close to it.
 

5MilesBack

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Use chains to get you out of hunting places, not get you into them.
Most all of the places I used to hunt during the later rifle seasons, you wouldn't be able to get in there without chains.......steep up hill and sloppy as heck. One year I showed up and there were four or five vehicles at the bottom of this long steep twisting climb to get back into where I normally went. It had rained for two days straight and then turned to snow, so there was about 8-10" of snow on top of the slop.

None of these guys had chains for whatever reason, and I never saw any of those guys back there the whole time. After I chained up there was a Suburban coming down the hill sideways. Another truck pulling a small trailer was jackknifed off to the side. My Toyota with chains didn't even break a sweat. When I came back out after a few days most of these guys were camped right there at the bottom of that hill, but my camp was a few miles up above and beyond the hill.

I have the rubber tensioners, but I also have the chain tensioners with heavy springs that keep them nice and tight. The inside of my chains don't have any loose chain that can flop around when they're put on correctly, and the outside is easy to tension and keep those loose ends in place at the same time. I actually used to carry a small jack with me that I used on each wheel to put the chains on. A lot easier than driving over them to get them on nice and tight.
 

WTFJohn

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Joined
May 1, 2018
Messages
104
Location
CO
Most all of the places I used to hunt during the later rifle seasons, you wouldn't be able to get in there without chains.......steep up hill and sloppy as heck. One year I showed up and there were four or five vehicles at the bottom of this long steep twisting climb to get back into where I normally went. It had rained for two days straight and then turned to snow, so there was about 8-10" of snow on top of the slop.

None of these guys had chains for whatever reason, and I never saw any of those guys back there the whole time. After I chained up there was a Suburban coming down the hill sideways. Another truck pulling a small trailer was jackknifed off to the side. My Toyota with chains didn't even break a sweat. When I came back out after a few days most of these guys were camped right there at the bottom of that hill, but my camp was a few miles up above and beyond the hill.

I have the rubber tensioners, but I also have the chain tensioners with heavy springs that keep them nice and tight. The inside of my chains don't have any loose chain that can flop around when they're put on correctly, and the outside is easy to tension and keep those loose ends in place at the same time.
I'll use chains to access some places as well, but I know the roads as well as you do and know what to watch for in the weather. I won't send people I don't know/trust into areas like that , there's a good chance they will end up stuck or in a ditch, even with chains. To me, the use chains to get out rule is one of those 'you have to learn the rules before you can break them' situations. I pulled people like that out this year before the opener of 3rd season. Never underestimate where a Marylander thinks his F-350 with cables towing a 32' camper thinks he can go.

I have seen those other tensioners, but haven't tried them myself. May have to get a pair next time I'm due for a new set of spiders.
 

wyosam

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Aug 5, 2019
Messages
87
Heavy chains x4 (carry 5) on stock 2010 taco. I carry repair links, extra cross chains, and chain pliers, but haven’t had to repair a chain in the field in a long time. Built chains myself with about 30% more cross chains than off the shelf.


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