Jesse wrote:I recognize that a car can become quite cold, because it's not insulated well, but it's still shelter from the wind. So long as you have some of the things Calgacus and others have mentioned you'll be fine. Just do NOT burn something in the car without a window cracked a bit.
Jesse, you've got a great list, and Calgacus, great information as usual.
I've always got water, tools, MRE's, power bar-type snacks, flares, ropes, straps, sand, a shovel, extra mags for the gun(s), FAK, and lots of other junk that tends to accumulate in the back of my 4Runner. When traveling across mtn passes in the winter, as we inevitably do every Christmas, I'll be outfitted a lot like McGyver (I mean Jesse).
Out west here, it just makes sense. Big stretches of nothing but frozen forests and deserts, lots of places to slide off the road and down into a canyon, where you might not be found for a while if you're injured, for example.
I'm also trained in white-water rescue, and carry a throw rope and life jacket.
I have pulled folks out of a ditch, and helped stranded motorists on more than a few occasions. And sometimes you're in the middle of nowhere and the road's closed due to a semi truck jackknifing and turning over in the snow. You might be stuck for several hours in 10degf weather, and you need to be prepared.
IMO, the best survival tool for winter driving is a well maintained vehicle that has 4wd, or Fwd with studded tires all around and decent ground clearance.