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4-5' drifts 50' long will a snow blower work?

Discussion in 'Residential Snow Removal' started by ColoradoDrifter, Oct 23, 2005.

  1. ColoradoDrifter

    ColoradoDrifter Junior Member
    Messages: 2

    I live in a rural area of Colorado on a private road. 1-3 times a year we will get a storm that blows snow horizontally and does a great job leveling the landscape. Unfortunately that means there are several places on our private road that will drift from 3-5 feet.

    I haven't seen any discussion of what blowers will go through deep snow. My goal is to make the road passable or break down the drifts enough to use a truck with a plow. Does anyone have experience with or an opinion on this topic?
  2. Kramer

    Kramer Senior Member
    Messages: 386

    no experience for you but 5' drift is pretty decent size. If it happens in the beginning of the year, doeas that mean next time its 8' drift???

    If its only 50 ft long, and you have time, almost any large 2 stage blower should work......but be aware that you're gonna be buried while getting under it.

    You might need something to knock the pile down as you go....and its gonna take a long time.

    For me, a small loader/tractor or skid steer might be a good option to open up a path to get going...that assumes you have a place to put it. There were drifts about 6ft where I used to live--the town always used a decent sized payloader, but the road was also about 1/2 mile liong and uphill at about 20 degrees. Let us know what you decide. :waving:
  3. 04superduty

    04superduty PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,354

    what type of blower? if a walk behind i think a tracked model would be best. that way you can float over some of the snow and do layers at a time.
  4. ColoradoDrifter

    ColoradoDrifter Junior Member
    Messages: 2

    Thanks for responding Kramer!

    If it happens in the beginning of the year, does that mean next time its 8' drift???

    Fortunately at my elevation (about 7,500') the Colorado sunshine melts 100% of the snow between storms. I have the room for a skid steer, its just not the budget. I am interested in a large 2 stage snow blower but my fear is that if the snow is taller that the opening I will get no where. I was reading a separate thread about a walk behind vs. tractor mounted and folks seemed to say a lot of good things about the walk behinds.

    I am hoping someone will be able to say how a walk behind might perform. Would I be able to go into the drift, back out and then re-enter? Keep in mind this only happens 1-2 times per season and as soon as I buy a tractor, we will have 5 years of mild winters.
  5. Detroitdan

    Detroitdan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,937

    if it's only 50 feet long, what about building or planting a windrow? A fence or a row of trees or bushes might well be enough to disrupt the drifting, and if you do it right the wind will do the work for you. Study where the wind clears snow down to bare ground around houses and structures, I think it is called leeward. You could certainly try snowfence for that short a distance, and its temporary. Where I work we rent it out in 50 foot sections with stakes. I'm sure Home Cheapo must have it. If you do it right the snow will be scarce in front of the fence, wont be much to clean up with the snowblower. I doubt you could take on 5' deep snow. I have a good sized Ariens that is only 18 inches high at the auger opening. Gotta stay ahead of it. I think a better way would be with a V-plow. Good luck and let us know what you do.
  6. Joe D

    Joe D Senior Member
    Messages: 605

    I have a church I do that has one section of the walks that drift 3-4 ft if we get 6in and the wind is blowing good. I use my Ariens 8hp and have no issues with it it just takes longer. The good thing is the drift is ussually just powery snow that the machine will just go through. I have a set of bars that run up the front of the blower to break the drifts up and feed them into the augers.
  7. Kramer

    Kramer Senior Member
    Messages: 386

    Hey the bars sound like a great idea! Got a picture to help him out with how they are attached??
  8. Joe D

    Joe D Senior Member
    Messages: 605

    I think they are shown on the Ariens site. They came on the blower new
  9. scholzee

    scholzee Senior Member
    Messages: 242

  10. justme-

    justme- 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,138

    They are called Bank Cutters. flat steel or aluminum bar stock 18" to 24" bolted at a slight forward angle from the top corners of the auger shield is all they really are.

    In Colorado, isn't the snow fairly dry, especially since it banks so much? I would expect there is a possibility the truck could handle it unaided if so. I would suggest snow fencing on the up wind side in any case- it's relativly cheap and easy enough to install for the season. The banks will still form, but significantly smaller since the fence will cause it to bank there.
  11. MrBigStuff

    MrBigStuff Senior Member
    from Boston
    Messages: 140

    Blower before plow?

    You want to use the blower to make it passible by a plow truck? IMHO you've got it backwards. I regularly had to deal with 4-5' drifts in my driveway when I lived in WI where the snow is very heavy. The plow will outperform any blower if used right. You can take passes at the bank with the plow up off the ground but not so high as to beach the truck. I used to plow the neighbor's driveway that was about 1/2 mile and it took three passes to get it down to the gravel base. So it can be done.

    You're gonna be out there all day long trying to knock down those drifts even if you have 3' drift cutters on that blower. That's why I added a plow to my arsenal...
  12. Ramairfreak98ss

    Ramairfreak98ss PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,872

    lol, that troy bilt is huge in width, in the simplicity commercial models its the same price for a much smaller unit since theyre built well. my 32" width ones have 12hp for last years model and 13hp for this years model. It moves snow well, a 12 or 13hp motor on a 40+ width unit would be slow as molassas!

    Most only take 2ft max intake plus another foot if you use the drift knives. if your doing 5+ feet id think ONLY a big plow would work or front end loader, etc. I know in NJ in 96 we had a blizzard, some trucks even wouldnt move 5+ ft drifts, thats a lot, 3-4ft was about theyre max. We had a big ol CAT bulldozer and front end loader come down our country street, was over 34+ " of snow and drifts over 8ft tall lol. Me and my 16hp gardentractor and a 46" plow, haha, get real, i plowed every hour to keep the driveway low, drifts overwhelmed it sooner or later.