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Plowing deep, long drifts?

Discussion in 'Residential Snow Removal' started by bstout, Feb 24, 2008.

  1. bstout

    bstout Member
    Messages: 78

    My driveway is one half mile long. Some places along its length, the snow gets much deeper than other spots. I do my first swipe in the shallowest spots then nibble away at these drifts until I get the driveway widened out.

    One time this season the snow drifts were almost three feet high (and 100 yards long) in the middle but much shallower near the edge of the road near the ditch. As I went for the low spot I got pulled off the road and into the small drainage ditch and stuck.

    I try to plow with the wind and drifts to keep it down but sometimes it does get away from me. Would it have been better for me to raise the blade slightly and stay in the middle of the driveway away from either side or do I want to always leave my blade all the way down?

    This situation doesn't happen very often but it does happen.
     
  2. veggin psd

    veggin psd Senior Member
    Messages: 276

    It kinda all depends on what equipment you are using. If you have a half ton truck with a 7.5 foot straight plow then I'd say keep the plow up a little and just nibble at it. A heavy 3/4 ton truck or larger and a 8 foot v plow or straight blade should handle that. In fact that much snow for that length of drive would be a heck of a lot of FUN!!!!wesport
     
  3. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    Work the drifts side to side .Just keep pushing a plow length to the sides.The make your straight runs and cut the piles back for the next time.
     
  4. doh

    doh Senior Member
    Messages: 252

    a V plow puts banks on both sides, try winging the bank down wind. Then if it snows and blows, ithe road will not fill in as high as the banks.

    Go in straight, off the ground your first run, then wing everything to the down wind side.
     
  5. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    First rule - never let snow get in your A-frame. That's a sure way to get very stuck. Lifting your plow off the ground is a quick way to do that. Also plowing deep snow with the plow straight so the snow comes over the moldboard (technical name for the blade). Your best bet is plowing alternately to each side - in a herringbone fashion. You can try powering through with the plow at full angle. If it's too much for your equipment, you can still do the herringbone thing. When I ran a half ton with a 7.5' plow, it could usually handle 10"-12" even of wet and heavy snow, but it also depends on your tires and ballast. If you use the herringbone, you can push normally on each side to finish up. It takes longer, but not as long as getting stuck.
     
  6. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    Mick,I couldn't think of the name.Herringbone:salute:.
     
  7. bstout

    bstout Member
    Messages: 78

    Great information gentlemen. I didn't know about keeping snow out of the A frame. These are the kind of things I need to learn and hopefully not from personal experience.

    So my best chances of making the first pass is to have maximum angle on the blade and try to stay in the middle of the drive (away from either ditch) with the blade all the way down while maintaining a moderate speed?

    I have learned that once you can't back up you're in trouble. I like the herring bone pattern. My understanding is to start in the middle and push towards the right ditch, then back up and push towards the left ditch and so on and so forth until you make your way down the drive. As long as you can always back up I would think I'd be alright.

    I'm just trying to learn. One of my favorite Will Rogers quotes "Some men can learn from reading, other men can learn from watching other men, everyone else must pee on the electric fence for themselves".
     
  8. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    ............
     
  9. bstout

    bstout Member
    Messages: 78

    Thanks, Mick! I appreciate the advice.

    I'm flying by the seat of my pants here for the most part.

    I'm having a ball doing it though! :D
     
  10. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546


    Join the crowd. That's how I started plowing. Bought a plow and had it put on a 1/2 ton Dodge. Had to have the installer show me how to lift it to get it home. Practised mounting, dismounting and angling for about two weeks, till it snowed. Got a couple customers and started plowing snow. Got on here and drove a few good guys crazy with my questions - like "Why is this Fisher MM1 so hard to get hooked up?" answer " Push down on that yellow triangle thingy.".