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Discussion Starter #1
I live in Dillon, CO and work in Breckenridge, CO and occasionally have to get over Vail pass with lots of weekend commutes to Denver and Boulder.

Does anyone who live in this region have any suggestions on tires?

We have everything from hard packed snow, ice, slush, and deep snow in our area... it all varies day by day. My daily commute consists of Swan Mountain road which is a very windy climb/descent at 6 in the morning so its usually not plowed at those times. My route back home consists of Dillon Dam road which is a sheet of ice....

I was considering the winter force with studs but we go to denver and boulder so much that im fearful it will not handle well on dry/wet cold conditions...
 

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Strichmädchen & Koks
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Have a look at Nokian winter tires. They have both studdable and non studded tires.
 

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Ive read good things about them, they just seem either more expensive or harder to come by than the comparable Blizzacs.
They are worth it! By far the best snow tires out there ... if you can find them. They seem to suffer from a poor dealer network.

Out of: Blizzak, X-Ice or Winterfarce I'd rank:
- Blizzak (for deep snow)
- Winterfarce (they work well in deep snow, not ice)
- X-Ice (work well on ice, but not so great in deep snow)

OP - do you see more snow or ice? I have the Winterfarce, which are the worst winter tire out there, but they perform excellent in the deep snow on my Focus.

If you want to go cheap, Altimax Arctic or Winterfarce are probably going to be the cheapest - both are good in deep snow, but the Altimax Arctic is a better snow tire.

WS-70 is on sale right now as it's discontinued, so you can probably still get a set of those cheap. WS-80 is new, but an improvement. Definitely great all around winter tires.

Now that I have discovered tires-easy.com and see that they sell Nokians, the next set for my Focus will probably be Nokian snow tires.
 

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Strichmädchen & Koks
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My Nokians work quite well on dry pavement, even at warmer temps...the Blizzaks and Altimax Arctics I also have used were not nearly as good with that.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
They are worth it! By far the best snow tires out there ... if you can find them. They seem to suffer from a poor dealer network.

Out of: Blizzak, X-Ice or Winterfarce I'd rank:
- Blizzak (for deep snow)
- Winterfarce (they work well in deep snow, not ice)
- X-Ice (work well on ice, but not so great in deep snow)

OP - do you see more snow or ice? I have the Winterfarce, which are the worst winter tire out there, but they perform excellent in the deep snow on my Focus.

If you want to go cheap, Altimax Arctic or Winterfarce are probably going to be the cheapest - both are good in deep snow, but the Altimax Arctic is a better snow tire.

WS-70 is on sale right now as it's discontinued, so you can probably still get a set of those cheap. WS-80 is new, but an improvement. Definitely great all around winter tires.

Now that I have discovered tires-easy.com and see that they sell Nokians, the next set for my Focus will probably be Nokian snow tires.

Well the problem is where I live it varies... In the morning for work the plows are not out yet so its deepish snow... 3+ inches. but the ride back home at night its all ice..

I could care less if the tires perform good on dry pavement or not I can handle it since i am the one usually driving if we head out of the rockies. Im more worried about the daily commute for my wife... Not the best winter driver in the world.

also what size are you guys reccomending? im thinking 205/60R16
 

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Blizzak for snow/ice if you aren't going for studs, those altimax arctics would be nice with studs.

Nokians aren't as readily available.
 

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speaking from experience.

I bought my Nokian Hakka 7s from Tire Factory. call around, different locations quoted me wildly different prices, even drawing from the same warehouse.
they may be the best, but they are the noisiest tire I have ever driven on. and they are not cheap.

I have also had the altimax artic studded. honestly, the studs probably did very little, and they were 15$ more per tire from tire rack, and they are noisy. however the altimax is a great budget tire. way better than the winterforce.

avoid the winterforce (even with studs)

my recommendation is get blizzacks or Xice if you want premium, altimax arctic if you want budget (but still very good). hakkapelittas if you want the best that money can buy.

I wouldn't get studded tires unless you really really needed them, and then, I would only get hakka's.
personally I wouldn't again for a street driven tire.
 

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Agree Norm

Only reason I might go for studs is if you're doing a daily afternoon drive on an unsanded ice sheet.

I was visualizing a country road that gets plowed, melts in the day & then freezes to multiple ice sheets in the late afternoon from his description.

Worst possible conditions and care would be needed whatever tires are used.
 

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Agree Norm

Only reason I might go for studs is if you're doing a daily afternoon drive on an unsanded ice sheet.

I was visualizing a country road that gets plowed, melts in the day & then freezes to multiple ice sheets in the late afternoon from his description.

Worst possible conditions and care would be needed whatever tires are used.
i hear ya, melt n freeze is the slipperiest out there.
but good tires are pretty amazing. xice and blizzacks do wonders.
studs, especially the humongous studs in the Hakkas are really loud, they are a compromise in their own right.
 

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Absolutely

Tires have improved & I've steered clear of studs for quite a while now. Don't drive in conditions where they would help very often, too noisy on pavement, and limits on when & where they can be used have an effect here (Ontario, CA got rid of them completely).

Sanded ice & snow doesn't need their help at all, great traction when it's cold.

Unless the OP's Wife has to deal with frozen water flow on the road in the evening they wouldn't be needed. Equivalent of the proverbial "Black Ice", even if you can see it.
 

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With the advancements in tire technology, I'm not really sure they are even needed any more. I'm sure a WS-70 or WS-80 (I think all of Nokians are studded) will outperform a Winterfarce studded in pretty much any condition.

I would have went that route, but for some reason, 185/65-15 snow tires were all over $100 a piece except for the Winterfarce. So that's what I went with.

Probably won't be going with studded again. The noise ... drives me nuts.
 

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Strichmädchen & Koks
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Not all Nokians are studded. What I like best about mine is their dry pavement performance, even in warmer weather. My General altitudes did not do well on dry pavement.
 

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You're right - The Hakkapeliita isn't studded. That's one I was looking at as well.

My parents have the studded Nordsman on their Focuscape and they're super quiet. Quieter than the studless Blizzak WS-50 I had, even!
 

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C2H5OH
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All season recaps.

Silica in the compound, that part's similar to high priced studless Winter tires. Difference would be the harder year round compound & tread design.

Car recaps are only allowed a single recapping, should be MUCH better than the truck recaps I learned to dislike. Only the best of those are worth using, or your own casings recapped so you know the history. New import tires are too close in pricing to recaps to make cheap recaps worthwhile.

('scuse me while I vent on bad truck tires)
 
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