Is there anything better than winter in the mountains? Breathing in the cold, crisp air and taking in the snowy mountain peaks teleports you away from all the noise and chaos of the city. Even in a crowded ski resort parking lot, the snow creates a quiet calm.
To highlight the toughness of some of our 4x4 rigs, the Northwest Motorsport team took four winter-ready vehicles up to the mountains to shoot some video and photo content.
One of the many perks of living in the Northwest is the tremendous amount of snow-capped mountain peaks just waiting to explore. Whether it’s the Rocky Mountain Range running through Montana or the Cascade Mountain Range in Washington, there’s no shortage of scenic areas in the Northwest.
Located just an hour east of Puyallup, Snoqualmie pass was the perfect backdrop for some winter content. The NWMS team headed out on November 15, 2022, with a pair of vehicles for our first of two trips. Check out a video from our first trip below!
Even in November, there was snow on the ground thanks to some pre-Thanksgiving snow. After having such a blast on our first trip, we decided to do it again with two more vehicles on November 21, 2022.
The Alpental Ski Resort, located at the Summit at Snoqualmie, gave the perfect backdrop for the vehicles as they showed off their grit. With dramatic views of the Cascade mountains and snow-covered trees, we were surrounded by nothing but perfect scenery and awesome rigs.
The first rig we grabbed was a 2020 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon. Odds are, when you think of Jeeps, you think of the outdoors. These midsize trucks certainly live up to that reputation. With 4-wheel drive and some hulking 37-inch tires, this Gladiator is ready for any weather conditions. The Jeep Command-Trac 4x4 System allows you to quickly shift from two-wheel drive to 4-wheel drive without stopping. This feature was perfect as we moved from pavement to gravel and then into the snow and ice. Whatever the terrain, the Gladiator was in complete control.
· 3.6L V6 engine
· Jeep Command-Trac 4x4 System
· 37 in. Mastercraft Courser MXT tires
· Find out more about this Gladiator here!
In the world of high-performance off-roading rigs, no truck is as easily recognizable as the Ford F-150 Raptor. With the amber lights and the Ford wordmark on the grille, these rigs are a sight to behold. If you’ve never been lucky enough to ride in a Raptor, you’re missing out. No matter the terrain, the suspension on the Raptor keeps you comfortable. The Raptor trucks aren’t just built to handle rugged terrain; these high-performance off-road trucks were designed to conquer. This truck can effortlessly drive along uneven, rocky terrain at high speeds, thanks to the long-travel suspension and the powerful 3.5L V6 engine.
· 3.5L V6 EcoBoost engine
· Fox High-Output shocks
· 450 horsepower
· Aftermarket bumper for improved approach angles
· Find out more about this Raptor here!
We love driving trucks with the top-of-the-line trims and big lifts, but sometimes it’s good to show off the power of a stock truck. No frills, just a tough, adventurous rig. The 2020 Toyota Tacoma was the perfect truck to get us out into nature. For most occasions, a 4x4 truck with a good set of tires is more than enough to get you through the snow and ice. The Tacoma had no problem handling the challenging terrain as it crawled up a snow-packed hill effortlessly.
· 3.5L V6 engine
· 278 horsepower
· Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac tires
· Find out more about this Tacoma here!
With 37-inch tires and a turbocharged 2.3L EcoBoost engine, this 2022 Ford Bronco SUV is a beast in the snow and ice. One of the best features of the new Bronco SUV is the G.O.A.T. Modes (Goes Over Any Type of Terrain) terrain management system. These different modes allow you to quickly alter the performance of the Bronco to best handle the terrain. The Bronco also features a soft top, so you can enjoy the cool breeze as you tear up the trails during the warmer months. But for our trip to the mountains, we obviously kept the top on.
· TurboCharged 2.3 Liter EcoBoost
· Suspension lift and 37-inch tires for extra ground clearance
· Electronic Front and Rear Locking Differential
· Find out more about this Bronco here!
After taking in the views near Alpental Ski Resort, it was time to get the gear set up and start shooting. Since we were up in such a scenic, wide-open location, it was the perfect time for some drone footage. Once the drone was up in the air, it was time to drive. The drone captured the vehicles from a birds-eye view as they drove through the wintry landscape.
Along with recording tons of video, we also took pictures of the vehicles as they posed in front of the snowy backdrop. When you parked these rigs in front of the snow-covered trees and jagged mountain peaks, it was impossible to take a bad shot.
Unfortunately, many avoid going out into the snow because they don’t have the right vehicle. Venturing out on snowy roadways can be dangerous without a 4-wheel drive vehicle and the proper tires (check out our blog on picking the best snow tires for your vehicle)!
It can be tempting to stay cooped up inside during the winter months, but don’t let the snow and ice keep you from enjoying the great outdoors. Having a tough 4x4 rig like a Ford Raptor or Jeep Gladiator is ideal, but most 4x4 and AWD vehicles are perfectly capable of handling winter weather. Regardless of the vehicle, it’s always important to take precautions and drive safely in the snow.
A good pair of all-season tires are a must when traveling on icy roadways. Being prepared with chains and a shovel is always wise when you’re driving through a mountain pass.
The most important thing to remember when driving on wintery roads is to go slow. A 4-wheel drive vehicle is great for getting traction in the snow, but it doesn’t make you immune to sliding on the ice if you take a corner too fast. For some winter driving tips, read our blog on the subject here!
If you want to find a safe, dependable truck or SUV for the winter, look no further than Northwest Motorsport. Whether you’re looking for a comfortable SUV for your next family road trip or a serious lifted rig to go off-roading in the snow, we have you covered. With an unbeatable selection of rugged trucks and adventurous SUVs, Northwest Motorsport should be the first stop on your next winter adventure.