Driving in the Snow

The main rule for winter driving is to be cautious and alert!


When travelling within the National Park it is compulsory to carry chains if your vehicle is 2WD.

4WD and AWD are exempt from fitting chains.  The majority of accidents that occur in snow /ice conditions involve 4WD and AWD vehicles, therefor if you are unfamiliar with driving in snow or ice conditions you may wish to consider carrying and fitting chains.

Practice fitting the chains prior to needing them

Pack the chains in a place that is easy to get to.

When the chains are on, drive slowly to avoid tyre damage and remove them at the first opportunity but remember to watch out for other roads-users

More on fitting chains


Certain areas of the Snowy Mountains are deemed "snow-ice risk sections" between 1 June and 10 October.

Kosciuszko Road from Sawpit Creek to Charlotte Pass and the Island Bend/Guthega road (the former is never cleared of snow beyond Perisher). Winter to Charlotte Pass is by courtesy of oversnow transport only. 

The Cabramurra-Khancoban Road is usually closed from the start of the snow season in June until the end of the October long weekend.

Black Ice, is common when driving in the Snowy Mountains. It is in shady areas that don’t get sun at all during the day. It is hard to detect and you are likely to hit it before you see it. Stay well back from the car in front of you.

If the section of road you are driving is slippery – do not panic, slow down, but do not bbreak suddenly, change to a lower gear, drive with caution.


Brakes, steering and suspension are critical for the safe handling of a car in slippery conditions. Book your car in for servicing just prior to your trip to the Snowies. Faulty brakes can easily cause a car to slide off the road or collide with others.

Tyres It is beneficial to have plenty of tread to grip the surface and break through any thin ice on the roads. If you plan to travel to the snow frequently this season consider fitting a set of winter tyres with an aggressive tread pattern. Most people find their car to be heavily loaded on skiing trips, check your vehicles owner handbook  for the maximum tire pressure and increase to this level for added safety.

Windscreen check and or replace wiper blades prior to your trip to the snow. Carry a scrapper to remove ice from your windscreen. It is not recommended to use boiling water to clear your windscreen as it may crack.

Anti-Freeze is required in the cooling system. Follow the manufacturer's directions on mixing techniques and the quantity to use.

Batteries can be affected by cold weather so it is important to check your battery before you head to the snow. If in doubt get a new one

Fuel If you drive a diesel car make sure you fill up with Alpine Diesel or Winter-Mix diesel located in our BP Service station. It has a lower freezing point  so is better for your car in the cold mountain conditions


Call the Roads and Traffic Authority on 131 700