I MADE IT!
Donner pass is indeed 7,200.
The Alamo rental was a 2001 Chevy TrailBlazer (very nice!) with a 2WD, 4x4AWD, 4 HI, and 4 LO, selector. ABS. It also had Nevada plates.
Went through the pass on Monday morning. A website said expect heavy snow and that chains were recommended to be in the vehicle. So I stop in Sacramento (Would you believe that I could not find a single Pep Boys or Autozone equivalent in San Fran? What? Do cars just not break down in San Fran? Now I did find a NAPA, but come to find out had something to with wines and a valley... nothing to do with auto parts SO I stop in Sacramento at a Whip-Mart off the highway, and come to find out Whip-Mart does sell tire chains... they don't carry them in their Fort Worth stores though, so I was pleased.
Enter Whip-Mart. Locate chains. What do you mean you need my tire size...? I thought this was a "1 size fits all type product." Uum, no sir, you need tire size. (sigh) (return) 245-70Rx16MS. That will be $63.75, thank you.
Proceed up Sierra's. It starts to snow. Then it starts to snow very hard. As in can't see so good hard. tag the 4x4 switch. Tune into AM radio 1610 for road conditions. Roadblock ahead. Must have chains on all cars and semi's to pass or be in a 4x4 vehicle with snow tires. (Snow Tires? Do I have snow tires?) Cement trucks cannot pass. Whew, I was sure worried about that.
At 2000 feet, through the falling dander, I see snow monkies and road block. I stop. The monkey was very friendly and honest. He said that it was my call, but since my vehicle had mud/snow tires (ahhh so that's what the MS on the sidewall was for!) and was 4x4, he said I should be all right on 4 HI. I left chains in box and proceeded up and over.
The snow was thick, and not recently plowed, but traction was never lost. It is interesting to see a Porsche in chains. I got passed by *a lot* of other 4x4's holding to the regular speed limit. I could not bring myself to go above 45mph, no matter how solid the TrailBlazer felt.
It sure was beautiful! Reno had quite a pile being dumped on it Monday afternoon when I arrived. I turned in the rental, and the guy at Alamo tells me that the vehicle is registered to their Tahoe outlet. That might explain the MS tires. I feel lucky that I wound up in the vehicle I did. I don't imagine that all the rental vehicles had MS tires.
--- Now for Fiero related items ---
There is a black SE w/tan interior on 26th st, San Fran, very close to where I was staying. Are you on here? I also got passed by a white 2m6 in downtown on Monday. Dude, you ran a light! Way to go!
In Reno, I gave pause by a Porsche dealership that had a white FORMULA covered in snow in the parking lot. Had to stop for a pic. Mountains all around, and the only pic I want is by a Fiero. And I dont even give much heed to the $70,000 vehicle parked around it!
thanks for all the help on Friday before I left.
Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.