We’ve learned over the years that when running all terrain or mud terrain style tires on our other vehicles that frequent tire rotations really extend tire life. Although more aggressive tread has awesome performance on unpaved roads, they always seem to wear a little odd when driven on pavement. As the miles added up on our trip, we started looking for a good opportunity to rotate the tires on the truck and get the spare tire into the rotation.
After some consideration, the best opportunity presented itself the day after we crossed the Artic Circle along the Dempster Highway. We found a reasonably level gravel pit with nice firm soil. As an added bonus, the shape of the gravel pit protected us from the gusty Arctic wind.
We were really pleased with how well the chain hoist and rear tire mount worked. We also found that we had done well in provisioning for tire / wheel work. The entire rotation took less than 2 hours and then we used our on-board air system to balance all the tire pressures.
One thing that we have learned on our trip is that everyone has different experiences on a road depending on weather. One vehicle may make it through an area easily and totally clean, while another vehicle may get a day of bad weather on the same stretch of road and subsequently end up in pretty muddy conditions. Our first day on the Dempster was pretty wet and muddy. As a consequence, we had to bucket wash and scrape a lot of mud off the wheels in order to complete the tire rotation.
Overall everything went smoothly and it’s nice to have inspected everything and be treating the tread the best we can.