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I have my mind set on Nokian Hakkapeliitta LT2 Studded. I have stock rims, 17in Rubicon take-offs, for them. Hakkapeliitta LT2 don’t come in stock size 255/75R17. Most of the driving will be in Calgary and on Alberta highways so when it gets nasty we have compact snow and ice for a while. Doing trails in powder may happen only once or twice – hopefully more as I get brave.


LT265/70R17 would be the more common choice, and closest to stock, a bit wider, a bit shorter.


I noticed LT235/80R17 is also available which got me thinking if narrower would be better.


On road: Narrower would cut through the snow/slush and have higher contact pressure on ice – which is more important then higher surface contact. Wider would be more stable/comfortable on bare road. Wider with lower pressure will grab/glove/hug the road better over uneven surface.


Off-road snow: I’m guessing snow will usually be to deep so you want to be able to float mostly - so wider. Cutting through snow with narrower tire for better traction would be good on trails but I would not expect such conditions.


The age old question.


This is a picture of the snowcoach I spotted in West Yellowstone – notice the huge wide tire, large slick knobs, no studs. It just floats!
 

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Of course that coach is also 2 or 3 times the weight of a Wrangler. I follow your thinking, and for my use am mostly thinking about stock size Duratracs as being better than KM in snow and on clean highways, although the side walls won't be as strong for rocks.
 

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I'm just over the border in BC. On my FJC, I had the Hakkapeliitta 8 SUV's in 265/70/17, which is the stock size for the FJC. They were awesome tires and I'm a big fan of the Nokians. On my JKU, I'm currently running Blizzak DM V2's, also in 265/70/17. They were part of a dealer special winter wheel/tire package. They worked really well last winter. For me, the 265's are a good balanced winter size for the JKU. I haven't tried the narrower option though.
 

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I joined the pizza cutters today, with 235-80-17 Falken Wildpeak AT3W tires. I couldn't resist the Discount Tire 20% off deal.
 
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