High Gear: Cooper Discoverer M+S tire review | SummitDaily.com

High Gear: Cooper Discoverer M+S tire review

Text and photo by Fritz Sperry
Special to the Daily

Last December, I was prepping for a winter road trip and needed new tires. I went to Discount Tires in Denver and hooked myself up with a pair of Cooper Discoverer M+S tires and I'm glad that I did. I chose them based mostly on price, which is very reasonable as far as snow tires go. They are rated as "M + S," or mud and snow, but since they are made to be studded they were snow tires to me. During the first stretch of my road trip they managed the snowy interstates — and then some.

Living in snow country requires the right tools, and snow tires or all-terrain tires are a requirement for getting around. (They're also good for safely avoiding visitors that don't have the required equipment.) We get a lot of storms across the Colorado Rocky Mountains and CDOT doesn't always smooth the way, so being able to reach the freshies demands an investment — even if the nearest chairlift is only a 10- or 15-minute drive away.

Colorado also has a new law that requires snow tires, chains or four-by-four capabilities when the snows pile up on the roads, and after a solid season of driving on snowy roads, these tires proved their worth. The tread helps shed snow to increase grip on both flat and uneven terrain.

Good in winter, better in summer

I opted to pass on the studs and I'm glad I did — the surprise I got this summer made it worth it. If I had studded my tires, I probably would have also bought a set of AT (all-terrain) tires. But, since the Discoverer M+S weren't studded, I just left them on my truck and kept driving when the snow melted.

Recommended Stories For You

I hit a lot of backcountry trailheads this spring and summer. I did very difficult four-by-four trails across the state, and the tires weren't just good — they were great. The first time I drove Coney Flats Road outside of Boulder was in the rain on a down day, and the tires managed every turn and surmounted every rock I crawled.

I upped the difficulty on Middle St. Vrain Road and the connector trail near Lyons, where I got stuck a couple of times due more to my driving errors than the tires. These roads are comparable in difficulty to Wheeler Lake Road above Alma.

I often talk about a "quiver of one" when it comes to tents or packs or skis, and that is the goal, isn't it: to find something that works well for all applications? A quiver simplifies the experience and helps you save your money for winter road trips. The next time I need a set of tires for a winter road trip, I'll be putting another set of Cooper Discoverer M+S on my wheels.

Fritz Sperry is a skier, author, photographer and artist who has skied extensively in the Colorado backcountry. He's the author of: "Makingturns in the Tenmile-Mosquito Range," and "Makingturns in Colorado's Front Range, Vol. 1," both available from his company, Giterdun Publishing.

Cooper Discoverer M+S tires, $98-$160

Size: LT215 to LT 285

Rim width: 5.5 to 9 inches

Section width: 9.1 to 11.4 inches

Overall diameter: 28.82 to 34.17 inches

Tread width: 5.91 to 9.02 inches

Tread depth: 17 to 19 (1/32 inches)

Max load: 1,985 to 3,750 pounds

Sidewall: Black (all)

The Cooper Discoverer M+S tire is a studdable SUV and light truck tire designed for traction on snow and ice. For more info, including complete specs and a list of Summit County retailers, see us.coopertire.com.

Go back to article