Winter Run in Snow Country

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by phryan, Jul 18, 2015.

  1. phryan

    phryan Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 9, 2014
    Winters here are quite snowy with 2-4 ft depth most of the winter, this kept the flock inside from Jan-Mar. Was thinking about trying some kind of covered run for the winter to provide them extra space. I was thinking about the hoop style greenhouse, engineered up for strength and use a heavier tarp. Not looking to keep it particularly warm but basically snow free. Anyone ever try something like this?
  2. DaQatz

    DaQatz Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 18, 2013
    Southern Maine
    Even if you cover a run snow gets in pretty easily. Where I live it just blows in the side.

    If you want to keep the snow (generally) out, you will also need to sheath thou outside of the run during the winter months. Even something as little as plastic sheeting from the ground to about two feet up should work.

    Another consideration you may want to consider is how this will attract rodents in. A that's generally free of snow will attract them to it. And from there the coop itself.
  3. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 16, 2010
    NEK, VT
    I've seen heavily constructed hoop style runs that work in winter. It's just as easy to make a square/rectangle run with roof. I use a tarp or two to mostly cover the two windward sides. That will keep out most of the snow and provide the wind shield they want in winter. That's what I do for winters, not too fancy but it works.
  4. MysteriaSdrassa

    MysteriaSdrassa Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 26, 2015
    Central Wisconsin
    My girls free range all winter,, snow here can range from 6" one winter to 4' or more the next. We use pickup truck toppers as aerial predator and weather shelters so in winter months we snowblow paths from one to the next to the next. I can however attest to the strength of hoop style greenhouses as we have one that we use for selling garden plants in spring. If you use a heavier grade greenhouse film,, say 4 mill or better,, the snow will slide right off and stay fairly warm inside on sunny days. as far as mice,, i wouldn't worry too much,, at your winter temps most will be hibernating,, and if your girls are anything like mine,, a mouse in the run is fair game and extra protein snack
  5. jetdog

    jetdog Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 18, 2013
    Covered run with commercial grade clear shower curtains on the sides,keeps the snow out and let's the sunshine in.
  6. snhchick

    snhchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 6, 2015
    Has anyone used a cold frame, such as this: Don't know if I can afford it, but I like that it is clear, keeps out the wind and that the windows open based on temperature. Will this get too hot for my chickens? I only have 3 bantams right now; would this be OK if I add a couple more hens next year?

    My run is 12'x16' and I'm not much of a carpenter, so I'm concerned about trying to cover the top of the run and having it collapse under the weight of the snow (I live in New Hampshire).. My run is made of dog kennel panels with hardware cloth around the lower 2-3' and chicken wire on top to keep out hawks. Any suggestions?
  7. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

    Feb 25, 2014
    Northwestern Wyoming
    My Coop

    Ours does very well in the winter. It's a hoop made with cattle panels and we cover it with plastic in winter. As you can see from the outside picture, it handled snow loads very well. It also didn't budge in 60 mph winds with sideways blowing snow. And you can see that inside it's bright and comfy. Yep, those are chicks in there when it was in the teens and twenties, raised without a broody hen or a heat lamp. (The snoopy Easter Egger Gladys is just checking out the chicks' pen while it was open.)
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2015
  8. MysteriaSdrassa

    MysteriaSdrassa Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 26, 2015
    Central Wisconsin

    That particular item is rather small.. Not even a full 5 by 3 or even 2 ft high on the tall side.. If you look.. Those are lettuce heads in there... For the money I'd say look elsewhere
  9. Chipper Chicken

    Chipper Chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 16, 2014
    My Coop
    Just a friendly heads up on Quonset style huts....they can handle most snow loads, BUT If they get freezing rain on top of snow or even worse, melting snow(heavy-wet) then a Freeze of any kind, get out there quick and prop up the ridge line in as many places as needed. Out of 4 100' Quonset greenhouses we lost one completely but saved the other three. These also are not something that is generally covered by insurance either. :(

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