There was the trip to Minnesota shortly after marrying when we hit a very bad snowstorm from Madison to Eau Claire. The snow was building up in the road to the point of having ruts. We had Donna's '87 Honda Accord and promptly surrendered in Eau Claire and stayed at a Motel. Word from Mom the next day was that if we had toughed it out for another 15 minutes we would have been out of the worst. There was no way I could have driven for another 15 minutes. I was fried.
Then, there were the many trips to New York. These were long, drawn out, overnight affairs and almost always included some bad weather somewhere along the way. Usually we hit some lake effect snow in Erie or Buffalo and things got white knucklish. If not going there, then we had something bad coming home. One year they had a horrible ice storm that we drove out of. Beautiful, but devastating and scary.
A couple of years ago we were driving back from NY in our van and suddenly we couldn't accelerate any faster than 35 MPH. The TCS Traction Control System light kept flashing and the situation was dire. I had to keep pulling over to the side of the road and putting my flashers on. Finally a cop came along and put his lights on. He turned out to be no help. "I don't know where you can go, but you can't stay here," was the crux of his message. Thanks, man. Luckily I was able to limp the van to the next exit in South Bend, IN where we actually found a hotel that would take a dog. Because Toby insisted on barking every time a door slammed or a toilet flushed, we didn't sleep very well of course, but that's another story.
There was a trip about 5 years ago where we spent much of the trip counting semi trucks and other cars that had slid into the ditch the night before. We lost count of the semis at 15 I think. There was even an SUV on its roof with the headlights still on. Scary stuff.
Thankfully we've never had a real disaster ourselves. We've had some weather setbacks, but for the most part, it's been smooth sailing.
Here's to safe travels for you and your families this holiday season.