How often do you traverse gravel roads? If you’ve ever gone through such a terrain, you’ll agree with me that it can be challenging. You’ll probably struggle with tire performance. That’s why you need the perfect tires to navigate such a terrain seamlessly.

You need tires with a blend of on-road comfort as well as off-road toughness to handle gravel roads. This is where all-terrain tires come in. These resilient tires offer a perfect combo that guarantees both comfort and reliability.

It’s important to know that not every all-terrain tire is manufactured with the same capabilities. For instance, on-road all-terrain tires are built to deliver fantastic on-road comfort alongside some reliable off-road capabilities.

Conversely, off-road all-terrain tires are built to handle mud and rocky trails, as well as other rougher road conditions. They are not suitable for smooth roads.

Therefore, if you encounter gravel roads occasionally, I recommend that you get a set of solid on-road all-terrain tires. These champs will guarantee your preparedness to tackle smooth surfaces or pavement and rough gravel terrains.

Buying Guide: What to Consider While Choosing Tires for Gravel Roads

Durability

Durability is one of the first things I consider when I engage my tires on gravel paths. I think about how well my tires can withstand the rough surfaces and sharp rocks.

If you often go through gravel roads, you need tires built with good tread depth and thickness. These tires last longer and deliver better performance on gravel terrains.

A solid sidewall, which is a vital requirement for gravel roads, protects your tire from damage, especially punctures.

Therefore, I urge you to look for tires designed with reinforced sidewalls. This feature provides extra durability and resilience against debris and sharp rocks. This will not only give you peace of mind but also guarantee the longevity of your tires.

Traction and Grip

Your ability to maintain confident control is a function of maximum traction and grip. This is another thing to consider if you usually travel on gravel roads.

Tires with aggressive tread patterns or deep grooves provide enhanced traction on loose surfaces like gravel. They achieve this by getting rid of the gravel from the contact patch of the tires.

On-Road Capability

Since I’ll have to switch to on-road surfaces, I also consider using tires that can perform excellently on asphalt. If this is your case, you should get tires with a nice blend of on-road and off-road capabilities. This will help keep your driving experience smooth and comfortable on any of the two terrains.

Tire Size

Lastly, do not forget to consider your vehicle tire size specification.

You can get the prescribed tire size for your vehicle in your owner’s manual. Otherwise, you may want to do a quick search online. Any of these can help you identify the perfect tire size for your vehicle’s rim.

Buying the right tire size guarantees your vehicle’s performance and safety on gravel roads.

Details of the 9 Best Tires for Gravel Roads In 2024

Best Overall

1. Falken WildPeak A/T3W

Do you often travel through snow and gravel terrains than smooth public roads? If that’s the case, the Falken WildPeak A/T3W is certainly a perfect tire for you.

This tire comes with a 3-peak mountain snowflake (3PMSF) symbol. It also promises a 5-year/55,000-mile warranty and a 30-day/1,000-mile trail ride. You can’t go wrong with this set of tires.

Pros

  • Highly compatible with rough roads and gravel terrains.
  • Performs well on shallow and deep snow.
  • Smooth ride on highways.

Cons

  • May produce some noise on highways.
  • Subject to quick wear than expected
Falken WildPeak A/T3W tire
Falken WildPeak A/T3W

Our Verdict

Falken WildPeak A/T3W tire boasts an impressive rough-track performance. It also features a solid sidewall design. This helps to protect the tire against damages caused by sharp objects and stones on gravel roads.

The tire’s heat-diffusing technology helps keep the tire cooler on tough surfaces like gravel or dirt. Moreover, it is not as stiff on smooth roads as most off-road tires. Some consumers have reported early wear usually after 25,000 miles. However, overall, this tire boasts a reasonable service life. 

I also noticed WildPeak A/T3W’s fantastic control and confident wet handling ability, as well as its top-notch performance in dry conditions.

2. Vredestein Pinza AT

The Vredestein Pinza AT tire comes with the best warranty and unmatched comfort compared to others. It’s one of the best factory tires I know. It’s the closest rival to the Falken WildPeak A/T3W. Vredestein offers 8 years from production/70,000 miles on this tire. Additionally, buyers get a 100-day trial period.

Pros

  • Offers exceptional features compared to its price.
  • A generous 8-year warranty period.
  • Extremely durable.
  • Delivers a smooth and comfortable driving experience.
  • Provide exceptional light and deep snow traction.

Cons

  • Its heavy weight may slightly decrease fuel economy.

Our Verdict 

The Vredestein Pinza AT performs excellently on both on-road and off-road terrains. Several buyers are raving about this tire’s performance in snow, sand, gravel, and wet surfaces. I couldn’t find any negative reviews concerning this tire.

The Pinza AT tire delivers a comfortable and reliable driving experience. The credit goes to its multi-pitched pattern and computer-aided design. With this tire, you will rarely feel bumps when going over gravel roads.

The tire also features a three-peak Mountain Snowflake rating and provides reliable rides in light-to-moderate snow.

Cooper Discoverer AT3 4S tire

3. Cooper Discoverer AT3 4S

The Cooper Discoverer AT3 4S is a versatile tire. It is uniquely designed for crossovers, pickup trucks, and full-size SUVs that regularly traverse gravel tracks. Cooper promises a 6-year/65,000-mile warranty on this tire. Buyers can also enjoy a 45-day road test. This will allow you to experience the tire’s performance first-hand.

Pros

  • Quiet performance on dry tracks.
  • Features unique tire tread design compatible with all terrains, including gravel roads.
  • Exceptional traction on snow.
  • Offers top-notch hydroplaning resistance.

Cons

  • Relatively noisy for extreme comfort lovers.

Our Verdict

Cooper Discoverer AT3 4S delivers enhanced stability and better traction on rough surfaces in winter conditions. Thanks to its Snow Groove Technology, as well as the saw-tooth block edges. 

The tire is built with hydroplaning resistance capabilities. With this feature, you can enjoy enhanced safety in slushy conditions or during heavy rain.

Most users rave about this tire’s traction in snow, gravel, and wet conditions. They also applaud its tread life. Conversely, some users complain that it is relatively noisier on smooth roads. Overall, this tire provides a strong grip on gravel roads and is ideal for those who frequently drive on dirt and gravel.

BFGoodrich Trail-Terrian T/A tire

4. BFGoodrich Trail-Terrian T/A

The BFGoodrich Trail-Terrain T/A is another powerful option on this list. Although it offers on-road performance with comfort, it also boasts off-road capabilities in arenas like rocks and gravel. BFGoodrich promises a 6-year/60,000-mile warranty on this tire.

Pros

  • Optimum on-road performance with gravel road capabilities.
  • Excellent dry traction and confident handling.
  • Commendable performance in loose terrains such as sand.
  • Fantastic performance in light snow.

Cons

  • Excellent wet traction but poor hydroplaning based on users’ reviews.
  • Early tread wear compared to its other counterparts in this review.

Our Verdict

The robust tread compound of BFGoodrich Trail-Terrain T/A is built with the capacity to resist tearing and chipping for off-road and gravel use. The tire also features closed shoulder elements, which helps to minimize airborne noise.

The BFGoodrich Trail-Terrain T/A tire comes with a three-peak mountain snowflake (3PMSF) certification. I’m personally impressed with the tire’s smooth and quiet ride, as well as the satisfactory light snow performance.

However, its deep snow traction is quite poor. Nevertheless, users feel confident engaging these tires on gravel roads.

Although the wet and dry traction seems good, you may likely experience slight issues with hydroplaning.

Lastly, the Trail-Terrain T/A’s tread life is relatively okay. You can enjoy up to 45,000 miles using the tire for both off-road and on-road adventures.

Nitto Nomad Grappler tire

5. Nitto Nomad Grappler

The Nitto Nomad Grappler is a sophisticated, versatile, and comfortable on-road tire. It also has light off-road capabilities. The tire offers excellent light snow traction as well. Nitto offers a 5-year/60,000-mile warranty for this tire.

Pros

  • Top-notch tire for sand, gravel, and snow terrains.
  • Commendable dry traction and confident handling.
  • Excellent wet traction.
  • Offers low noise level with a comfortable driving experience.

Cons

  • While it’s possible to get about 50,000 miles in mixed terrains, some consumers expect better tread life, considering the price.

Our Verdict

The major thing I like about the Nitto Nomad Grappler tire is that it retains its premium performance throughout its lifespan. This type of tire is a true symbol of extraordinary quality.

The tire features interlocking tread blocks, having tapered edges for additional bite, as well as effective dry grip. According to users’ feedback, the tire grips and holds up even on steep and wet roads. It also makes loose surfaces like sand and gravel easy to maneuver.

I noticed this tire’s grip and confident handling on gravel with the commendable low noise level. Nitto promises a 5-year/60,000-mile warranty. However, if you subject this tire to both on-road and off-road adventures, you can expect about 50,000 miles.

Sumitomo Encounter AT tire

6. Sumitomo Encounter AT

The Sumitomo Encounter AT is another fantastic tire suitable for SUVs, crossovers, and pickup trucks. The tire delivers an excellent gravel road grip. It also boasts a 5-year/60,000-mile warranty alongside a 30-day test drive with 2 years of roadside assistance.

Pros

  • Exceptional traction on dirt, gravel, and snow.
  • Low noise level at highway speed.
  • Commendable dry and wet traction.

Cons

  • Probability for treads to wear out faster than promised.

Our Verdict

The Sumitomo Encounter AT tire’s deep and open tread design pattern has stepped edges on the center blocks. This feature provides extra bite on gravel surfaces and also enhances the capacity to tackle the winter landscape.

One exceptional feature I noticed about this tire is its extraordinary hydroplaning resistance in stagnant water. This ensures a safe and stable driving experience. 

Most users have continually lavished their praise on the amazing performance of the Sumitomo Encounter AT on rough roads. However, a few consumers complained about quick treadwear.

The Sumitomo Encounter AT features a three-peak mountain snowflake (3PMSF) rating. It also provides dependable snow traction.

Firestone Destination A/T2 tire

7. Firestone Destination A/T2

The Firestone Destination A/T2 is a solid gravel tire built with sophisticated features that guarantee top-notch delivery. Firestone promises a 5-year/55,000-mile treadwear warranty on this tire.

Pros

  • Offer excellent grip on gravel surfaces.
  • Provides commendable snow traction up to 4 inches.
  • Also performs well on packed snow.
  • Extended tread service life.
  • Exceptional dry and wet traction with confident handling.

Cons

  • Can be somewhat noisy on smooth roads. However, it doesn’t create any notable distraction.

Our Verdict

Firestone Destination A/T2 is built with excellent traction and high durability as the major features. With a balance of off-road capability, the high-void pattern delivers consistent contact with the rough surfaces. 

The tire also features stone rejecters between the tread blocks. This helps to reduce possible damage that may be caused by stone drilling, particularly on gravel roads.

I’m personally impressed with this tire’s grip on dirt and gravel roads. However, it may be noisy when traversing smooth, dry roads. Do not worry; it’s not a distraction.

Most consumers testify of enjoying extended years of use beyond 70,000 miles. This is particularly true for those using the tire for both on-road and off-road terrains.

Falken WildPeak A/T Trail tire

8. Falken WildPeak A/T Trail

Does a large part of your travel happen on gravel roads? In that case, you need to enjoy the better experience that the Falken WildPeak A/T Trail offers. The tire also comes with a 5-year/65,000-mile warranty, as well as a 30-day/1,000-mile trial ride.

Pros

  • Relatively fair price. Extremely quiet.
  • Excellent all-terrain performance.
  • Top-notch aggressive tread design pattern.

Cons

  • Average wet traction.

Our Verdict

Falken WildPeak A/T Trail tires feature rugged construction with over-the-shoulder ribs. This is just perfect for puncture resistance when going over sticks and rocks. With this feature, you can see why it is a top pick for drivers who enjoy exploring gravel terrains.

Nonetheless, some users have expressed dissatisfaction with its average wet road performance. They’ve also mentioned hydroplaning issues particularly during the rainy season.

The WildPeak A/T Trail comes with a Three-Peak Mountain Snowflake (3PMSF) rating. Meanwhile, the 3D Canyon sipes are one of the exceptional features of this tire. This feature enhances snow traction and provides drivers with extraordinary grip and stability in wintry conditions. 

WildPeak A/T Trail also features dual sidewall designs uniquely on every tire. This allows you to customize your vehicle with an outstanding appearance from the crowd.

Toyo Open Country A/T III tire

9. Toyo Open Country A/T III

Last on this list, let’s explore the impressive benefits of using the Toyo Open Country A/T III. This tire’s tread life is simply superb. In addition, the tire comes with a 5-year/65,000-mile warranty, as well as a No Regrets 500-mile/45-day trial offer.

Pros

  • Compatible with gravel roads. Excellent wet traction.
  • Offers fantastic ride quality on highways and cities.
  • Extended tread service life.

Cons

  • Average performance on rocky terrains.

Our Verdict

Personally, I can vouch for this Toyo Open Country AT III tire’s exceptional on-road handling, responsiveness, and durability on rough surfaces like gravel.

What more? The Open Country A/T III also offers excellent hydroplaning resistance and reliable grip across diverse terrains. 

Irrespective of some users complaining about less-than-ideal performance particularly on rocky terrain, this tire still excels. Its tread life and top-notch performance on other terrains make up for its rock terrain drawback.

Also, the Open Country A/T III features a three-peak mountain snowflake (3PMSF) symbol. This guarantees a dependable winter performance delivery.

How Do We Select the Best Tires?

We don’t just pick the tires randomly. There is a lot of work behind suggesting the lists of the best possible tires. We adopt a multi-dimensional approach and our reviews are a collective wisdom of many users rather than a single user.

To determine the best tires, we undertake extensive market research, meticulously examine the specifications of each tire, and carry out a very thorough analysis of user reviews from top retailers. Finally, our keen tire experts apply their experience and expertise and provide a well-rounded assessment to create the final list of the best possible tires. Read our detailed review process.

How to Safely Drive on Gravel Roads to Avoid Hazards

Navigating gravel terrains can be challenging. However, I’ve put some tips together to help you overcome the hazards and enjoy a safe, comfortable ride:

  1. Firstly, ensure to drive low speed. Typically, traversing gravel roads demands more caution. Therefore, slowing down minimizes the risk of your vehicle sliding and going out of control.
  2. Secondly, keep your tires properly inflated to the recommended psi. It’s easier for under-inflated tires to lose traction. Also, they can be more exposed to damage/puncture from rocks. In that case, you have to monitor your front and rear tire pressure to ensure a safe ride on gravel terrains.
  3. Furthermore, prepare for unexpected road conditions. It’s vital to note that gravel roads can change before you know it, leading to washouts or potholes. So, while you drive, ensure to watch out for these hazardous signs, and be prepared to carefully navigate through.
  4. Always remember to be extremely cautious anytime you encounter loose gravel. Such a condition can cause your tires to lose grip, resulting in sliding. Therefore, carefully engage your brakes and avoid sudden steering wheel movements. This will help you maintain proper control.
  5. Lastly, always maintain some space on the road when driving behind other vehicles. This is because gravel roads usually kick up dust and rocks. So, you’ll protect yourself and your vehicle from injury/damage when you maintain a reasonable level of distance.

Following the tips I’ve unveiled above will help you successfully handle the challenges that come with gravel roads. Then, you can enjoy a safe and fulfilling ride.

Are Gravel Roads Hard on Tires?

Of course! Gravel roads can be hard on your vehicle’s tires, especially if they consist of uneven surfaces and sharp rocks. Driving on such bumpy roads or one with sharp rocks can speed up tire wear and cause serious damage or puncture.

Therefore, I advise that you drive cautiously and carefully observe the tips I shared above. This will help to ensure that your tires don’t wear out quickly.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

All-terrain tires are the best option for gravel roads. They’re designed to deliver excellent traction on diverse roads, including dirt, gravel, and patched roads. They also maintain a smooth and comfortable ride on city roads.

You can select from the myriad of options outlined in our list of best tires for gravel roads. I’m sure you’ll find the ones that meet your needs.

Although highway tires are not designed specifically for gravel roads, they can still perform commendably on gravel roads.

Their unique tread patterns are constructed for smooth and fuel-efficient performance on paved roads. This may not be able to deliver proper traction on dirt, gravel, or other off-road surfaces.

Although mud terrain tires handle and perform well in loose, muddy terrains, I don’t recommend them for gravel terrains.

Their peculiar aggressive tread design tends to deliver excessive traction on gravel roads. This can result in both rough and noisy driving experiences. Choosing the right tire for gravel terrains is very critical.

Using all-season or passenger tires for off-road terrains like gravel is not ideal. They may not be able to provide the required traction, prevent cuts and tire punctures, as well as durability in gravel conditions. This will in turn affect your secure and comfortable driving experience.

When it comes to gravel roads, it’s best to drive at a moderate speed. If you drive too fast, your vehicle may lose control and pick up dust. On the other hand, driving too slow will result in more fuel consumption.

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