snow mode and winter tires?
i drove the first 4 weeks of winter with near bald summer tires and it was slippery but do-able. a mm of snow should have been pretty easy as long as you werent just hammering the throttle.
edit.. just saw you have the 5spd man. you could have skipped 2nd and tried the hill in 3rd to keep torque (and therefore wheel spin) to a minimum. same idea as the winter mode or the 2006+ trip tronic automatics.
I have no issues at all in snow in my 04. A nice set of Cooper CS4 Touring's and winter mode is all I need, the 160lbs. of salt in the trunk helps too....Just had a 10" snowfall last weekend, got around just fine. Turn off that T/C and it's a whole different story, can you say fish tail?
With the manual tranny u should have been able to get around better, I was lookin at a cheap 03 with a manual online but never went to see it. I wanted to get rid of my truck for it, but I think my 4x4 may b needed in the bush this summer.
Try filling yer tank to the top for added weight, also toss a bag of salt in the trunk.
I would think manual would be better being able to play with the rpm I got an 03 automatic with bald summer tires and it hard to get grip at first but I managed good so far and it's been pretty bad in Ontario