I live in the Northeast and we have had major snow and ice loading during the winter at times causing home and store roof cave ins to occur. I started with a cover pools auto cover with below deck rigid rails and water levels at mid skimmer level. Heavy snow melting and refreezing into ice was a very bad experience with this auto cover. Almost lost a $15,000 auto cover. Had to get emergency crews to remove the heavy snow on top and then to chop up the ice underneath it and remove the ice chunks by hand hoping the sharp edges of the ice chunks would not tear the vinyl auto cover. Some vinyl cover running bead tears pulling out of the aluminum tracks had to be repaired after this disaster. Obviously an auto cover cannot survive the weight such heavy snow melting and refreezing into ice even with the pool water supporting it at mid skimmer level. It seems the weight of the snow pushes out the water under the cover thereby dropping its level. Next I tried a spring loaded mesh safety cover supported again by a high water level plus the springs. Same problem occured and I had to release the springs that had bottomed out from the huge snow ice load to save the spring loaded safety cover which was quite hard to do with the severe tension. Some springs just popped off on their own from the brass anchors from severe stress. Next I am going to try the newly designed 2019 auto float inground pool winter cover from asiaconnectionllc that has numerous foam flotation sewn into the pool cover to make it float wherever the water level is left at and anchored with water filled plastic hold em downs on concrete decking. Not sure what the sewn in foam flotation will do with thousands of pounds of snow and ice on top but at least it can be left not attended if on vacation in the winter without major tears, rips, and damage and at worst the entire assembly will just be pushed down into the pool without major damage and can be salvaged intact later when someone is home. I have read on this forum that others just leave the pool open during snow blizzards and heavy ice forming but again this demands someone be home to uncover the pool from whatever cover was put there. So I ask you what is the best solution if these winter conditions occurs and no one will be home. Is a plain winter cover with maybe some useless flotation and anchor bags or hold em down water buckets the easiest way to get thru a bad winter without catastrophic damage to the cover or pool?