Winter Running Traction Devices
This past Friday, after 14 months of waiting, I finally got the chance to try the Kahtoola MICROspikes [iRF MICROspike preview]… and that’s not all. When I traveled north to visit my parents for the holidays, I threw three pairs of winter traction devices into my car just in case there was snow to be found somewhere to the north. Well, early on the morning after Christmas I headed up to White Plains, New York to run with TWIR author, Anthony Portera. As we pulled up to Rockefeller State Park it was clear that White Plains was aptly named on this day. During our three hour jaunt over ice-covered hill and dale, Tony and I put four pairs of traction devices to the test. I’ll be sharing our findings over the next four days.
Oh, you want to know which traction devices we tested? Well, we put metal to ice with the Kahtoola MICROspikes, Yaktrax Pro, Kako Ice Trekkers Ultra, and STABILicers SPORT. These oversoles varied as much in their design, construction, and weight as much as they did in the traction they provided. I feel like I normally mince my words, but not today. Here’s how I rank the traction devices I tested … from least favorite to the best.
- Kako Ice Trekkers Ultra review [Product discontinued]
- STABILicers SPORT review
- Kahtoola MICROspikes review
- Yaktrax Pro review
Take a look at my individual reviews to see why I ranked the traction devices as I did, to share your own thoughts, and to hear what others have to say. [The easiest way to read the latest post at iRunFar is by subscribing via RSS or via email.] If you see that I’ve reviewed a device that you’ve tried, I ask that you post your comments for the appropriate day to maximize their helpfulness to other readers.
In the mean time, take a look at these winter running resources:
- Traction Devices for Winter Trail Running – A great overview on La Sportiva’s website
- The Screw Shoe: The Best Way to Run on Packed Snow and Ice! – Matt Carpenter
- How to Screw Your Shoes – Jeff Browning
- Snowshoe Running Overview – iRunFar (read the comments)
- Andy Jones-Wilkins asks “Any of you ice runners out there ever try icebug shoes?” Well have you? Do you like them? Andy likes his.