We have flurries in St. Louis today with the possibility of 3 to 5 inches when it is over. I say bring it on! I would love to break out the Kahtoola MICROspikes for the third time since getting them this last Christmas. We usually don't get a lot of snow, but just enough that it used to keep me inside or sent me to the gym for a trip on the treadmill. This is the photo I took on December 26, 2010 during my first run in the MICROspikes. As you can see, the route I take for my usual run looks pretty icy. This is where I felt the MICROspikes earned their keep and performed their best.
I could barely even tell I had them on and was able to continue on my run regardless of the weather. As I ran I could hear the spikes digging into the ice, reassuring me that they were doing their job. The snow and ice slowed me down a little, but not by much. I was able to run my usual 5K loop in 28:51 minutes at a pace of 9:18 minutes per mile. The tracks I left in the soft snow had also shown me how well they were staying in place and providing the traction I needed. This photo is of a foot step during my run, showing the chains and spikes beneath my running shoe.
I have been very happy with the Kahtoola MICROspikes as they fit tight, do not slip, are light weight and have been very easy to take on and off. Initially, they were not what I had wanted. I was reading through some running blogs before Christmas and saw mention of "Yaktrax" being ideal for traction in the snow and ice. I mentioned the Yaktrax to my wife (okay, hinted strongly), but luckily for me she doesn't buy anything without reading all the reviews first... and in her mind the MICROspikes beat out the Yaktrax.
I have since been doing some reading about MICROspikes and feel she made the right decision. During my research I have read instances where runners had used them for trail running as well, although they are most widely used for winter hiking, walking and running. I am wanting to do a little trail running this year and am very anxious to try them out in that environment.