walking on icy roads

what gear ?

1 to 20 of 21 messages
18/11/2012 at 16:28

I walk every day on northern rural roads. I have Pogu microspikes for for snow & thick ice., which are excellent but when conditions are patchy but still dodgy, the microspikes are too harsh.

What alternatives do you recommend ?

Sam Todd

18/11/2012 at 20:53
Stuff like Yaktrax are good. Some people find they wear pretty quickly, but mine have lasted 3 winters and walking in Lakes / US and been fine. The 'Pro' ones seem to be a bit better than the 'walker' range. But there are many options if you look around. Some easier than others to fit, but places like Lidl were doing ice 'cleat' style ones quite cheaply recently
18/11/2012 at 20:58

There is seemingly still the odd bit of icebug (retractable metal spikes in the soles) footwear on amazon.

A few people doing fibreglass parts to sole units too (Hangwag but also others) which might well improve the grip a bit.

18/11/2012 at 23:06

Or the commercially available version of GOF's diy screw-in spikes...


Possibly better than the diy version? But I couldn't be sure - I didn't get enough proper winter to test them last year

19/11/2012 at 16:06


Yes I had noticed Yaktrax but seen reports suggesting instability on non icy surfaces

when they rolled as you walk, did you experience that ?

19/11/2012 at 16:09


I have got an old pair of boots that might be suitable. I will give them a try, thank you

Matt C wrote (see)

Or the commercially available version of GOF's diy screw-in spikes...


Possibly better than the diy version? But I couldn't be sure - I didn't get enough proper winter to test them last year


19/11/2012 at 17:22

Yaktrax are pretty good on roads and general icy/snowy rough walking. Just need to walk carefully on hard flooring if you've worn them, say, to the supermarket. Or of course you can just take them off. I have the pro model. Something with spikes might be bettter for footpaths though.


19/11/2012 at 17:38

Some further info in this UKH thread

19/11/2012 at 20:06
There may be a slight roll with the Yaktrax as the coils can make things slightly uneven. But I've walked with them on ice and snow and never had a problem until on ice-less or snow-less road! Have seen reviews of the spring-covered rubber not lasting that long esp on the 'walkers', but I haven't worn them enough to tell. If it's for light use and just walking I've found them to be fine. Like David I have the 'pro' one now as the 'walker' ones have gone to the old man!
Edited: 19/11/2012 at 20:07
20/11/2012 at 11:10



Thanks for the advice & other thread  I am going to give the Yacktrax 2nd. choice but I reckon that the studs in my old boots should be answer.

Sam Todd



20/11/2012 at 17:56


I sometimes wonder about the old-fashioned approach of nailed boots, which is similar to the screw soled approach

GOF, this link has some more pictures than your one, but the same information



09/12/2012 at 17:29

I dug out some old screws & tried them on my ancient boots & they worked very

well on icy roads, so have bought a set from Amazon (not the 26 pound items) & have

them poised for use next week.

Sam Todd

09/12/2012 at 19:27

I got Yaktraks earlier this year when I posted this Tiny Trip Report. In fact, I was caught completely on the hop by a fearsome freeze, and if I hadn't found a pair of Yaktraks in a shop at the start of the walk, I wouldn't have been able to do the walk at all./

09/12/2012 at 19:34

How do you rate Yaktrax versus Kahtoola, Paddy? (Or anyone else who's tried both?)

09/12/2012 at 19:35

Never tried Kahtoola, so no opinion.

09/12/2012 at 19:47

I think the spike & chain set-up with the micro-spikes make them a bit more robust than the Yaktrax IMO. I do own both, but have only ever worn the Yaktrax (around town) as I haven't been to them there hills often in snow and, in fact, when I have been out in snow, conditions haven't warranted the extra grip.

Yeah, I'm a lightweight 

Oops, sorry, we're talking 'on icy roads', not snowy hills.

Edited: 09/12/2012 at 19:49
09/12/2012 at 20:02
I've used both microspikes and magic spikers. Been across a few hills in snow and ice using microspikes and rate them highly. I've worn the magic spikers on icy roads and them fairly usefull though a real faff putting them on.
09/12/2012 at 20:26

I switched the computer off and then thought that I'd not explained myself very well. So here's what I have in readiness, in ascending order — so to speak.

Yaktrax that fit my walk to work / shops everyday footwear.
Yaktrax that fit my fabric walking boots (the next size up)
Microspikes that fit my fabric walking boots

I'm not too sure that the micros would fit my B1s (haven't tried 'em), but I reckon if weather calls for B1 boots then it's probably time for crampons and axe. However, as mentioned in my post above, I've limited experience on the hill in winter.

A little off topic (again), but I hope context always helps.


09/12/2012 at 20:51

Yaktrax do give good grip on pavements, easy paths. My only problem with them is the rubber heels. Due to the amount of walking I do, (at least 15mls per day), I find I can wear them out in a week!

 I did get something like the Ice Diamonds last year, but can't find them again from the shop I got them from, less than the price of ID's and can't recall name

Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snake bite..... and furthermore always carry a small snake.   W.C.FIELDS.

Walk, climb, camp. Just get out there


09/12/2012 at 21:01
Pete, sofar I've only used the microspikes in snowy conditions, not used my crampons yet, though only in Wales in up to a foot of snow not counting drifts. I found them quite stretchy and fit both my trainers and big boots.
For icy roads I bought some rubber straps with 4 little teeth, really curious to see how well they work.
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