Saturday, March 22, 2014

Yaktrax Product Review

Recently the folks at Yaktrax sent Ashley and I a pair of YakTrax to review on one of our hikes. They sent Ashley a pair of their Yaktrax Pro and me a pair of their Yaktrax Run. Unfortunately, the winter of 2013 - 2014 in Southern California was extremely light with limited to no snow in the Southern California Mountains. We did not have the chance to test out the pairs of Yaktrax on one of our hikes in Southern California.  However, we did get a chance to test them out on our recent hiking trip to the Grand Canyon National Park in mid-February.

We tested our pairs of Yaktrax out on one section of the Bright Angel Trail in Grand Canyon National Park.  The conditions when we hiked the Bright Angel Trail were light snow and ice on the upper portion of the trail closer to the canyon rim with more snow/ice on north facing slopes. Temperatures at night during our visit were in the upper teens with highs during the day in the low forties. Needless to say we had a good chance to test these out and will update this review once we get a chance to hike in the snow next year in Southern California. We only went down the Bright Angel Trail 1.7 miles to the second tunnel which has an elevation gain/loss of approximately 600 feet.

Here is a little bit more about the Yaktrax Pro (pictured below): It features a spike-less light weight design and has 360 degrees of traction with a patented skid lock coil system. It also has a durable natural rubber blend for a good fit of the Yaktrax Pro. The removable performance strap and the heel tab allows for a good fit and easy installation and removal of the Yaktrax Pro.

The Yaktrax Pro performed good on the hike. They provided noticeably improved traction as compared to regular shoes without them. They were also really easy to put on and take off.  The coils really seemed to grip very well on the ice and snow on the Bright Angel Trail. Brian and I saw several other hikers wearing Yaktrax Pros as well while on the Bright Angel Trail. We were glad we had them for the snowy/icy portions of the Bright Angel Trail because it might have been a little to slipper to do without.

Here is a little bit more about the Yaktrax Run (pictured below):: It is an ice traction device anatomically designed for use with running shoes (and can easily be applied to trail running shoes). It allows you to run naturally on packed snow and ice with the Yaktrax Run's combination of removable spikes and steel coils, providing 360° of traction. According to the manufacture, the Yaktrax Run can be worn in temperatures as low as ‑41° Fahrenheit. (This number was not actually independently tested by either Ashley or I.  If it is ever ‑41° Fahrenheit I can guarantee you we will be indoors.)

When hiking I first found that it was relatively easy to put on and take off the Yaktrax Run. I would recommend obviously sitting down while doing this. I felt that the spikes and traction coils did their job on the mixture of hard packed snow and ice. We also wore them on section of the trail with little to no snow and they still held up very well. The rubber also appeared pretty sturdy and it looked like they would hold up for a while (Good Durability). I am going to caution readers that these are traction devices and not crampons. If you are doing any sort of a hike with significant ice/snow and lots of climbing then you need to invest in a good pair of crampons.

If for some reason you had a pair and they were to break, YakTrax will replace them so long as they are under warranty if you contact them within 90 days (should cover a winter of use – they are clear to say that these are not to be used on bare asphalt or concrete). I would assume retails stores would also honor the warranty but I am sure that probably varies depending on location.

The Price for the Yaktrax Run is $40.00 and the cost of the Yaktrax Pro is $30.00. They are both reasonably priced and the Yaktrax Run probably offers just a little bit more traction with the spikes. They can be purchased in retail stores like REI or through online retailers like Amazon.

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1 comment:

  1. Hi Asley.
    The Yatrax Run are a very good.
    I bought based on this review and my boyfriend thought they were not going to be even decent(He's a outdoor gear expert).
    After 150 miles of hiking in the Appalachian trail. now he won't stop asking me questions about.
    It's still looks and feels new. even know I use it as running shoes also.


Ashley and I encourage and welcome our readers to submit comments about their experiences on the trails we have posted on our blog or about their own hiking experiences in general.