February 15, 2021

Winter hiking equipment

If you're going to be hiking in the winter -- in a place with snow like British Columbia -- you really need good traction devices.  For general-purpose hiking, microspikes are definitely the way to go.

You can't go wrong with these two models, both of while I use all the time:

1. Hillsound Trail Crampon

https://www.hillsound.ca/collections/traction-devices/products/trail-crampon

REI has them but also check out https://www.google.com/shopping

2. Kahtoola MICROspikes Footwear Traction

https://kahtoola.com/product/microspikes/

MEC has them

The Hillsound have 1/2" spikes while the Kahtoola have 3/8" spikes.  If I had to pick one, it would be the Hillsound.

In the Okanagan winter hiking is usually on a mixture of snow, ice, and dirt and rocks.  I happily used Yaktrax Pro in Vancouver for years but as I soon as I moved to the Okanagan they failed, because the rubber was quickly ground down by the dirt and rocks.  In retrospect, microspikes would have been better than Yaktrax in Vancouver too.