Screw shoes for hiking and running on snow or ice
Posted by sibylle in ice, Germany, Switzerland, Europe, Colorado, Idaho, Canada and PNW (Thursday February 24, 2011 at 11:14 am)


My running shoes with screws added for traction

Two years ago, my son made me  “screw shoes” for Christmas (when he asked what I wanted, I said that I wanted  “screw shoes”). I hike in these even in snow, by using gaiters over the show and a vapor barrier inside the shoe. This can be a fancy vapor barrier liner sock, as made by several suppliers, or as simple as a plastic bag. I use grocery bags over my socks, which keeps my feet dry and warm down to zero degrees.

You can also turn hiking boots into screw shoes, and simply remove the screws in spring. I like running on snowy trails, so I use running shoes.

I’ve had the above pair of screw shoes for two years now, and they’ve held up well. Use a relatively new running shoe, with a thick sole, and make sure the screws are short (about 3/8 inch), so as to not feel them

Other outdoor hikers prefer the Yaktrax,  or the Kahtoola MICROspikes work with a heavier hiking boot, but I like traveling light and fast.

Matt Carpenter, 17-time winner of Pikes Peak ascents and marathons,  describes how to make a screw shoe on his website.

4 comments for Screw shoes for hiking and running on snow or ice »

  1. Pretty clever.

    Comment by Claire Walter — February 26, 2011 @ 9:50 pm

  2. My son gave me a pair of YakTraxs for Christmas a couple of years ago - they worked well but are broken now.

    I’d never heard of screw shoes … might have to try these next. They sound more durable than YakTrax.

    Comment by Mandy — March 14, 2011 @ 10:35 am

  3. Mandy, My YakTrax also broke (long ago), which is why I asked Tristan to make me the ’screw shoes’. Trail runners use them, but no one sells them at stores, so they’re not widely known among the (non trail-running) public.
    Tristan has built them for other people, so let me know if you need some.

    Comment by sibylle — March 14, 2011 @ 10:40 am

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