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If you live in winter-snow-prone areas or want to engage in activity during winter, you may need to invest in ice cleats. Ice cleats are a worthwhile investment that has saved millions from slips and falls in winter conditions. These useful devices for shoes and boots can provide great stability so you can walk and hike in colder temperatures without worrying about falling.
Today, many manufacturers offer different ice cleats, making it hard to decide which version is better than the other. This comprehensive guide will explore 7 of the best ice cleats that are worth checking out.
With so many models of ice cleats on the market, deciding on the best cleats for your needs can be overwhelming. After doing extensive research and testing, we came up with some of the best ice cleats available. Use this table to make an informed decision without wasting time.
|Image||Brand||Best For||Spike Material||Spikes per Foot||Details|
|Yaktrax||● Light Hiking|
● Light-Duty Work
|Kahtoola||● Winter hiking|
|Stainless Steel||12 spikes||See price|
|STABILicers||● Winter walking|
● Driveway walking
|Stainless Steel||34||See price|
|Stainless Steel||18 Spikes||See price|
|H Hillsound||● Hiking|
|Carbon Steel||11 Spikes||See price|
|EnergeticSky||● Winter Hiking|
● Winter Trail Running
● Ice Fishing
|Stainless Steel||19 Spikes||See price|
● Road Running
|Tungsten Carbide||10 Spikes||See price|
1. Yaktrax Pro Traction CleatsRead Customer Reviews Here >>>
If you are looking for lightweight and versatile ice cleats, the Yaktrax Pro Traction Cleats are worth considering. These ice spikes for shoes feature a unique, spike-less design, which is rare in most models. Instead, they are designed with an indigenous stainless steel coil system to make you walk comfortably on ice and snow.
We love that these anti-slip cleats are semi-durable and hold up well against dry surfaces that you may encounter during your walks. If ease-of-use matters to you, then you will be pleased to know that these cleats come with Velcro straps that render them easy to wear and remove and ensure a snug fit.
2. Kahtoola MICROspikes Footwear TractionRead Customer Reviews Here >>>
Kahtoola MICROspikes Footwear Traction is packed with impressive features and offers great value, which is expected considering the price. For starters, they are designed for multi-purpose use and do extremely well in conditions. So, whether you want to go winter hiking, trail-running, backpacking, or ice fishing, these MICROspikes will not disappoint.
A feature that makes these cleats worth considering is the spike design. For aggressive traction, these cleats are designed with 12 heat stainless steel spikes; 8 at the forefront and 4 at the heel. They are strategically positioned to bite into icy terrain and ensure stability.
Crafted from durable TPE, MICROspikes will give you a secure and comfortable fit. Unlike the previous Kahtoola model, the elastomer of this model has a lower weight and profile and comes with reinforced harness attachment points.
The stretchy elastomer harness makes the spikes easy and fast to wear with different types of shoes and sizes. Thanks to the integrated toe bail that prevents your toe from pushing to the front, you don’t need to worry about hurting your foot,
However, it may be worth noting that MICROspikes lack the Velcro straps, as is the case with other models like the Yatrax Pro Traction Cleats. Hence, they may need constant adjustment to help keep them snug on your shoes.
3. STABILicers Walk Traction CleatRead Customer Reviews Here >>>
Reduce the risk of fall when striding on wintery surfaces with these affordable traction Cleats. STABILivers cleats are built to provide 360-degrees of traction, making them cost effective without compromising on functionality.
Once secured on your foot, you can move comfortably in slick conditions. Better yet, the great tractions make them ideal for everyday activities like walking.
An outstanding spec that we couldn’t help but notice is the multi-directional cleats. These uniquely-designed cleats offer great stability when walking on snow and ice. The underside features 34 spikes, which are replaceable and available in bronze and steel options.
Plus, the cleats are designed with an improved heel with full-sole coverage for improved stability. Putting on these cleats is extremely easy, thanks to the large pull tabs.
4. Unigear Traction Cleats- Best Easy-On CleatsRead Customer Reviews Here >>>
If you have been hunting for easy-to-use cleats to use on firmly packed ice or dry snow, Unigear Traction Cleats can do the trick. These cleats are an excellent choice for mountain climbing, hiking, dog walking, and jogging. Other than ice and snow, they offer a decent grip on various terrain conditions.
These cleats stand out because of their sharp spikes that are secured in place with chains. Each foot has 18 spikes, 6 spikes at the heel and 12 at the forefront. The spikes are well distributed for ample support and stability.
Each spike measures ½ inch long and is crafted from stainless steel. Thus, they are highly durable, corrosion-resistant, and bite well even into the slickest snow or ice.
Another notable feature is the extra-thick thermoplastic elastomer band that offers a snug fit on different shoes and maintains traction. This is also made possible by the full-sloe coverage on the heel and forefront. Not to mention the adjustable over-foot straps that will give you an optimal fit and reduce your chances of twisting the cleats when you traverse different terrains.
5. Hillsound Trail Crampon- Best Cleats for Winter Hiking and BackpackingRead Customer Reviews Here >>>
The Hillsound Trail Crampon should be on top of your list if you want the best cleats to go winter hiking. These traction cleats feature a sturdy stainless steel design with 11 steel spikes in an Ergonomic plate system. Hence, they offer top-notch traction in winter conditions.
Better yet, the elastomer harness can comfortably fit lightweight, heavier, and insulated boots. Because of this, the cleats are a perfect fit for when you are wearing hiking boots when hiking or backpacking.
Are you tired of losing your shoe or constantly adjusting it while out in a winter activity? Well, you will be pleased to know that this crampon comes with a Velcro strap designed at the top of the instep. The strap ensures that your shoe remains secure even in deeper snow conditions.
What’s more, the reinforced side chains eliminate any weak points and disperse weight throughout the foot. Hence, you can do serious trail work without worrying about muscle fatigue.
However, these crampons are not an excellent choice for lightweight trail running shoes. Instead, you may want to opt for cleats with lighter spikes like that of Kahtoola MICROspikes Footwear Traction.
6. EnergeticSky Upgraded Version of Walk Traction Ice Cleats- Best Ice Cleats for Suburban and Urban UseRead Customer Reviews Here >>>
The Energetic Crampons are known for their durable and highly-versatile design, making them suitable for hiking in snowy conditions, icy roads, mud, wood, angled terrain, and ice fishing. They are also suited for both males and females, regardless of age.
They come with 19 multi-directional steel spikes that are strategically placed to ensure even weight distribution. Constructed durably with a welding stainless steel chain, you can have peace of mind knowing that these cleats will offer you stability when walking on the ice or snow.
EnergeticSky ice cleats are hassle-free to wear and remove. They are also very flexible and lightweight, making them easy to carry around and store away.
You don’t have to worry about injuring your foot due to falls or slips in the snow or ice with these cleats. The cover is crafted from silicone, which is 5mm thicker than the usual TPR rubber. Silicone is flexible to -60degrees and does not tear or snap with ease. Plus, there is adequate full-sole coverage to help you maintain traction and prevent slips.
7. Kahtoola NanoSpikes Footwear Traction- Best Lightweight Ice CleatsRead Customer Reviews Here >>>
These cleats come in handy if you are after unmatched comfort and exceptional traction when walking, running, or training on icy streets and roads. An impressive feature of these cleats is their lightweight design. The NanoSpikes weigh less than the microspikes, making them an ideal choice if you find the Kahtoola MicroSpikes Footwear Traction a bit heavier.
Apart from their lightweight design, the Nanospikes ice cleats are exceptional because of their self-clearing design. This prevents snow build-up and unwanted weight so you can stride comfortably and with ease.
Each sole is equipped with 10 spikes that are constructed from tungsten. Generally, tungsten is a highly durable material that is corrosion-resistant, and you can expect your ice cleats to last longer. The tough TPU inserts also offer reinforcement for major stress points.
Factors to Consider When Buying the Best Ice Cleats
With different types of ice cleats on the market, finding the most suitable for your shoes and type of terrain can be tricky. Fortunately, there are various factors to keep in mind so you can purchase high-quality ice cleats that give you value for your money. They include:
Ice cleats are crafted from different materials, and your choice will depend on your needs. Generally, the material of the cleat will affect its durability. Stainless steel cleats are an ideal choice if you are after affordability, versatility, and better contact points for traction.
If you intend to use your ice cleats regularly, you need an ice cleat like the Kahtoola Nanospikes Footwear Traction, which is constructed from a highly durable material like tungsten.
Although expensive than stainless steel cleats, tungsten ice cleats are harder and provide long-lasting durability and traction. That means that they can dig into hard ice and serve you multiple winters without requiring replacement.
How often you intend to wear your ice cleats will determine the level of durability suitable for you. Durability will also depend on why you are using the ice cleats. For instance, you may need ice cleats with a higher level of durability if you live in a snow-covered area or love to go to these areas regularly.
However, models with moderate durability level may be ideal if you live in an area not constantly covered in snow. Please go through the online customer reviews of the model you want to see how long it lasts.
Terrain Where You Intend to Use Them
Before purchasing ice cleats, make sure that you consider the terrain for where you will be wearing them. Knowing where you will be using them will also help you decide on the best material to offer optimal comfort and maximum safety.
Ease of Use
The best ice cleats should be straightforward to use; otherwise, you will not get value for your money. You are unlikely to wear cleats if they are inconvenient to use and remove. If possible, purchase your cleats from the store so you can fit them over your shoe before making any buying decision. Also, you want to ensure that they are easy to take off.
Type of Closure
Furthermore, you may want to consider the closure depending on the comfort you need. Ice cleats come in three closures to choose from including step-in design, hybrid, or strap-on design.
The weight of the ice cleats may matter to you if you want to remain active during winter. The best ice cleats should have the right traction without feeling too heavy; otherwise, you may not end up wearing them very often. Nevertheless, you should keep in mind that most lightweight ice cleats are designed with fewer spikes and are only suitable for thin layers of snow.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Should I remove my ice cleats when indoors?
Yes, it is highly advisable to remove your ice cleats if they are not meant for indoor use. Basically, cleats are designed with spikes to bite the snow and ice to prevent slipping; hence, they can be damaging when worn indoors. Nevertheless, some models can be safely worn indoors without causing damage to the floors. If your ice cleats are not intended for indoor use, make sure that you remove them before getting into a building.
Q: What size of ice cleats is perfect for me?
Generally, ice cleats come in varying sizes to choose from. To ensure that you get the right size for your needs, visit the size chart and confirm your size. Nevertheless, a good rule of thumb is to choose a bigger size, especially if you are wearing boots.
Q: Is it possible to replace spikes when the ice cleats become loose?
Well, some ice cleats like STABILicers Walk Traction Cleat come with replaceable spikes, so that you can replace the spikes with ease. However, models like the Kahtoola Nanospikes Footwear Traction come with spikes that are not replaceable. Therefore, make sure that you go through the product description before making any buying decision.
Q: Should you wear ice cleats if the spikes are loose?
It is not advisable to wear your ice cleats with loose spikes as you may feel unstable and increase your chances of slipping or tripping. Make sure that you regularly inspect your ice cleats to ensure that the spikes are stable and intact. Otherwise, you may need to replace the spikes or buy new ice cleats.
Q: Can I drive in ice cleats?
Yes, you can drive while wearing ice cleats if you make the right selection. Look for heel-only ice cleats that will allow you to drive safely and comfortably.
Q: Can one run in ice cleats?
You can run in ice cleats, depending on the type. Brands like Yaktrax are known for manufacturing ice cleats that are lightweight and ideal for running.
Q: Which should I buy between ice cleats and crampons?
Your choice will largely depend on your needs and the winter activity you intend to undertake. Crampons are heavy-duty devices that are suitable for ice climbing and mountaineering adventures. On the other hand, ice cleats are lightweight, more affordable, and useful for everyday wear.
Ultimately, finding the best ice cleats will largely depend on your usage needs and other circumstances. If you love getting out during winter, we hope that our reviews prove useful to help you find the right type of cleats that meets your safety and comfort requirements. Don’t forget to factor in where you plan to use the cleats, the frequency of usage, level of traction, ease of use, and reliability in icy conditions.