SPIKES, CRAMPONS, TRACTION, WHAT'S THE DIFFERENCE?
Crampons come in different variations suited for various activities and terrain. However, the term crampon has become well known as a traction device suited for mountaineering. Similarly, the terms Micro-spike, Ice cleat, and Trail crampon have been adopted to describe a traction device suited for non-technical terrain...
My wife and I purchased Hillsound Trail Crampon Ultras, Super Armadillo gaiters, and SpiKeeper crampon bags in February. We have used the trail crampons on steep backcountry snowshoe trails on Mount Seymour and Grouse Mountain during a recent visit to Vancouver, as well as on icy sidewalks in our neighbourhood here in Winnipeg. The crampons are light, well made, provide excellent grip on ice and packed snow, and are easy to put on and take off. The stainless steel spikes provide a satisfying crunch when walking on flat icy surfaces, withstanding my 230 pounds over the occasional bare urban intersections. They also enabled safe climbing, without slippage, on the steepest sections of the Snowshoe Grind on Grouse Mountain. During descents it was possible to adjust my stance to a sitting position and do a controlled glide down loosely packed sections of the trail, which was tremendous fun. While these are not a substitute for traditional crampons in demanding ice climbing situations, they are incredibly versatile and as indispensable as proper hiking boots and trekking poles for backcountry winter hikers. The Super Armadillo gaiters are the best of several different gaiters I have owned over the years. They are well designed from tough waterproof-breathable fabric, kept our feel warm and dry, and were easy to put on and take off. I have a size 11.5 foot and the large fit me well. My wife is a size 6 and she found the XS to be a bit snug around her calves. With hindsight she would have moved one size up. If you have large calves you might consider doing this. The SpiKeeper bags are of equal quality to other Hillsound products. The bags are good option for larger styles of crampons with bigger spikes. However, the included bags with the Trail Crampon Ultras are sufficient. That being said, I do find myself using the SpiKeepers for my Trail Crampon Ultras, as they can be attached to a belt and do provide a bit more space than the included bags.
Hi George, thank you so much for your excellent, honest, and experienced review of our products! We appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts and knowledge with us and our customers! We are happy to hear that you have gotten great use out of them already and hope you get years of adventures out of each item. Thanks for your support!
I now have a complete set of sizes to carry with me to help the unprepared I come across while hiking. I wouldn’t carry anything other than Hillsound.
Hi Cameron, thank you for taking the time to leave us a great review! You are a hero on the trails for bringing crampons for people that need them!
My wife used these on a recent winter hike to Siffleur Falls. This is an easy trail, with only moderate elevation gains, but they made a huge difference on some of the icy pitches. They fit well and seem durable.
Hi Richard, thank you so much for leaving us this great 5-star review! We are so glad your wife traversed the icy patches of your recent hike with ease! Happy trails!
Tried several different crampons for hiking on icy trails. Trail crampon ultra were the best by a long shot. Highly recommend
Hi Brian, thank you for leaving us a 5-star review on your Trail Crampon Ultra! We really appreciate the recommendation!
On les aiment beaucoup! Ils sont solides et facile à mettre et à enlever !! Ça fait le travail ; on marche avec ces crampons en toute sécurité
Merci de nous avoir donné une excellente critique 5 étoiles. Nous sommes si heureux d'apprendre que vous aimez votre Trail Crampon Ultra !