Jan 13, 2021 at 8:13 am #3693561CalBPL Member
I see great reviews for Katoola Microspikes. They’re averaging $60-70 online. But there’s an abundance of knockoffs that look very similar in design at a fraction of the price, some between $20-30. I don’t believe in buying junk but does anyone have thoughts on this? ThxJan 13, 2021 at 9:11 am #3693565Brad RogersBPL Member
@mocs123Locale: Southeast Tennessee
I think the Khotoola’s are made by Snowline and Hillsound is another proven brand, so I wouldn’t limit myself just to Khotoola’s but I probably wouldn’t go with just any knockoff either, especially on something on something that is designed to keep you safe.
Obviously the area of biggest concern is the elastic band that could break. I have a pair of Microspikes that I bought in 2008 that are still going strong without any signs of wear or fatigue.Jan 13, 2021 at 9:56 am #3693567DanBPL Member
Obviously the area of biggest concern is the elastic band that could break.
For me, the point of failure usually involves the links and metal connecting pieces. They can can often be repaired temporarily, but eventually when too many of the links break, I just buy a new set. So far, I haven’t had the elastic fail on either microspikes or yaktrax (I like the diamond grip style for around town). The parts in contact with the ground take a lot of abuse and fail first for me. YMMV obviously, and I haven’t tried any of the more obscure brands.Jan 13, 2021 at 10:33 am #3693568Tipi WalterBPL Member
In my experience the biggest concern with microspikes is their propensity to glob up wet snow underneath and you end up hiking on 3lb clumps of snow beneath each boot—then having to kick off this snow every 3rd or 4th steep. OTOH they work great on powder snow at 0F or on ice but in wet snow which is pretty much all we get in the Southeast they are worse than boots.Jan 13, 2021 at 11:47 am #3693588Victor HoytBPL Member
@vhoytLocale: Hudson Highlands
Sectionhiker just reviewed one of the knockoff brands. He seems to like them. However, read the one stars on Amazon and you’ll see exactly what one would suspect. The qc is spotty, so they’re not durable. The materials are cheaper, and likely not viable at very low temps.
I have a pair of ten year old Microspikes. There is one break on the elastic, but they still stay on. They’re dull and worn, but still kicking. I’d say the extra cost is worth the longevity.Jan 13, 2021 at 1:58 pm #3693606Stephen SeeberBPL Member
I go through a number of pairs of microspikes each year and it does not matter who makes them. I have broken the major brands in less than a month and the same with the knockoffs. So, why pay more? The links of any brand will break. I don’t think I have had a failure of the elastic portion on any but link failures on all of them. If you tend to use them only on snow and ice, then I would expect minimal or no failures. However, if you use them on terrain with rocks, then, expect failures. My use of microspikes involves lots of rocks. I stopped purchasing the top brands because you can get knockoffs for $25-30 on Amazon. A number of the knockoffs have a one year warranty, so after a link breaks after a couple of months, I get a free replacement pair or a refund from Amazon. For the past two seasons I have mainly purchased a brand on Amazon with the strange name Uelfbaby. The last one I purchased failed on the 2nd hike and its replacement is on the way.Jan 13, 2021 at 2:33 pm #3693613Chris RBPL Member
I have recently been using the Hillsound Flexsteps, no links to breakJan 13, 2021 at 4:33 pm #3693634
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