What are you guys wearing for traction on snowy down fall, wet bear grass... If you've been there you know what I'm talking about.. Micro spikes? Hillsound trail crampons? Or what.... Tired of busting my arse.... Thanks DEW
We wore crampons on our entire Kodiak trip this year, and I am a big fan. There is no substitute for being able to get a sure grip on a hillside, particularly when the going is steep and the vegetation is wet or has been frozen. After my last trip to Kodiak and the "Great slide of 2010" I wasn't taking any chances on traction in steep terrain. I have mostly used hillsound trail crampons with great success, though I have also used the stubai 6 points in the past as well. The hillsounds were easy to take on and off (not that I took them off much), and they stayed put on my boots allowing me awesome traction on both wet vegetation/snot grass as well as wet or moss covered rocks. I did notice that my feet felt a little sore, due to a change in the where the pressure points were because of the crampons, but this was with all day use heavy hiking with a lot of side hilling ..I didn't get blisters, but just noticed I was getting new callouses where I hadn't formed them before.
Luke did have the metal pull through on his one of his hillsounds part way thru our trip, necessitating a pretty hefty para cord repair. We examined our buddy's kahtoola micro spikes and it appears their rubber might be a little bit thicker, but they could be prone to the same problem...I didn't have any trouble with mine, but I weigh less than Luke does and also wasn't packing quite as heavy loads so that could account for the difference.
Kahtoolas and Hillsound trails both will "walk" on ya a bit when sidehilling for a while. What I mean by that is that they slowly wrap around from the bottom of your foot to the side. Plus over time, a couple years, the rubber will get weather checked and break...one of my Hillsound Trails came apart so many times that it was beyond what paracord could fix.
My buddy on my 2nd goat hunt this year had these and they are WAY slick for fast on/off, stout as hell, and lock into place perfect and I really like the ratchet design. Plus the price here is killer!!!