The WMTR mission is to organize activities for trail runners that encourage people to get outside, have fun, and live active, social lives together.

The group imagines a fun, diverse, inclusive trail running community that is passionate about welcoming new trail runners, exploring new trails, and becoming better informed about the environment, health, trails, and gear. We practice good trail stewardship that includes working alongside the West Michigan Mountain Biking Alliance and others to help build and maintain the private and public trails.

Zen, Motorcycles, and Running: Gumption Traps

Thirty years ago, I used to run across people who, like me, had read and enjoyed Robert Pirsig's wonderful, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. This book remains one of the most intriguing ornaments in modern American literature, but, like I said, I haven't heard anyone talk about it for a long time.

Sun, Sprays and SPF

It’s finally summertime in West Michigan and I am excited to be sweating it up out on the trails! There are some different challenges to trail running when it’s hot, muggy, and humid, hydration depleting weather. Are you drinking enough water during the day to keep yourself hydrated during the run? While that’s a question road runners will ask themselves too, it’s even more important when you are working harder climbing all those hills. Are you wearing SPF? Yes, you are mostly shaded by trees on the run but what about when you are hanging out before or afterwards?

A New Logo

Our website at West Michigan Trail Runners has been up for over a year now. But until this week--April 2014--we've had to make do with a makeshift logo that stands in until we could find a permanent replacement.

Hex nuts vs Hobnails

Today was the day. Christmas Eve morning, a loop around Pickerel Lake with 16 of my WMTR family, and plenty of fresh midwestern powder on top of even more midwestern ice. I loaded up my left Patagonia Forerunner with LaSportiva AT/Hob Nails, and I loaded up my right one with #6, 3/8 in. steel hex nuts from Modern Hardware. The question is, which option performed better?

...And then there was running

Why did I start running? It's probably the same reason you started running. To lose weight. I had already been on the " journey to a healthier me" for about a year when I started struggling to stay motivated. Then I asked myself a simple question, whose body did I envy? And what did they do to get that enviable body? All the people on that list in my head had one thing in common. They were runners!

Knuckle Lights

When it comes to winter running in Michigan, we have a lot of things to consider. What are we going to wear to stay comfortable? How are we going to improve our traction? Can the other runners, cyclists, and most importantly drivers, see me? As a trail runner this last question is the most important: how am I going to see where I’m going?

Salomon Speedcross

I'm still using the Speedcross 2 that I won at the Dirty Herd Fall Classic two years ago. I break these shoes out in the winter because of their aggressive grip, which I really like in the snow and slush and mud. The tread on these seems a bit heavy duty to me for normal dry conditions, but when it gets cold, my Asics Fuji Racers are just too light weight and cold for the weather. These Speedcross are not water proof, but they do have a tight weave across the top of the foot and keep my feet dray and reasonably warm throughout my runs.

The Edge

I started running in 2007. I actually just had to look up my first 5k time to see that it really had been that long ago. I tried running a couple of times prior to that, but it didn’t take. My husband Patrick, an amazing runner and athlete, wanted so badly for me to start. But the more he pushed, the more I resisted. I’m a bit like a feral cat in that way. It was too far past my edge. Slowly something within me shifted, and with the support of Patrick and my dear friend Trudi, I decided to try again with a “couch to 5k in five weeks” training plan.

YakTrax XTR (Kahtoola Microspikes)

Truth be told, I haven’t run in the Kahtoola Microspikes. But my experimentation with the YakTrax XTR, and previous reviews I've read about both, leave me feeling confident that I can comment on both.

I have already hit the snowy trails in the YakTrax Pro, HobNails, Ice Spikes, and sheet metal hexnuts, so this should finish my comprehensive coverage of your winter traction options. Let’s make this short and sweet…