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.

Goal vs. Intention

Last week was rough. I had a minor complication from some oral surgery that left me feeling pretty miserable. Well, perhaps just a touch more miserable the pre-planned misery of oral surgery. I may not have helped matters by hyper-focusing on my training plan. The jury is still out on that one, but all of this did make me think about the idea of goal versus intention.

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?

Altra Superior

If you read my review of the Altra Lone Peak 1.5s, you know that I love them. I am a huge fan of everything Altra. I even ran in, and now chill out in, an original pair of black Instincts. So when I picked up my first pair of Superiors, I was super excited. They were going to be everything I was looking for. Touted as being lighter than the Lone Peaks, closer to the ground than the Lone Peaks, and with a removable stoneguard, they were going to be the Altras I was going to use for my trail races. That is until they didn’t fit.

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.

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…