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The Best Winter Traction Device

Last updated on September 29, 2020

We looked at the top 7 Winter Traction Devices and dug through the reviews from 58 of the most popular review sites including Trip Savvy, Treeline Review, CTOP Reviews, Shoe Hero, Spy, Runner's World and more. The result is a ranking of the best Winter Traction Devices.

Best Winter Traction Device

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Our Picks For The Top Winter Traction Devices

Show Contents
Our Take
Experts Included
Pros
Cons
  The Best Overall

Cimkiz Stainless Steel Anti-Slip Crampon Boot Spikes

Cimkiz

Stainless Steel Anti-Slip Crampon Boot Spikes

Overall Take

Stainless Steel SpikesThis winter traction device is made with 19 stainless steel spikes that help you make your way across slippery terrain.

Experts Included
DWYM Sports and Recreation Experts plus CleatsReport, New York Mag, All Listings, Official Top 5 Review, iPerfect List. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" Stretchable material utilized to link the cleat to your shoes is five millimeters thicker than the usual rubber"
Cons
"The spikes on this option are not as big as what you'll find on a traditional crampon, so they would not be good to wear when climbing icy surfaces."

Hillsound Carbon Steel Trail Crampon Winter Traction Device

Hillsound

Carbon Steel Trail Crampon Traction Device

Overall Take

Carry Bag IncludedIncluded with this winter traction device is a handy carry bag.

Experts Included
DWYM Sports and Recreation Experts plus New York Mag, Wiki EZ Vid, Trail To Peak, Treeline Review, Hiking Geek, Loaded Pocketz and 2 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" Another claims these crampons make you feel “almost superhuman” when “on a trail and approach every obstacle without fear of slipping, sliding or falling.”"
Cons
"Cannot be worn when driving"
  The Best Value

Yaktrax Slip On Steel Coil Walking Traction Cleats

Yaktrax

Slip On Steel Coil Walking Traction Cleats

Overall Take

Lightweight and EffectiveThese lightweight traction cleats are easy to slip over any shoes or boots for a walk or run on a winter day.

Experts Included
DWYM Sports and Recreation Experts plus New York Mag, Wiki EZ Vid, All Listings, greenbelly, iPerfect List, Gear We Are and 3 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" “I’m so afraid of falling on ice, so when I saw these I gave them a try and wow, they really work,” celebrates one reviewer."
Cons
"The average rating is relatively low."

STABILicers Walk Traction Cleats

STABILicers

Walk Traction Cleats

Overall Take

Multiple Color OptionsYou'll find this winter traction device is available in a choice of orange, black or blue.

Experts Included
DWYM Sports and Recreation Experts plus All Listings, iPerfect List, Trip Savvy, CTOP Reviews, Shoe Hero, Big Game Logic and 3 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" Flexible as well as usable even in extreme temperatures like minus 45-degrees Fahrenheit."
Cons
"The size chart is not accurate."
Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
14

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the winter traction devices available to purchase.
7

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

58

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: Trip Savvy, Treeline Review, CTOP Reviews, Shoe Hero, Spy.

9,134

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including Amazon.

Our experts reviewed the top 7 Winter Traction Devices and also dug through the reviews from 58 of the most popular review sites including Trip Savvy, Treeline Review, CTOP Reviews, Shoe Hero, Spy, Runner's World and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Winter Traction Devices.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Overall

Cimkiz Stainless Steel Anti-Slip Crampon Boot Spikes

Our Expert Score
9.8
5 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
9.0
1,135 user reviews
Our Take

Whether you're traveling across a muddy road, a a snowy mountain or a block of ice at your favorite fishing hole, this winter traction device is a must-buy. It's easy to pull on and off and has an adjustable strap for a tight fit. The chain system with built-in spikes provides the traction you need to stay on your feet.

What other experts liked
Stretchable material utilized to link the cleat to your shoes is five millimeters thicker than the usual rubber
- CleatsReport
Several reviewers specifically mentioning purchasing these to go ice fishing, like one who raves, “These cleats grip the ice great/ I can run to my ice fishing tip up without worry of flipping.”
- New York Mag
Perfect to be used for a wide range of boots and for various sports.
- All Listings
There are 19 stainless-steel spikes on each cleat.
- Official Top 5 Review
Stretchy material for easy fitting.
- iPerfect List
What other experts didn't like
Some customer complaint about long term use issues
- CleatsReport
The spikes on this option are not as big as what you'll find on a traditional crampon, so they would not be good to wear when climbing icy surfaces.
- Official Top 5 Review

The Best Bang For Your Buck

Yaktrax Slip On Steel Coil Walking Traction Cleats

Our Expert Score
8.9
9 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.8
3,729 user reviews
Our Take

This winter traction device works well for both men and women and is available in extra-small, small, medium and large sizes. Although the cleats are lightweight, they are still able to provide the traction you need to safely move across slippery surfaces. The coils are also coated with zinc to prevent rust from forming on the coils.

What other experts liked
“I’m so afraid of falling on ice, so when I saw these I gave them a try and wow, they really work,” celebrates one reviewer.
- New York Mag
The unique coiled design of these Yaktrax Walk Traction cleats increases the stability of your footing on snow or ice, but also won't damage most types of flooring if you briefly wear them inside.
- Wiki EZ Vid
Steel coils are coated with zinc and are 1.2 mm thick.
- All Listings
The durable rubber foot frame with a removable over-foot strap ensures a secure fit.
- greenbelly
Heavy-duty rubber and 360 degrees traction.
- iPerfect List
Adjust easily
- Gear We Are
The highly elastic outer band comes with a heel tab to make them easy to slip on and off, and is sized to fit most boots and shoes.
- Trip Savvy
Rather than spikes or cleats, the Yaktrax Walk utilizes 1.2 mm steel coiled springs wrapped around thin rubber strands on the bottom.
- Treeline Review
Breakage- and abrasion-resistant durability
- Wapiti Travel
What other experts didn't like
The average rating is relatively low.
- iPerfect List
Straps could be more durable
- Gear We Are
But with the Walk, there’s no points, spikes or sharp edges. This means the traction and grip aren’t as good as we’ve seen on other ice gripping devices.
- Treeline Review
Choosing a perfect size can be tricky; for oversized shoes, order a bigger size
- Wapiti Travel

Overall Product Rankings

Cimkiz Stainless Steel Anti-Slip Crampon Boot Spikes

1. Cimkiz Stainless Steel Anti-Slip Crampon Boot Spikes

Overall Score: 9.8
Reviews Included: 6

Hillsound Carbon Steel Trail Crampon Winter Traction Device

2. Hillsound Carbon Steel Trail Crampon Winter Traction Device

Overall Score: 9.7
Reviews Included: 10

Yaktrax Slip On Steel Coil Walking Traction Cleats

3. Yaktrax Slip On Steel Coil Walking Traction Cleats

Overall Score: 9.4
Reviews Included: 10

STABILicers Walk Traction Cleats

4. STABILicers Walk Traction Cleats

Overall Score: 9.3
Reviews Included: 10

Kahtoola NANOspikes Low Profile Tungsten Carbide Spikes

5. Kahtoola NANOspikes Low Profile Tungsten Carbide Spikes

Overall Score: 9.2
Reviews Included: 10

Yaktrax Run Traction Cleats, Spikes & Coils

6. Yaktrax Run Traction Cleats, Spikes & Coils

Overall Score: 9.2
Reviews Included: 10

Limm Microspikes Crampons Ice Traction Cleats

7. Limm Microspikes Crampons Ice Traction Cleats

Overall Score: 9.0
Reviews Included: 10

Our Winter Traction Device Findings

Cimkiz Stainless Steel Anti-Slip Crampon Boot Spikes

What We Liked: Whether you’re traveling across a muddy road, a a snowy mountain or a block of ice at your favorite fishing hole, this winter traction device is a must-buy. It’s easy to pull on and off and has an adjustable strap for a tight fit. The chain system with built-in spikes provides the traction you need to stay on your feet.

Hillsound Carbon Steel Trail Crampon Winter Traction Device

What We Liked: Made using an ergonomic design, this winter traction device works to disperse your weight for reduced fatigue and better traction. As an added bonus, these crampons come with a complimentary carry bag that makes transporting the cleats a breeze.

Yaktrax Slip On Steel Coil Walking Traction Cleats

What We Liked: This winter traction device works well for both men and women and is available in extra-small, small, medium and large sizes. Although the cleats are lightweight, they are still able to provide the traction you need to safely move across slippery surfaces. The coils are also coated with zinc to prevent rust from forming on the coils.

STABILicers Walk Traction Cleats

What We Liked: No matter what type of shoe or boot you prefer to wear, this winter traction device will fit securely. The spikes are multi-directional for better traction, and the rubber comes in a choice of three fun colors. The cleats can be used in temperatures as low as -45 degrees Fahrenheit.

Limm Microspikes Crampons Ice Traction Cleats

What We Liked: This winter traction device has tiny spikes that are quick to grip the slippery surface you’re walking on. They can be used during a fishing trip, when walking through the snow or hiking up a mountain. Since they are constructed from a stretchy rubber, you won’t have any trouble fitting them over your shoes.

Our Winter Traction Device Buying Guide

Once winter hits, the ground can become hard and slippery. While you may be able to navigate the ice and snow-covered ground to complete your day-to-day activities, you’ll need a little extra support when participating in certain outdoor adventures. That’s where winter traction devices come in. They slip right over your shoes or boots and provide that extra traction you need to stay upright.

So what activities are winter traction devices best used for? These cleats can be used for everything from shoveling the snow off your driveway to hiking up a mountain. If you’re going for a walk over loose gravel or down a muddy road, you’ll find these cleats are a lifesaver. Additionally, the cleats work great during an ice fishing trip, as the spikes dig into the ice to keep you from slipping.

When shopping for the best pair of winter traction cleats, you’ll want to look at the construction material. A TPE elastic rubber top membrane is ideal, as it’s stretchy, lightweight and won’t tear. The spikes should be made from a premium stainless steel, as this metal is the most durable. Some models also have a reinforced metal chain system that adds to the strength of the cleats.

Check the number of spikes on the winter traction device, as well as the spike’s direction. You’ll find some models have just 10 spikes, while others boast as many as 24. A lesser number of spikes is fine for walks in the snow and mud, but a higher number is ideal for hikes and icy surfaces. Most of the devices have the spikes projecting downward, but you will come across a few models with multi-directional spikes.

Don’t forget to look for any extra features the winter traction device may have to offer. Some models coat their spikes with zinc to help prevent rust from forming. Others come with a carry bag for travel and storage.  You’ll even find cleats in a variety of colors, like orange, blue, black and brown.

DWYM Fun Fact

The earliest ice cleats researchers know of date back 1,100 years, to a pair of iron spikes found in a Viking village in Sweden. Cleats have been found in other snowy, icy regions as well — shepherds in the Alps used them as far back as the 1500s, using horseshoe nails on wood or metal platforms to give themselves traction through the Alpine winter.

Modern mountaineering crampons originated in the Alps, where Italian blacksmith Henry Grivel worked with English engineer Oscar Eckenstein to develop crampons for climbing nearby slopes in the early 1900s. The next generations of the Grivel family continued to refine the design, and today’s traction devices are the direct descendants of that innovative footwear.

The Winter Traction Device Tips and Advice

  • It is not safe to wear any winter traction devices when driving. You’ll need to arrive at your destination and then put the cleats on over your shoes or boots. When you return to the car after completing your adventure, you’ll need to remove the cleats before getting back on the road.
  • Check the sizing chart for the cleats you’d like to purchase, as there are different recommended sizes for the type of shoe you’re wearing. For example, the cleat sizes for trail runners might be different than the sizes for hiking boots and fishing and insulated boots. It’s also a good idea to check reviews to see whether other customers had to size up or down based on their experience with the traction devices.
  • When putting the winter traction device over your shoes, first place the toe of the cleats over the toe portion of the shoe. You can then wrap the cleats across the bottom of the shoe and up over the heel.
  • Chances are your winter traction devices will become dirty as you cross muddy surfaces. To clean them, you’ll need to grab a bowl of soapy dish water and a toothbrush. Use the toothbrush to get in between all of the spikes. Rinse the cleats off and immediately dry them with a lint-free towel to prevent rust from forming on the spikes.
  • Water traction devices come in a wide price range. The Yaktrax Slip On Steel Coil Walking Traction Cleats are the most affordable, while the Cimkiz Stainless Steel Anti-Slip Crampon Boot Spikes and the STABILicers Walk Traction Cleats have a more moderate cost. The Hillsound Carbon Steel Trail Crampon Traction Device comes in with the highest price tag, as it’s made using an ergonomic design and has longer spikes.

About The Author

Alicia Bodine
Alicia Bodine 

Alicia Bodine is a New Jersey-based writer specializing in finance. With more than 15 years of experience, her work has appeared on leading financial publications. She's also a certified Ramsey Solutions Master Financial Coach.