How to Keep a Firm Footing in Icy Weather


There’s nothing worse than going for a morning stroll only to find yourself with the “rubber side up” as they say. Black ice, slippery sidewalks and refrozen snow can be a game-changer for people (like myself) in a certain demographic. I don’t make it to the snow very often, and when I do I’m usually at a conference grounds…which means plenty of opportunity to slip up and fall hard.

Here are some great ways to keep your footing in slippery situations:

Yaktrax (pictured above): These things are great on refrozen snow and slippery pavement. I’ve worn the same pair for four seasons now. Two caveats: take them off indoors, they are very slippery on tile floors. They tend to slip off your feet when walking through drifted snow, but a shoelace “leash” is a low-cost remedy.

Yaktrax Pro

Yaktrax Pro: Mostly the same as regular Yaktrax but with a heavy duty instep strap to keep them on your feet.


Stabilicers: These nonslip soles attach to your boots (see thumbnail above) and come recommended to me by a meter-reader who wore these through a number of seasons and praised them for their traction and durability. Rugged construction with replaceable spikes.

Kathoola MICROspikes

Kathoola MICROspikes: One step below full crampons, Katahoola MICROspikes are the hands-down choice of hikers and trail-runners. The chunky spikes hold well on the trail, but might pose a hazard on smooth concrete. They will also take a bite out of wood steps and decks.