I’ve been prepared for snow since August.
Since last years transport freeze I’ve been determined not to find myself stranded at Victoria next time the flakes cho0se to descend. I decided to purchase, and keep ever-ready, a pair of YakTrax Pro, snow running gizmos. A crampon affair that should keep me running and impervious to the wrong kind of snow announcement.
Of course, when the snow came, I was in the middle of the Peak District surrounded by virgin snow, while my YakTrax were cosy at home, in the cupboard, where I left them. I’ll never get that boy scout badge.
Fortunately I had just taken delivery of a new pair of trail running shoes that Sports Direct had kindly sent me to review. They were in the boot of the car – just where I needed them.
I opened the box to reveal a surprisingly handsome pair of shoes the New Balance 813 GTX, ladies version. I think I was worried they were going to be pink or a bit wishy washy but they have that solid trail feel about them and they have GoreTex which is an absolute blessing in the snow.
I think at £42 they are probably the cheapest running shoe I’ve run in so far but nothing about them feels cheap. I often think we are being conned by shoe manufacturers, what on earth do Asics put in their shoes that makes my usual model cost £130?! More fool me obviously.
So £42 + Gore Tex + super grippy sole + handsome = mighty good value trail shoe
We opted to start our run out by the start of the Monsal Trail – an 8 mile gravel track along the route of the disused Bakewell to Buxton Railway. The choice of location was based solely on my determination to sample the long awaited tart of Bakewell fame. It’s been a fairly longstanding gripe of mine that I’ve managed to reach the age of 40 without trying a real tart.
Runs are so much better with purpose, I’m usually driven by the post run Stella but in freezing conditions that promise of a warm cuppa and a pastry works pretty well too.
I was mighty pleased with the shoes, they fit perfectly which suggests they are a wide fit, they are super comfortable and came with that new shoe affect that makes you admire the reflection in puddles and shop windows.
Here’s an assemblage of my trail shoes, New Balance on the left, Inov8 MudRoc in the middle and Salomon GTX on the right, showing the tread differential between them. The Inov8 is the most aggressive sole with deep tractor treads ideally suited for wet muddy conditions. The Salomon is ageing a bit now so the tread looks flatter than it should but its the least aggressive of the three, with the New Balance 813 treading the middle ground.