We spent last weekend in Crested Butte so Ian could race in the inaugural Crested Butte Fat Tire 40 on Saturday. It was a beautiful day, the wildflowers were in full bloom and the trails were nice and tacky. Ian had a great race (finishing 10th overall) and it was also a nice role reversal for us – Juniper and I had fun supporting Ian in a race for a change. Read more about his race here.
After Ian’s race, I went for a great 10-mile trail run on Snodgrass Mountain above Mt. Crested Butte. It was the first opportunity I’ve had to try out the new SkyRace OT trail shoes from Lafuma that Ian brought home for me a couple weeks back. The SkyRace’s feature OutDry, a new waterproof/breathable membrane for shoes and gloves. (Full disclosure: OutDry is a client at Ian’s company Backbone Media). Unlike Gore-Tex, which is a free-floating membrane bootie or liner in gloves and shoes, OutDry is bonded directly to the external layer of the shoes. With Gore-Tex, there is a gap between the membrane and the outside of the shoe where water can collect, making the shoes heavy and cooling you down. OutDry eliminates those gaps.
Admittedly, I was a little skeptical about the technology, especially since I’ve been racing in Gore-Tex shoes for so many years now. The trails on Snodgrass were pretty dry, but I went out of my way to run through a couple of small creeks during my run. Impressively, my feet stayed really dry, and they didn’t get hot and clammy despite temperatures in the 80’s. I finished the run on a couple of miles of pavement and when I was done, my shoes were almost completely dried out. Typically, after a wet, muddy run I am loath to put my soaking shoes back in the car because they stink. Not a problem with the Sky Races.
Although at 15 ounces these aren’t the lightest trail shoes on the market, I think they’ll be an awesome adventure racing shoe. Last year we wore Gore-Tex shoes during our 60-mile trek through the desert in Abu Dhabi, hoping to keep the sand away from our feet, but they were really hot and sand still collected between the outer and inner layers of the shoe. I think these LaFuma’s with OutDry will effectively keep the sand out and be breathable enough to wear in 100-degree conditions.