Schwalbe Ice Spiker£39.00

Ultimate Arctic snow and ice tyre, but more than you'll ever need

BikeRadar score4.5/5

You want a real winter tyre? Check out this studded wonder from Schwalbe - perfect if we ever get snow again.

With 304 tungsten steel studs putting an ice bite in each of the chunky alternating tread blocks on the centre and shoulder tread this is definitely a serious Arctic tyre.

Nothing else comes close for icy trail grip and the tall, firm shoulder knobs mean traction right over into the turns or the deepest slush and snow too and wide-spaced tapered tread means it clears sludge really well too.

As you'd expect though it clatters and roars on firmer surfaces and it'll chew woodwork and roots to ribbons. All those metal studs make it heavy and it'll slide wildly (and even spark sometimes) if you're anything less than super careful with it on tarmac or rock sections too.

It's expensive for what is a very rare use tyre anywhere in the UK south of the Cairngorms too. But it will probably last you a lifetime and of course if ice and snow are part of your usual winter riding diet it could be an essential bit of kit.

Guy Kesteven

Freelance Writer, UK
Guy started filling his brain with cycle stats and steaming up bike shop windows back in 1980. He worked the other side of those windows from '89 while getting a degree in “describing broken things covered in mud" (archaeology). Dug historical holes in the ground through the early '90s, then became a pro bike tester in '97. Guy has ridden thousands of bikes and even more components the world over since then and can remember them all in vivid, haunting detail. Can't remember where the car keys are, though.
  • Age: 44
  • Height: 180cm / 5' 11"
  • Weight: 68kg / 150lb
  • Waist: 76cm / 30in
  • Chest: 91cm / 36in
  • Discipline: Strict sadomasochist
  • Preferred Terrain: Technical off-piste singletrack and twisted back roads. Up, down, along — so long as it's faster tfhan the last time he did it he's happy.
  • Current Bikes: An ever changing herd of test machines from Tri bikes to fat bikes and everything in between.
  • Dream Bike: His Nicolai Helius AM custom tandem
  • Beer of Choice: Theakston's Old Peculier (not Peculiar)
  • Location: Yorkshire, UK
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