Thursday, November 22, 2007 12.39pm
By Guy Kesteven
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.
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