Hiking in Finland

Climbing, bikepacking, skiing & packrafting in the north

Inov-8 OROC 280 Review

Time to continue with some reviews of gear used in Russia. My footwear were the Inov-8 OROC 280, a lightweight trailrunner with spikes to give extra grip. I was the only person to use trailrunners on this expedition, all the others used rubberboots. Lets have a look, shall we?

The important bit: Weight for the pair in Size 42,5 is 567 g.

What makes this shoe stand out - besides the colour - is that it has before mentioned spikes, a whopping nine of them to be correct. Six under the forefoot, three under the heel, guaranteeing you solid grip on every surface (except marble floor, on which it is damn slippery). Every surface means for me rock, ice, mud, tree roots, swamp, forest ground, be they normal, wet, flooded or frozen.

Nine spikes to rule them all. Ähem, have splendid grip on any surface.

The shoe is super breathable, dries quick and is absolutely not waterproof, just as I like them. The laces seem to be made of some kind of dyneema material, at least they are a lot thinner and stronger than normal laces, again something I prefer - they keep knots better than the normal lace materials. The upper is made of neopren, and Inov-8 tells us it helps to protect us better from dirt and debris. The truth is I still get all kind of grit in them if I am not wearing gaiters.

The OROC 280 has the Endurance sole, which is in my experience just as grippy as the Slicky sole, but your milage may vary. The profile of the shoe is similar to the Roclite, which is to date my favourite profile for outdoor shoes. As durability is something that is always asked about, I have walked over 200 km in my OROCs so far, and yet have to see problems with endurance, but I also only wear them for trailrunning and backpacking.

I would say the footbox is normal to narrow, if you have wide feet in the front then you might want to look at another shoe, but for folks with narrow to normal feet these are fine. Now, with the winter upon us, these trailrunners allow you to walk save on icy trails, lakes and mountains without needing spikes or similar, thus a useful piece of kit if winter doesn't send you back indoors and crampons would seem like overkill for your trips.

I can't think of anything I don't like about them at the moment. Improvements? Well, all black would be cool, obviously. I was thinking if two additional spike even further at the front would make sense, as I walk/ run with the front of my foot striking first and this could give a tiny bit more traction an real slippery surfaces, but after some more consideration I came to the conclusion that they're fine as they are. Well, except if they'd come in all black, obviously.

All in all a very lightweight, fast shoe with great grip, good durability and fine looks =) Sadly the usual suspects don't seem to have the shoe currently in their line-up, so I suggest if you like a pair that you email them and ask if they can get it for you, or visit your local outdoor shop and get them there!

The Week in Review

Is it again that time of the year?

Put on Fullscreen and enjoy.

David was for a bimble in the Black Mountains, some great, moody photos of a fine looking area.

Dondo was for 27 hours in Glacier Gorge. Great, atmospheric photos from an early winter hike, it is definitely worth your time.

Early winter looks sweet when Fraser is the man to tell the story and take the photos. Have a look at his Glen Doll & Loch Esk trip report, a recommended read.

Maria had a sunny start to her week.

The Ammergauer Hochplatte in the Alps was visited by Rainer, and he was happy to come over 2000 m on this trip.

Staying in the Alps, but UL style, was the trekking-ultraleicht.de Austria meet-up which happend in the end of October in the Mürztaler Alpen.

Steven had unfinished business on Beinn Dorain.

Dave was with his mates in the Niewkoopse Plassen, and a might fine report details this adventure.

The Bryson City Beer and Bicycle Brunch is a daytrip made by the Velo Hobo, something I definitely would join!

Tomas was in the valley of the three skulls, an adventure which had howling wolfs and death moose.

The Dude Abides was in Dolwyddelan Hills.

The absolute Gem of this week is Mark's Vaattunkilampi Overnighter. Sublime writing and photography, a must read.

Dave from Bedrock & Paradox went on a 60 miles trip through Glacier National Park. Epic views to be seen.

Part 2 of Keith's Mourne Wall adventure is online, and has more epic photos in it.

Johnny did The Fisherfield Six.

John was in Jirisan.

ULA now offers their packs with women specific shoulder straps. That pretty neat, I actually would get a pack with those S-shaped straps myself.

If you're living in Norway and would like to get your hands on some cheap UL gear, have a look at what Joe has on sale.

John wrote a great "Make Your Own Dehydrated Meat Sauce" article.

Markus shows us how to connect your sleeping pads & mats so that they stay together. Nice.

Ross wrote a delicious article about "How to Prepare Acorns in the Woods"

Erin and Hig tell us How To Go Trekking with a Toddler.

Helen tell us about her Inspiration.

In the Gear Department we have a first look at the Rab Xenon insulated jacket and the Rab Alpine Pull-on softshell by Joe.

A first look at the Rab Microlight Alpine Jacket is taken by Baz, who also sheds some light on the 2010 GoLite Jam.

Benjamin has a review of the Terra Nova Moonlite bivy up.

Phil illuminates his approach to winter footwear.

Rio shows that the 2010 GoLite Ion is humongous and the ideal EDC or weekend pack.

Peter has a first look at the Berghaus Asgard Smock and the Haglöfs Ozone.

terrybnd reviews the Rab Infinity down jacket.

Dennis found the perfect hydartion system with the Source ConverTube.

Matthias reviews the Inov-8 F-Lite 230.

Geoff outlines his winter footwear, which consists of Montrails and Microspikes.

Maz has a new winter stove, the Primus Express Spider.

Finally, yours truly wrote the essential quilt guide =)

Remember, you can become a Fan of Hiking in Finland and Nordic Lightpacking on Facebook!

UL Metal Tour

Guitars, drums, bass, pyrotechniques, skulls, lightly dressed ladies, plenty of alcohol, head banging.

Or UL gear talk ad absurdum?

Probably a mix of the both, when I join PTC for a walk in the Scottish hills from November 29th till December 1st. Johnny is joining us as well, and Steven and Fraser are still thinking about it. If you're free for a Monday till Wednesday trip in the early Scottish winter, join us - Peter might even give you a tent to test for two nights!

Location is still being talked about, but the Cairngorms seem a likely destination. If you can get a couple of days free and feel like testing tents, talking gear, metal music and UL backpacking and see some mighty fine Scottish hills in their winter dress, I suggest you let Peter or me know! See you in Scotland =) And to help us set the tune for this trip, join us and curate the Spotify playlist for the UL Metal Tour.