Traction: The five burly front crampons allow runners to really dig in on the uphill, but in an effort to cut weight, Faber skipped the rear crampon. Instead, they opted for 31 laser-cut, Swiss cheese-like decking holes to grab at the snow. “They’re effective in powder, but descending on packed trails is a bit sketchy,” says one tester.
Binding: One tester ran 10 miles of the New York Black Creek Park Race on icy, rolling trails and commended the Aerobic’s comfortable binding. “It felt like my foot was part of the ’shoe,” he says. The simple binding has two straps across the toe and a single U-shaped pull. A second strap tightens the heel. Tip: Brush the heel buckle free of snow at rest breaks, because it freezes up quickly in cold temps (below 10°F).
Comfort: Lightweight frames are the norm with running snowshoes, but testers praised the feel of the Aerobics. “It’s not necessarily lighter on the scale than other running snowshoes,” says one experienced racer. “But it feels like it. This shoe simply disappears from my feet when I run, and the flexible decking adds a bit of spring to each step.”
$140; 22 inches; 2 lbs. 3 oz.; fabersnowshoes.com