Quick Look @ the MLD Light Snow Gaiters

A couple of weeks ago I decided to pick up a pair of the Mountain Laurel Designs (MLD) Light Snow Gaiters. I figured that (for me) these would be a good addition to my ZPacks rain kilt for covering my lower body in less than ideal weather. Between the kilt and the gaiters, I get almost complete coverage, but still maintain a good bit of breathability.

Being that my Inov8 Roclite’s I hike in are a size 12.5, I went with size large gaiters. When they arrived, they weighed 2.7 oz on my scales, without any cord on the instep. Some large diameter shock cord did come with the gaiters to use as the instep strap, however, I started thinking about what would work best here… So, I decided to order some Spectra Guywire from Lawson Kline to give a try. Later, I also emailed Lawson and asked him for his thoughts on what would be the best cord to use in this situation. He said that he still had some of his Vectrawire cord, and could send me a piece with my order to give a try. As soon as it showed up, I installed it on the gaiters, and they now weigh in at 2.9 oz (pair).

Of course, these gaiters are a no-frill type of gaiter. They are basically a solid, eVENT tube, with a shock cord and an anchored cord lock at the top, and a plastic “toe shoelace anchor clip” at the other end. There is some elastic cord in the bottom hem, which helps to get a tight fit around the top of my shoe, and there are also 2 loops (1 on each side) to attach an instep strap to. Due to the design of these gaiters, it is necessary to slide the gaiters on before putting on my shoes. Maybe a small bit of inconvenience, however, this also means that there are no zippers or velcro that can fail over time.

I gotta admit, I am really looking forward to using these. I think that they will be a welcome part of my kit. To be honest, even on warmer hikes, I am thinking about just unzipping the pants legs off of my hiking pants, and wearing these instead. In fact, I am pretty sure I will on a trip coming up in July… I am also looking forward to seeing how the  Vectrawire holds up as the instep too…


So, until then, thanks for stopping by!


Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any of the companies mentioned in this post. I paid the full price for the MLD Gaiters, however, Lawson Kline did send me the small piece of Vectrawire to give a try for free. The statements in the above post are of my own opinion, which I have formed after handling these items myself. I am not being paid in any way to talk about these products.

About Stick

My blog is essentially a record of my hiking career. Through it, I, and others, can see how I have evolved from a heavy weight backpacker, to a smarter, more efficient, lightweight backpacker. Through the use of video, still photos, and of course writing, one can see my progression, as well as check out some of the places I hike, and not to mention some cool, lightweight gear options. For me, my blog is a journal, but for others, I hope that it is an interactive learning tool to aid them in their own progression towards lightweight backpacking.
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7 Responses to Quick Look @ the MLD Light Snow Gaiters

  1. Pingback: PHGT: October 2016 Mt Roger’s/Grayson Highland Hike | Stick's Blog

  2. Tea Man says:

    Hey Stick,

    Any updates on the gaiters-kilt combo? Is it working well for you? I’m thinking of trying it out too.

    Tea Man


    • Stick says:

      Tea Man,

      I won’t get to try it out until July. Just trying it out though, along with my previous experience with the kilt on it’s own, I feel like it will suit my needs great… and especially on those colder weather hikes. I am only going to wear the gaiters on my July hike to see how hot I get in them… it will be very likely I will be hiking in temps over 90 F…



  3. Thanks for the post. I own the same gaiters, but my major gripe is the pain/loss of circulation caused by wearing them for extended periods of time. The upper elastic clasp system can be tough on the legs after many miles. Also, I wore them last winter for a long snow hike above 5,000′ and was surprised that the seam leaked. I then seam sealed it, which has “seemingly” solved said problem.


    • Stick says:

      That’s a good point, thanks for bringing it up. Just like their eVENT overmitts, I would assume that these would also need to be seam sealed for a truly waterproof gaiter. Funny though, they don’t mention anything about seam sealing them on the website. Maybe there is just less chance of water seeping through the seam due to the nature of gaiters? Maybe that’s also why they call them “Light” Snow Gaiters… Anyway, I will see how I like them before seam sealing… Good point though!

      Another good point about the upper elastic closure. I have used a pair of tall OR Gaiters and had the same thoughts. I don’t know if there are other gaiters that fix this issue, but I imagine it is an issue with most tall gaiters (and even some socks I have). For me I don’t plan on cinching them unless it is raining (unfortunately I am not in much snow so not too worried about snow coming over the top). And then I will just cinch them just tight enough.

      Thanks for sharing your findings with them, I appreciate it!


      Liked by 1 person

  4. Steve Carothers says:

    Hey Stick…just curious will these gaiters protect you against snake bite too?


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