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Review: Icebug Zeal OLX – long term wear

We posted our first look at the Icebug Zeal OLX on April 10th, 2015 – since then they’ve been on many courses, many laps, many miles – and I wanted to do a recap discussing their long term wear. With the 2016 season coming, the chances are high we’ll see shoes from last season on sale and getting moved by retailers for cheaper – so, how did these guys hold up?

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Icebug Zeal OLX Unboxing

Icebug Zeal OLXIcebug released the Zeal to the market in 2015 – the first wholly dedicated shoe for the OCR market. Today, I got my hands on a pair of the OLX, studded versions, and wanted to put out a short unboxing video, some photos and initial thoughts before getting them muddy and breaking them in at FIT Challenge this weekend.

Things I like, immediately out of the box.

The large plastic panel on the inside of the foot – this should be a great addition for rope climbs and general rock protection.

The wide grip on the tread – some studded bugs have a less aggressive tread, despite being studded – and I’ve missed this more aggressive tread pattern.

Toebox – after wearing them, the toebox is wider than my Spwider OLX (similar to the Accelerita’s) – but not as wide as the Pytho2’s. They feel very comfortable on.

 

 

Icebug Zeal OLXThings I’m holding judgement on.

The nylon upper is a very coarse fabric – likely very good for durability and water absorbtion, but it has a rough feel and will take some breaking in.

That same plastic panel gives the shoe a moulded feel – likely it won’t fit everyone. Take a trip to Shale Hill and try them on.

More when I’ve worn them in a race, and broken them in.