RATING – 5 stars

PRICE – $295


The first year I used sand ladders in Morocco, I used them a lot. In fact, more than I cared to. They were metal, unbelievably heavy and hard to lug around in deep sand. That’s when I started to do my research and came across Max Trax sand ladders. So when I returned to Northern Africa last March, I loaded them up in the sweet carrying case and sent them on Continental Airlines with me. They were so compact and lightweight, I didn’t even pay any extra bag fee.

Just because of the weight and shorter length, I first questioned their ability to perform. However, I became an immediate believer the instant I used them in a ridiculous section of camel grass. The design is smart and the “teeth” catch the tire’s tread easily for quick traction. I’ve now used them in a number of different situations, deep sand and even to help my friend’s Saab with performance road tires get through a fluke ice storm. So if you are heading out into situations off-road where you need to take care of yourself, make sure you have a set of these. Of all the ladders I’ve tried so far, you can’t go wrong and you won’t throw your back out using them. Sure people swear by carpet, and other “plaques” as the French refer to them, but when the going gets serious, Max Trax are the real deal.