Experience the Winter Wonderland with Snowshoes

Posted by Carla Bamesberger | 11.29.2015

Slogging through snow can make enjoying favorite trails or exploring new trails difficult in the winter. On many trails, snowshoes are a must in the winter months. These contraptions give your foot more surface area so that you can easily walk on top of the snow, and their aggressive tread provides traction that your boots don’t give you. Snowshoeing offers a new and fun way to enjoy the great outdoors in the cold months, helping you face and overcome new challenges with ease. The most difficult part is deciding on what snowshoe works best for you.


Know What You Need


Several factors impact what size and style you need. Before you go shopping, know your weight and height so that you can more easily determine the right size for your body. Selecting the appropriate length will make you more comfortable, reduce fatigue, and enhance your overall experience. Foot size also matters. Many companies make models designed specifically for women, who typically have smaller feet than men. These designs feature straps that support a smaller boot more comfortably.


Next, you need to determine what types of hikes you need them for. A backcountry expedition with a lot of hill action requires a more aggressive tread than flatland or gently rolling hills. Similarly, snow conditions also impact your choice. Smaller shoes work well for packed snow, but if you’re prone to trail blazing through fresh powder, you’ll want something with a little more surface area to increase your buoyancy.


After that, it all comes down to preference.


Keeping it Simple with Xplore


Sometimes, you just need to keep it simple. Not everyone needs a high tech design with the latest and greatest technology and hardcore tread. Some people just want to go for casual winter hikes on easy trails and enjoy the frost-covered wonderland. The Xplore from Tubbs works great for the casual snowshoe experience.


Like other models, the Xplore uses a lightweight tubular aluminum frame to keep from dragging you down and fatiguing your legs. They also offer intense traction for packed snow, fluffy conditions, and ice alike. Their simple binding design sets the Xplore apart from other designs. The binding is easy to fasten and fast to release, making them perfect, even for beginners.


Crescent Moon Comfort


Crescent Moon, a Colorado-local company based out of Boulder, offers some of the most comfortable rigs on the market. Their models are designed for ergonomic comfort. Part of their comfort comes from their unique binding. Their designs feature a whole-foot binding that closes around your entire boot rather than being secured by straps. Although their design makes getting these shoes on and off more complicated, it takes pressure off of your foot and reduces drag.


Runners and joggers will love Crescent Moon as well. Rather than using the traditional low friction pivot system incorporated into many other styles, Crescent Moon utilizes a flexible band that lifts the tail of your shoe to reduce drag and increase speed. The teardrop shape of the frame also boosts both comfort and speed by reducing the chances of crossing the frames while you move.



Versatile MSR


For a highly versatile option, you might consider MSR. MSR uses a lightweight plastic frame for most of its models, though they do offer some metal frames as well. One of the key features of MSR snowshoes is the semi-redundant binding design. If one strap breaks on the trail, it won’t compromise overall functionality. As an added bonus, replacing an MSR strap on the trail requires no tools, unlike other designs.


People also love MSR for their portability. The rectangular shape of the frame makes these shoes look bulky, but unlike many other designs, they lay flat. Their flat surface makes them easy to strap onto backpacks for snowmobiling or extended dry patches. You can also buy packable tail extensions to fasten to the back of these shoes if you happen to encounter fresh powder on the trail.


Nature looks different under a blanket of snow. Get out and experience it like never before with a quality set of snowshoes.

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