" If you can walk, you can snowshoe " is a popular and true saying. There isn't a long learning curve, it doesn't require a large investment for specialized boots, fashion statement clothing, lift tickets and standing in long lines and it doesn't require a lot of special techniques. You can start today, and have fun, immediately
Snowshoeing can accommodate a wide variety of activities,a casual hike in the woods, an overnight backpack trip, or an alpine climb, and can provide a workout to meet your needs, whatever they are. It's also a relatively inexpensive way to get the whole family out in it together.
One of the things that I like best about snowshoeing is that snowshoes are highly maneuverable, allowing you to go places where cross-country skiers and snowmobilers cannot go. You can easily travel through thickly-wooded and/or steep terrain (where avalanche danger is not, of course). Another distinction between hiking in the other three seasons and hiking in the Winter snow via snowshoes is the experience of the quiet and serenity of the snow-covered landscape.
- Always check your gear, before you go:
- Are your snow poles telescoping okay ? Maybe a squirt of silicone is in order.
- Any suspicious cracks in your snowshoe bindings ?
- Survival gear & knowledge intact ?
- Familiarity with the terrain you're going to ? Map ?
- Don't leave home without the 14 essential-gear items !
- Make sure someone at home knows where you are (in case of your emergency).
- Duct tape for emergency patchwork on snow shoes & snow poles
- Breaking the Trail:
- If you snowshoe with other people (safer than going alone) take turns leading. It gets very tiring breaking the trail.
- If you have energetic, want-to-go-fast young people in your group, put them in front and leave them there for as long as is practical and safe. Good for them, good for you.
- When leading, take into consideration the pace of the slowest member of the group.
- When leading, make your steps short enough so everyone in the group can follow in them.
- When following, try to stay in the leader's footsteps whenever possible. This conserves your energy and retains a better, well-defined trail for those who follow you.
- Take breaks, as necessary, to make adjustments to your clothing try to stay dry avoid chills.
- Take frequent breaks to drink water and eat something. Snowshoeing is strenuous and burns off calories and uses up body fluids in the form of perspiration. REMEMBER: In the winter, because of the cold, you may not always get the obvious signs of perspiring, but you are, nonetheless, and those fluids must be replaced.
- If you must go where the snowmobiles play, stay out of their way !