What Are the Basics of Snowshoeing?


Quick Answer

There are three different types of snowshoes: flat terrain, rolling terrain and mountain terrain. Flat terrain snowshoes are the best choice for beginners. As the saying goes, "If you can walk, you can snowshoe." The only main difference from regular walking is that snowshoeing requires a wider stance to avoid stepping on the outer frames of the snowshoes.

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What Are the Basics of Snowshoeing?
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Full Answer

Always give the right of way to cross country skiiers, as it is much easier for a snowshoer to move out of the way than for a skiier. When climbing hills, use the crampons at the front of the snowshoes to gain traction, and use poles to help balance. For downhill slopes, dig in with the heel crampons, and keep body weight back and knees bent. Use poles in front for added stability. When crossing the side of a hill, use the sides of the snowshoes to create a shelf in the snow, and keep weight on the uphill shoe.

When snowshoeing, choose insulated, waterproof boots. Wear them with wool or synthetic socks to keep feet warm and dry. For clothing, a zippered top is a good choice because it allows you to adjust it as needed to maintain a comfortable body temperature. Pants should be waterproof but breathable.

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