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Thread: Snow shoes?

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    Senior Member Mithrandir's Avatar
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    Snow shoes?

    So the snow is on the horizon. Expecting 7 inches tonight. In preparation for the fun I went out and bought some snow shoes from the local ski shop (LSS?), the only model they carried; Tubbs Xplore.

    I get home and on a whim, decide to look it up on amazon... and it's got terrible ratings. The binding system is an absolute joke. I tried them on with my boots, paying more attention this time and yeah, the bindings are going to be a huge issue. So I'm going to return them tomorrow night and look for some in a different store. Going to check out Eastern Mountain Sports first, then Dicks. Only problem is I have no idea what I should be looking for. Anyone have a good idea of what brands are generally the best?

    Any recommendations would be awesome, thanks!

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    warm boots, ski pants and some ice shoe spikes, perhaps?
    Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
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    Senior Member reducedfatoreo's Avatar
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    I got myself a pair of Louis Garneau shoes on steepandcheap last year. Great deal, shoes work great. Unless you plan on doing some hardcore snowshoeing where you'll be in and out of the bindings a lot, I wouldn't worry about it. If you got a good deal and these shoes will keep you afloat, walk on them until they fall apart.

    Look for reviews on snowshoes on Backcountry Outlet's website (they run steepandcheap along with Chainlove and Bonktown, etc.)

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    Pwnerer Wordbiker's Avatar
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    Lots of places around here rent snowshoes. At least then you can try before you buy.
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    Senior Member jdon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mithrandir View Post
    So the snow is on the horizon. Expecting 7 inches tonight. In preparation for the fun I went out and bought some snow shoes from the local ski shop (LSS?), the only model they carried; Tubbs Xplore.

    I get home and on a whim, decide to look it up on amazon... and it's got terrible ratings. The binding system is an absolute joke. I tried them on with my boots, paying more attention this time and yeah, the bindings are going to be a huge issue. So I'm going to return them tomorrow night and look for some in a different store. Going to check out Eastern Mountain Sports first, then Dicks. Only problem is I have no idea what I should be looking for. Anyone have a good idea of what brands are generally the best?

    Any recommendations would be awesome, thanks!
    I have Easton Backcountry shoes but they are overkill, at least for this side of the lake. I only got out twice last winter. You may get better use from them in Buffalo.
    Ionnsaich aig casan latha an-d, bi be airson latha an-diugh, bi an dchas airson latha a-maireach.

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    Ah, misery slippers, do not bring back good memories. As a young lad I used to spend three or four months every winter wearing them. Sure were good for building up your leg muscles though.

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    I have two pairs: MSR and Atlas. I prefer the MSR for the heavy wet snow and tight forest trails that we have here in western Washington. Excellent for hill climbing with the built in spikes.
    Regards, MillCreek
    Snohomish County, Washington USA

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    You Know!? For Kids! jsharr's Avatar
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    Here is a list of the top models in use on the Dallas snow shoeing circuit:


    Hope this helps in some strange way.
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    I have a pair of MSR Denalies. They work well for me. Just don't try to walk backwards in them.
    "Why is it that one careless match can start a forest fire, but it takes a whole box to start a barbecue?" Anonymous

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    Senior Member mulveyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mithrandir View Post
    So the snow is on the horizon. Expecting 7 inches tonight. In preparation for the fun I went out and bought some snow shoes from the local ski shop (LSS?), the only model they carried; Tubbs Xplore.

    I get home and on a whim, decide to look it up on amazon... and it's got terrible ratings. The binding system is an absolute joke. I tried them on with my boots, paying more attention this time and yeah, the bindings are going to be a huge issue. So I'm going to return them tomorrow night and look for some in a different store. Going to check out Eastern Mountain Sports first, then Dicks. Only problem is I have no idea what I should be looking for. Anyone have a good idea of what brands are generally the best?

    Any recommendations would be awesome, thanks!

    As with the poster above, here in Upstate NY the whole family has MSR Denali's.

    Pluses:
    The bindings are very easy to deal with when you're wearing mittens. Once on, they stay on.
    The spikes are great on light ice.
    You can get extensions if you need extra float.

    Cons:
    The plastic bases are REALLY loud if there's even a hint of crust. Compared to traditional gut and wood snowshoes, it's like you're accompanied by a small engine.


    I highly recommend getting a set of trekking poles. They're very useful when ascending and descending slopes in particular.

    If this is your first set of shoes - don't make the mistake of assuming that you're going to be "floating" on the snow. That's a common mistake. You're still going to sink in quite a bit, depending on how much the snow is packed, etc.
    Knows the weight of my bike to the nearest 10 pounds.

  11. #11
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    Another vote for Atlas. Two seasons on my 1029s. Whatever you get, use them with a pair of water resistant pants since some shoes kick up snow on the bum. Wearing Jeans results in a frozen backside.

  12. #12
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    +1 on the MSRs.

    I don't own any (yet) but I borrowed some MSR snowshoes a few years ago for a snowshoe hut trip in the mountains. Six miles in (with a full pack) on crusty snow. Next day a snowshoe hike of several miles in woods and open meadows. Snowed a foot overnight and packing out 6 miles in falling snow. Amazing.

    The MSRs have a good grip in steep going and they drag on the ground as you walk, instead of popping back to your heel and flinging snow onto your back.

    I want to do some snowshoing this winter and I will rent MSRs from REI for a bit.

    I have just used my goretex waterproof Lowa hiking boots (with tall gaitors) for my snowshoe trips and they worked just fine.
    Last edited by eofelis; 11-11-11 at 10:08 AM.
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    One reason why I really like my MSRs is the ability to use the flotation tails. Having the ability to tailor the length of the shoe to the weight and snow conditions is great. I pretty much use the full-size flotation tails all the time, but I have the ability to take them off for my wife or other people with us using the shoes. This helps the maneuverability, too.
    Regards, MillCreek
    Snohomish County, Washington USA

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by skijor View Post
    Another vote for Atlas. Two seasons on my 1029s. Whatever you get, use them with a pair of water resistant pants since some shoes kick up snow on the bum. Wearing Jeans results in a frozen backside.

    And another vote for Atlas, here as well.
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    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MillCreek View Post
    One reason why I really like my MSRs is the ability to use the flotation tails. Having the ability to tailor the length of the shoe to the weight and snow conditions is great. I pretty much use the full-size flotation tails all the time, but I have the ability to take them off for my wife or other people with us using the shoes. This helps the maneuverability, too.
    Another for the MSR with the removeable tails. I'm a big dude and I need those tails on fluffy snow, but I like to get a good jog going on harder packed trails, so I disconnect the tails and stash 'em in my pack when I want to really haul ass. I've had mine for 5 years and they're still in good shape; another bonus of the solid plastic design. Super durability.
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    You Know!? For Kids! jsharr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    Another for the MSR with the removeable tails. I'm a big dude and I need those tails on fluffy snow, but I like to get a good jog going on harder packed trails, so I disconnect the tails and stash 'em in my pack when I want to really haul ass. I've had mine for 5 years and they're still in good shape; another bonus of the solid plastic design. Super durability.
    GGK1, which model of the MSR do you use? Please tell me it is the MRSA....
    Last edited by jsharr; 11-11-11 at 12:37 PM.
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    Senior Member rankin116's Avatar
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    I got a pair from TSL, made in VT. http://www.tsloutdoor.com/en/product...-top-men-30%22

    I got the Over The Top model, great traction, climbing block for your calves. I can't compare them to others, but these have been great for me.

    A +1 to the trekking pole suggestion.

    I grew up outside Buffalo, where are you planning on taking yours?

  18. #18
    Senior Member kc0yef's Avatar
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    +`1 ATLAS
    I have had MSR TUBBS(I really liked them) but when Summer rolled around I snagged these off the bay for $30
    I use my ski poles and can walk all day...
    I like to take photos and have a monopole walking stick that is also collapsible
    Last edited by kc0yef; 11-11-11 at 12:39 PM. Reason: add sennse

  19. #19
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsharr View Post
    GGK1, which model of the MSR do you use? Please tell me it is the MRSA....
    That would be far too awesome. I've just got the cheapo MSR Denali. I think they were $90 at REI; maybe even less.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    That would be far too awesome. I've just got the cheapo MSR Denali. I think they were $90 at REI; maybe even less.
    Mine are even older and are the MSR Classic.
    Regards, MillCreek
    Snohomish County, Washington USA

  22. #22
    Senior Member triumph.1's Avatar
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    I am also looking into buying a pair for this winter to help keep in shape and a good excuse to get out and use that digital slr I've had for a year now. I just don't know if we get enough snow around here to use them.

  23. #23
    Senior Member catmandew52's Avatar
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    I've got a traditional pair (like those in pic)that I used in the winter 0f 74/75 when we got 4ft plus in the Detroit area, in 2 1/2 days. Original leather bindings did not make it thru the winter, replaced with synthetic rubber and used them again in 77/78.51g2BBl9XTL__SS500_.jpg
    http://www.amazon.com/Iverson-Countr.../dp/B0041OVAO6
    You might want to think about getting some gaiters to go with.
    Last edited by catmandew52; 11-12-11 at 04:37 PM. Reason: added limk
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