Base Layer

Fleece Jacket

 

Wool Hat

Scarf

 

 Sun Glasses

 

Gloves

 

SnowShoes and Walking Poles

 
 

Hydration Bladder

 
 

WaterProof Boots

 

 

 Gaiters

What to Take and How to Pack

"If you can walk, you can go snowshoeing" is a popular and true saying. There isn't a long learning curve, it doesn't require a large investment, it doesn't require a lot of special techniques and mostly it allows you to go places where cross-country skiers and snowmobilers cannot go. You can start today, and have fun, immediately!

Clothing (no cotton!)

  • Waterproof boots-not lightweight (plastic boots work very well)
  • Outer shell pants (waterproof)  
  • Warm hat (fleece)
  • Face mask (if the temperature is going to be really cold. And/or windy)
  • Long underwear (top & bottoms)
  • Extra wool socks and liner socks, 2 pair 
  • Fleece jacket
  • Outer shell jacket (waterproof) 
  • Wool gloves and liner gloves 
  • Wool shirts and sweater
  • Long gaiters (to keep the snow out of your boots)
  • Pile or wool pants

Walking poles (could be rented)

Walking poles are essential when snowshoeing.They help you stay balanced in the snow and help take the strain off your legs on ascents and descent.

What to Bring - Other necessary equipments (fits all activities) 

  • Toiletries
  • Towel
  • Water bottles (2)
  • Tissues
  • Bandannas (many uses!)
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunblock
  • Lip balm with sunscreen
  • Moisturizer (optional for skin that dries quickly)
  • Antiseptic hand wipes
  • Camera and journal (optional)

Group Items (will be supplied if needed) 

  • Flashlight / headlamp
  • Insect repellent
  • Basic first-aid kit

SnowShoeing Tips

UPHILL: The approach to an uphill depends upon the slope and the condition of the snow. If the snow is light and soft, you might go straight up, by kick stepping. That is, by pushing the toe of the shoe vertically into the snowpack, pressing down in order to pack down the snow enough to support your weight. Then shift your weight to that foot and then repeat the process with the other foot.  Another technique that could be used is called "the herringbone technique". Instead of pushing the shoe directly into the snow, you step sideways at about a 45% angle. This way, a little more of the shoe comes into contact with the snow--never mind that you look like a penguin going up the side of the mountain.

TRAVERSE: Although traversing is traveling horizontally along a slope. Regardless of whether you traverse horizontally without elevation gain or with a slight elevation gain via switch-backs, the techniques are basically the same.
If the snow is hard, you'll probably traverse & switchback - gaining elevation with each switchback - by edging your shoes much the same as you would with skis, being careful to always keep the shoe level, beneath you (for balance and to avoid slipping).

DOWNHILL: One technique is the same as explained in the Traverse section above, with one exception. Whereas, when moving uphill, you tend to put your weight forward, when traveling downhill, you tend to put your weight on the back part of the shoe with particular attention to the heel crampon getting traction. Another way to travel downhill is straight down. This works okay in soft snow where you can dig your heels in and achieve firm footing.

GET UP after a "fall-down"