Snowshoeing is a fascinating sport, and one that you might want to try for yourself. This article takes a look at this increasingly popular sport and what makes it so special.
If you are an outdoors enthusiast with a taste for winter activities, you have plenty of choices at your disposal. You can enjoy the fun and excitement of downhill skiing, the peacefulness and serenity of cross country skiing through the back country, or the unique challenge of snowboarding.
But if you have grown tired of the same old thing, you might want to try a new challenge. The sport of snowshoeing is quickly gaining ground, as more and more people discover the many great things this sport has to offer. Whether you are looking for a great workout, the perfect way to explore the back country of your favorite ski resort, or just a way to get back to nature, snowshoeing might just be what you have been looking for.
What Makes Snowshoeing Unique?
Lovers of snow and cold crisp air have plenty of activities to keep them engaged and fit throughout the winter, so what makes snowshoeing so unique? For one thing, snowshoeing gives outdoor enthusiasts a chance to be close to nature, as well as the opportunity to explore at their own pace.
Skiing and snowboarding might give you a chance to see nature, but when you go snowshoeing you can slow down and really get to know the world around you. If you are lucky, you might even come face to face with a grazing moose or a majestic elk as you wind your way down the many snowshoe trails throughout British Columbia and beyond.
Why Is Snowshoeing Becoming More Popular?
In many ways, snowshoeing represents a primal desire to return to a simpler time and a simpler way of life. In the busy modem world, simply finding time to decompress and get back to nature is priceless, and snowshoeing gives you the chance to do just that. Snowshoeing has been around for thousands of years, ever since our ancient ancestors first learned to move across the snow with ease. You can continue the tradition today by strapping on a pair of snowshoes and exploring the wilderness in your own back yard.
Snowshoeing is also a perfect activity for families to enjoy together. Snowshoeing enthusiasts can find a variety of trails, from easy beginner trails to more challenging trails for experienced outdoor enthusiasts. The wide variety of terrains and trails available makes snowshoeing the perfect way for the whole family to bond while enjoying the beauty of nature.
One of the great things about snowshoeing is that it can be enjoyed by all ages and all skill levels. If you can walk, you can walk across the snow on a pair of quality snowshoes. Beginners can enjoy a leisurely stroll through their favorite ski resort, while more experienced snowshoers can head out to the back country to explore the wilderness on their own or with a group of like minded friends.
What Do I Need to Get Started?
if you would like to try snowshoeing out on your own, you have a number of different choices. You can buy your own snowshoes and head out in the wilderness of your own backyard, and indeed many snowshoe enthusiasts got their start just that way. But as your passion for the sport grows, you will want to find more suitable venues for your new sport.
Fortunately, many ski resorts and mountains throughout British Columbia offer specials designed with snowshoers in mind. If you are booking a stay at one of the many popular ski resorts in British Columbia, be sure to ask about their snowshoe packages. Most ski resorts have snowshoes to rent, allowing new and experienced outdoor enthusiasts to enjoy their favorite sport even if they do not have their own gear.
The Three Types of Snowshoes
When it comes time to rent the snowshoes for your very first trip, keep in mind that there are three distinct types of snowshoes on the market. A good ski resort will have all three types available, making it easy to choose the gear that best meets your needs.
The first type of snowshoe is the recreational hiking type. As the name implies, this style of snowshoe is designed for simple hiking out in the back country or on the trails. These relatively inexpensive snowshoes are the perfect choice for first timers, since they work best on the simple terrain beginners will want to stick to. Recreational hiking snowshoes are not designed for challenging terrain with a lot of steep climbs and drops, but they are perfect for the relatively flat beginner trails many mountain resorts have to offer.
Aerobic/fitness snowshoes are designed for active snowshoers who are looking for a good workout. You can spot these unique snowshoes by their sleek design, light weight and durable build.
Hiking and backpacking snowshoes are perfect for snowshoe enthusiasts who prefer powder to packed snow, and those who plan to explore the less traveled snowshoe trails of the back country. These snowshoes are built to last, and built to endure even the toughest conditions out on the trail. Hiking and backpacking snowshoes combine lightweight aluminum frames with durable materials designed to float over the surface of the snow, all with a strong binding designed to support many different kinds of boots.
When you book your snowshoeing adventure, you might be offered a package deal that includes the rental of the snowshoes themselves, as well as poles and a special snowshoe bag. These package deals are perfect for beginners who want to try their hand at the sport, but more experienced enthusiasts often prefer to purchase their own equipment and bring it with them to the trails. Luckily, snowshoeing is a relatively inexpensive sport, with a good pair of snowshoes typically selling for between $100 and $300.
So if you are looking for an exciting way to spend the cold months of winter, why not give snowshoeing a try. The great thing about the sport of snowshoeing is that it can be as easy or as challenging as you want it to be. If your goal is to stay in shape and avoid the winter pounds, you can walk off those holiday meals while exploring the beauty of nature. And if you are looking for a new sport and some friendly competition, you can find that as well. No matter what you are looking for in a sport, snowshoeing has it, and a lot more to boot.
Experience the Yeti Competition for Yourself
If you are convinced that snowshoeing is the sport for you, why not take it one step further and explore the world of snowshoe competition? One of the most popular events on the snowshoe calendar is the famous Yeti series.
The Yeti offers something for everyone, including the chance to blaze new trails, meet new friends and engage in the spirit of friendly competition. You will also enjoy a great workout, along with the chance to try out some great snowshoeing equipment in a fun and safe environment. During the races that make up the Yeti challenge, snowshoe enthusiasts can practice a number of important skills, including climbing, hiking, and single tracking. Participants can choose the short course, or the more challenging long course for a bigger thrill and a better workout.
The first race of the Yeti challenge takes place January 29, 2011 at Mount Washington Ski Resort. The date of the next race is still to be determined, but it will take place in beautiful Whistler Olympic Park. The third race in the series will take place in the Cypress Mountain cross country and snowshoe area. Whether you are new to the sport of snowshoeing if an experienced enthusiast, the Yeti has plenty to offer.
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