March of the Snowshoers

If I were granted the wish to snap my fingers and be one place on the planet to go for a snowshoe run, it would be Antarctica. Who knows, maybe someday? In the meantime, we have family who are going there next week, and we’re excited to hear all the details of their trip.

Snowshoe Magazine contributor Debbie McKeown (Derrick’s sister), and her husband Jack are eagerly anticipating this trip of a lifetime. Debbie and Jack have traveled many places over the years, and have had some incredible adventures along the way – trekking in Nepal, hut-to-hut hiking in Iceland and climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, to name a few.

Here’s one of Debbie’s articles featured on

Some of the preparations that we have been hearing about for this trip include: amassing facts and trivia about the continent (Did you know there are parts of Antarctica where there has never been ANY precipitation in recorded history?); purchasing rubber fishing boots for plunging into the frigid waters when going ashore; mentally and medically preparing for potential bouts of seasickness in crossing the Drake Passage; and engaging in heated battles with their trip-mate friends over who will be the first to set foot on the White Continent (Debbie is insisting she is the only suitable candidate for this awesome responsibility, but Jack feels otherwise).

But the best thing is…. just in case they have opportunity to take them out for a spin, these crazy California-based Canucks are packing their Dual Tracs! It doesn’t get much cooler than that!


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About Sara Montgomery and Derrick Spafford

Derrick and Sara are trail runners from Eastern Ontario who discovered that running on snowshoes in the winter months is a great way to enjoy their favorite trails year-round. They competed in their first snowshoe series (The Mad Trapper Series in Low, Quebec) in 2005, each finishing 2nd in their respective divisions. Plans for 2006 are to return to the Mad Trapper, to take in some races in New York and Vermont, and hopefully cap their season with the U.S. Snowshoe Championships in March, as Canadian guests. Derrick runs a company, Spafford Health and Adventure (, which specializes in coaching and event promotion. He is currently planning an annual snowshoe race to be held in the Kingston area, starting this winter.