Learning the Snowshoe Basics in Sheboygan

Winter in Wisconsin isn’t cooperating with snow lovers so far this year, but that didn’t stop more than 20 folks from learning the basics of snowshoeing at the Maywood Environmental Park (www.gomaywood.org) in Sheboygan, WI on Dec. 1, 2011.

A few years back, Maywood hosted workshops for enthusiasts to build their own wooden snowshoes. Those workshops became poorly attended in later years, so Maywood discontinued them. Recognizing the growing popularity in modern snowshoes and equipment, Maywood worked with local snowshoe shop owner, Tim White from Snowshoe Gear LLC (www.snowshoegear.com) to put together a one-hour clinic for snowshoeing basics.

Topics for the clinic included snowshoe types (traditional to high-tech), equipment accessories, locations to snowshoe, and beginner to advanced snowshoeing techniques. Because there was no snow on the ground yet and the clinic was a weeknight, the presentation was shared through a PowerPoint and hands-on program.

Originally intended for only an hour, classroom participation and questions pushed the discussion quite a bit longer. One lucky attendee won a free Black Diamond Spot headlamp.

If you’d like a copy of the presentation in PDF form, please click: http://bit.ly/yy0NZU.

One of the tips given by White was, “While there is no perfect snowshoe, getting the right snowshoe for the situation is key. Factors like the terrain, type of snow, size of the user, and type of snowshoeing (extreme backpacking verses a casual loop around the park) are important considerations when finding a good fit. A snowshoe provides buoyancy in the snow, not unlike a boat in the water. Just like a boat, a snowshoe will have to partially sink to work. A light, fluffy, snow does not provide as much buoyancy as a dense, wet snow. Find as light and small of a snowshoe as possible without sinking too deep into the snow.”

The clinic was well received, and those that weren’t able to attend want another chance. So, an encore clinic may be hosted later in January. The date should coincide with an upcoming free Candlelight snowshoe hike also held at Maywood on January 28, 2012 at 6pm. A family friendly course will include lighting along the path and strategically placed campfires for warming up and roasting marshmallows.

For more information, please contact Maywood at 920-459-3906 or email Tim White at tim.white@snowshoegear.com.

About Tim White

Tim White is the owner of Snowshoe Gear LLC (www.snowshoegear.com), a family business in Kohler Wisconsin. Their mission is to spread their passion for snowshoeing and hiking with everyone by offering expert advice and quality products. They have tested most gear and have found the best, so you don’t have to.

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The Snowshoe Magazine Team

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