Anyone who is new to snowshoeing will likely find it confusing, especially when they’re about to strap the gears to their boots. You might spend more time on the trailhead, frustrated, trying to figure out how the bindings work, only to find that they’d go loose again and again. This happens to almost all first-time snowshoers.
Putting on snowshoes is actually pretty simple once you know how the cinching system works. It does involve a little guesswork, especially when your snowshoes are not equipped with toe locators. But overall, it’s not any harder than putting on skis or snowboard.
How to Put on Snowshoes
- If you’re on the trailhead already and some snow has made it on to your snowshoe decks, make sure you shake it off first. It’ll help you secure the binding once you cinch the straps.
- Once it’s clean, slide your foot into the binding. Sounds easy right? But, this is actually trickier than you might think. You must not put your foot too far forward or backward on the deck. You can tell that you’ve placed your foot appropriately by looking at the ball of your foot. If it’s exactly above the toe crampons, then you’re doing it right.
- Now that your foot is on the right spot, you need to secure it with the straps. First, deal with the ones that lock your toes and arch to the deck. After that, take the one that goes behind your heel. Make sure they fit properly, neither too tight nor too loose.
- Last but not least, tuck in the excess straps using the provided clips, so they won’t catch on things when you’re on the trail. Once you do all this, the only thing that’s left is to have fun. Just be sure that you stay on the trail if you’re a beginner. And, always bring some company with you.
Tips on How to Wear Snowshoes
- Keep in mind that every snowshoe has its own binding system. Thus, you need to always be on the lookout for the one that offers the easiest and most secure cinch straps, when you’re buying one.
- Some snowshoes like the ones made by Crescent Moon come with bindings that include a toe locator. It’s very handy for beginners since it prevents the users from putting their foot too far forward or backward on the deck.
- Don’t wait until you’re at the trailhead to try your new snowshoes. You can put them on as soon as you get your hands on them. Ideally, you will want to try them out at your backyard or anywhere where there’s enough snow. But if you can’t find any, putting them on in your house is okay too. Just make sure you don’t stand, or else you’ll either damage the crampons or your floor. Trying your snowshoes beforehand can help you quickly learn how the binding works. It’ll save you from the embarrassment of looking completely clueless at the trailhead.
- As much as you want to know how to cinch the straps properly, you also need to learn how to remove them. Trust me, it can get really annoying if you have no idea how to undo the straps quickly.
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