If you’re a woman and looking for your first shot wandering around the winter wonderland with snowshoes, below, you’ll find a few best snowshoes made specifically for women.
Snowshoeing has been increasingly popular for the last few years. It’s not hard to see why. This winter sport has a relatively zero learning curve, and everyone, regardless the gender can do it. Whether you’re up for a long trek and blaze your way through varying winter terrains or just want to attempt to stay fit in the winter by jogging on the groomed trails, you can do it all with a pair of good snowshoes.
Top-Rated Snowshoes for Women
|MSR Lightning Ascent||Backcountry||Aggressive||22", 25", 30"||$$$|
|Tubbs Wilderness||Recreational||Mild||21", 25", 30"||$$|
|Atlas Elektra 12 Series||Backcountry||Aggressive||23", 27"||$$$|
Now before we go further to the details of each of the snowshoes listed above, you should know that snowshoes are available in men’s, women’s, and unisex models. However, the only distinguishing features between the three of them, most of the time, are the sizing and the binding. In fact, men’s specific snowshoes and the unisex models are often different in colors only.
Women’s snowshoes are generally made smaller in size, with the tails tapering at the close. It is done to accommodate women’s shorter gait. With smaller snowshoes, it is expected that they’d be more agile and efficient with each step they make. Furthermore, since women’s feet are commonly smaller than men’s, the bindings are also designed to fit smaller boots. That said, you will significantly benefit from women’s specific snowshoes if you’re a petite woman. Other than that, you’ll do just fine with those of unisex or men’s models. As a matter of fact, it may come to your surprise that many women are comfortable with men’s snowshoes.
MSR Lightning Ascent are possibly the most advanced backcountry snowshoes you can find in the market today. From a lightweight yet durable aluminum-nylon combo construction to the most aggressive traction systems running 360-degree around the outer frame, these snowshoes have everything you need to tackle some really challenging steep terrains. The comprehensive technical specifications of MSR Lightning Ascent are obviously an overkill for recreational snowshoeing. However, if you hope to find backcountry snowshoes that work great for various snow conditions, nothing is better than MSR Lightning Ascent.
MSR Lightning Ascent Snowshoes come in both men’s and women’s specific models with three size selections: 22-inch, 25-inch, 30-inch. You will have to consider the total weight load your bodyweight and whatever it is you carry–to determine the ideal size for you. The largest size can guarantee satisfactory flotation over deep snow for a maximum weight of 300 pounds. Should your weight load exceed that number, consider using the 5-inch add-on flotation tails.
The Wilderness is the mid-range snowshoes manufactured by Tubbs. Like other snowshoes from Tubbs, they come in both men’s and women’s versions, with the latter looking prettier. Thanks to the brighter splash of colors. The aluminum frames coupled with Soft Tec decking are a tad heavier for typical recreational snowshoes. However, they do offer unmatched stability. You can feel it more clearly as you travel with a loaded pack on your back. That’s why these snowshoes are popular among winter hikers and backpackers.
As far as the flotation is concerned, Tubbs Wilderness Snowshoes perform quite well on soft fresh snow, but they fall short on deep powder. That should be expected, though, since they’re not full-blown backcountry snowshoes. The semi-aggressive crampons underneath the decking pack quite some bites in them. Combined with lateral cleats, you should be able to cover groomed trails and packed snow, even moderate rolling terrain without much problem in these snowshoes. Do keep in mind, however, that as recreational snowshoes, Tubbs Wilderness are not designed to tackle steeper inclines.
Striding on the snowy terrain is just a breeze with lightweight Atlas Women’s Access Elektra Snowshoe. Designed for a comfortable fit for any woman’s boots, this pair of snowshoes have NYTEX decking for superior durability that would last for seasons. It comes with a heel riser that makes snowshoeing in uneven, rolling terrain hassle-free. Getting on and off the snowshoes is also pretty easy. With a special WRAPP trail binding, the snowshoes have a snug fit and offer secure protection to the feet. If you weigh around 80-160 lbs., this one’s perfect for you. With Atlas’ LSR suspension, you can enjoy your snowshoe adventure to the full extent without difficulty or discomfort. Its Twin-Trac Toe Crampon offers superior traction that won’t fail you no matter the extreme weather conditions. A perfect combination of comfort, functionality, and stability, this pair of snowshoes is definitely worth every penny you spend.
Quick Tips to Choosing the Best Snowshoes for Women
The type of snowshoes is another important thing to consider when selecting the ideal ones for you. Largely, snowshoes are grouped into three: backcountry, recreational, and running snowshoes. For beginners, it’s best to choose recreational snowshoes. Not only are they far less hefty in terms of price tag, but also many of them are now equipped with technical specifications that allow you to go and tackle moderate rolling terrain. That should be enough of a challenge for first-time snowshoers.
Once you get the excitement and ready for a step up, you can upgrade to the pricier backcountry snowshoes. They’re commonly bulkier in size and have aggressive sets of solid steel crampons. The larger size is necessary for the overall flotation in deep snow, while the crampons help to provide traction on packed snow and icy slick slopes. For more information about types of snowshoes and their anatomy, please refer to our Snowshoes Buying Guide.