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Katy Payne

Snowshoe 101: Through the Eyes of a First-Timer

Katy Payne, e-Marketing Assistant, No Phone Number Available

Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 5 p.m.

Snowshoe 101: Through the Eyes of a First-Timer

Do you enjoy hiking? Have you ever considered snowshoeing? I recently had the opportunity to tag along with one of our beginner's snowshoe tour class to experience the sport for the first time. The following account is what you might expect during your first snowshoe adventure.

The snowshoe class I joined included transportation; our group met in the Mead Yokes parking lot, where we then started the short trip up to Mt. Spokane. When we arrived at the trail head, we were greeted with a light winter snow flurry. As gear was divvied up, class guides Brandon and Josh demonstrated the proper techniques for wearing and walking in snowshoes. We also learned some basic anatomy of a snowshoe; we were instructed that placing the ball of your foot on the snowshoe's pivot point would better allow for ease of movement.

After a few minutes of awkward shuffling and waddling around, we were off to hike Mt. Spokane! As soon we began hiking, it quickly became apparent how popular snowshoeing has become. We passed couples with dogs, groups of friends and even families with children. The most creative family actually set up a double-duty tether: dad had a dog leading by the front of his waist, while he pulled a small child behind on a sled!

Halfway through our adventure at Mt. Spokane, we trekked up a fairly steep incline. What a thrill it was to reach the top! Out of breath and thirsty, we stopped to take a break underneath a small picnic shelter before making the decent back downhill.

I am definitely looking forward to my next adventure! This is a sport that can be enjoyed regardless of your age or fitness level. The best part about snowshoeing is the fact that it can be tailored to your current fitness level. For starters, you can work with moderate inclines until you are comfortable enough to tackle a steeper hill. If you are looking for a new winter sport to try out, why not try snowshoeing for yourself?

To browse upcoming snowshoe classes through Parks and Recreation, take a look at our new Interactive Winter Guide. Parks and Recreation also has an assortment of skiing classes for those with a need for speed.

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