Best Snowshoes For Mountaineering
Snowshoeing is a fun activity, it gives tremendous pleasure and holds a tinge of excitement. Snowshoes are a must to have an accessory for mountaineers as it helps them to enjoy the great outdoors and experience the beauty of hiking through the fresh snow.
Without proper snowshoes, one has to struggle through and sink in the snow-covered landscapes that one is exploring. The right pair of snowshoes renders the ideal traction for walking through the snow. It also offers the needed stability and floatation for snowshoeing.
There are a number of important snowshoes for mountaineering available in the market. And most of them revolve around three major styles, namely flat surface snowshoes, rolling and mountain snowshoes. Let us discuss in detail about the top best snowshoes for mountaineering and ways to use them on board.
The 6 Best Snowshoes For Mountaineering – 
- MSR Men’s Revo Ascent Snowshoes
- Chinook 80006 Trekker Snowshoes
- MSR Evo Trail Hiking Snowshoes
- WildHorn Outfitters Sawtooth Snowshoes
- Crescent Moon, Gold 10 Backcountry Snowshoes
- Winterial Mammoth Snowshoes
Best Snowshoes For Mountaineering
Best Snowshoes For Mountaineering Reviews
- Dimensions: 27 x 10 x 7 inches
- Weight: 4.7 pounds
- advanced external traction
- durable to withstand abusive conditions
- Adapts to all conditions
- Renders up-hill efficiency
- Made in the USA and Ireland
The MSR Men’s Revo Ascent Snowshoes are the best snowshoes for mountaineering. The advanced perimeter teeth of the shoe’s deck help with advanced traction at its traverses. The split teeth of Torsion 2 crampons help in distributing the forces better for a more continuous ground contact even in harsh conditions. The injection molding plastic deck of the snowshoe helps in withstanding all the abusive conditions outdoors. It also features a unique torsional flex for a deep purchase.
The snowshoes are ideal to adapt to all the conditions. Its modular flotation tails allow the user to experience excellent maneuverability of small shoes. There is also on demand floatation feature available as an addition to this footwear. The ergo elevators of the snowshoes help to decrease fatigue and enhance traction on the steeps with its ergonomic design. The shoe engages with a flick of a pole grip and is made in the USA and Ireland.
- Dimensions: 31 x 10 x 5 inches
- Weight: 6.05 pounds
- Recommended load: 180-250 pounds
- Lightweight and strong Aluminum frame
- UV resistant polyethylene decking
- Heavy duty aluminum crampons
- Includes carry bag with back straps
The trekker snowshoes offer excellent comfort and traction on all the snow and moderate terrains. It is ideal for enjoying long winter hiking through forests and snow trails. It features heel straps with quick release buckles that help to secure the footholds.
The UV resistant polyethylene decking and bindings of the snowshoes are flexible up to -40 degrees. The lightweight and strong aluminum frame of the shoes feature an ergonomic design that ensures easy and comfortable walks. Easy to use dual freeze resistant ratchet bindings of the shoes are easy to adjust and gives a secure fit.
The heavy duty aluminum crampons of the shoes rotate freely to bite into the snow and to allows the tails drop to shed all the accumulated snow. The heel crampons offer traction for heading down all the mild slopes. Shipping involves a carry bag with backpack straps, mesh ventilation, side handles and Velcro pole carriers. Recommended weight load for the snowshoes is between 180 and 250 pounds.
- Dimensions: 8 x 28 x 8 inches
- Weight: 3.56 pounds
- Dependable and durable all condition snowshoes
- Steel traction rails and brake bars
- Duo fit bindings
- Optimal modular floatation tails
The MSR Evo Trail Hiking snowshoe is one of the favorites among mountaineers of the world. It offers exceptional value for all condition day use and for trail walking. The shoes are known for their durability and dependability and offer excellent traction and floatation on rolling terrain and snowy trails. Its steel traction brake bars and rails are molded directly on to the snowshoe decking along with its carbon steel crampons. It offers a secure grip in varied conditions from crust to ice and even on packed powder.
The Duo fit bindings of the snowshoes offer glove friendly and weather resistant adjusting attachment to a variety of footwear. For additional floatation in deep snow, optional 5-inch modular floatation tails can attach with the snowshoes. It is an ideal choice for both men and women who are looking for all-purpose snowshoes. The user has to simply slide them on and twist down the adjusting knob for additional floating in deep snow or while carrying a heavy pack.
- Dimensions: 21 x 8 x 6 inches
- Weight: 4.8 pounds
- Completely adjusting bindings
- Lightweight materials
- Hard pack grip teeth
- Steep incline heel fit the riser
These are new and improved snowshoes with ratchet binding on heavy duty spring load clips. These adult snowshoes are available in two lengths namely 21 and 27 inches and can adjust to the size of the foot. Its ratchet style binding and quick release buckle secure heel straps offer a custom feel for the user. Lacing is not necessary and walking in the snow becomes pretty simple. The model is of durable aluminum frame design and helps in optimal floatation performance in deep powder.
The sawtooth is of high-grade weather tested material. Each shoe has sets of heavy duty crampons that ensures traction on both hard and icy surfaces. Its incline heel lift riser helps with balance and traction while climbing up the hills. It also comes handy under the heel to support the user. The snowshoes have boot grip, no-slip pads, and additional heel strap clip. All these features help in cradling the foot in place and prevent sliding around while shoeing in the snow.
- Dimensions: 32 x 11 x 9 inches
- Weight: 8.6 pounds
- Teardrop shape frame snowshoes
- SPL binding system
- Spring cam buckle quick pull loop
- Stainless steel crampons
- Lifetime manufacturer warranty
The crescent Moon backcountry snowshoes are ideal for mountaineering and are the footwear of preference by mountaineers across the world. This 32-inch footwear takes up the shape of a teardrop and is more maneuverable than most of the shoes of traditional shape.
The SPL large binding system fits shoe size from 10.5 to 15. The binding features of its spring cam buckle help in quick pull loop and its ratchet heel strap. It features three stainless steel crampons along with additional traversing claws. The product is backed up with a lifetime warranty from its manufacturers.
They are good enough to fit smaller feet and are okay to use with normal snow packs. It is the best shoe to withstand maximum load and is ideal for snowshoe floatation. Most of the users like the way the shoes moves with them to the mountains. They feel like they are part of their feet and not as an add on. The shoes are well constructed with welded frames and the fit and finish of the shoes are of the highest standards as well.
- Shoe weight: 5.6 pounds
- Load capacity: 240 pounds
- Lightweight polymer frame
- Extreme durability
- Integrated pop-up terrain heal
- Heal and square-toed design
The winterial mammoth snowshoes are of lightweight polymer frame and weigh less than five pounds per pair. They are this easy to pack and render excellent maneuverability on the snow. They are extremely durable owing to their strong polymer frame and metal teeth. These make the snowshoe capable of taking a beating while snowshoeing in the high mountains and backcountry. This is an advanced snowshoe that is made for experienced snowshoeing.
The snowshoe features a pop-up terrain heal a square toe design which makes it easier to climb hills with the shoes on. The Aluminum teeth of the shoes help to enhance traction and grip while walking on the snow. These advanced snowshoes are meant for use in the mountain terrain and it has been made comfortable enough for long journeys in the snow.
Buyer’s Guide For Best Hiking Snowshoes
Types of Snowshoes
As a general rule, based on the construction and the mechanics, snowshoes are classified into three major types and those are,
- Flat terrain snowshoes
- Rolling terrain snowshoes
- Mountain terrain snowshoes
Flat Terrain Snowshoes
These shoes are ideal for beginners to use on the snow. They are the best for walking on flat terrains that pose no challenges. They are great for families and hold bindings that are easy to adjust. The shoes have the best and modest traction system. These are the entry-level options for mountain shoes and are comfortably priced as well.
Rolling Terrain Snowshoes
These are for hikers and vivid backpackers. These people are able to cope up with the steep terrain and the rolling terrain with the help of their rolling terrain snowshoes. They are ideal for backcountry snowshoeing as well. They feature crampons on their body that are aggressive and also feature secure bindings.
Mountain Terrain Snowshoes
These snowshoes are for mountaineers, serious hikers and also for backcountry snowshoeing. They cope up with the challenging terrain and also manage well in steep and icy terrains. The crampons on the shoes are of climbing style and its bindings can withstand even the harshest and difficult conditions. They are extremely durable and tough as well.
Types of Bindings in Mountain Shoes
The Bindings of the shoes keep the foot securely on the snowshoe and are thus pretty important. They also keep the mountaineer stable when traversing or walking over areas that are covered with heavy snowfall. As a general rule, there are two types of bindings, the fixed bindings and the rotating bindings.
- Rotating Bindings
- Fixed bindings
These binding type will pivot and rotate at the attachment point of the snowshoe and are ideal for snowshoeing in the backcountry. This allows the shoe to drop down and shed any excess snow that collects. It also allows the user to walk through the snowy landscape easily.
They help in the natural movement of the mountaineer and is thus great for taking uphill treks. The drawback of rotating bindings it that they are not easy to use around obstacles such as fallen trees. The tail of the shoe drops down when the user lifts the foot and will get hook on to the obstacle. Some styles of mountain shoes enable the user to remove and reattach the tail during such situations.
This is the best type of binding in the snowshoes if they are of use in traversing areas that are filled with woods. This helps the user to tackle any obstacle and allows them to find their path. But they do not pivot and are always in alignment with the foot. But as its binding does not pivot, it makes climbing hills and walking on the snow very difficult. It makes natural movement difficult and feels like walking with short skies on the foot. Also, the snowshoe does not shed the snow as they walk, rather the snow gathers on the tail and makes it even heavier.
The Working Mechanism of Snowshoes
Snowshoes feature a special design that helps them with mountaineering on terrains full of snow. It helps to traverse snowy landscapes without sinking deep into the snow. They work by widening the footprint and spread the weight of the body over a larger area. This help to avoid a lot of pressure exerting on a small area of snow by the foot.
This, in fact, prevents the user from sinking into the snow as they walk. The user, in fact, glides over the snow and this is termed as traversing. This quality of the shoe is known as floatation and most of the models offer modular floatation on their shoes to get walking simply over snowy landscapes.
Snowshoes do not come with their own boots; the user has to attach the shoes with their own boots using the ratchets or the straps available. Most of them are able to accommodate any type of winter boot. The size of the snowshoe depends on the terrain that one traverses and also their weight.
The heavier the person, wider should be the footprint of the shoe to avoid sinking into the snow. For those wanting to hike or climb the hill, then a rolling terrain shoe is a must. The crampons on the shoes offer the grip to bite on to the surface while climbing. They help the user propel themselves forward over the hill. The crampons are the teeth of stainless steel and are present on the sides and under the heels of the snowshoes.
Method of Using The Snowshoes
Using shoe shoes is not rocket science and is a very simple procedure. The snowshoes should attach with the winter boots. This makes the footprint broader and longer than how they will be in normal footwear. This also prevents the user from sinking into the snow as they walk. The poles pair up with the footwear to push the user along as they walk. While using the poles, the user has to extend the downhill pole so that the uphill pole is a little shorter and at the end, they are of even length.
What to wear with snowshoes?
The user has to lift the feet a little higher than normal so as to minimize the debris they might pick up as they move forward. The user has to ensure that their foot is secure in the snowshoe. It ensures that the feet will not pull off as they step. Place the ball of the foot over the top of the hinge of the shoe and then tighten the front strap. Ensure that the strap is not too tight and are only firm to keep the feet firmly and snugly secured on to the snowshoe.
There are a couple of techniques that will enable the user to walk better with the snowshoes. These techniques depend on the terrain and are pretty simple to learn. Walking uphill is different from walking downhill, similarly walking in deep dry snow is different from walking on ice. The mountaineer has to get accustomed to these techniques as they progress through their snowshoe journey.
Leveraging on The Ideal Snowshoe Size
The size of the snowshoe will not depend on the shoe size of the user but on their weight. The design of the snowshoe is to enable the user to glide or float across the snow without sinking into the surface and getting bogged down. This is the reason behind their floatation feature as well. This floatation allows the user to traverse over icy and snowy landscapes, to climb on them and also to run over them.
Heavier the person, wider should be the snowshoe so that it is able to distribute weight evenly on the surface and prevents sinking. The size of the shoe also depends on the traversing area. if the snow power is light and dry, the shoe needs to be wider. The user has to choose the smallest of shoes so as to enhance its maneuverability.
We hope our list of the best snowshoes for mountaineering helps in choosing the best shoes for your adventurous trips. Ensure to read through our guide before setting your foot on the snowy landscapes.
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