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Snow Shoe


Float on the Snow this Winter!

Snowshoeing is a safe, low impact sport that is perfect for outdoor winter fun and physical activity. Snowshoeing uses every major muscle group and really burns calories. What a great way to get your 60 minutes of daily physical activity!

Replacing running with snowshoeing as your training in the winter will improve your strength. Snowshoeing builds leg muscles and improves endurance. When you add poles while snowshoeing you help to condition you arms, shoulders and back muscles.

You can go snowshoeing in the woods, on a trail, in open fields, in the back country. It’s a fun, easy and cheap way to spend quality time with your family and friends.


Where to borrow, rent or buy snowshoes in Nova Scotia.

There are a variety of locations where you can borrow, rent or buy snowshoes
in Nova Scotia. Click Here for the available guide.

What kind of Snowshoe is Best for You?

When you rent or buy snowshoes, remember to ask the sales person for all the information you can about snowshoes – they are the experts.

  • What type of Snowshoes do you want? (Maintenance free or traditional).
  • Where are you going to snowshoe? (On steep closed in trails or open groomed trails).
  • What type of snow are you going to be exposed to? (Soft powder or hard crusty snow).
  • What is your weight?
  • What are you going to be doing with your snowshoes? (Day trips or over night expeditions).

Recreational Snowshoes are used for beginners. They are designed for easy, gentle terrain or groomed trails, and are easy to adjust. These are the most inexpensive type.

Adventure Snowshoes are used for someone more experienced. They give better traction on icy-steep conditions. They have thicker bindings that are great for rough terrain. These snowshoes are great if you are rough on gear, but are more expensive.

Backcountry Snowshoes are highly durable and they can handle harsh conditions and terrain. They are used for trail breaking, day hikes, winter summits, backpacking, and backcountry snowboarding and skiing. They offer great grip for steep ascents on uneven icy ground.

How to Snow Shoe

You’ve got the energy and you’ve got the shoes. Now all you have to do is learn how to use them. If you can walk, you can snowshoe. So you’ve got a good start!

Your First Step

  • First thing first. Find a flat surface to practice going forward. This is similar to walking but you have to pick up the foot that is moving forward and plant the shoe ahead and over the edge of the other. You’ll be taking long steps.
  • Don’t walk with your snowshoes side by side.
  • Move your shoe far enough a head that it won’t interfere with your other step or it clears the back shoe.
  • Keep your feet as close together as you can. (i.e. back of one shoe close to front of other shoe).
  • Now that you have the forward movement under control, pick an object and race towards it. See how straight you can go.
  • Try going into deeper snow and make your own path.

Your First Turn

  • Don’t cross your shoes over your legs.
  • Poles make this process easier.

Turn Step

  • To turn right, your right foot steps in the direction you want to go and the left foot follows.
  • To turn left, your left foot steps in the direction you want to go and the right foot follows.

Kick Turn

  • This is a sharp turn. Turn one foot 180 degrees, parallel in the opposite direction of your other snowshoe.
  • Transfer all your weight on to the turned foot, lift your other foot and place it along side the already turned foot.
  • The Kick Turn is great because it is fast and requires a smaller space—but you have to have a little more skill to complete it.

Safety Check List for a Day of Snowshoeing

  • Map/Compass in waterproof casing (Zip lock bag or Map Covering)
  • Headlamp or Flashlight
  • Waterproof matches, fire starter
  • Extra Food/Water
  • Sunscreen and Lip Protection
  • Extra hat, gloves, and scarf
  • First Aid Kit

Snowshoe Repair Kit

  • Duct Tape
  • Pliers
  • Nylon tie wraps
  • Bailing wire
  • Heavy-duty shoelace or cord

Have fun floating on the snow this winter – and don’t forget your camera!

More Exciting stuff about Snowshoeing!

Nova Scotia Trails –

  • Find great trails near you that are maintained in the winter where you can go snowshoeing.

Snowshoe Magazine –

  • This page provides snowshoe tips from the experts, as well as product reviews and snowshoeing events in your area.

Red Cap Snowshoe Club

  • For information on the Red Cap Snowshoe Club, Nova Scotia’s oldest local sports organization, click here.
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