If you have winter-loving pals, you may have heard them grumble about how “boring” snowshoeing or snowshoe hiking is for them. Friends with good intentions will try to convince you that other hobbies are more fun, accessible, or faster. Some may argue that tromping in the snow in mountain snowshoes (snowshoes for men and women) is too much work. And I used to believe the same things.
Well, we are afraid to say that all of my previous beliefs regarding how to snowshoe were false! After all, types of snowshoeing are pretty similar to hiking, and many of us don’t find hiking dull, and snowshoes Canada is so popular. Why would adding snow to a hike in the winter make it boring?
We should stop comparing snowshoeing to other winter sports and appreciate it for what it is: a unique sport with distinct benefits and appeal.
Snowshoe Scenarios are “boring.”
Here are a few examples of times when we’ve heard (or thought) that snowshoeing is boring. Because everyone is different, these scenarios are fun for some snowshoers. However, we’ve included some examples below to show where we’ve heard the notion that snowshoeing is boring.
● Scenario 1: Select a groomed, hard-packed ski trail and track. “Why am I going so slowly?” you ponder as you watch the skiers pass you. You reach a picnic bench or a point where you can turn around and go back down (while skiers zip past you, yelling at you to get out of their way.)
● Scenario 2: You forget to bring your sledge with you. What is the purpose of a sledge? You convince yourself that you are capable of carrying a backpack and that the kids can walk as well. A sledge is just more equipment you’ll have to lug around.
● Scenario 3: You pick a trail with no specific landscape or goal. You will not reach the top of a ridge or mountain or see anything other than trees. But that’s fine because this is a beneficial workout. Right?
Have you ever heard someone use one of the reasons listed above to justify their refusal to snowshoe?
Bring a sled, a crazy carpet, or something else slick.
Why? So that you can get back into your automobile. Why walk when you can glide down the trail like a bird? After all, one of the main reasons why some people think snowshoeing is dull is because they have to walk down the hills.
A sled is very useful for motivating children to get to the lake, viewpoint, or day’s aim by promising them a sled ride down. Here are some pointers for snowshoeing with a sled.
● For the ascent, strap your sled (like this one) to your backpack, bring a light, crazy carpet, or tie a long rope to the sled and pull it behind you.
● If you’re going down in a sled, you should pack a helmet because the terrain is twisty and steep. You don’t want to injure yourself by flying into a tree.
● If you’re pulling a sled with young children down a steep trail, always lead the sled ahead rather than pulling it behind you. If you remove it, it will only hit you on the backside. Guide it down first, using a long rope to steer it.
Choose an exciting and fulfilling trail.
Hike to the top of a ridge or an accessible summit. Hike to a picturesque lake and play ice games (more games at the end of the story.) Choose a walk that follows a creek and includes some charming tiny bridges.
This advice applies to all levels of difficulty. You may only appreciate a path if it is easy enough for your activity preferences. However, by picking a trail that you believe you’ll love (in terms of scenery and exercise level), you’ll almost certainly have a good day.
Games are a great way to stay occupied on the route, whether you have kids or not.
If your children are bored when travelling, it’s possible that Mom and Dad are not having fun. It is possible that snowshoeing isn’t a delightful pastime. Bring treats, play games, laugh, tell jokes and stories, and have a good time. The kids will have a wonderful time if you are having a good time.
Here are some games to play when out on the path.
● Hide and Seek – Play while hiking in the direction you want to go. For example, the kids must race up the trail before discovering their following hiding site. Watch the kilometres tick away.
● Horse Rides are the titles we’ve given to our trekking poles hauling kids uphill. It works!
● Red Light, Green Light, Duck Duck Goose, What Time Is It Mr. Wolf, and Simon Says are all fun kids’ games. “What time is it, Mr. Snowman?” (rather than Mr. Wolf) is one of my favourites, with variations like one bunny hop, two arctic seal slides, three penguin waddles, and four polar bear crawls… – and it may be played while trekking.
● Snow soccer can be played with a soccer ball (or something comparable that is not white).
● Take turns throwing a little football up the trail. Continue to hike in the same direction you’ve been.
● Different tag games, such as pie tag — In the snow, make a large pizza and have the kids chase each other along the lines that mark the pie slices. Alternatively, create a giant snow maze like the one seen below and play tag in it.
Try some of the suggestions above the next time you hear someone say, “snowshoeing is dull”, or if you have thought of it yourself. You can tailor the sport to your preferences by testing new settings, paths, and activities, and you might discover your next favourite sport!
So, how about you? Have you ever considered snowshoeing to be tedious? What activities and suggestions do you have for fun while hiking or snowshoeing in the winter?