A pair of Vintage Vermont Tubbs snowshoes made of maple with rawhide tethering and suede foot holders and straps. From our humble beginnings in 1988 to the present, InSTEP’s view of what the customer wants has never changed � provide a quality, full-featured product at a value price. Tubbs brings the competitive snowshoe race community the first asymmetrical aluminum frame, on the Tubbs 10K Race Snowshoe, for an effortless running stride. As word of his quality workmanship spread, Iverson began making snowshoes for foresters, loggers, trappers and others who work outdoors in the winter. This would be the first successful American expedition to explore Antarctica since 1840 and required 75 pairs of snowshoes.
Tubbs thrives in the rebirth of recreational showshoeing through innovative technology and by introducing their 1st lightweight aluminum snowshoe. While this style can be easier to construct and maintain than snowshoes made from wood, the advantages offered by a light frame can be easily lost to accumulated snow on the deck. With this book, you will learn how to make a variety of snowshoes and furniture made in the snowshoe style using updated materials. Therefore, snowshoes like the Montagnay should only be used by experienced snowshoers.
Aluminum Framed Snowshoes: Gene and Bill Prater developed the oval-shaped aluminum framed Sherpa snowshoe and steel hinge rod in 1972 in Ellensburg, WA to overcome some of the deficiencies they encountered with wooden snowshoes while doing winter mountaineering in the Cascades. The frame is held in shape by means of two wooden cross braces, neatly mortised into the frame.
Iversons manufactures 2,000 sets of snowshoes each year, including six traditional and modern designs, as well as snowshoe-making kits for do-it-yourselfers, wooden-framed fishnets and leather-laced furniture. Even indoors, the consistent dry air will steal moisture from areas of high moisture content, including the human body, your pet, and your wooden furniture. Personally, I’ve found that hanging my snowshoes using a couple of coat pegs in the back closet works well.
Even though many enthusiasts prefer aluminum snowshoes, there is still a large group of snowshoe enthusiasts who prefer wooden snowshoes. Best bet is to come to the Duluth Pack store in Canal Park, where there are plenty of snowshoes to choose from, and have one of the extremely knowledgeable staff help you with your choice. However, snowshoes are mainly used today for recreation, primarily by hikers and runners who like to continue their hobby in wintertime. It is certainly easier to snowshoe on packed trails, but users should spend some time off trail to truly take advantage of the floatation and maneuverability of the snowshoes.
Not far away, in a quieter corner of the plant, Tubbs’ only full-time snowshoe lacer talks about the other snowshoes the company makes: hand-crafted wooden ones that make up just one half of one percent of overall sales. GV is currently one of the leading North american manufacturers of traditional snowshoes and modern aluminium and injection molded snowshoes. The step – in binding enables users with crampon compatible boots to easily step from the snowshoes to their crampons and then back to snowshoes.
According to the National Sporting Equipment Association, US outdoor enthusiasts purchased 444,000 snowshoes in 1994, while 640,000 were purchased in 1995. Second, most wood snowshoes don’t have quite the same traction as more modern mountaineering snowshoes do. I have seen some wooden snowshoes with built in crampons, but they aren’t nearly as aggressive as MSR’s Evo Ascents. Some factory-made snowshoes are given a coat or two of varnish, but this, while serving to make them partly water proof, makes them rather slippery when crossing logs and ice. Some modern snowshoes have bars that can be flipped up for ascending steep slopes.
I learned how to snowshoe on an army surplus wooden bearpaw with rawhide laces and a truly terrible leather binding. Best bet is to come to the Duluth Pack store in Canal Park, where there are plenty of snowshoes to choose from, and have one of the extremely knowledgeable staff help you with your choice. Modern snowshoes are much lighter and more comfortable so that lameness caused by snowshoeing is now very rare. Working as a team, the family performs every aspect of the snowshoe-making process, from steaming and bending wooden strips to lacquering leather laces and fastening bindings.
After the frames have been finished, the dry wood must be steamed before it can be safely bent to the required shape, and before doing this, a wooden bending form must be made. I was taken to task today in a Letter to the Editor ( read it here ) in the Rutland Herald for something I wrote in a column ( read the column here ) several weeks back about wooden snowshoes. I made some Beaver Tails 3 yrs ago and went to Stowe,Vt with family for my first ever snowshoe hike.
Yukon Charlie’s Snowshoes – Since our beginning, Yukon Charlies mission has been to produce the highest quality, all-terrain aluminum framed snowshoe line that combines performance with value. But as long as there’s still some white stuff out there, there will still be a few diehard snowshoers tromping around in it. Snowshoeing is booming these days, with the sale of snowshoes increasing by 25 percent a year.
A yearly coat of clear varnish will help to ensure that the wooden frames and rawhide webbing of your snowshoes are preserved. Where but one pair of snowshoes is purchased, style B will probably prove the best selection, and should be ordered with the flat toe. The disadvantages of aluminum shoes are primarily durability; in extremely cold temperatures the vinyl can become brittle and crack or break. Once snowshoeing season is over, there are a couple of basic maintenance tasks that will ensure that your snowshoes will have a long and productive life.
If your snowshoes have neoprene lacing, it is still necessary to varnish the wooden frame. Slowly bend it against the wooden inside blocks, and nail on the outside blocks to hold it to the proper curve. It is that kind of throwback beauty and utility that attracted me to the vintage snowshoes that had been collecting dust in my basement. Each snowshoe is handcrafted out of lightweight, aircraft-grade aluminum tubing and TIG-welded for incredible strength, durability and reliability. The advantages of aluminum shoes are they lightweight and smaller than their wooden cousins. The forms are shaped and sized depending on the style of snowshoe that is being made.
Despite their great diversity in form, snowshoes were, in fact, one of the few cultural elements common to all tribes that lived where the winters were snowy, in particular, the Northern regions. Tubbs’ wooden snowshoes start at about $200, while aluminum ones begin at half that amount. Another company called ‘Vermont Tubbs’ still exists there, manufacturing wooden furniture.
Wooden hiking and climbing snowshoes like Iversons are not high tech and they don’t have all the features of the modern aluminum and plastics showshoes, but they are very serviceable and will take an amazing about of pounding and scraping. Old-style snowshoes are still being made and vintage models can be purchased at garage sales, thrift stores, antique stores and off the Internet.
And make sure that your snowshoes are stored off the ground, preferably in a location that is difficult for rodents to reach. There is a partnership with Dupont that provides an exclusive material called Arctec, a nylon co-polymer used as webbing for Tubbs’ snowshoes. It was not too long before this evolved into the white ash framed snowshoes with the raw hide lacing that we associate with snowshoeing today.
Imagine the classic swallowtail snowshoe made with a magnesium frame, lattice of coated steel cable, and canvas bindings. Crescent Moon Snowshoes – Snowshoes from Crescent Moon� fit, perform, and last like no other. Some styles are suitable for a wide range of abilities such as elongated bearpaws with rounded ends, and traditional Alaska-style snowshoes with a wide deck and tail. Snowshoers must be aware of the potential risks of conductive heat loss at times such as when putting on the snowshoes. Wilcox & Williams Snowshoes – Our finished snowshoes are tops – apples among oranges – a better design, stronger lacing and more and better varnish than any others!
Following these basic maintenance and storage techniques will not guarantee that your snowshoes will outlive you to be passed on to a new generation of snowshoe enthusiasts, but it will certainly aid your snowshoes in achieving a long and useful career out on the trail. Trappers, park rangers, maple syrup collectors, wildlife biologists and loggers in northern climes continue to depend on snowshoes to traverse deep snow, but the fastest growing segment of snowshoe users are outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy trudging through the snow for recreation and exercise.
Traditional wooden snowshoes usually have an open lace deck and leather or rawhide lacing. Many aluminum shoes will also have a crampon on the sole of the shoe designed for traction in the hills and slopes of the western U.S. Sizes are often given in inches, even though snowshoes are nowhere near perfectly rectangular Mountaineering shoes can be at least 30 inches (76 cm) long by 10 inches (25 cm) wide; a lighter pair of racing shoes can be slightly narrower and 25 inches (64 cm) or shorter.