Best Snowshoes TechnoBuffalo 2020
For some of us, winter is a long season. Snowshoeing is a fun way to burn calories and get around safely when the weather goes south. The snowshoes I swear by are the All Terrains from ENKEEO. These lightweight snowshoes can get you places where other models fail. They work well on trails and off, and can handle steep inclines and descents. There are a few snowshoes aside from the All Terrains that stand out from the pack. Whether you're looking for a pair for your kids or yourself, these are the models that score big points with me.
- Best Overall: ENKEEO All Terrain
- Best Value: Chinook Trekker 30
- Best for Steep Terrain: Wildhorn Outfitters Sawtooth
- Best for Trails: MSR Evo Trail
- Best for Kids: Tubbs Snowglow
Best Overall: ENKEEO All Terrain
I tend to take my snowshoes over all types of terrain, especially when I'm traveling. If you're anything like me, you want a pair of shoes that can do well in fluffy, powdery snow, and the deep and heavy stuff. The All-Terrain snowshoes from ENKEEO are lightweight enough to log long hours in the backcountry, and they have sticky crampons for aggressive traction when going up and down hills and mountainsides.
The All Terrains come in a variety of sizes from 18 to 30 inches, guaranteeing you can find a pair that fits your body size. The PE decking offers up good flotation, and I am in love with the adjustable ratchet tensioning on the bindings. You can slip these on, off, or make quick adjustments on the fly with no trouble at all. And the aluminum spikes on the underside dig into snow and ice to give you traction even on steep inclines and declines.
If you only snowshoe in thick and deep powder, be aware that these tend to sink into the snow. That's not unusual for any shoe, but without available extensions to increase buoyancy, it's something to keep in mind. For most, these are the best all-around pair of snowshoes on the market. They're well-made, priced right, and the build lets you walk in a natural gait and enjoy the great outdoors.
- Wide variety of sizes available
- Good flotation in most conditions
- Easy to adjust bindings
- Excellent traction
- Carry bag included
- Could be better on thick powder
Go anywhere with ENKEEO
The All-Terrain snowshoes are lightweight, easy to adjust, and have excellent traction for any type of snowshoeing.
Best Value: Chinook Trekker 30
The Trekker series of snowshoes from Chinook Technical Outdoor is beloved by athletes and explorers everywhere for their freeze-resistant ratchet bindings. They live up to the hype. Being unable to remove your shoes or make minor adjustments while out in the wild sucks. That never happens with the Trekker 30 snowshoes. The bindings adjust, no matter the temperature or conditions, and give a secure fit that holds.
The Trekker 30s are beginner-friendly and are also a good fit for the more experienced adventurers. Aluminum crampons rotate smoothly and bite into the snow as they should. The tail drops during walks to shed snow and prevents buildup well. The heel crampons provide excellent traction for flat ground and forest travels, and they do okay for mild slopes but aren't up to the task of helping you ascend or descend steep hills or mountain paths.
This kit from Chinook Technical Outdoors includes a carry bag with backpack straps. Nice! The shoes support up to 300 pounds and offer excellent flotation on hard-packed snow or fresh, white powdery paths. Whether you're a beginner or have been playing in the snow for a bit, you won't find a better cross country set at this price point.
- Freeze-resistant bindings
- Includes carry bag + backpack straps
- Supports up to 300 lbs
- Lacks traction needed for steep climbs
A steal on cross country trails
The freezeproof bindings and lightweight build make these an excellent choice for those who walk on flat trails in deep or light snow.
Best for Steep Terrain: Wildhorn Outfitters Sawtooth
Wildhorn Outfitters specializes in designing affordable outdoor gear to make nature more accessible to those of any skillset. The Sawtooth snowshoes are an excellent example of their mission statement. Available in 21" or 27" sizes, Sawtooth shoes are built for adults up to 235 pounds. With two size choices and three colors, you're guaranteed to find a snowshoe that's just right for you.
The frames on these shoes are durable and lightweight, courtesy of an aluminum build. Even in deep powder, you'll get superior flotation from the HDPE decking, a type of lightweight, sustainable plastic that holds up to frigid temperatures. Hardpack grip teeth provide excellent traction, and with a steel incline heel lift riser, these shoes are a winner for the toughest of uphill climbs.
I love that the Sawtooths not only come with spring-loaded ratchet bindings but also have a heel strap and boot grip that secures your boot in place. There's no slipping or sliding around while shoeing! My only gripe is the lack of carrying case. It would be nice to have a bag with backpack straps to tote these about more efficiently — a minor complaint about an otherwise excellent set of snowshoes.
- Bindings are easy to adjust
- Grippy crampons
- Excellent up and down hills
- Three colors and two sizes available
- No carry bag
Best for Steep Terrain
Tackle any hill
You'll have no trouble going up or down big hills with these shoes. They adjust easily and tackle any terrain with ease.
Best for Trails: MSR Evo Trail
If trail hiking is your thing, you will adore the MSR Evo snowshoes. They're fantastic in any conditions, giving a trustworthy grip on ice, crust, and snow-packed fresh powder. The forward-thinking MSR created this shoe in four color choices, all measuring 22 inches.
The DuoFit bindings lock feet into position and keep them there, even over rolling terrain. Bindings are freeze-resistant and glove-friendly, so it's a breeze to loosen or tighten them in the field. The steel traction rails and brake bars are molded right into the decks. They bite into the snow and hold their own on the ice.
The unique unibody design of the Evo Trail snowshoes gives them the right amount of flotation on hiking trails, and snow doesn't stick to the decks. If you spend some of your days in light powder or off-trail, you'll want to pick up the optional flotation tails to keep you above the surface. Be forewarned: these are rated to only support those who weigh 180 pounds or less.
- Superior traction
- Decent flotation
- Freeze-proof bindings
- Flotation tails available
- Weight limit of 180 pounds
Best for Trails
A hiking snowshoe like no other
With a unibody design and superior traction on ice and snow, these are a perfect choice for those who snowshoe on hiking trails.
Best for Kids: Tubbs Snowglow
The fun and functional snowshoes from Tubbs, known as the Snowglows, teach kids snowshoeing basics while giving them a stable platform to learn and grow. The bindings, called Quicklock2, are frustration-free, and easy enough for children to adjust by themselves.
The Snowglows live up to their name by yes, giving off light. Batteries inside the shoes power up colorful red, green, and blue lights, plus a bright white flashlight-type glow at the front. Fair warning: the battery-powered lights are flaky and more gimmicky than useful. Cold temps cause the lights to flutter, flash, and sometimes even go dead.
Aside from that, these are a reliable learning tool for kids. Molded traction is built-in and works as it should on rolling terrain and flat surfaces. The all-in-one design also prevents snow buildup, so kids can concentrate on learning the sport rather than being frustrated by the technicalities.
- Bindings are easy to adjust
- Sturdy construction
- Snow does not collect on the deck
- Good traction
- Lights fail in cold weather
Best for Kids
Kids 4-8 will love the Snowglow shoes
Supporting up to 50 pounds, the Snowglow snowshoes are a fun way for kids to learn how the ins and out of the sport.
Grabbing your snowshoes and hitting the trails or backcountry is one of the best winter exercises. You burn calories, get some exercise, and get out in nature rather than hibernating all season.
The snowshoes I swear by for most conditions are the ENKEEO All-Terrain Snowshoes. The body is a lightweight aluminum alloy that doesn't weigh you down, and the PE decking gives you good flotation on most types of snow. If you mostly go off-trail or up into the mountains, be aware that lots of light and powdery snow can be a challenge for these shoes. You'll sink a bit more than you expect.
These shoes have traction to spare thanks to the superbly designed crampons. Going up and down icy stretches is no challenge for the All Terrains. The double ratchet bindings are genius, allowing you to slip in and out of your shoes in seconds. This package includes a carry bag, and the entire setup is a steal at this price point.
Credits — The team that worked on this guide
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