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Thread: Any experience with those Boreal Sliding Snowshoes?

  1. #1
    Senior Member forestgnome's Avatar
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    Any experience with those Boreal Sliding Snowshoes?

    ...that I see in LL Bean's catalog? I've no experience with XC/BC skiing and I haven't skied alpine in about 12 years ( changed to snowboard ).

    I snowshoe a lot, through all kinds of terrain. I always wish the snowshoes were a snowboard or skiis when I'm going downhill.

    Any comments on these? Thanks.

    happy trails

  2. #2
    Member jime's Avatar
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    Not Quite Skis, Not Quite Snowshoes...

    I had an earlier version of these when they first came out and found them just okay for what they are. They have an integral skin on the bottom that wasn't great for uphill stuff, which crampons on snowshoes would be better suited for. They basically slid downhill and I had a hard time controlling them, even with metal edges, I think because they are so wide I couldn't get them "slanted" enough for the edges to work. The caveat to this is that I am an incredibly poor skier! Bottom line I found them slow, heavy and awkward. But, of course, just 'cause they didn't work for me doesn't mean that someone with more skill couldn't make them work. I just found them to be one of those hybrids that is good in theory but not so much in practice.

    The Boreals are still made by Karhu and the bindings are better than the ones I had however they are not designed for anything over a size (mens) 12.

    I've gone back to skiis for skiing and snowshoes for 'shoeing.

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    These are what I have also seen called skiboards or approach skis. I looked into buying a pair and changed my mind after getting some feedback from an owner who happens to be a member here-BMISF-he took his back after trying them out.

    If you go to www.backpacking.net and search in the winter forum, you should find some discussion on these. I can find them if you can't.

  4. #4
    Senior Member bcskier's Avatar
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    Yupi skishoes

    Quote Originally Posted by forestgnome
    ... I always wish the snowshoes were a snowboard or skiis when I'm going downhill.
    Though I haven't had any first hand experience you might also consider these: yupi skishoes They seem like they would work if the trail wasn't too icy. Which means not as often in the northeast as in the west where they are produced.


    bcskier
    Last edited by bcskier; 12-15-2007 at 08:48 AM.

  5. #5
    Moderator David Metsky's Avatar
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    I've always felt these were a solution in search of a problem. They don't grip as well as snowshoes for climbing. Going downhill they are barely controllable and don't slide anything like a ski.

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    Quote Originally Posted by David Metsky
    I've always felt these were a solution in search of a problem. They don't grip as well as snowshoes for climbing. Going downhill they are barely controllable and don't slide anything like a ski.
    I reread the comments on TLB about the Karhu's, so I have revised my comment here-the poster liked their climbing ability and said they were fairly easy to control, but said they were slow with little glide. He also said the pattern started to peel off the skis-perhaps a one-off defect, but I don't know for sure. He wasn't really a skier, but was happy with them on moderate terrain. He was using them in Yosemite on and around Glacier Point Road, so probably the snow was hardpack or fairly hard off track.
    Last edited by TomD; 12-20-2007 at 12:43 PM.

  7. #7
    Senior Member forestgnome's Avatar
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    Thanks, all. I don't hear anything positive elsewhere, either.

    happy trails

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    Senior Member RickB.'s Avatar
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    I would like to provide one qualified positive note and I have spent many hours on them (I mounted NNN-BC bindings on mine). They are perfect for moderate terrain when snow conditions make back country skis impracticable, such as a heavily, unevenly boot-tracked trail. I use them primarily in the Ossipees, climbing up one of the steeper trails and "skiing" the ridges and moderate trails down. Contrary to others' inputs, I find they climb very well, better than skis with skins. A lot more fun than snowshoes in those conditions. Prior comments on downhill control, lack thereof, are correct, though, and they have to be horsed to turn, not edged. Thankfully, they're slow.
    That said, if there is decent snow, I leave them behind and grab the back country skis. And they are certainly no substitute for snowshoes in the Whites.

  9. #9
    Senior Member forestgnome's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RickB.
    I would like to provide one qualified positive note and I have spent many hours on them (I mounted NNN-BC bindings on mine). They are perfect for moderate terrain when snow conditions make back country skis impracticable, such as a heavily, unevenly boot-tracked trail. I use them primarily in the Ossipees, climbing up one of the steeper trails and "skiing" the ridges and moderate trails down. Contrary to others' inputs, I find they climb very well, better than skis with skins. A lot more fun than snowshoes in those conditions. Prior comments on downhill control, lack thereof, are correct, though, and they have to be horsed to turn, not edged. Thankfully, they're slow.
    That said, if there is decent snow, I leave them behind and grab the back country skis. And they are certainly no substitute for snowshoes in the Whites.
    Thanks for the input

    happy trails

  10. #10
    Senior Member DougPaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RickB.
    Contrary to others' inputs, I find they climb very well, better than skis with skins.
    Interesting observation, considering that they are short, wide skis with skins...

    Doug

  11. #11
    Senior Member RickB.'s Avatar
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    That is the point. The short length makes them more manageable on narrow trails.

  12. #12
    Senior Member DougPaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RickB.
    That is the point. The short length makes them more manageable on narrow trails.
    Perhaps a misunderstanding--I was focusing on the observation that they climbed better than skis with skins. I took that to mean more grip than skis with skins. The greater maneuverability of the shorter ski was obvious to me.

    Doug

  13. #13
    Senior Member RickB.'s Avatar
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    It's more than maneuverability; in the conditions I described, the length enables more "skin" to make contact with the snow without bridging. I'm done.

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