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Thread: Latest Preferred Snowshoes?

  1. #1
    Senior Member TCD's Avatar
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    Latest Preferred Snowshoes?

    We're mostly ancient here, so I am looking for the wisdom of the ancients.

    I'm still using my very old Northern Lights 25" snowshoes (modified by bolting on old instep crampons for better traction). But at some point I will be in the market for new snowshoes.

    My use is some trail hiking, some bushwhacking, occasional ice climb approaches (although those are mostly boot tracks).

    Here's a page from Liberty Mountain, as an example of what might be available:

    https://pro.libertymountain.com/snow...eid=d492d15fdc

    The number of brands and styles is a bit overwhelming. My interest is in good traction, light weight, and a simple and reliable, and durable binding system that mates with various kinds of boots.

    Cutting to the chase: I am looking for opinions on the current status of the various brands, and what might be good choices, maybe for next year. Thanks in advance!

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    And the long lost MSR vs Tubbs debate begins anew....

    Seriously, I've always used Tubbs brand snowshoes initially on recommendations from people I trust here but over time from my actual use. The thing I particularly liked is their binding system. It is very simple and can be adjusted easily even with heavy gloves. It stays reliably snug and has never caused pressure points on my instep or other areas. The big flip side/downside to that is that they do not stack very flat so depending how you lash them to your pack it may present an issue. Despite that I would definitely recommend the brand. I've owned both trail and powder models.

    I haven't bought new shoes in several years now and have noticed some minor design differences to some of their bindings so I can't comment on whether the new designs are better or worse. I think Tubbs had a longer warranty at the time versus MSR and MSR went through a stretch of quality problems but I'm not sure that is still the case. Somebody here on VFTT is (or was) an MSR gear tester so hopefully they will chime in on the latest news.

  3. #3
    Senior Member sierra's Avatar
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    I do not like Lightning Ascents. I love Tubbs Flex VRT, in fact I'm buying a new pair very soon. They are indestructible and very easy to put on and off.

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    The urethane straps on my 16-year old Atlas 1025 snowshoes failed two years ago and I decided to buy a new pair instead of sending the old ones out for repair. Because of the scarcity of snowshoes at that time, I didn't have much to choose from but found a pair of Atlas Apex BC snowshoes. I've been satisfied with them, but see that Atlas has changed the design slightly and now calls them the Atlas Range BC. No doubt there were other snowshoes that may have been better choices at the time, but were not available.

    You probably realize that if you plan on doing some trail hiking on packed trails and some bushwhacking, you'll need two pairs of snowshoes.

  5. #5
    Senior Member JustJoe's Avatar
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    I had the Tubbs Flex Alps for a decade or more until all the crampons (under foot and side) got too worn or broken to be worth fixing. I ended up replacing them with the Tubbs Mountaineers. Not quite as aggressive traction and not as flexible. But, a little more float. If I were doing stuff like the northern Presi's over and over, I would have stuck with one of Tubbs Flex series. The Mountaineers work great for my requirements.
    Joe

  6. #6
    Senior Member Salty's Avatar
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    Postholing is becoming far more popular than any brand of shoes I can think of.

    Too soon?

  7. #7
    Senior Member richard's Avatar
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    Tubbs Flex Alp are my favorites. Simple & snug fitting bindings. Excellent crampons.
    Last edited by richard; 11-22-2022 at 01:41 PM. Reason: More info

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfb View Post
    The urethane straps on my 16-year old Atlas 1025 snowshoes failed two years ago and I decided to buy a new pair instead of sending the old ones out for repair. Because of the scarcity of snowshoes at that time, I didn't have much to choose from but found a pair of Atlas Apex BC snowshoes. I've been satisfied with them, but see that Atlas has changed the design slightly and now calls them the Atlas Range BC. No doubt there were other snowshoes that may have been better choices at the time, but were not available.

    You probably realize that if you plan on doing some trail hiking on packed trails and some bushwhacking, you'll need two pairs of snowshoes.
    For 30 bucks they sent me 2 straps for 1225's. They included the hardware to replace the rivet. I did have to drill out 2 rivets but the special screws and washers were easy to install.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Remix View Post
    For 30 bucks they sent me 2 straps for 1225's. They included the hardware to replace the rivet. I did have to drill out 2 rivets but the special screws and washers were easy to install.
    I remember the thread you started about your strap failure. At the time, it looked like it might have taken quite a while to get the parts I needed and I found a pair that was available. Someday, I may take my old ones to my local Atlas dealer and see if they can be repaired.

  10. #10
    Senior Member NorthShore's Avatar
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    I liked the Tubbs Flex Alps for a brief period until they failed after about 5 uses (cracks in the crampons and one broke completely off during a hike in excellent snow conditions) and Tubbs refused to stand by their product. I've gone back to MSRs and purchased my first set of Lightning Ascents, but still really like the old Evos which last forever. I now recommend MSR for my clients.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by NorthShore View Post
    I liked the Tubbs Flex Alps for a brief period until they failed after about 5 uses (cracks in the crampons and one broke completely off during a hike in excellent snow conditions) and Tubbs refused to stand by their product. I've gone back to MSRs and purchased my first set of Lightning Ascents, but still really like the old Evos which last forever. I now recommend MSR for my clients.
    Great feedback!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken MacGray View Post
    How is the flotation with these? They seem liked they'd be awesome for the uneven icy terrain we see in the Whites but wouldn't have much flotation given the flex. What are your thoughts/experience on that?

  14. #14
    Senior Member skiguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DayTrip View Post
    How is the flotation with these? They seem liked they'd be awesome for the uneven icy terrain we see in the Whites but wouldn't have much flotation given the flex. What are your thoughts/experience on that?
    I bought a set of these last year. From my experiences so far your observations are correct. IMO with todays more frequent hiker activity this is a nice nimble shoe for the times. With trails broken out frequently and quickly these days The TSL is a reasonable choice. I am one of those trail nazi types that wears snowshoes unless itís bulletproof. Therefore the excellent traction this snowshoe provides works well for me. Also because they are reasonably compact and light I have no problem always carrying them rather than debating whether I should leave them in the car or not. The operation of the bindings is quite good even with heavy gloves which is one of the highlights of this shoe. I have read one report of the plastic piece on the bar bridging the heel to forefoot failing. As you have observed they are definitely not for deep fluffy snow. Rather more of a technical shoe which works well here in The Whites for most situations.
    "I'm getting up and going to work everyday and I am stoked. That does not suck!"__Shane McConkey

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    I've been buying old Sherpa snowshoes on Ebay. You can get them for under $100 including shipping. You need to make sure the ones you're buying have the toe flap. Most of them have the non-aggressive claws but every once in a while you can find the preferred agressive claws.

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