When we came home from our Christmas ski trip to Austria, I returned my skis to the Army Outdoor Rec rentals office and asked about their snowshoe rentals. For $40 I could rent a pair for a week. We had almost ten inches of fresh snowfall, and I was chomping at the bit to get outside. I happily paid the $40 and loaded the snowshoes into my car.
I’d never snow shoed before, so I wasn’t entirely sure what I was doing. Since I’ve done my fair share of hiking and skiing, though, I figured I’d have the clothing and general athletic skill I’d need not to get frostbite or break an arm.
In the 24 hours between renting the gear and heading out on the snowshoes for the first time, I had a few nervous moments. Would I look super-awkward clunking my way through the woods? Was it really a good idea to take Small Shaw out in the cold?
When it was time to go out, I dressed Small Shaw, got myself into ski clothes (but with a lighter-weight jacket than I wear skiing), and put her into the Ergo Baby. I hiked the mile or so to the forest, carrying snowshoes in one hand and poles in the other, wearing the baby on my front.
The trickiest part of show shoeing was getting my feet into the snowshoes while wearing Small Shaw. There I was, alone at the edge of the woods, bending over with an 18 pound baby in a snowsuit between my snowshoes and me. It was doable, but not easy.
The next two hours were awesome: It was cold. It was beautiful. It was quiet. It was peaceful. I was getting a great workout in while cuddling Small Shaw and talking to her about show and trees. Those next two hours made me want to move to rural Colorado ski country when Nick retires from the Army so that I can snowshoe all winter long. I loved it.
Do you like pushing yourself beyond what’s comfortable? Do you like trying new things? I know how much I enjoy those things, but I’m not sure if other people do, too. I’d love to hear your thoughts; either on snowshoeing or on trying new things — or both. Will you leave a comment?
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