BEST FOR: Technical terrain.
THE TEST: If your hike turns into an icy scramble, as ours did on Vermont’s Long Trail, that’s OK. These beefy shoes are made from aircraft-grade aluminum, and flexible plastic joints at the toe and heel allow the entire deck to flex slightly, increasing shoe-to-snow contact on uneven terrain. Plus, the two main crampons rotate independently for more precise and secure footing when sidehilling. Testers also loved that a one-handed pull is all it takes to tighten the partially floating binding and that the comma shape of the tail prevented stepping on it with the other shoe.
THE VERDICT: A versatile, user-friendly snowshoe. 4.9 lbs
Ease of Use: 5
DO I NEED DEDICATED SNOWSHOE BOOTS? No. Most snowshoes work with everything from running shoes to snowboard boots.