Outside magazine, January 1999
Review: Accessorize Those Platforms
Just the trimmings you'll need for your winter wanderings
By Andrew Tilin and Stuart Craig
SNOWSHOES | BUYING RIGHT | THE OTHER STUFF | BOOKS
Since using snowshoes requires you to wear plain old shoe-shoes, we've selected a couple of models — along with sundry other useful items — to keep you floating over the snow this season. For blazing a path through deep powder or shouldering a hefty load, Tecnica's waterproof Snow Paw TCY 2 ($169; 800-258-3897) is the best bet. An adjustable strap across the ankle joint and a tall leather upper provide stability, while a ring atop the toe lets you latch down gaiters. However, if you're of the type more inclined to slip on a pair of rag-wool socks and your running sneaks, you'll appreciate the low-top simplicity of Salomon's new Vapor Trail ($119; 877-272-5666). Sheer insulation, water-resistant construction, and a neoprene cuff keep your feet warm and dry when high-stepping it through the fluff. Back at the house, the Vapor Trail's grippy tread is good for a job around the snowpacked block. Above your boots, steer clear of anything too warm — plowing through powder can be a hot endeavor. Ibex's Backcountry Pants ($180; 802-457-9900) are suitable, thanks to a weave that includes wool for warmth and wicking, spandex for stretch, and nylon for durability. The pants fit close, and the elastic cuffs fit over boot tops. Whether you break a sweat or not, you need to stay hydrated, even in winter. CamelBak's insulated SnoBowl ($53; 800-767-8725) slips unobtrusively under a jacket and keeps 50 ounces of your favorite beverage conveniently on tap. To dress up your ensemble, consider the Outdoor Research Alpine Fez ($30; 800-421-2421), a pillbox topper with convertible earflaps. More important, it's made of WindStopper fleece, which performs as advertised. And if reaching a ridgetop in snowshoes feels more gratifying when the descent involves pulling a few ollies, you'll want the Arc'teryx Snoyo ($129; 800-985-6881). The pack secures a snowboard or snowshoes in a flip-down pocket, separately stows an avalanche shovel, and has room to spare for a jacket and a snack.
Photographs by Clay Ellis