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Monday, November 14, 2022

First Day on Snowshoes - Day 349

  Today I finally got to try out the new snowshoes. "Why," you ask, "didn't you try them out before the hike?"
foam snowshoes

I will tell you why. I discovered these foam snowshoes in October of 2020, over a year before I was to leave on this hike. They are called Luna, made by Crescent Moon, and I believe they are actually made in the USA. However, they were out of stock. I would check every month, and I finally decided I'd have to pick something else. But in October of 2021, suddenly they were available. Quickly, I ordered a pair. They've been in my car since the beginning of the hike. There wasn't enough snow in Ohio to ever need them.

But, I decided today was a snowshoe day.
hiker on snowshoes

It was borderline- I probably would have been fine without them, but maybe not. Anyway, I wore them. They are small and lightweight. They were super easy to walk in, although I don't really think snowshoes are awkward. I've been snowshoeing since I was a pre-schooler, and it's just second nature. However, these are more like having slightly larger boots than snowshoes that drag. I liked how stable they made each step. When there were rocks or sticks under the snow they evened out the footing, preventing rolled ankles. They have really good traction. I think they saved me from a wet foot about 3 times when there was deep muck under the snow that couldn't be seen. I even managed the one semi-serious stream crossing in them.

Here is what the tracks look like.
snowshoe tracks

In the morning there were quite a few hills as the trail climbed beside the west end of the Dead River Storage Basin.
winter view

In the middle of the day were a few road miles. Some of these were barely roads, but about 2.5 miles had been driven enough (probably hunters out getting ready for opening day of gun deer season tomorrow) that I took the snowshoes off. I put them back on again for the final 2.5 miles. All together, I walked about 6.4 miles on the snowshoes.

Then the trail follows the Little Garlic River. It was quite picturesque, but mostly not photogenic through the trees.
Little Garlic River

I'll admit it; I was getting pretty tired toward the end of the day. Snowshoeing is hard work and no one else had been on the trail before me. But then I saw tracks ahead. Sue and the puppers had walked out a mile and left me a message in the snow. Can you read it?
letters in snow

letters in snow

These two panels say 1 MI to Go. Then there were my initials. This was a big encouragement for me, and I finished up in good time. There were actually a couple of hikers I passed in that mile as well. So if you want to hike from Co Rd 510 to Elliott Donnelly TH, you won't lose the trail for the next couple of days.

I don't usually tell you exactly where I hiked, but tomorrow is another random piece, so you won't find me, haha!

This was plenty enough excercise for one day. I did fine, but it was really hard work.

Oh, P.S. The first time Marie and I hiked this we were following flagging tape put out by Bill Menke, and aided by Lorana's older GPS unit. Now it's real trail.

Miles today: 8.9. Total miles so far: 4058.6.

See Mostly Lake Superior


Ann said...

Glad the snowshoes worked well for you. Those snowy scenes look pretty but it can stay there.

vanilla said...

Courageous Lady. I flinch at the first snowflake.

The Oceanside Animals said...

Lulu: "Our Dada says he can almost hear the snow crunching under your feet!"

Sharkbytes said...

Ann- I love it, but it's playing havoc with the logistics

Vanilla- well, you shouldn't see quite as much in southern Indiana

Lulu- It does crunch. Maybe I should do a video

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