Beginner's Guide to Snowshoeing

Source: K7Adventures

Snowshoeing is the ultimate way to enjoy the colder months, and it doesn't need any previous experience or special equipment. You just put on some shoes and go for a walk in the powdery snow.

In this beginner's guide, we will teach you the basics of snowshoeing so that you can hit the slopes with confidence even if you are a first-time snowshoer!

What is Snowshoeing?

Snowshoeing is a winter adventure that involves walking through the snow with a pair of snowshoes. Traditional snowshoes have a larger surface area, which helps to distribute your weight so that you don't sink into the deep snow.

A snowshoe hike is an exciting adventure that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Further on in the article, we outline the full-day and half-day organised tour options that you can do through K7Adventures from Thredbo.

What's So Great About Snowshoeing?

Easy to learn

You don't need to have a special skill to do this activity making it ideal for beginners. You can learn how to snowshoe in a few easy steps from an experienced guide and, with a bit of practice, you'll be able to enjoy this fun winter sport.

It is a great workout

Snowshoeing is an alternative to the gym in winter. It's a great way to burn some calories and get your heart pumping. It is also a low-impact exercise, so it is gentle on your joints.

It is a fun winter activity

Especially if you do this with family and friends! Nothing beats the fun of snowshoeing. It is a great way to explore winter landscapes and enjoy the fresh air.

You can go at your own pace

There's no pressure, you can just go at your own pace. Take your time to enjoy the beauty of winter and take in all that this activity has to offer.

Infinite opportunities to explore

You are not just walking in snow but on a journey of discovery. There are endless opportunities to explore when you go snowshoeing. You can see the unique Australian alpine landscapes with ancient granite boulders and striking weather-worn snow gums.

What You Need to Know When Snow Walking in Thredbo

Duration

It depends on your energy levels and whether you choose a guided tour but three hours is a good amount of time to allow. The best time to start this activity is early in the morning so that you can make the most of the fresh snow conditions. 

Highlights

Expect to witness amazing scenery and rugged terrain, get a great workout and have an overall great time when snowshoeing in Thredbo.

Equipment included

To successfully complete this activity, you only need to bring snow shoes, poles and gaiters. Make sure to choose the right type of snowshoe and the correct size so you will be comfortable wearing them in steep terrain. If you go on a guided tour they can usually provide all of the equipment you need.

Fitness Requirements

Snowshoeing is suitable for those with a moderate to high level of fitness. If you can walk around a golf course, you are probably fit enough for snowshoeing. If you have any health concerns, please consult with your doctor before participating in this activity.

Age

For guided groups, the minimum age is usually around 15 years old but younger kids can snowshoe if they have the right equipment.

Group Size

It is safer to go snowshoeing with another person or a small group. Solo trips are risky.

Guidelines for Walking in Snow 

Source: K7Adventures

Check snowshoe trail regulations

The tour provider will likely discuss snowshoe etiquette with you before starting the activity. But it is always good to be aware of the basic rules.

If it is your first time, check the map and familiarise yourself with the route and stick with your group. If you are new to snowshoe activities, it is advisable to choose an easy route that is suitable for first timers.

Be aware of your surroundings

Take extra care when walking on slippery areas or avoiding obstacles. Always ensure you follow the guide and keep to the group.

Carry a backpack

Pack essential items like water, snacks and a first-aid kit. Make sure to wear several layers of clothing, and bring sunscreen and a hat as well.

Wear the right gear

Bring snowshoes, trekking poles, and gaiters (optional). 

Step out of the trail when not hiking

If you are taking a break, move out of the trail, so you will not block the way for other hikers.

Yield the trail

Make sure to yield the trail to uphill hikers.

Leave no trace

Pack up all your rubbish, dispose of waste properly and do not disturb wildlife.

These are just a few things you need to keep in mind when snowshoeing. Following these guidelines will help make your experience more enjoyable and safe.

Where Can I Snowshoe?

source: K7Adventures

K7Adventures offers great snowshoeing tour packages. Check out their full-day and half-day tours below:

Full Day Tours

Winter Ascent of Mt Kosciuszko

A Winter Ascent of Mount Kosciuszko summit is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure that will make your trip to the snow unforgettable. Standing on top of Australia in midwinter, looking out at the vast expanse of land stretching out before you, is one of life's most beautiful experiences. This tour is a 12km round trip.

Winter Ascent of South Ramshead

Indigenous people regard this trip as a must-do adventure. A winter climb of South Ramshead is an experience that you will never forget. You can climb from the snow gums to the peak in style!

At the top, you'll get some great views in exchange for a challenging climb up from the valley floor. We will cover a maximum elevation gain of 450 meters, and the total distance travelled will be between 3 and 8 kilometers, depending on the group’s fitness level.

Half Day Tours

Ramshead Ramble

A wonderful introduction to the magnificent Alpine regions beyond Thredbo can be experienced with this half-day snowshoe tour. Follow the seasoned tour guides from Eagles' Nest into Granite Tors and Windswept Landscapes of the Ramshead Range. The length of a Ramshead Ramble ranges from 2 to 6 kilometres, depending on the group's fitness level.

Packing Checklist 

  • MyThredbo Card
  • If you're wearing enclosed waterproof boots, make sure they're appropriate for cold weather (no ankle socks)
  • Waterproof coat and pants
  • Have enough layers to alternate throughout the day (thermal, mid-layer, outer layer and puffer jacket) and wet weather gear
  • Gloves and beanie
  • Hats, sunscreen, and sunglasses are also recommended
  • Per person, there should be at least two liters of water
  • Have a nutritious breakfast and bring something to eat with you
  • Personal medication (e.g. Ventolin)
  • Backpack to put everything you need
  • Phone or Camera

FAQS

Is snowshoeing harder than hiking?

It is a bit more difficult than hiking because you wear snowshoes, but it is a very beginner-friendly activity.

Can I go snowshoeing if I am not fit?

Yes, as long as you are comfortable walking for several hours. Each route will be different in terms of difficulty, so choose the route that best fits your ability and don’t choose the route for advanced snowshoers.

Do I need to bring my own equipment?

No, you can rent or borrow gear from a number of snowshoe rentals at an additional cost. However, if you have your own snowshoes and trekking poles, it is advised that you bring them.

What should I wear on a snowshoeing tour?

You will need to wear several layers of clothing as the weather can change quite rapidly in the mountains. Thermal, mid-layers and a puffer jacket are ideal.

Is there anything else I need to know?

When travelling in a group, make sure to stay together and follow the guide's instructions. If you need to stop for a break, make sure to move out of the trail so as not to block the way for other hikers.

Book your accommodation at Lantern Apartments when in Thredbo!

Lantern Apartments offer stunning views of the valley and is only a short walk to the village centre. With a range of rooms, Lantern is perfect for couples, families and groups.

Visit our website or email bookings@lantern.com.au to book your accommodation today!