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Old Gear vs. New Gear: Snowshoes and Scopes

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February 17, 2011

Old Gear vs. New Gear: Snowshoes and Scopes

By David E. Petzal

by David E. Petzal

One of the areas in which I resisted change the longest was snowshoes. I had a pair of Vermont Tubbs traditional webs made out of ash and varnished rawhide in the “Michigan” pattern, and swore I would never get the new style Tubbs, which are made in China out of aluminum and neoprene. For years we got no snow, so I gave the old webs away, but this winter we got so much snow that I needed snowshoes just to pick up the branches on my lawn, and since I couldn’t find the old style anywhere, I got the new ones (the Venture model). I’m saddened to say the aluminum and neoprene monstrosities work much, much better than the old type. It isn’t even close. Next thing you know I’ll be replacing all my wood-stocked guns with plastic. 

During the 1960s and into the ‘70s, virtually everyone who got a dangerous-game rifle in .375 H&H or bigger put a Leupold M8 3X scope on it. I think there was a law requiring it, or something. It had a field of view of 43 feet at 100 yards (as opposed to about 34 for a fixed-power 4X M8) and was a very tough scope, having very few guts to shake loose. But then variables took over and it was eventually dropped from the line.

Now, the M8 3X is available again from the Leupold Custom Shop. You won’t see anything on the website, but I’m assured it exists. They will build you one for $349, which is very reasonable, and it is a much better scope, mechanically and optically, than the old M8 3Xs. The two key differences are that the new one has an actual magnification of 3.4X (as opposed to 2.7X), and a field of view of 30 feet at 100 yards. And it still has very few guts to shake loose, making it just as fine a choice for a hard-kicking rifle as it was 40-odd years ago.

Comments (38)

Top Rated
All Comments
from Happy Myles wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Say it isn't so Dave. Plastic and aluminum snow shoes used by one I consider "an old timer". Think I will roll over in my wool blanket next to the fire and sleep a spell.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Let's not get to carried away. Replace wood with plastic gun stocks? How absurd! Seriously, I am surprised you got rid of the wooden ones. With minimal care they would still be going strong.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Dave,

What was the objective diameter of the old 3X M8?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from MJC wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

@DEP- I seem to recall a post awhile ago in which you mentioned that you pretty much had gotten rid of all your wood stocked rifles by this point. I noticed you went with the laminate for the E.R. Shaw.

As for new vs. old, gear is one area that has improved so drastically in recent years that new is, imho, frequently better than old. Heck, the invention of PolarTec fleece would have been a complete game changer by itself, and it's just one of many innovations a hunter can take advantage of.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from davidpetzal wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

To Beekeeper: It's a straight-tube scope, just like the old one, so the objective is 1.00.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Thanks Dave, I couldn't remember if it was a straight pipe or a 28mm.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

My old .416 has an even older Leupold M8 3X on it which has not fallen apart yet. I think it will remain on the rifle although a neighbor offered me a like new Leupold 2.5-5x at a decent price to replace my relic scope which apparently embarrasses him.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bella wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

While I prefer XC skis for getting about on top of the two and a half feet of snow out there for pleasure, when I have to do any actual work out in the snows I have snowshoes also, and I have modern aluminum tube ones.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bella wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

While I prefer XC skis for getting about on top of the two and a half feet of snow out there for pleasure, when I have to do any actual work out in the snows I have snowshoes also, and I have modern aluminum tube ones.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bella wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

That double posting is on the webmaster, not my doing!
Somehow the Bot thought My post was spam and required me to do the "captcha" thing. I followed instructions and then discovered it had double posted me! Bad Bot!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from 99explorer wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I have a framed sign on the wall of my study reading, "New Things Are No Damned Good." I have had to acknowledge a few exceptions.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from rock rat wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

David I switched to Sherpa Snowclaws in 79. That's most of my adult life I"ve been running around on a much lighter, easier to use, snowshoe. Last year all the webbing busted out. An hour a shoe with parachute cord.

Computers and airplanes have their uses too.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from cbanks wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Seems to me, David, that there was a Gun Digest article by a David Petzal some years ago entitled, if I remember correctly, "I Sold All My Lovely Wood". Am I to understand that, after the article, you surreptitiously and with mendacious intent re-acquired wood-stocked items? What are your faithful readers to make of this betrayal?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Michigan Gunner wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Friends have tried that type of snowshoe in the deep snow of the Michigan UP. The were worthless, not enough floatation. The Iverson brand with wood frame and neoprene webbing are still the best.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from hi_tail wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

"Next thing you know I’ll be replacing all my wood-stocked guns with plastic." -Don't do it Dave, DON'T YOU DO IT! It could save your life. Get yourself another pair of rawhide snowshoes so if you're truly stranded you can start a fire with you wooden stocked rifle to boil your rawhide shoes to chew on. Aluminum and synthetic?! Puhlease :D

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Sure wish Ford would bring back the Bronco

This is how they would screw it all up!

http://www.roadfly.com/magazine/galleries/detroit_auto_show_2004/photos/...

Will you take play follow the leader with this Bronco!

http://www.van-gmotorsports.com/Portals/0/Pictures/Dad/Bronco-6.jpg

Hell no, you'll scratch the paint!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Some of the newer ones are great for just getting places. Bought a really nice pair for hunting a couple years back but couldn't get rid of the squeaks - sent them back and picked up another pair of wood and leather. Feels good to be back.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from jaredrobbins wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

putting plastic stocks on a gun is blasphemy its just so ugly

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I can see a serious problem using plastic/rubber and metal in subzero conditions, not good :(

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Carney wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

"Today is a good day to die."

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from shane wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I don't see how 3.4X is an advantage over 2.7X given the intent of the optical sight in question. The field of view is much smaller, also bad news. So maybe it's a great scope for an all-around .375, but not as good as the original for bigger badder rifles for serious dangerous game hunting and the hairy situations that come with it. Honestly, I want even lower magnification for quick and close work. I guess when you consider that there will be a PH right there holding something thunderous, it's not such a bad deal. Price wise, it's a great deal.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

To clarify last statement, Snowshoe users beware, I can see a serious problem using plastic/rubber and metal in subzero conditions, not good. Plastics/ rubber and metal products unable to bend and will break like glass under subzero conditions. Good ol'fashion snowshoes may be better.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from tom warner wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Since I have been wandering around on snowshoes for way over 65 years, I think that I know a little bit about them. Having tried them all, I will stick with my old bear paws with neoprene webbing. I like the neoprene over the gut because I do not have to constantly varnish the gut, something that I had to do pre-neoprene for years. I am just a slave to tradition I guess, although some of the horrible looking modern shoes do work very well. I own 6 pairs of shoes of various types, and for open country the long pickerel type are the best, but I don't know if they are made in aluminum. I notice that the space age shoes do not seem to have tails on them, something that I think is quite important for easier tracking over long distances. Sorry Dave, I think that I will remain in the stone age.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Drew McClure wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

You can make steel harder and harder, but out of a box of knives only one is forged carbon and it so easy to sharpen and retains a wicked meat cutting edge, I wish I had a few more. When I hunt with my older brother, he carries a scoped rifle and I carry a light shotgun, who will send the first shot who will claim the prize in the deep woods? I am mostly new school, but a wool coat I bought last year is changing my ideas about comfort in snow. I don't want to be caught holding a rangefinder when the window of opportunity is shrinking, so estimating distances is done by walking off stand before I enter them. There will always be room for the best of the old school, but after drilling out a few hickory wooden axe handles, you start to open your mind to other options. Cheers to battle scarred wooden stocks, farm trucks, and chainsaws that are consistently maintained by the grey heads that know what fresh butter taste like, and shared with me a few fine fishing spots.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from davidpetzal wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

To Cbanks: I was engaging in irony, a well known literary device used by such noted writers as Grace Metalious, Bill Heavey, and S.J. Perleman.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Quiet Loner wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Anyone ever try the "Magnesium Snowshoes and Bindings", item MGR-926 on CheaperThanDirt.com? I thought they were probably junk but looks like the same thing being used by the troops on MARINE SURVIVAL show on the Military channel. I can remember about three snows deep enough to use snowshoes in my life in Louisiana but you never know. Looks like they could also be used to stun bullfrogs.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Quiet Loner wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

DP,How do you pronounce Heavey's last name? Like "After eating that week-old tuna sandwich, I feel a little heavey" or is it like "Damn, bill is heavy"?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Quiet Loner wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Also, wasn't BH supposed to start some sort of graze off of the stuff growing in your yard blog? Have I missed it? Did he poison himself? I'm told he has the digestive system of a coyote.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from duckcreekdick wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

And when the snow is all gone and hunting season is but a memory, you can sit back with a cold beer while you rub a coat of ArmorAll on that plastic stock, occasionally looking up to admire your neoprene and aluminum webs hanging over the fireplace.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mark-1 wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I'm old fashion, too. I still use my 30-year old bear paws and Michigan's made of ash and neoprene webs. Neo's don't ice up like leather.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Montana wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Well I try to be a traditionalist but after getting my new shoes I have decided that for the long walking I do in open sage country that they are better for that than the traditional ones, they just don't seem to hang up as much. The only thing I don't care for about them is if they ever hit each other it gives off quite a clang, not so good for coyote hunting.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from AlaskanExile wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I have 2 sets of Cabelas Outfitter snowshoes, and I can assure you that they do not "break like glass" in sub-zero weather. One distinct advantage I've found is that snow won't stick to the decking material (after it has cooled to the ambient temp) which means that you don't have pick up that snow with each step.
Ratcheting buckles are another key advantage to modern gear. If your foot feels a little loose, you just lightly pull up on the buckle and put it back down an it tightens up one click. No fumbling with cold hands to try and buckle leather bindings with cold soaked fingers! You can adjust/set/remove the bindings with your gloves on.
My wood and rawhide shoes are decorations on the wall now.
AKX

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from James Miller wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I agree with everything David Petzel writes with the exception of his position on aluminum snowshoes made in China. Cabela's sells wooden snowshoes made by the Ojibway (Chippewa) who live in Ontario and northern Minnesota. The shoes are excellent in the deep snows we've had this year. Their makers won't confiscate our weapons or restrict our hunting rights. The Chinese on the other hand.... Let's support products made here.Period.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from NHshtr wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I own two pair of snow shoes. One is wood/neoprene (Maine style), and the other is short light weight aluminums (Michigan(no tail)style) with rawhide web (which were the "new thing" in the early 80's!).

I use them both and find the woodies the best and the alums good for packing in.

However, DP speaks truth (even if he engages in irony). I have used the latest aluminum and neoprene with those easy fitting bindings and they are excellent. But I don't plan to buy a set. My oldies have to wear out first - but I'm sure they will outlast me.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ridgerunner821 wrote 3 years 7 weeks ago

I have both kinds of snowshoes. Here on the eastern shore of Lake Ontario where we get about 200" of snow a year, I use my old wooden Mich style all the time. Those alum style are fine if the conditions are perfect, but try walking over snow covered brush piles rabbit hunting and you'll soon find yourself waist deep on one leg. Some things simply can't be improved upon. The only time I find the alum to work well is when the snow is either not deep enough to warrent use, or hard enough to not need.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ridgerunner821 wrote 3 years 7 weeks ago

I have both kinds of snowshoes. Here on the eastern shore of Lake Ontario where we get about 200" of snow a year, I use my old wooden Mich style all the time. Those alum style are fine if the conditions are perfect, but try walking over snow covered brush piles rabbit hunting and you'll soon find yourself waist deep on one leg. Some things simply can't be improved upon. The only time I find the alum to work well is when the snow is either not deep enough to warrent use, or hard enough to not need.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Brian Robinson wrote 3 years 7 weeks ago

Plastic snowshoes to go with plastic gun stocks, what is this world coming to.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 2 years 5 weeks ago

Yes, some modern materials are better then the old...

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from hi_tail wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

"Next thing you know I’ll be replacing all my wood-stocked guns with plastic." -Don't do it Dave, DON'T YOU DO IT! It could save your life. Get yourself another pair of rawhide snowshoes so if you're truly stranded you can start a fire with you wooden stocked rifle to boil your rawhide shoes to chew on. Aluminum and synthetic?! Puhlease :D

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Michigan Gunner wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Friends have tried that type of snowshoe in the deep snow of the Michigan UP. The were worthless, not enough floatation. The Iverson brand with wood frame and neoprene webbing are still the best.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from James Miller wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I agree with everything David Petzel writes with the exception of his position on aluminum snowshoes made in China. Cabela's sells wooden snowshoes made by the Ojibway (Chippewa) who live in Ontario and northern Minnesota. The shoes are excellent in the deep snows we've had this year. Their makers won't confiscate our weapons or restrict our hunting rights. The Chinese on the other hand.... Let's support products made here.Period.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Happy Myles wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Say it isn't so Dave. Plastic and aluminum snow shoes used by one I consider "an old timer". Think I will roll over in my wool blanket next to the fire and sleep a spell.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Let's not get to carried away. Replace wood with plastic gun stocks? How absurd! Seriously, I am surprised you got rid of the wooden ones. With minimal care they would still be going strong.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from MJC wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

@DEP- I seem to recall a post awhile ago in which you mentioned that you pretty much had gotten rid of all your wood stocked rifles by this point. I noticed you went with the laminate for the E.R. Shaw.

As for new vs. old, gear is one area that has improved so drastically in recent years that new is, imho, frequently better than old. Heck, the invention of PolarTec fleece would have been a complete game changer by itself, and it's just one of many innovations a hunter can take advantage of.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from davidpetzal wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

To Beekeeper: It's a straight-tube scope, just like the old one, so the objective is 1.00.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

My old .416 has an even older Leupold M8 3X on it which has not fallen apart yet. I think it will remain on the rifle although a neighbor offered me a like new Leupold 2.5-5x at a decent price to replace my relic scope which apparently embarrasses him.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bella wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

While I prefer XC skis for getting about on top of the two and a half feet of snow out there for pleasure, when I have to do any actual work out in the snows I have snowshoes also, and I have modern aluminum tube ones.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bella wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

That double posting is on the webmaster, not my doing!
Somehow the Bot thought My post was spam and required me to do the "captcha" thing. I followed instructions and then discovered it had double posted me! Bad Bot!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from 99explorer wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I have a framed sign on the wall of my study reading, "New Things Are No Damned Good." I have had to acknowledge a few exceptions.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from rock rat wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

David I switched to Sherpa Snowclaws in 79. That's most of my adult life I"ve been running around on a much lighter, easier to use, snowshoe. Last year all the webbing busted out. An hour a shoe with parachute cord.

Computers and airplanes have their uses too.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from cbanks wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Seems to me, David, that there was a Gun Digest article by a David Petzal some years ago entitled, if I remember correctly, "I Sold All My Lovely Wood". Am I to understand that, after the article, you surreptitiously and with mendacious intent re-acquired wood-stocked items? What are your faithful readers to make of this betrayal?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Some of the newer ones are great for just getting places. Bought a really nice pair for hunting a couple years back but couldn't get rid of the squeaks - sent them back and picked up another pair of wood and leather. Feels good to be back.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from jaredrobbins wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

putting plastic stocks on a gun is blasphemy its just so ugly

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Carney wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

"Today is a good day to die."

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from duckcreekdick wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

And when the snow is all gone and hunting season is but a memory, you can sit back with a cold beer while you rub a coat of ArmorAll on that plastic stock, occasionally looking up to admire your neoprene and aluminum webs hanging over the fireplace.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ridgerunner821 wrote 3 years 7 weeks ago

I have both kinds of snowshoes. Here on the eastern shore of Lake Ontario where we get about 200" of snow a year, I use my old wooden Mich style all the time. Those alum style are fine if the conditions are perfect, but try walking over snow covered brush piles rabbit hunting and you'll soon find yourself waist deep on one leg. Some things simply can't be improved upon. The only time I find the alum to work well is when the snow is either not deep enough to warrent use, or hard enough to not need.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Dave,

What was the objective diameter of the old 3X M8?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Thanks Dave, I couldn't remember if it was a straight pipe or a 28mm.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bella wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

While I prefer XC skis for getting about on top of the two and a half feet of snow out there for pleasure, when I have to do any actual work out in the snows I have snowshoes also, and I have modern aluminum tube ones.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Sure wish Ford would bring back the Bronco

This is how they would screw it all up!

http://www.roadfly.com/magazine/galleries/detroit_auto_show_2004/photos/...

Will you take play follow the leader with this Bronco!

http://www.van-gmotorsports.com/Portals/0/Pictures/Dad/Bronco-6.jpg

Hell no, you'll scratch the paint!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from tom warner wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Since I have been wandering around on snowshoes for way over 65 years, I think that I know a little bit about them. Having tried them all, I will stick with my old bear paws with neoprene webbing. I like the neoprene over the gut because I do not have to constantly varnish the gut, something that I had to do pre-neoprene for years. I am just a slave to tradition I guess, although some of the horrible looking modern shoes do work very well. I own 6 pairs of shoes of various types, and for open country the long pickerel type are the best, but I don't know if they are made in aluminum. I notice that the space age shoes do not seem to have tails on them, something that I think is quite important for easier tracking over long distances. Sorry Dave, I think that I will remain in the stone age.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Quiet Loner wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Anyone ever try the "Magnesium Snowshoes and Bindings", item MGR-926 on CheaperThanDirt.com? I thought they were probably junk but looks like the same thing being used by the troops on MARINE SURVIVAL show on the Military channel. I can remember about three snows deep enough to use snowshoes in my life in Louisiana but you never know. Looks like they could also be used to stun bullfrogs.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from NHshtr wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I own two pair of snow shoes. One is wood/neoprene (Maine style), and the other is short light weight aluminums (Michigan(no tail)style) with rawhide web (which were the "new thing" in the early 80's!).

I use them both and find the woodies the best and the alums good for packing in.

However, DP speaks truth (even if he engages in irony). I have used the latest aluminum and neoprene with those easy fitting bindings and they are excellent. But I don't plan to buy a set. My oldies have to wear out first - but I'm sure they will outlast me.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I can see a serious problem using plastic/rubber and metal in subzero conditions, not good :(

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from shane wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I don't see how 3.4X is an advantage over 2.7X given the intent of the optical sight in question. The field of view is much smaller, also bad news. So maybe it's a great scope for an all-around .375, but not as good as the original for bigger badder rifles for serious dangerous game hunting and the hairy situations that come with it. Honestly, I want even lower magnification for quick and close work. I guess when you consider that there will be a PH right there holding something thunderous, it's not such a bad deal. Price wise, it's a great deal.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

To clarify last statement, Snowshoe users beware, I can see a serious problem using plastic/rubber and metal in subzero conditions, not good. Plastics/ rubber and metal products unable to bend and will break like glass under subzero conditions. Good ol'fashion snowshoes may be better.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Drew McClure wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

You can make steel harder and harder, but out of a box of knives only one is forged carbon and it so easy to sharpen and retains a wicked meat cutting edge, I wish I had a few more. When I hunt with my older brother, he carries a scoped rifle and I carry a light shotgun, who will send the first shot who will claim the prize in the deep woods? I am mostly new school, but a wool coat I bought last year is changing my ideas about comfort in snow. I don't want to be caught holding a rangefinder when the window of opportunity is shrinking, so estimating distances is done by walking off stand before I enter them. There will always be room for the best of the old school, but after drilling out a few hickory wooden axe handles, you start to open your mind to other options. Cheers to battle scarred wooden stocks, farm trucks, and chainsaws that are consistently maintained by the grey heads that know what fresh butter taste like, and shared with me a few fine fishing spots.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from davidpetzal wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

To Cbanks: I was engaging in irony, a well known literary device used by such noted writers as Grace Metalious, Bill Heavey, and S.J. Perleman.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Quiet Loner wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

DP,How do you pronounce Heavey's last name? Like "After eating that week-old tuna sandwich, I feel a little heavey" or is it like "Damn, bill is heavy"?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Quiet Loner wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Also, wasn't BH supposed to start some sort of graze off of the stuff growing in your yard blog? Have I missed it? Did he poison himself? I'm told he has the digestive system of a coyote.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mark-1 wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I'm old fashion, too. I still use my 30-year old bear paws and Michigan's made of ash and neoprene webs. Neo's don't ice up like leather.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Montana wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

Well I try to be a traditionalist but after getting my new shoes I have decided that for the long walking I do in open sage country that they are better for that than the traditional ones, they just don't seem to hang up as much. The only thing I don't care for about them is if they ever hit each other it gives off quite a clang, not so good for coyote hunting.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from AlaskanExile wrote 3 years 8 weeks ago

I have 2 sets of Cabelas Outfitter snowshoes, and I can assure you that they do not "break like glass" in sub-zero weather. One distinct advantage I've found is that snow won't stick to the decking material (after it has cooled to the ambient temp) which means that you don't have pick up that snow with each step.
Ratcheting buckles are another key advantage to modern gear. If your foot feels a little loose, you just lightly pull up on the buckle and put it back down an it tightens up one click. No fumbling with cold hands to try and buckle leather bindings with cold soaked fingers! You can adjust/set/remove the bindings with your gloves on.
My wood and rawhide shoes are decorations on the wall now.
AKX

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ridgerunner821 wrote 3 years 7 weeks ago

I have both kinds of snowshoes. Here on the eastern shore of Lake Ontario where we get about 200" of snow a year, I use my old wooden Mich style all the time. Those alum style are fine if the conditions are perfect, but try walking over snow covered brush piles rabbit hunting and you'll soon find yourself waist deep on one leg. Some things simply can't be improved upon. The only time I find the alum to work well is when the snow is either not deep enough to warrent use, or hard enough to not need.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Brian Robinson wrote 3 years 7 weeks ago

Plastic snowshoes to go with plastic gun stocks, what is this world coming to.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 2 years 5 weeks ago

Yes, some modern materials are better then the old...

0 Good Comment? | | Report

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