I've had a request to give some information on snow shoeing, so if you happen to live somewhere with snow, this post is for you. If you don't, then you can read it and wish you lived somewhere with snow.
I can't really give you too much information. The picture above is me snow shoeing up to my grandparents cabin in 2007 when I was pregnant with Jonah. Those are my mom's snow shoes that I borrowed. If you can tell from the picture, they are a modern snowshoe, which is what I would recommend.
If you have something like this...
You may want to consider updating. These will be very difficult and you will look really silly. Trust me, we used to have some of these when I was younger and they just weren't much fun.
This is what you want:
You just wear your regular snow boots, strap them on and walk on top of the snow. It's pretty fun. But it's mostly just like going for a walk. Actually, I hardly ever snowshoe. What I REALLY love to do is this:
Cross country skiing! It is the best workout, and the best part is when you get to the top of the hill, you can turn around and ski down instead of having to walk down like you do with snow shoes.
If you want equipment, you can rent it or you can buy. I know there's a great place by Macey's in Orem called Play It Again Sports, and they sell used sports equipment, so you could probably get a really good deal. One of the best things about getting your own equipment is that once you do snowshoeing or cross country skiing is totally free. You could even find any empty field or park and just go!
If you live in Utah county, I would recommend going up American Fork Canyon. There are a lot of places to go there, and there are two places that actually close to all snowmobiles and groom cross country skiing trails. They are Little Mill campground, which is about halfway to Tibble Fork Reservoir, and Granite Flat's campground. To get to Granite Flat's Campground, you park at Tibble Fork Reservoir, then ski up and to the right on the road until you get there. It is by far the best and most beautiful. It does take a bit more time to get there, but it's really worth it. It has the most snow, and it's really quiet and peaceful:
(This is me and my brother-in-law Jeremy in 2004, and yes, that is like 4 feet of snow on the roof the that building)
Groomed trails are really nice, but not necessary. From the parking lot at Tibble Fork Reservoir, you can also go right on the Mineral Basin road:
(Me and Katie B. in 2008 when we were both pregnant.)
Mineral Basin Road is nice and flat if you want a little easier workout, but there will be snowmobiles and the snow will be a lot more packed down and possibly icy depending how the weather has been. If you need someone to go with, let me know because my mom will seriously go with you. And she would probably let you borrow some gear to try out too. She goes all the time and is always looking for someone to go with her.
But where I really wish I was going today is my grandparents cabin in Midway. The only way to get there in the winter is by cross country skiing, snowshoeing, or snowmobile.
This is where I really found my love for cross country skiing. We've been going up there my whole life. When I was very small, my mom would put me on a sled or tube and pull me up, then when I was big enough I would ski myself. At the cabin we roast marshmallows and hot dogs over the fire, drink hot chocolate, boil snow for water, go sledding ALL day, and just spend time with my family talking and playing games.
By the way; If you want to know how to dress for snow sports, please see picture above that was taken with my mom when I was like 10. I'm wearing a green sweatshirt and pink sweatpants with a pink robe over the top, and the MOST essential thing to have in a freezing cold cabin: The big orange booties. Man, I was a pioneer in fashion since I was in elementary school! But the Pièce de résistance was the awesome coat and hat I wore up the cabin on this same trip:
Man, I was awesome!
1 month ago