A Cheaper Alternative to Skiing

So, you live in Colorado.
You obviously want to take advantage of the awesome winter sports that the mountains have to offer.
But – what if you don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars on a ski pass and ski/snowboard gear? What if you don’t want to spend even more money booking pricey ski lessons. What if you don’t want to sit in hours of traffic on the way up to the mountains every weekend? – or wait in long lines to get on the lift and up to the actual slope every single time? and what if you’re just not into the terrifying rush you get while sliding towards your death down the mountain?

What if you just don’t want to ski/snowboard?

Well then, maybe you’ll be down for snowshoeing.
Here’s just a couple reasons why I believe snowshoeing is a good alternative to skiing:

IMG_49421. It’s not an expensive sport.
While snowshoes aren’t as cheap as I imagined they’d be, they are nowhere near as expensive as all the gear that comes with skiing. Matthew and I scooped up 2 pairs of REVO Trail MSR shoes for $80 each in clearance at REI, and we also got poles (not required) for about $15 each. That’s less than $100 for all of our snowshoe gear!

2. It’s easy.
You don’t have to be super skilled to enjoy snowshoeing. It’s really just like walking, but with big flippers on your feet. This means that anyone, any age, at nearly any fitness level can do it!

3. It’s a good workout.
Snowshoeing is very similar to hiking, but it just requires a little more effort since your feet now weigh 2x their average weight. It’s a good way to burn some calories during the winter!

4. You don’t have to travel far to do it.
Like running, snowshoeing requires very little effort when it comes to getting to where you can do it. All you have to do is find some snow, put on your shoes and get going. This is a major plus when it comes to avoiding the ski resort traffic and lift lines! Two of my favorite snowshoeing spots so far are Boreas Pass Road in Breckenridge and Lost Lake in Nederland – but I guarantee that there are many trails closer to Denver!

IMG_5220
5. It’s beautiful.

Picture this: You’re walking along a shimmering, snow-filled, winding trail lined with towering trees dusted in white. You get to an open clearing with a frozen lake back-dropped with snow-capped mountain peaks. Can’t beat it.

6. It’s not [as] dangerous.IMG_5689
If you’re not an adrenaline junkie who needs that rush you get while downhill skiing, then snowshoeing may be right up your alley. No falling, broken bones nor life-threatening incidents… unless you happen to nearly die falling into an iced-over river like I did. Just, watch where you step.

Okay, so snowshoeing is nothing like skiing. But maybe that’s the real beauty in it.
It’s cheap, safe(r), and allows you to enjoy Colorado’s beautiful winters in the mountains!

I’ll let you know how I feel about skiing after I try it next week 🙂

frugal & free,
Claire

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