Saturday, January 15, 2011

A Significant Snowstorm and a Great Time for Snowshoeing

On January 11-12 2011, the East Coast got quite a large snowstorm. My front yard got 10 inches, and the North Shore of Long Island got about 12-14 inches of excellent powdery snow. Obviously, cycling on the road was out, and indoor training is always something that I avoid if possible. Both Helen and I were available for our first snowshoeing expedition of the season. Our first choice would have been cross country skiing, but after a trial over open fields with my back country skis, I figured that the day would be ideal for some snowshoeing. We went to Caumsett park on Lloyd Harbor, and had 25 miles of empty trails, and numerous open fields to explore. Snowshoeing is an excellent form of winter exercise. Equipment is inexpensive, anybody who can walk can do it, and the learning curve to at least some proficiency is quick. Women, who have a wider pelvis, seem to pick it up easier than the men, in my experience.
As we were the first ones on most of the trails, we did a lot of trailblazing, as you can see Helen doing in photo #3. The temperature hovered in the high 20s, so the cold was not a big factor. With the amount of energy burned, we were quite toasty most of the day, and did not need heavy clothing.
Although in the past we had used winter hiking boots for the snowshoes, our cross country boots worked well for this purpose. After a wonderful day breaking trails and enjoying the relaxing pace of snowshoeing, we were glad to get home and have a home cooked dinner by the roaring fire of our country kitchen fireplace. No matter what the season or weather conditions, I believe that outdoor exercise has undefinable benefits that indoor exercise cannot ever match.

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