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#10740 - 12/10/03 04:30 PM Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes
Layback Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/23/99
Posts: 816
Loc: Monroe, WA
I am in the market for 2 pairs of backcountry snowshoes. What is your preference?
- Joe

#10741 - 12/10/03 04:34 PM Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes [Re: Layback]
strat Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/30/01
Posts: 4242
Option 3: MSR

I own a pair of Tubbs MTN shoes which I bought about 5 years ago. They have molded plastic bindings which really keep your foot in place very well. My dislikes about the shoes are as follows: very costly, very heavy, the bindings don't compress well and make it difficult to pack these monsters, the crampons are made out of aluminum and take a tremendous beating when you step on rock, which is sometimes unavoidable.

Two years ago, I got a pair of MSR snow shoes, which, were half the price of the Tubbs. The bindings are not as good but are still solid and can be much more easily manipulated with a gloved hand. As I bought them, the flotation wasn't good enough, but, I added a tail and in anything other than powder like the adirondacks had this past weekend they are fine and I am heavy. But, in reality, in powder like this, every snow shoe is going to suffer. The crampons are far far superior to the Tubbs and they are made out of steel which makes them a bit more durable.

Finally, the design of the snow shoe with the 'flutings' in them provides infinitely better control on steep terrain. If I am going down hill on steep snow in my tubbs, they almost certainly become skis. With the MSRs on, the shoes do what I tell them to rather than turning into skis.

#10742 - 12/10/03 04:40 PM Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes [Re: Layback]
irisharehere Offline
Site Supporter

Registered: 12/06/01
Posts: 1658
Loc: Danbury CT
Yup, what Sammy said. I've got a pair of Denali's, they grip really well going down or across slopes, the extendable tails are nice too, if you're going to be carrying more weight sometimes.

But hey, YMMV, so just try a few different models before you buy.

I didn't spend nine years in Evil Graduate School to be called "Mr Irish", thank you!

#10743 - 12/10/03 04:57 PM Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes [Re: irisharehere]
scottie_c Offline

Registered: 05/01/02
Posts: 284
Loc: NY
I have a pair of Atlas snowshoes, and wished I got a different binding system. They are great other than that. The spikes on these are the most aggressive I have seen, and they are really burly.

In addition, I have tried Red Feather, Tubbs, and the old-school woodies. The Tubbs had a superior binding system that works well with every type of boot. The woodies were used in very deep snow, and worked extremely well.

I have heard very good things about MSR brand snowshoes.

#10744 - 12/10/03 05:05 PM Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes [Re: scottie_c]
intrepid02 Offline
Snarky Bastard

Registered: 06/24/02
Posts: 1421
Loc: Boulder
Another vote for MSR's. They're as good or better than anything else I've seen/tried and they're also a heck of a lot cheaper. No brainer for me.

#10745 - 12/10/03 05:31 PM Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes [Re: intrepid02]
Chas Offline

Registered: 03/22/01
Posts: 1754
Loc: Flagstaff
I go for the Tubbs. The float in powder is a bit better and the crampons are just aggressive. The binding is a bit better then the MSR (which my wife uses and she was cursing their float in super light powder and also thier bindings).

When are they going to get a clue and come out with an option of a clip on like a crampon binding?

Edited by Chas (12/10/03 05:33 PM)

#10746 - 12/10/03 05:56 PM Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes [Re: Layback]
dantheman Offline

Registered: 11/07/01
Posts: 19
I've tried Redfeather and Tubbs, and now prefer MSR.
Specifically, I find my gait not so wide-legged with the MSR's (which are less wide).
I second the suggestion to try some before you take the plunge.

#10747 - 12/10/03 06:04 PM Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes [Re: Chas]
edk Offline

Registered: 05/06/02
Posts: 441
Loc: allentown, NJ
Depends on what you want to do.. You'd think with an item like a snowshoe it would be as simple as "walk on snow" but...

I have a pair of the big burly ATLAS snowshoes (30) and they are bombproof, but heavy as hell offer good float in deep snow, have an aggressive crampon that lets me keep them on longer before switching to crampons when going up steep slopes.

I've seen the new TUBBS bindings for similar BC applications and they are sweet and simple.

OTOH - BC snowshoes SUCK on packed trails for long distances! I've gone on 25 miler day hikes that have absolutely kicked my ass walking in those things on the herd paths that are prevalent on some of the more well traveled high peak link ups. I would have greatly preferred a lightweight pair of red feathers or even small running snowshoes.

If I had to do it over again knowing how I use the things I would go for the NEW MSR Denali - the binding has been improved. For ice climbing approaches, icy slopes - snow slope transitions, traversing and weight /speed concerns they are the best out there. But don’t expect them to float very well (even with the tail extension) in deep powder.


#10748 - 12/10/03 06:04 PM Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes [Re: dantheman]
GeeVee Offline
Auto Reply

Registered: 11/14/00
Posts: 4403
Loc: Brooklyn, NY
I second the suggestion to try some before you take the plunge.

Any thoughts on who does rentals to make such a comparison feasible (trying them on in the store will give you some sense of relative ease of use of bindings, etc. but doesn't help figuring out performance).

On a related note... what's anybody's choice of footwear for just generally tooling around on snowshoes?
So long as you can boogie you ain't too old.

#10749 - 12/10/03 06:13 PM Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes [Re: GeeVee]
MurphysLaw Offline

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 2308
Loc: Hudson Valley, NY
On a related note... what's anybody's choice of footwear for just generally tooling around on snowshoes?

I usually just wear my light leather GTX hiking boots.
They're waterproof and keep me dry and warm.
If the snow's deep I'll wear gaiters, otherwise I may not bother.

I have Tubbs and like 'em. The bindings are fairly easy to use, and once they're on, it's "set it and forget it".

If I were buying new today, I'd also strongly consider the new MSR's.
I really didn't dig their bindings, but apparently they've improved them for this newest iteration.

edited to add: I just checked MSR's site. Other than the old, basic Denali model, all of the newer ones (Denali Ascent, EVO, EVO Ascent) are NOT CHEAP.
$160 to well over $200.

If $ is a concern, one can likely find Tubbs, Atlas, Redfeather etc shoes on sale at STP for a lot less dinero.

Edited by MurphysLaw (12/10/03 06:42 PM)
"Flailing?" "Flail on!"

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