Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes

Posted by: Layback

Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 04:30 PM

I am in the market for 2 pairs of backcountry snowshoes. What is your preference?
Posted by: strat

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 04:34 PM

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.

Posted by: irisharehere

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 04:40 PM

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.

Posted by: scottie_c

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 04:57 PM

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.
Posted by: intrepid02

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 05:05 PM

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.
Posted by: Chas

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 05:31 PM

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?
Posted by: dantheman

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 05:56 PM

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.
Posted by: edk

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 06:04 PM

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.

Posted by: GeeVee

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 06:04 PM

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?
Posted by: MurphysLaw

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 06:13 PM

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.
Posted by: strat

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 06:16 PM

Same as Murph, I just use my regular old hiking shoes if I am just out snowstomping for the sake of snowtomping.

But, if, like edk is talkin, yer gonna be wearing them to get to ice, it's important to make sure that the bindings work with yer most likely bigger ice boots.
Posted by: Mike Rawdon

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 09:04 PM

I suggest that the binding makes the snowshoe. And I just saw Tubbs' new binding, with ratcheting straps like a snowboard binding. Looks very slick, and may be the best out there (speculation). I have old Shepas, and somewhat newer Atlas 8x25's, the latter of which I'm quite happy with.
Posted by: RangerRob

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 09:59 PM

Redfeathers. Have taken lots of abuse over the years.

Posted by: pitfall

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 10:20 PM

Unless things have changed in the last couple of years, Tubbs and Atlas have very different binding systems and I'm not talking about how they attach to your boots. Tubbs uses a pivot rod (not sure what the real term is anymore) while Atlas uses a flexible attachment. The difference; tails on Tubbs will drag in the snow while Atlas tend to flip up as you walk. While Atlas shoes WILL flip snow up on your back, I personally prefer this attachment system to the free heel tubbs shoes. For me, it makes breaking trail up steep trails much easier. You can drive the front of the shoe into the snow with a much simpler kick than you can with the tubbs shoes. For this reason, you should try both shoes to see which works best for you. As far as MSRs, they just don't provide the float someone of my aah, stature needs. I use 8x30s and if I have a big pack, I think I could go bigger in fresh powder. 99% of my snowshoe experience has been in the Catskills on trails that were rarely hiked in winter so if you are planning on using snowshoes on packed trails you might be able to get away with smaller shoes. That is definitely something to consider when buying shoes.
Posted by: crackers

Re: MSRs - 12/10/03 11:41 PM

I had a pair of 33" atlas boards. I liked them, alot actually. But i would rather get MSRs now. I actually gave up on snowshoes and got a pair of ascent skiis which rock the world for going up and down hill. I use my clicker stepin bindings on them...

Atlas has a more durable design, but the MSRs have similar floatation and, imho, are lighter overall.

i used whatever were on my feet, whether snowboarding or iceclimbing boots or even sneakers.
Posted by: Mike Rawdon

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/10/03 11:45 PM

When I bought my Atlases 5-6 yr ago they had both spring-loaded and free-hinging bindings. Mine are the latter.
Posted by: charliebutters

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/13/03 04:32 PM

msr denali ascent, little u shaped at bar at the heel folds up to give you added support ascending and can be easily lowered/raised with gloves on.
Posted by: d-elvis

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/17/03 04:56 PM

Some good deals up on Tubbs and Redfeathers at STP
Posted by: Ewick

Re: Tubbs or Atlas Snowshoes - 12/29/03 03:56 PM

I'm in the market for some feet rackets, and was wondering if anyone had looked at or tried the Salomon plastic shoes, I like the idea of the tighter gait. and the look easy to pack.