I had never been snowshoeing before and had always imagined the circumstances for snowshoeing something along the lines of being buried in rural northern Canada under three feet of snow and walking around with tennis rackets on your feet. I guess they still sell the traditional woven kind, but snowshoes seem to have become way more hardcore.
I had no idea how easy they are to walk in, or that a lot of models now have crampons on their undersides to give you traction in icy conditions (see photo, above, of my new snowshoes). Our snowshoes were easy to put on (they have bindings that you adjust around your everyday boots or shoes), and MiniMan did really well. I was a little skeptical about a two-year old traversing around in snowshoes, but he actually walked about a half a mile during his first time out. He was insanely excited and completely into it.
This morning, I was reading some stuff online and it turns out that some companies have developed snowshoes with spring-loaded suspension systems so that a person can actually go running in them. It seems like the perfect winter solution for any kind of trail runner. Our property borders public state land and I love to run on the dirt roads and trails, but in the winter, I'm pretty deterred because of the risk of falling on a patch of ice and taking out an ankle. Heading out on a trail to run in snowshoes instead of braving a road covered in slush seems fantastic, though.