Views #755 | Low-Intermediate 4

Snow Shoes

Tim talks about special shoes he uses to get around when snow trekking.

Jeff: So, you do winter sports?

Tim: Ah, yeah, really, I just do snowshoeing and cross-county skiing.

Jeff: Snow shoeing!

Tim: Yeah.

Jeff: That sounds interesting. What snow shoe? Is that like a boot?

Tim: Well, it's kind of hard to explain but it's kind of like a big - I don't know how you would say it - kind of like a big paddle that you strap on to your boot. You have a regular boots, your good boots and then you put a big flat kind of round thing on the bottom of your shoe.

Jeff: What's it made of?

Tim: Well, it is made out of kind of a webbing. It's made out of a webbing and basically it spreads out your weight so that you can walk on snow, cause if you don't have them and you just have your regular boots you're gonna fall into the snow, so it distributes your weight out onto the snow.

Jeff: So are they heavy?

Tim: They can be, but like a long time ago they used to have huge ones that were made out of like skins and stuff like that from seals but now they're pretty light. They're made out of metals and good materials so they are pretty light now.

Jeff: Are they expensive?

Tim: They can be, but not too bad and you can rent them probably almost anywhere.

Jeff: And how deep is the snow when you're walking with snow shoes? How deep is the snow?

Tim: Well, it depends on how much it snowed really. You know it can be really really deep: something that is going to cover up a car, or it can be barely deep at all. Like I've taken snow shoes out on my pack - I was hiking Yosemite and we hiked up and there wasn't any snow at first as we got, there was more and more and then it got to the point where we were sinking in the snow and it was time to put on the snow shoes.

Jeff: So, they're not heavy. Do you legs get very tired when you are walking in snow shoes?

Tim: Not too bad really unless sometimes the snow isn't really dry. It's really wet snow and sometimes it will kind of clump on the snow shoes and then the snow will make it really, really heavy, so you got to knock them off and that can get really heavy and your legs can get tired.

Jeff: And how do you put them on? How do you attach them to you boots or?

Tim: Well, you just lay them down and they're some straps on them and you just put the straps on pull them tight. It's a lot like snowboarding really except you don't have click on boots. They're some straps you just pull on.

Jeff: Cool. It sounds pretty cool.

Tim: Yeah, it is not bad.

Learn vocabulary from the lesson!



I just do snowshoeing and cross-country skiing.

'Snowshoeing' is an activity where you put special shoes that look like rackets on your feet, so you can walk on snow without falling in deep.

Notice the following:

  1. I have never tried snowshoeing before. 
  2. We all went snowshoeing, and it was fantastic fun.

hard to explain


It's hard to explain but it's kind of like a big paddle that you strap to your boot.

When something is 'hard to explain,' it means that you have difficulty describing it.

Notice the following:

  1. It is hard to explain how much I love him.
  2. She said it was too hard to explain, so she did it herself.

distributes your weight


If you just have regular boots, you're going to fall into the snow, so it distributes your weight.

When you 'distribute your weight,' it means that you try to spread your weight evenly over a particular surface.

Notice the following:

  1. When you jump, you have to try and distribute your weight so that you do not injure yourself.
  2. A good bike distributes your weight really well.

hike up


I was hiking Yosemite and we hiked up and there wasn't any snow at first.

When you 'hike up' somewhere, it means that you walk up something with an incline. Usually we use hiking to describe an activity that is more difficult than normal walking.

Notice the following:

  1. I have always wanted to hike up a mountain and have a picnic at the top.
  2. She hikes up mountains on a regular basis.

clump on


It's really wet snow and sometimes it will kind of clump on the snowshoes.

When snow 'clumps on' the snowshoes, it means that is groups together and sticks onto the shoes.

Notice the following:

  1. All the mud has clumped onto my boots, and I have to clean them.
  2. Snow really clumps on these mittens, and my hands get cold very quickly.

Vocabulary Quiz

snowshoeing • explain • distributes
hike up • clumping
  1. This backpack is comfortable because it weight really well.
  2. It's hard to walk because all this mud keeps on my boots.
  3. It took about 4 hours to the mountain and only an hour to hike down.
  4. It's hard to why I don't trust him, but I really don't.
  5. He goes across the lake with his dogs every morning.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

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