Winter hikes, urban snow days, and other cold weather outdoor adventures just got a lot more fun. A new product called “Snowfeet” lets you turn the winter shoes or boots you’re wearing into mini skis for an experience that lands somewhere between skiing and skating.
Reintroduced on Kickstarter this fall, “Snowfeet” is a pretty simple concept. They’re made of a highly durable, lightweight fiberglass-reinforced material with metal ski edges and adjustable bindings. They’re only slightly longer than your footwear, too, upturned at the ends like regular skis so you can slide down snowy hills with ease. They also have heel brakes, giving you a bit of control over your speed.
The Snowfeet creators say these strap-on mini skis are ideal for bringing to downhill ski slopes, cross-country ski trails, and snow parks, but you could also use them on forest trails, hilly public parks, and other places with enough snow pack to ski on. Because they’re so compact, you also have more freedom of movement than you normally would with skis, enabling you to attempt more tricks than you might ordinarily dare. But they’re also friendly to total beginners, and arguably less intimidating than conventional ski gear.
They come in two versions: Snowfeet II and Snowfeet X. The latter is a bit more robust, featuring an additional pair of toe straps and ladder straps as well as extra screws, nuts, and an edge tuner stone. The company says that while the original design is “great for those who just want to have fun in the snow,” the X is “great for those who take this sport seriously and require the highest quality without compromise.”
The design is small enough to easily fit into a backpack, though each pair already comes with a storage bag of its very own. You don’t even need ski poles to use them, though you might want to have some anyway, just for fun. The creators recommend using Snowfeet with any winter shoes or snowboard boots with bindings, particularly waterproof shoes that fit your ankle firmly.
They add: “You can use Snowfeet on snow that is not deeper than +/- 20 centimeters. Snowfeet are best on ski slopes, snow parks, forest paths, and off the slopes too, just not in deep powder. By the way, most skis and snowboards are not suited for deep powder either.”
One size fits men’s sizes five through 13 and women’s sizes 6.5 through 14.5, which does, unfortunately, leave some people out — including kids. Maybe a future version will be a little more inclusive of people with smaller and larger-than-average feet.
While the Kickstarter campaign for the new, updated versions has already ended, you can still preorder your own pair of Snowfeet II or X on Indiegogo for $118. Even better, initial orders are expected to start shipping in January 2020, so you’ll have them in time for the upcoming winter sport season. The more pairs you buy at once, the more money you save.