How to Finish Snow Shoes

How to Finish Snow Shoes
Snow shoes must be able to last through harsh conditions, including extreme cold, snow and ice. Finishing the shoes properly can therefore shore them up for the long outdoor treks ahead. Fortunately, this can be accomplished by following a few simple steps.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Snow shoes
  • Sandpaper
  • Wood boat varnish
  • Rag
Step 1
Sand your snow shoes. Use a piece of regular sandpaper, and perform the task lightly. The goal here is to remove old bits of varnish and small slivers of peeling wood, if any, not to perform a rigorous sanding. Consider sandpaper with a grit of 150 or more, since anything less may be too coarse.
Step 2
Apply varnish to the wood frame of your snow shoes using a soft rag. Wood boat varnish works best. This will protect your snow shoes from moisture; allowing your snow shoes to freely absorb water is the fastest way to cut down the longevity of your snow shoes--and can make your shoes' wood frame weak.
Step 3
Apply varnish to the leather or raw hide portions of your snow shoes. Wood boat varnish will work fine. This will protect the leather or hide areas of your snow shoes from absorbing unwanted moisture. At the same time it will prevent the hide from becoming loose.
Step 4
Apply an extra coat of varnish to the hide or leather at the snow shoes' heels since this area tends to suffer the most wear and tear during snow shoe season.
Step 5
Allow the varnish to dry. This may take up to two full days.

Tips & Warnings

Consider applying the wood boat varnish to your snow shoes at least once a year (toward the end of snow shoe season).

Article Written By William Jackson

William Jackson has written, reported and edited professionally for more than 10 years. His work has been published in newspapers, magazines, scholarly journals, high-level government reports, books and online. He holds a master's degree in humanities from Pennsylvania State University.

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