Behold the snowshoe. It's not the wood and rope contraption that looks like a tennis racket you envisioned. It's sleek and lightweight.
It's got spikes on the bottom, which means two things. One, you'll slide less. Two, you don't want to step on the dogs' paws.
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you The Complete Guide of How to Snowshoe:
Your just slide your boots right on in there.
And off you go.
You take your first step in the snow and think it's the weirdest feeling in the world.
You have fun splashing and sinking in the snow.
You wish you were just a little bit taller.
You admire the beauty of it all.
You find a stick because it makes everything more exciting.
You go straight into the woods to find fresh snow. You wouldn't want to cheat and follow a snow mobile (pronounced Skidoo) trail. That wouldn't be any fun, now would it?
You might get lucky enough to find solid ground and then you ask to take a short break because you're a big Newfoundland and tire quickly.
You swim in the snow.
You force the dog to break the trail and save you the work.
You fall. A lot. It's really hard to not step on your own snowshoe and trip yourself. Carla will demonstrate.
You can't get up because your hands just sink deeper in the snow.
You realize that pushing on your knee is your only leverage.
You keep going.
You stop and pick the golfball sized ice balls out of the dog's paws.
You take another break because snowshoeing is hard work.
You face plant again because a black dog stepped on your shoe. The Canadian will demonstrate.
You have to do the ole roll over maneuver to try and get up.
You get snow up your jacket and down your pants. You think the snow is literally burning a hole in your bum - it's that cold. I know from personal experience, thank you very much.
You ponder the meaning of life and take in the view. And enjoy sitting down.
You climb a hill because...well, because it's there.
You jump off it because it's fun.
You fall behind the group because you dropped your mitt and had to go back and find it. Which wasn't easy because you have white mitts.
You lie down in the snow because you're that tired and the cold feels good.
You ask to go home because your fur is frozen.
Then you go home and feel really good about yourself because that was the coolest thing you've ever done in the snow.
Then you take a nap because it was one hell of a workout.