Here’s where to borrow snowshoes for free

Ask any Vermonter, and they’ll give you several ways to stay active outdoors in the winter. Perhaps one of the easiest to learn, however, is snowshoeing, which requires less balance and skill than skiing and snowboarding.

Equipment can be expensive though, with most racquets costing upwards of $100. Fortunately, initiatives around Vermont have made snowshoes available for free at libraries and some parks.

Essex Junction Recreation and Parks has adult and youth snowshoes and hiking poles to borrow for free this winter. People can use them in an Essex park or take them elsewhere. They are available for hire from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday to Friday at the Recreation Office located at 2 Lincoln St., Essex Junction.

Snowshoers hike a trail at Mad River Glen on January 29, 2017.

The Parks Department was able to purchase the snowshoes through a grant from the Vermont Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness & Sports, which provides grants to organizations that promote physical activity.

Your local library may also have snowshoes. Fletcher’s free library offers adult and youth snowshoes as well as a snow brick maker in its library of things. Other libraries equipped with snowshoes include St. Albans Free Library and Milton Public Library, as well as many other small libraries across the state.

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Contact urban change reporter Lilly St. Angelo at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter: @lilly_st_ang

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