When purchasing a product made overseas, consideration should be given to the overall impact on people and the environment. Even if a factory has the best environmental controls and recycling policies in place, they still need to package their products with sufficient protection for a journey that frequently consists of being trucked from the factory to a rail depot where it is packed into a shipping container, then being sent by train to a shipping port. Each port is a noisy mass of ships, trains, trucks, and forklifts, all polluting the environment. The cleanest burning vehicle there is still comprised of tons of steel, which is produced in what is hardly the most environmentally friendly process. Once there, the containerized product is lifted by crane onto a ship, along with hundreds of other containers. That ship will then head out over the ocean, stopping at many ports along with way to pick up more containers, as well as drop some off, which will travel the reverse of their course over land, until a truck delivers the finished goods to your retail store. This process makes it easy to see why those that care about the environment prefer locally-made goods.
Now picture a meadow, blanketed in snow. Near-silence, the only sound is snow gently crunching underfoot as your Crescent Moon snowshoes carry you across the powder, magically floating on crystallized frozen water particles (no two exactly alike!) that brings a peacefulness to the outdoors not found during other seasons. A pleasant contrast to the cacophony of machinery found at a shipping port, don’t you think? Well, Crescent Moon is based in Boulder Colorado, and they make every effort to source their raw materials and supplies locally, or at least from US suppliers, so they take little, if any, part in that global abomination that is international transport. Of course, that also means that they employ US workers, which means they’re doing their part to keep unemployment down, while keeping the local economy moving. All this would be for naught if they didn’t also make an outstanding product that’s won awards. And they do, which is cool. Cooler than exploring fresh snowfall, undisturbed except for fresh deer tracks.
After that intro, you’re right to expect an awesome product, and Crescent Moon doesn’t disappoint. With their highly-praised single-pull-loop binding, and lightweight, innovative designs, their Gold, Silver, and Running series snowshoes are prized for outstanding performance and value. Each one starts with a TIG welded aluminum frame, for an excellent strength to weight ratio. Add to that a flexible harness that is anatomically shaped to hold your foot securely while being easy to adjust. Top it off (or under?) with a proprietary decking material and three crampon system for an experience that is unparalleled.
Each series features their teardrop frame design for a natural stride and optimal flotation, TIG welded 6063 aluminum tubing for greater strength and durability, their SPL binding for equal tension, 3 claw traction for control and stability, and PVC-free TGS decking.
The Gold series offers powder coating on the aluminum frames, SPL Gold bindings with spring cam buckles over the foot and ratchet buckle heel straps with a binding release strap, binding anti-twist stabilizer and large stomp pad for greater control, as well as stainless steel claws at the toe, ball, and heel. (The Gold 10 & 17 have additional traversing claws) They’ll fit women’s size 5 to men’s size 11, and up to size 15 in the Gold 10 and 17, all backed by a lifetime warranty.
Their Silver series is the value-priced line, but no corners were cut when it comes to performance. The same high quality aluminum tubing is used, but it’s polished instead of powder coated. Traction is still provided by three claws constructed of aluminum rather than stainless steel. An SPL binding with single-pull loop system using has tension lock over foot and cam locking heel strap buckles for the best fit possible, and sizing is pretty much the same, accommodating women’s size 5 to men’s 11. Warranty is a two year limited, but I suspect that very few customers have any issues requiring warranty returns.
If you’re looking for Running/Race snowshoes, the Gold 12 has you covered. Somewhat of a hybrid between the Gold and Silver series, weight was the primary consideration for the component spec, so you can run faster and longer. The frames are powder coated, like the Gold, but the binding is their SPL Race Binding with single pull loop and release loop with spring loaded cam buckles over the foot and heel strap. To save weight, the Silver’s aluminum three-claw traction system is utilized. It also features a binding anti-twist stabilizer and large stomp pad for greater control, and the sizing is somewhat expanded, from women’s 5 to men’s 14. It gets the Gold’s lifetime warranty as well.
So, Crescent Moon offers an award-winning design, they’re an award-winning, environmentally-aware business, and made in the USA. If you’re in the market for some snowshoes, those are some pretty compelling reasons to gave them a look. You’ll also be supporting US workers, while minimizing the impact on the environment that comes with buying from overseas.