Snowshoe Construction: Up the Trail
Carve, bend and lace your own pair of wooden ash snowshoes style up the Gunflint Trail! Part of the Up The Trail Series hosted at historic Gunflint Lodge, this class is designed to allow students ample opportunity to not only make snowshoes but also partake of the many recreational opportunities available on the Gunflint Trail. Pointed at both ends, the traditional Ojibwe snowshoe design is efficient for travel through both wooded areas or across frozen lakes and open expanses. This class begins with an evening session, where students will steam bend the ash frames. The following day will be a break as the snowshoe frames dry, allowing students to pursue their own activities. On Saturday & Sunday, class will resume as students shape ash frames and mortise in crosspieces with simple hand tools. They will then learn traditional techniques for lacing their shoes using lightweight, hollowed nylon cord. Traditional bindings will also be provided and their uses will be covered in detail. Course discussions include a variety of binding types and their application. The end result is a satisfying reflection of craftsmanship and skills handed down through the generations. Most students do not completely finish lacing in 2 days, but leave with the knowledge to do so on their own. For those students who desire, an optional 5th day is available on November 12 to complete the lacing. Additional tuition: $50, students must register with North House in advance.
A variety of lodging options are available to students at special rates at Gunflint Lodge, though students are welcome to stay wherever they choose during the class. Students are responsible for their own lodging reservations and do not have to stay at Gunflint Lodge to participate in this course. Lodging reservations at Gunflint need to be made by calling 1-800-328-3325, and referencing this class, since these room prices are discounted for North House students. Registrations for the North House course can be made online (see below) or by calling North House at 218-387-9762.