Skis or Snowshoes?

Take BACKPACKER's quiz to quickly determine where your natural ability directs you.

Choose the statement that best describes your outdoor demeanor:

  1. I take my time and absorb every sight, sound, and smell.
  2. I generally stick to the trail, but occasionally I'll climb a tree or scale a cliff just because it's there.
  3. Give me speed! Going faster lets me see more and have more fun.

Choose the statement that best describes your skiing experience:

  1. What skiing experience?
  2. I've been cross-country (on groomed trails) or alpine (downhill) skiing a few times on rented or borrowed gear.
  3. I've been an avid alpine skier since elementary school.

Most of your winter travel will take place:

  1. In heavily wooded areas, below treeline.
  2. In mountainous terrain that includes open woods, bowls, and lots of ups and downs.
  3. A combination of A and B.

Choose the statement that best describes your athletic ability:

  1. Carrying a backpack is challenge enough.
  2. I'm coordinated, but I'm no Michael Jordan.
  3. I can become competent at any sport in a matter of hours.

How much patience do you have for learning new skills?

  1. I want to just get up and go. Floundering is not for me.
  2. I'll hang in there until I'm too wet or people are laughing.
  3. My motto is "Never say die."

How much money are you willing to invest?

  1. My backpack was new in 1943.
  2. $300 is probably my limit.
  3. What's money when it comes to new backcountry toys?

Scoring: 1 point for each A, 2 points for each B, and 3 points for each C.

What your score total means:

6-10: Assuming you've already mastered the art of walking, you're a born snowshoer.

11-13: Take your pick because you'll probably enjoy and excel at both skiing and snowshoeing.

14-18: Strap on a pair of boards and get ready for a face full of powder.