Boulder-based winter gear manufacturer Crescent Moon has modified its snowshoe construction and production techniques to use ecologically friendly, recycled, and recyclable materials.
President Jake Thamm said switching to recyclable polyurethane decking materials not only eliminated PVC materials from the company’s snowshoes, but cut out more than half the weight contributed by the older material. Modifying cutting patterns to reduce waste allowed the new material to be used without increasing the cost of the snowshoes.
Crescent Moon is also using recycled stainless steel for crampons and recycled aluminum for frames and rivets; approximately 95% of the components of the snowshoes are now recycled or recyclable. The company also is recycling scraps and rivet pieces left over during production.
In addition, Thamm showed us a prototype using a magnesium frame along with the new recycled materials. With this lighter frame, the model he showed (which appeared to be an update to the Gold Model 9) will weigh less than a pound and a half per shoe. It’s in testing right now and is hoped to be available for the 2007-2008 Winter season.
While several outdoor companies including Patagonia have been promoting a more eco-friendly, sustainable approach, Crescent Moon is the first I’ve heard that has also created a lighter-weight but equally durable product in the process — good news for all of us.
Image: Crescent Moon President Jake Thamm showing some of the new magnesium frames. Photo courtesy of Janet Reichl.