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Atlas Elektra Rendezvous Review

The Rendezvous is a fantastic introductory snowshoe with great flotation, comfortable bindings, and a well-designed frame structure for accommodating a woman's gait.
Best Buy Award
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Price:  $140 List | $139.95 at REI
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Affordable, great flotation, comfortable bindings, easy to walk in
Cons:  Not the best traction for steep terrain, back heel strap is finicky
Manufacturer:   Atlas
By Penney Garrett ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Dec 28, 2018
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72
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#6 of 8
  • Flotation - 30% 7
  • Traction - 25% 6
  • Stride Ergonomics - 15% 8
  • Ease of Use - 10% 8
  • Binding Security - 10% 8
  • Binding Comfort - 10% 8

Our Verdict

The Atlas Elektra Rendezvous is a fantastic introductory women's snowshoe at a very reasonable price. Easy to walk in with impressive flotation, the Rendezvous is a great choice for beginner to intermediate terrain, whether on packed trails or out in deep snow. It fell a bit short on steep and icy slopes, but outside of that, it performed admirably in all areas. We find this to be a great option for beginner and seasoned winter enthusiasts alike.

New Color Available

Since our test cycle with the Elektra Rendezvous, Atlas has graced it with an updated colorway, pictured above. No technical specs or design aspects of the snowshoe have changed.

December 2019


Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards Best Buy Award Editors' Choice Award   Best Buy Award 
Price $139.95 at REI
Compare at 2 sellers
$319.95 at REI
Compare at 2 sellers
$199.95 at REI$200 List$139.95 at REI
Compare at 2 sellers
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Star Rating
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Pros Affordable, great flotation, comfortable bindings, easy to walk inSuperior traction, heel lifts for steep terrain, easy to use, men's and women's versions, add-on flotation tail compatibleGood traction and flotation, excellent binding system, heel lift, affordableGreat traction, Boa binding system, comfortable binding, easy walking, quietAffordable, great traction, easy to use, versatile
Cons Not the best traction for steep terrain, back heel strap is finickyExpensive, binding straps flop around, bindings take longer to get intoA bit heavy, tail flips up a lot of snow, toe shape feels a little wideBoa system is more finicky and less repairable than a strap system, on the heavier sidePlastic frame is loud, requires most women to widen their gait a bit, straps flop around
Bottom Line The Rendezvous is a fantastic introductory snowshoe with great flotation, comfortable bindings, and a well-designed frame structure for accommodating a woman's gait.This is a serious snowshoe for people that want superior traction and versatility while out in steep and variable backcountry terrain.This is a well-rounded and solidly performing snowshoe fit for all kinds of terrain and objectives.This is a well-performing snowshoe with great traction suitable for many different kinds of terrain and snow.This is a solid snowshoe with great traction and versatile bindings that will have no problem taking you into a wide spectrum of snow types and terrain levels.
Rating Categories Atlas Elektra Rendezvous Lightning Ascent Atlas Elektra Montane Louis Blizzard III MSR Evo Snowshoe
Flotation (30%)
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
7
Traction (25%)
10
0
6
10
0
10
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
9
Stride Ergonomics (15%)
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
6
Ease Of Use (10%)
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
7
Binding Security (10%)
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
8
Binding Comfort (10%)
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
7
Specs Atlas Elektra... Lightning Ascent Atlas Elektra... Louis Blizzard III MSR Evo Snowshoe
Uses Variable rolling terrain Mountain and technical terrain All terrain Flat, rolling and mountain terrain Flat and variable rolling terrain
Optimum weight loads (per size) 80-160 lbs Without tails: 120-210 lbs, With tails: up to 270 lbs 120-200+ lbs 100-200 lbs Without tails: up to 180 lbs, With tails: up to 250 lbs
Weight (per pair) 3.17 lbs 3.75 lbs 4.36 lbs 4.4 lbs 3.56 lbs without tails, 4.4 lbs with
Binding mount Fixed Full Fixed Full Full
Binding system Strapp binding offers Wrapp binding function PosiLock AT bindings Wrapp Swift binding Boa binding DuoFit
Crampon Twin-trac toe crampon Powder-coated steel Torsion2 crampons All-trac toe crampon Traxion HCS front crampon & V-rail crampon Steel traction rails and brake bars
Frame material Aluminum V-Frame 7000-series aluminum Aluminum V-frame 6061-T6 Aluminum ErgoStream Plastic frame and decking with steel traction rails
Deck material Nytex decking Urethane-impregnated nylon Nytex decking EDGE molded polymer UniBody deck - injection-molded plastic
Surface area (per size) 145 in² 160 in² 176 in² 189 in² 174 in² without tails, 220 in² with
Dimensions 6.3 x 23" 7.25 x 25" 8.5 x 27" 8 x 25" 8 x 22"
Flotation tails sold separately? No Yes No No Yes
Load with tails (per size) N/A Up to 270 lbs N/A N/A Up to 250 lbs
Men's and Women's versions? Yes Yes No, women's specific Yes Unisex
Sizes Available 23" and 27" 22" and 25" 23" and 27" 22" and 25" 22"
Size Tested 23" 25" 27" 25" 22" plus 6" add-on tails

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Rendezvous is a fun and stylish snowshoe that is nicely designed for a woman's gait. It floats well in deep snow despite being one of the shortest shoes in our review. The binding system is intuitive, secure, and comfortable. For icy and steep terrain this model isn't the best, but for beginner to intermediate trails and deep snow that doesn't get too steep, you will be well taken care of for an exceptionally nice price.

Performance Comparison


The Atlas Rendezvous was an all-around great performing snowshoe for beginner to intermediate terrain  all for a very nice price.
The Atlas Rendezvous was an all-around great performing snowshoe for beginner to intermediate terrain, all for a very nice price.

Flotation


Even though we tested the shorter length of the Rendezvous and pushed its recommended weight limit, it performed really well. The fact that we were able to float high on deep snow and also walk on packed trails with ease is evidence of a good design.


This shoe is incredibly lightweight (even in its larger size) without sacrificing a ton of surface area, a combo that aids in its ability to float like a pro. If you think you will be pushing the weight limit for the 23" size, grab the 27" for the same price.

The Rendezvous offers excellent floatation. We didn't even realize how deep of snow we were hiking in until we removed one shoe and promptly sunk a good foot and a half.
The Rendezvous offers excellent floatation. We didn't even realize how deep of snow we were hiking in until we removed one shoe and promptly sunk a good foot and a half.

Traction


The Rendezvous does not excel in the traction department, performing near the bottom of the pack. Despite a patented heel cleat meant to increase traction when on steep or varied terrain, it still can't measure up to many of the other models in our review. This shoe does not have a heel lift and climbing up steep hills feels awkward and requires quite a bit of extra energy. Getting back downhill is a bit sketchy.


We fared just fine, but if you're going to be on a lot of steep or icy terrain, there are simply better snowshoes to purchase. The best model, if you need serious traction, is our Editors' Choice, the MSR Lightning Ascent. It has aggressive side traction rails and heel lifts, which make getting up steep hills almost as easy as walking on flat ground.

The Rendezvous is well suited for variable and rolling terrain  but isn't the best choice for overly steep icy hills. Getting up and down this hill was definitely a bit awkward and sketchy.
The Rendezvous is well suited for variable and rolling terrain, but isn't the best choice for overly steep icy hills. Getting up and down this hill was definitely a bit awkward and sketchy.

Stride Ergonomics


We love the Rendezvous for stride ergonomics! It is extremely pleasant to walk in, whether on packed trail or in deep snow, which is something we pay very close attention to for this women's specific review.


While we preferred the MSR Evo, our other Best Buy winner, for traction and versatility, it doesn't feel nearly as natural to walk in. We blame its unisex nature. If you plan to stay on more moderate terrain, the Rendezvous will be a more comfortable experience.

The Atlas Rendezvous is among our favorite models for being able to walk normally and naturally.
The Atlas Rendezvous is among our favorite models for being able to walk normally and naturally.

Ease of Use


Again the Rendezvous performed near the top for this category. The combination of good stride ergonomics and a straightforward, intuitive binding system makes for an easy and pleasant experience.


We had a few issues with the back heel strap. It's difficult to tighten it enough to feel secure. Some users found that weaving their boot through the binding straps was a bit awkward (especially with larger boots). But, for most testers, these were minor and temporary inconveniences. If you want to be able to wear your snowshoes with large snowboard or ski boots though, the Evo might be a smarter budget choice.

The Rendezvous has a straightforward binding system  though getting threaded through all the straps properly takes a moment of focus and balance. From there walking comfortably and naturally was a total breeze.
The Rendezvous has a straightforward binding system, though getting threaded through all the straps properly takes a moment of focus and balance. From there walking comfortably and naturally was a total breeze.

Binding Security


The Rendezvous offers a decently secure binding system, though the back heel strap can be tricky to get tight enough. If you don't lock it in nice and tight, it tends to come loose when hiking. The strap material is also a bit stiffer and less stretchy than on other models.


Something we appreciate about snowshoes from both Atlas and MSR is the fact that replacement straps are available if something breaks. Not all systems are conducive to field repairs or repairs at all. It's something to be appreciated both from an environmental and a DIY standpoint.

The Rendezvous is a decently secure system that's easy to use  though the back strap can be a bit awkward to get properly cinched  and if you don't secure it tight enough it can come loose while hiking.
The Rendezvous is a decently secure system that's easy to use, though the back strap can be a bit awkward to get properly cinched, and if you don't secure it tight enough it can come loose while hiking.

Binding Comfort


Most the snowshoes we tested have comfortable bindings, but the Rendezvous is a noticeably cozy system that our testers enjoyed.


The front straps crisscross across the top of the foot and cinch evenly and uniformly by pulling a single loop. A heel strap buckles across the heel, and you're good to go. We felt secure without experiencing any pinch points or uneven areas.

We found the even cinch of the strap system on the Rendezvous to be among the most comfortable we tested.
We found the even cinch of the strap system on the Rendezvous to be among the most comfortable we tested.

Best Applications


The Rendezvous is best suited for beginner to intermediate terrain, either on trail or out in deep snow drifts. It floats well and is one of the easier models we tested for women to walk naturally in. It's not the smartest choice if you plan to spend the majority of your time on very steep or icy terrain though. For that, we would recommend the Evo for the same price, or, for very serious backcountry terrain, an upgrade to the Lightning Ascent.

Value


The Rendezvous retails for $140, a fantastic deal for a great walking and floating snowshoe — hence the Best Buy Award. While this is indeed an introductory model, it performed surprisingly well across our rating metrics. If you plan to be out in terrain where you need burlier traction, the Evo offers the option of add-on flotation tails if you need to upgrade based on terrain. And it costs about the same.

Conclusion


The Elektra Rendezvous is a fantastic entry-level snowshoe that will keep you floating high on snow drifts without gouging your wallet. The binding is comfortable and easy to use, and all our female testers could walk naturally without having to widen their gait. While this isn't the best choice for overly steep or icy terrain, we think this is a well-made snowshoe for most beginner to intermediate outings, and it will last you for years to come.

The Rendezvous is a really pleasurable introductory snowshoe that is well-made and great for trail hiking and floating in deep snow.
The Rendezvous is a really pleasurable introductory snowshoe that is well-made and great for trail hiking and floating in deep snow.


Penney Garrett