I don't live in Alaska, I just need some info about snowshoes. That is hard to come by in my part of N.Y. State. I seldom see any other snowshoers.
Eight years ago, I bought some of those white aluminum snowshoes that occasionally show up in military surplus. You know the type, eliptical pad with a long long tail. Wire mesh, white nylon bindings. I have not ever tried any other shoes, and I am pretty disgusted with these. Every time I take them out, same story. I am 200 lbs. I sink 12 to 18" deep into the snow. Of course then it is very difficult to turn with the long tails. Especially since the binding allows the tails to drag when you lift your foot. I would rather trudge through the snow in boots. Lot less tiring.
I have had the notion that I could cut off 1/2 the tail and weave some nylon webbing through the wires. The increase in surface area SHOULD increase my buoyancy. I don't know what I can do about the crappy bindings. I'm probably wrong, but I'd think you'd want the whole shoe to lift with your foot, rather than just the front. I never mastered the similar setup in cross country or downhill skiing. It all seems to be ergonomically screwed up to me.
Has anyone here ever done a modification like this? Or am I just plodding up the wrong hill?