I previously tested the Northern Lites Elite snowshoe and found it to be the lightest general purpose snowshoe around. It definitely matches our philosophy for lightweight backcountry travel. In this review, I take a look at the Northern Lites Backcountry snowshoe, which is basically the same design and construction but 5 inches longer and 1 inch wider. The difference is the intended use - traveling in soft snow while carrying a backpack and snow camping. How does the Backcountry compare with the Elite (and other snowshoes), and which is the best choice for different applications and conditions?
By Will Rietveld
Will Rietveld Ph.D, Senior Editor for Gear and Apparel, joined the BPL staff in April 2004. In his former career, Will was a research scientist, project manager, and R&D program administrator. Now retired, he lives in southern Colorado where he takes up a new career of backpacking year-round in the mountains and canyon country of the Southwest. During the summer months Will and his wife Janet are volunteer wilderness rangers in the Weminuche Wilderness. He has been a lightweight backpacker for 52 years and an ultralight backpacker for 13 years.