Wednesday January 19: rain in Salt Lake City and new powder in the mountains. All-Mountain Demo was held at a new place this year, Solitude Mountain Resort just east of the city. Nature cooperated by providing 10 inches (25 cm) of new powder the night before and more during the day. What an amazing trip it was to leave nearly snow-free Salt Lake City, chain up the bus at the mouth of Big Cottonwood Canyon, then grind up the steep narrow canyon to a winter wonderland at Solitude, which has received nearly 300 inches (762 cm) of snow already this winter.

We have not covered snowshoes very much for the past couple of years, so we wanted to catch up in that category. There have been some significant improvements, and we want to highlight several models that struck our interest because of their light weight and innovations. We will first describe the snowshoes in the photo series below, then present our impressions gained from our on-site testing.

The MSR Lightning Axis snowshoe (US$240) has all of the features of the Flash plus the ability to rotate the angle of the binding, so the snowshoes track straight regardless of any problems you may have with your feet angling inward or outward. They also have a heel lift (the Flash doesn't) for comfort when climbing steep hills.


  • Introduction
  • Snowshoe Testing
  • Coming Up

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