Snowshoeing in the Backcountry / Credit: Ross Perkins

By: Ross Perkins, Yukon Charlie’s Trailblazer, and founder of Wanderlust Not Less

Typically– when the skies cloud over and the fluffy white powder begins to descend from the sky, the high from spending the majority of time outside all summer begins to dwindle. Yes, snowboarding gives you that adrenaline rush and hot springs will reveal just how relaxed you can truly be, but being able to just walk outside and climb a mountain seems like a distant memory. That was until I stepped into my first pair of Yukon Charlie’s snowshoes.


No Lift, No Problem

Snowshoeing to Remote Snowboard Hill / Credit: Ross Perkins

Imagine a world where lift lines don’t exist. It’s beautiful, isn’t it? Strapping a set of snowshoes to your boots makes that world a reality. Rather than spend a chunk of change on a lift ticket, you can buy yourself a nice, well-deserved meal after a day of riding unaltered lines. What I came to realize is the excuses that I previously held onto as to why I couldn’t explore as much in the winter had dwindled away. This realization pushed me to try new things. The most exciting thus far was driving about an hour away to the top of Lolo Pass on the Montana / Idaho border. From a makeshift parking lot just off of the two-lane highway, my buddy and I strapped on some Yukon Charlie’s and mounted our snowboards onto our backpacks.


Snowboarding Backcountry / Credit: Ross Perkins

With the added stability and grip we were able to easily traverse up the side of a desolate, snow laden mountain without another person in sight. And, while one could argue that it is much more work to hike up a mountain for just one or two runs of the entire day (I was one of those skeptics)– when you reach the top and lain out before you is an untouched line of your choosing, without a hint of civilization around, it all makes sense. It feels like the mountain is rewarding you and paying due diligence for the fact that you took an alternative route. It is at the top that you have an undeniable realization of the complete happiness that has engulfed you, accompanied by a sense of freedom that is rarely matched.


Your Backyard Is A Playground

Exploring New Trails / Credit: Ross Perkins

I find that winter months make the area around my house nearly impassable via foot alone. Steep grades and respectable amounts of snow can make gaining any vertical a ridiculous feat. Even the flatlands fill with snow; while thick forest makes it difficult for light to penetrate and give way to any chance of snow melt. Once again, with the assistance of snowshoes, I was able to explore this winter wonderland with ease. As I stepped along paths, and trudged up the side of mountains– the beauty is striking. A world that I know like the back of my hand during the milder months becomes an entirely new world of exploration.


Explore Your World – No Matter the Weather

Why Try Snowshoeing? / Credit: Ross Perkins

Whether you find yourself a runner, hiker, or enjoy walks– snowshoes allow you to continue down (or up) your favorite paths with ease. If you know how to walk, you can most likely properly utilize snowshoes. Which makes it a great activity for the entire family. Yukon Charlie’s snowshoes and trekking poles come in a multitude of sizes and designs, from youth to adult.

I remain baffled at the fact that it took me until I reached my mid-twenties to strap on my first set of snowshoes. I still remember that day perfectly, and the mass amount of bliss that had engulfed my mind. Since then, I have been a huge advocate. I’m not necessarily advocating a brand or my photography– I’m advocating the happiness of others and the appreciation of the world around us. Any tools that can help me explore are worth my time and appreciation.

Strap Up | Step Out