Four Atlas Snow-Shoe Company staff members completed a technical Trans-Sierra snowshoe trek traveling from Symmes Creek near Independence, Calif., on the Eastern side of the range, to Wolverton Ski Area in Sequoia National Park through John Muir Wilderness on the Western slope. The traverse served as a means for the Atlas team to test its latest snowshoe products and ensure quality of its newest technologies in a real-world environment over multiple days.
The “Sierra High Route” is a classic summer backpacking trip and challenging winter backcountry mountaineering and ski tour with five passes above 12,000 feet and one pass above 13,000 feet, including an elevation gain of 12, 500 feet between Sequoia and Kings Canyon national parks, yet the 45-mile route has rarely if ever been completed on snowshoes.
Daniel Emerson, general manager for Atlas; Peter Chapman, development engineer; Cameron Martindell, marketing coordinator and staff photographer; and Teri Smith, womens workshop program manager, tested the new Mens 10 Series, Womens Elektra 10 Series, 12 Series, and 36 Series snowshoes with fully-loaded packs during the six-day trek.
“Its an understatement to say the Sierra High Route is a challenge,” said Emerson. “The conditions put our snowshoes and our personal will to the test and proved to us, the industry and consumers that our new, lightweight, technical designs provide a reliable and super fun way to enjoy the outdoors for multiple days in the winter months.”
Snowshoeing has served as a basic mode of transportation across seemingly impassable winterscapes for 3,000 years though the activity has exploded as a popular recreational sport in recent times due to product advancements and greater education by industry innovators.
Since 1998, snowshoeing has grown in participation by 93% across the nation. No snowshoe manufacturer has dedicated more time to R&D and introduced more modern-day advancements to the sport than Berkley-based Atlas Snow-Shoe Company. Atlas was the first to develop a Spring-Loaded binding and now holds 15 patents specific to the sport.