Yes. I watched the first season as it aired, watching season 2 now. Season 1 was the real opportunity to grab $500K. It will be much harder to win this time around, or at least it should be. Participants have the luxury of seeing the mistakes/strategies during season 1, and there's more experience among them. Each season should, in theory, be more difficult to win - assuming skill levels remain the same and it stays on Vancouver Island.
I'd like to see a change of scenery but I imagine picking a location is difficult. The environment needs to be harsh enough to prevent the show from lasting too long (even with heavy editing), but sustainable enough to allow participants to survive for a reasonable amount of time. You almost certainly need the threat of wild animals to drive ratings. Rattle snakes won't cut it, but brown bear country is probably out of the question.
Looks like they're carrying Kelty Red Cloud 110s (could also be the 90 liter pack).