Wilderness Trip Planning

Before planning a trip into the wilderness, it’s always wise to do a little bit of homework.

  • Study the area you’re going into and make sure you know your routes in and out.
  • Get to know the basic geography and make sure you’re fit enough to handle the terrain.
  • Study the normal weather patterns and pack for the environment.
  • Get to know the local wildlife and find out what dangers you can expect to encounter.
  • Study the edible plants in the area and learn how to use them in an emergency.
  • Make sure you know where all the watering holes are.
  • Make sure the gear you pack is suitable to the environment you’re heading into.
  • When hiking or doing any kind of back country activity, you need to let someone know where you’ll be and when you plan to return.
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  1. I’ve found that a MAP is the key. That you take the time and energy to acquire a map might just be a symptom of an otherwise well planned venture but I’ve found if you have a map things tend to go well.

  2. Is there anyone out there that would have knowledge of areas out west in Utah, Colorado, New Mexico for a real authentic backcountry camping expedition. I’m looking for somewhere off the grid and not in any national park or on someone’s private property. I don’t want to have to pay for a permit to do something that is my natural human right. I want to make my own trail or follow an old game trail. If anybody could give me a link or suggest a spot please respond.

  3. Roughbrained,
    Depending on how primitive you want to get, you might try out national forests, and national wilderness areas. They differ from national parks quite a bit. Unless there is a burn ban in effect in a national forest, you can build a campfire and camp pretty much anywhere. In a wilderness area, there are NO motorized vehicles allowed. The only transportation allowed is horses or on foot. Check the individual states’ websites.
    Good luck, be safe, and have fun.

  4. Another key is to leave your written plan with at least 2 people you trust that don’t live together.

    That way, if one person is out seeing a movie, and you haven’t returned or called when your plan said you would, the other person will (hopefully) notify the proper agency to initiate a search for you.

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