Planning Your First Backpacking Trip Out West

Backpacking in the west can be physically challenging and logistically belittling to the uninitiated however don't let that stop you! The rewards of this exploration are worth the hardship.

The California Crest: a northbound mental map

An author and composer writes a music suite based off his memories on the PCT.

Six Packraft Loops in the Bob Marshall Wilderness

The Bob Marshall Wilderness is home to some of the best wilderness packrafting in the lower 48 with options for novices and experts alike. Explore this beautiful country just remember to be mindful of our responsibility to care for this land.

The Timberline Trail

Similar to its cousin, the Wonderland Trail which circumnavigates Mt. Rainier, the Timberline Trail traces the shadow of Mt. Hood and makes for a spectacular journey.

Yosemite Adventures

Yosemite is a wild place and has incredible wilderness opportunities for hikers, climbers, and skiers.

The Massanutten Ridges of Virginia

Just a stones throw form the DC metropolitan area, the Massanutten Trail offers outstanding views and challenges for new and experienced backpackers alike.

The 2012 Alaska Mountain Wilderness Classic

Is this the longest, toughest, roughest or hardest? The beauty of it is that at the finish no one knew or cared. Every competitor was left with indelible experiences, challenges accepted and honestly won or lost. Each had started with a clean slate and had accomplished every step in the wilderness through their own efforts. -Adrian Crane, writing about the Classic in Ultrarunning (1986)

With a Capital C: My 2011 Alaska Mountain Wilderness Classic

Race report, gear and food, and, for the really ambitious, pointers for entering a wilderness race.

7 Myths about the Continental Divide Trail

At first glance, doing a round-trip (a yo-yo) on the Continental Divide Trail (CDT) seems like a waste. Why not hike a different trail instead of hiking the same one two times? However, unlike the Appalachian Trail and the Pacific Crest Trail, the CDT is never the same trail twice.

Brutality, Beauty, and the Day I Could Have Died on the Continental Divide Trail

The CDT is off-the-charts gorgeous, a great challenge, and it is my favorite of the big three long-distance trails. However, as with the Pacific Crest and Appalachian Trails, the CDT is not without its tricky areas.

PODCAST: Journey on the Wild Coast – Vacation Spots for the Adventurous

Got a week (or two) and a taste for adventure? Hig Higman and Erin McKittrick highlight hidden gems along the coast from Seattle to the Alaska Peninsula.

Journey on the Wild Coast, Part 2 – the Gear

Erin describes the gear needed to complete a 4000 mile trek encompassing multiple climate zones, every season, and mixed modes of travel.

Journey on the Wild Coast, Part 1

4000 miles. 9 months. Seattle to the Aleutian Islands.

Classic Denali: Climbing America’s Highest Peak (Part 2, Gear Notes)

Backpacking Light Magazine grant winners balance safety and gear weight on America's highest peak.

Classic Denali: Climbing America’s Highest Peak (Part 1, Summit Day Narrative)
Adventure OnDenaliClick to Enlarge M Click here for Part 2 Editor’s Note: Rich McDrew and Dennis Swanson were recipients of a Backpacking Light Magazine Adventure Grant. Their grant award was...

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