Our trail scouts' top local hikes
Hike to life-list hot spots without waiting in life-list lines. These under-the-radar trails deliver everything but the crowds.
Empty White Mountain summits. Tourist-free Yellowstone geysers. Rarely hiked Yosemite ridges. Rangers, guidebook writers, outfitters, and ultra-hikers dish their favorite routes for the first time.
Go ahead, look again. And again. These images are worth a third, fourth, and then a tenth gaze.
A forgotten explorer's route leads to off-trail, high-peak adventure and bona fide solitude.
Can you ever really have too much of a good thing? Once you've seen the biggest tree, largest glacier, and deepest canyon, nothing else compares.
The undisputed local experts—you—chose the top parks, trails, campsites, and weekend getaways from Alaska to Alabama.
Your favorite parks, weekend getaways, peak ascents, campsites, and more in the Rockies.
Your favorite Rockies hikes—from dayhikes to weekenders to multiday trips.
Experience the rugged side of Yellowstone on this two-day, 23.1-mile backpack. You'll track past steaming creeks and old-growth lodgepole on
the way to a campsite near Heart Lake's rocky shoreline. On day two, rise early for the 2,800-foot climb to Mt. Sheridan's 10,308-foot crown.
Free Print & Go PDFs give you turn-by-turn trail instructions and photos embedded on a usable topo map. Also: Gear checklists, driving directions, and geo-references for finding the nearest campground, restaurant, gas station, and grocery store.
What crowds? Lose yourself in the Lamar Valley on this weeklong hike.
The perfect dozen: Embark on one of these 12 treks, and turn America's most iconic preserves into your own private paradise.
Discover the world's tallest geyser, North America's smallest bird, and the country's best shade tree on these three treks.
Catch the best views in the nation's marquee parks from the comfort of your computer. Prepare to drool...now.
We've collected the best hikes, most amazing photos, and mind-blowing videos for the ultimate National Park planning center. Get inspired and get hiking now!
Disappear into Yellowstone's forgotten peaks. Bag Colorado's most exciting Fourteener. Hike Utah's unknown long trail Our field editors pick 24 epics for your Rockies life list.
Are wilderness webcams good for the backcountry–or bad for privacy?
Go high for the see-it-all hike in this iconic park.
A weekend in Glacier, a quiet 14er, and the Rockies' best hot springs.
Gaze into the world's most beautiful labyrinth.
Relax in an effervescent bath far from the dayhiking crowds.
Trip through kaleidoscopic color amid high-alpine splendor.
Get big payoffs on an easy hike.
Thru-hike America's highest trail.
See the park's famed glaciers from a high mountain pass.
Jon Heaton and his son survive a deadly Yellowstone windstorm.
The all-time best. That's what every hiker wants on a national park trek, and that's what you'll get if you tackle one of these 25 trips.
Zero in on your perfect hike, from thrilling slots to soak-awhile hot springs.
Who ever said out of sight, out of mind was certainly not referring to the wealth of wildlife that are making some big noise in Thorofare Valley.
No one knows the national parks better than the rangers who patrol them. We polled a bunch of insiders on their favorite national park sights, sounds, and tastes.
Fly these classic hikes in 3D with our guided tours.
Catch these highlights from The National Parks: America's Best Idea
, then download maps to hike to them yourself.
On the eve of his much-anticipated documentary, Ken Burns discusses the heroes and history of America's most precious wildlands–and the new challenges they face now.
From camping with wolves to fly-fishing smarts this insider's guide has you covered.
Disappear into Yellowstone's secret northern fringe, where you'll find a rejuvenated landscape and total solitude (except for the bison and grizzlies).
You know that the big-name parks draw big-time crowds. But each of those outdoor icons has a lesser-known replacement that offers some of the same classic features and epic scenery–and you get it all to yourself.
Superheated water sprays from Yellowstone ground.
The most remote spot in the Lower 48 is inside Yellowstone National Park. It's also the goal of our correspondent. What he encounters–and what it says about the solitude backpackers treasure–will surprise you. PLUS: See more of his photos and read a Q&A.
The system was rigged, says a former ranger. Here's how to beat it.
Hike with grizzlies in this remote northern corner of Alaska's greatest park.
America's first national park is a playground for grizzlies, wolves, moose, and hikers (not in that order).
Explore two ecosystems in this hinterland of moss-draped forests, ancient trees, and snowcapped peaks.
Trees, trees are everywhere, but sometimes there isn't a dry twig in sight.
Graze blueberry patches, explore swimming holes, and tag the South's high points on this sultry hike.
Send him out on a work trip. Let wilderness do the rest.
Drop into America's belly on a little-known hike that dips in and out of four different canyons, each blessed with gurgling spring water.
Climb classic Sierra passes, ogle granite monoliths, and camp above treeline in John Muir's second home.
Scramble up class III peaks and cross late summer snowfields on this strenuous but straightforward trip through Montana's big-mountain country.
The ultimate vacation in one of America's iconic parks requires the ultimate hiking plan: classic scenery, no crowds, and secret campsites. Here's how to spend a perfect week in Glacier, Yosemite, Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Olympic, Denali, and the Great Smoky Mountains.
This question fuels the debate regarding how to help the aging national park system improve.
Mark Jenkins, the author of "Destination Nowhere," discusses his Yellowstone assignment to find the most remote spot in the United States.
In "Destination Nowhere" (September 2008), Mark Jenkins explores the most remote wilderness location in the continental United States–a top-secret spot in Yellowstone. See his trip photos and read an interview with Jenkins where he discusses the assignment.
3-D hike videos, complete trip planner pdfs, our interactive ParkFinder tool, and more.
6 more must-dip pools from Alaska to Hawaii
Here are the top wilderness soaks on the continent. Can you keep a secret?
Want to hike where the most predators exist? Pack your courage and follow these directions.
Everyone loves national parks - but are they being loved to death? Join a star-studded roundtable to explore the fate of this embattled American institution.
Can I get married in a national park?
Want to hike visit Yellowstone in winter? Follow our guide to get all the winter highlights.
Our map team has been hard at work plotting the coolest hikes. Check out May's selections here.
We surveyed more than 40 scientists, conservationists, and professional adventurers, then ranked the 15 parks that are most in peril from climate change.
Hiker Gerald Holzer recounts a 2005 grizzly attack in Yellowstone.
Pick your poison with three epic adventures in Yellowstone: camping, canoeing, and ski touring
Write your own ticket to new adventures with these 10 territory-expanding skills.
Hike a historic long path through Yellowstone--if you're lucky enough to find it.
Can anyone really know what lurks in the heart of a grizzly? In the wilds of Russia's Kamchatka peninsula, Charlie Russell believes he is beginning to find out.
Our comprehensive guide to the best backpacking you can find in Wyoming.
For years, hikers have dreamed of trekking in Baca Ranch's untouched, wildlife-thick backcountry. You'll soon get your chance.
Where the words "wild" and "life" take on new meaning
When you have park visitors asking such questions as, "The animals aren't really wild, are they?" you have a recipe for disaster.
At a campsite along the Snake River, the bugling goes on night and day.