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Hiker Missing on Mt. Whitney

BACKPACKER Review
The 60-year-old man was last seen on Saturday.

Austin Creek State Recreation Area

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San Francisco, CA. Roam sun-drenched hills.

Trail Mix: West

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Backcountry swimming in Oregon, alpine lakes in John Muir Wilderness, and more.

Destinations: Top 3 West

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One Night Wonders: Couples, Honeymoon Lake

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Escape to a high-alpine hideaway.

Top 3: National Park Hikes

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Sample the best of our crown-jewel lands on these superlative trips.

Local Hikes in the West — March 2013

BACKPACKER Review
Soak in a New Mexico hot spring, spot wintering bighorn sheep in the Winds, hike to a lost California oasis, and more.

The High Life: High Sierra Camps, CA

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Hike Yosemite's granite-rimmed loop.

Trail Mix: Great November Hikes in the West

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Your region's go-now guide: See newts on the move in California and bears heading for lower elevation in Beartooths, MT

Killer Trips: Gravity

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Our favorite high-risk, high-reward adventures in North America.

Killer Trips: Weather

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Our favorite high-risk, high-reward adventures in North America.

From the Field: West

BACKPACKER Review
Our trail scouts' top local hikes

Trail Mix: West

BACKPACKER Review
Your region's go-now guide

Summit Fever: The Sierra Challenge

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When 37 hardcore hikers set out to scale 10 of the Sierra's highest and remotest peaks in a single Herculean, 10-day, 154-mile push, it will be an all-pain, 54,000 feet of gain kind of adventure.

The Other Way In

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Hike to life-list hot spots without waiting in life-list lines. These under-the-radar trails deliver everything but the crowds.

Trail Mix: West

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Your region's go-now guide.

Burn After Reading

BACKPACKER Review
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.

Local Hikes

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Jump-start your hiking season on these spring-ready trips from around the country.

Ultimate Adventure Handbook: Catch a Golden Trout

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Cast for beautiful fish that live in beautiful lakes.

Ultimate Adventure Handbook

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Tired of the same old weekend loops? Looking to create memories your grandkids will talk about? In this how-and-where guide, we serve up 15 extraordinary escapes that will shatter your expectations of "normal." From adventure moviemaking to canyoneering, we'll take you places you've never been—but will long to visit again soon.

Readers' Choice 2012: Reader Leader Contest Winners

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More than 150 of you entered our contest to become a BACKPACKER field scout. Meet the winners.

Readers' Choice 2012: Skyline-To-The-Sea Trail, Castle Rock Sp, Ca

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Hike through a towering redwood forest on this easy-access overnighter.

Readers' Choice 2012: Top 3 - West Hikes

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The region's best picks from our top field correspondent, who's notched more than 1,800 trail miles throughout the West and mapped 116 trips.

Readers' Choice 2012: Evolution Loop, Sequoia and Kings Canyon NP, CA

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Hike cross-country to a pocket of dreamy lakeside camps on the John Muir Trail.

Readers' Choice 2012: Your Neck of the Woods - West Hikes

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Climb an 11,000-foot peak, hike to a secret summit, see the glacier-capped Cascades, soak in hot pools, and explore the ruins of a 100-year-old resort.

America's Best Backcountry Ski Tours

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Upgrade your winter fun at these 8 beginner-friendly, expert-ready spots.

Online Exclusive: Readers' Choice 2012: Eli Boschetto's Five Favorite Hikes in the West

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Five more must-do hikes from our top field correspondent, who's notched more than 1,800 trail miles throughout the West and mapped 116 trips.

Perfect 10: North America's 10 Most Memorable Hikes

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Ten trails. Ten unmatched miles each. Get maximum bang for each boot step on hikes that our most-traveled contributors call their all-time favorites.

A Piece of Quiet

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America’s leading advocate of wilderness silence shows the way to Mt. Rainier National Park’s quietest corner. Plus: 9 more campsites with life-list listening.

Rip & Go: Three Sisters Loop - Lava Beds National Monument, CA

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Discover hidden wonders in a cave-riddled wilderness.

Perfect 10: Free PDF Trip Planning Guides

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We've picked the top 10 miles of North America's 10 most memorable hikes. Find your way to wilderness nirvana with these map and planning guides.

Rip & Go: Santa Rosa Island - Channel Islands National Park, CA

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Venture off SoCal's coast for long beaches, hidden canyons, and sea life.

Backyard Everests: Mt. Conness

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Walk a scary-narrow rock fin to an airy summit.

Backyard Everests: Lone Pine Peak, Inyo National Forest

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Climb without crowds to the state's top mountain view.

National Parks: Yosemite

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Enjoy this legendary park (without the legendary crowds) on a four-day trip through the Clark Range.

Going to Extremes

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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 High Life: Hiking Utah's Highline Trail

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Watch your step on Utah' Highline Trail. The nonstop views and rampant wildlife are distractingly spectacular. Plus: Gaze away on 9 more elevated hikes.

Local Hikes: West

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Hike these long trails in Washington, Oregon, and California, and climb to a 10,064-foot peak in Angeles National Forest.

National Park Slideshows

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See scores of stunning images from the Grand Canyon, Denali, Yosemite, and more.

Right Place, Perfect Time

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See Yosemite's river of ice, witness there-and-gone meteor showers in Hawaii, and mark your calendar for eight more fleeting natural wonders.

America's Best-Kept Secrets

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The only thing better than enjoying the life-list scenery in the country's premier national parks? Getting that same scenery, minus the crowds. Find it in these 10 backcountry hotspots, along with no-hassle permits, choice campsites aplenty, and solitude to match the world-class terrain.

Right Place, Perfect Time: An Oasis in California's Desert Peaks

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Peakbag in the White Mountains—without lugging in water.

Right Place, Perfect Time: Frazil Ice

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Witness a river of slush flow through Yosemite Valley.

America's Best-Kept Secrets: John Muir Wilderness, CA

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Local Hikes: West

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See California dunes, Nevada red-rock canyons, Alaska's deep forest, quiet Oregon Coast, and Washington's Cascade lakes.

Rip & Go: Lyell Canyon, Yosemite

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Escape front-country crowds on a trek to the park's idyllic interior.

Our Backyard: Joshua Tree National Park, California

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Climb, hike, and camp in Joshua Tree National Park.

Readers' Choice: West

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Your favorite parks, weekend getaways, peak ascents, campsites, and more in the west.

Trip Finder: Northwest

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Your favorite Northwest hikes—from dayhikes to weekenders to multiday trips.

Our Backyard: Trinity Alps Wilderness, CA

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Follow trail-savvy locals to nine sweet spot in the Trinity Alps Wilderness.

The Last Best Place

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More than three decades ago, a tiny band of California hikers discovered a magical valley in the Sierra Nevada. They possessed a rough map, but told no one. Now, the truth comes out.

Rip & Go: King's Canyon CA, Grand Canyon AZ, Shenandoah VA

BACKPACKER Review
From routes to food to post-hike brewski, we've got your weekend backpacking plans dialed. This week, we've got three killer adventures in Kings Canyon, Shenandoah, and the Grand Canyon. Ready? Read. Rip. Go!

Fall/Winter Gear Guide: Best Winter Trips

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We traveled to Fjordland and discovered that nothing compares to skiing glacier-clad mountains above deep-water fjords. Plus: 20 winter adventures, from California to New York.

Top 25 Winter Trips: United States

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Find the best skiing, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and winter camping trips in the U.S.

Top 3: Rainy Season Hikes

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Make the best of fall storms on trails that improve with soggy weather.

Less is More: 50-Mile Thru-Hikes

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Ten point-to-point treks with the payoffs of a thru-hike, but hikeable in a week.

Best Hikes Ever: Redwood Creek Trail, CA

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Feeling small among the world's tallest trees.

America's Scariest Trails: What are You Afraid of?

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Haunted mountains? Vanished campers? Bloodthirsty creatures? An evil wind that lures hikers over a waterfall? We dare you to hike America's scariest trails.

Best. Hikes. Ever.

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We've covered 245,591 miles of trails in our 37-year history. Here are our 20 all-time favorite trips, plus—shocking!—20 routes we never covered.

Best Hikes Ever: Summit Lake Trail, CA

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Backpack a knee-trembling route through an active geothermal zone.

Best Hikes Ever: The Lost Coast Trail, CA

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Hike America's most punishing paradise.

Best Hikes Ever: John Muir Trail, CA

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Step for scenery-packed step, nothing else compares to the John Muir Trail.

Top 3 Rainy Season Hikes: Mill Creek, CA

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Rains summon salmon and slugs.

High Sierra Trail, Ca: 50-Mile Thru-Hikes

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Go straight to the top in the Range of Light.

Rip & Go: Paradise Valley - Kings Canyon National Park

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Hike in the spray of waterfalls deep in the heart of black bear country.

Local Hikes: Santa Barbara/Ventura

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The best local hikes near Santa Barbara/Ventura.

Local Hikes: San Francisco

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The best hikes near San Francisco.

San Diego Hikes

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The best hikes near San Diego.

Sacramento Hiking

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The best local hikes near Sacramento.

Local Hikes: Los Angeles

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The best local hikes in LA.

Local Hikes: California

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The best hikes within two hours of California's major cities.

Rip & Go: Stuart Fork to Alpine Lake -Trinity Alps, CA

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Discover the inner sanctum of California's second largest wilderness.

Top 3 Waterslide Hikes: Eaton Canyon, CA

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Climb high and then plunge deep on this hike in Southern California.

Top 3: Hikes to Natural Waterslides

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Slip and slide into refreshing pools at these backcountry swimming holes.

The Big Parade: Hiking Los Angeles

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My hike, like a million other trips each day in Los Angeles, starts with a ride on a rumbling bus.In the heart of Los Angeles, a band of hikers starts a local-trails revolution--one step at a time.

Tahoe Rim Trail: Above it All

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On a thru-hike of the 165-mile Tahoe Rim Trail, two brothers get some perspective - on America's largest alpine lake, and each other.

Zones: Peaks

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Hike high points on Mt. Rainier, Mt. Washington, and Mt. Whitney.

Secret Hikes: Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks

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Explore a granite wonderland, cross two little-used passes, and score High Sierra solitude on this point-to-point hike.

Secret Hikes of the National Parks

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The perfect dozen: Embark on one of these 12 treks, and turn America's most iconic preserves into your own private paradise.

Zones: 6 Topographies, 18 Amazing Trips

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Whether you're looking for Coastal, Canyon, Peak, Forest, or Urban hikes, we have those. Plus some paddling (Water) trips for good measure.

Local Hikes: New Hikes Near You

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Our army of reader-reader scouts mapped 59 local hikes from South Carolina to Northern California. See their favorites, then learn how to download tracklogs and waypoints.

Local Hikes: California/Nevada/Hawaii

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Hike to the world's best tropical campsite, see elephant seals, and trek through poppies. (Click linked trips for GPS waypoints, photos, and more.)

Zones: Forests

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Hike amongst the trees in these Washington, California, and Vermont hikes.

Zones: Coastal

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Hug the coastline in these Michigan, California, and British Columbia hikes.

Coastal: Lost Coast Trail, CA

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This 26-mile trek along California's coast should have been a highway...except it was too riddled with cliffs to build on.

Peak: Mt. Whitney, CA

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Check out the Mountaineer's Route of Mt. Whitney if you're looking for a challenge.

Forest: Giant Forest Loop, CA

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See giant sequoias, including General Sherman, on this great family hike.

The Peak: Mt. Tamalpais, CA

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At Mt. Tam you'll find wilderness solitude with Pacific views only 20 miles from San Francisco. Plus, there's a beer garden.

Rip & Go: Dewey Point - Yosemite National Park, CA

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Discover the rewards of winter camping on this easy snowshoe trek.

Natural Wonders: Death Valley's Wildflowers

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Trek through lush fields that thrive on just two inches of annual rainfall.

The Best Cities To Raise An Outdoor Kid

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Which towns offer the ideal mix of accessible trails, inspiring teachers, and great recreational resources? We worked with The Outdoor Foundation to identify America's top 25 places to beat nature deficit disorder.

West Coast Readers' Choice Hikes: Kalalau Trail, HI

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Hike Hawaii's all-world coast to a secluded beach.

West Coast Readers' Choice Hikes

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The world's prettiest shoreline, giant pines, and Yosemite's premier view.

Your Favorite Places: Readers' Choice Trips 2010

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Who knows the secret trails and must-do classics in every corner of the country? Our teams of regional experts, recruited from the ranks of readers like you. Here are their top hikes from coast to coast.

West Coast Readers' Choice Hikes: The Ruby Crest Trail, Humboldt NF, NV

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Explore lonely alpine scenery in this off-the-radar wilderness.

West Coast Readers' Choice Hikes: Thru-hike the John Muir Trail, CA

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Trek 211 miles through hiker heaven.

West Coast Readers' Choice Hikes: California's Giant Sequoias, Sugarbowl Loop, Kings Canyon NP

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Take a lightly trafficked trail into the word's biggest grove.

West Coast Readers' Choice Hikes: Sentinel Dome, Yosemite NP

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Bag a granite peak with big views and small crowds.

West Coast Readers' Choice Hikes: Lakes Trail to Pear Lake, Sequoia NP

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Get a highlights tour of the High Sierra backcountry.

Natural Wonders: Blowholes, Salmon Runs, & Wine Country

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Hawaii's Nakalele blowhole rivals Old Faithful. Plus: Trek to Oregon's salmon run and California's wine country.

Top 3 Ansel Adams Hikes and Reader Photos

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The legendary shooter once said that photographs were "usually looked at, seldom looked into." Take a look into three hikes that inspired some of Ansel Adams greatest photos, and take a few pictures yourself.

Rip & Go: Badwater Basin to Gold Valley - Death Valley National Park, CA

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Don't waste winter: Tackle this cross-country canyon trek in the Lower 48's largest national park.

National Parks Hall of Fame: Best Peak

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No crowds. No frills. No cakewalk. This hang-on-for-your-life climb is not for the meager-hearted.

Natural Wonders: Sonoma Valley's Wine Country

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Wine making and hiking come together perfectly in the Sonoma Valley, where California meets the Mediterranean.

Quick Escapes: 10 Trails Near Major Cities

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The perfect metro-area trail: close, wild, uncrowded. Here are 10 major city options.

America's Scariest Trails: Yosemite's Supernatural Wind

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Go ahead and hike to this park's famous lakes and waterfalls. Just watch your step–and your back.

Undiscovered Hikes: 19 New Trails

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Hike these paths before the masses find them.

Your Daily Tread: Local Hikes Across the U.S.

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What's better than hiking every weekend? Hiking every day. Here are the best big-city escapes from New York to Los Angeles. Plus: Bill Donahue explores the remote reaches of Portland's Forest Park and discovers secrets even locals don't know.

Vote on America's Best Trail

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For our 2010 Readers' Choice issue we want to know your favorite trail in America.

Top 3 Perfect Substitute National Forests

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Get national park-caliber scenery without crowds (or entry fees!) in these dead ringers for Great Smoky Mountains, Zion, and Yosemite.

Where Solitude Rules

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Sharing is for kindergarten. Take one of these 30 hikes and you can have the wilderness all to yourself.

Weekend Planner: Quick Escapes

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Get big views and rack up long miles with these close-to-home adventures.

Where Solitude Rules - Lonely Summits

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You won't find bottlenecks on these untrammeled peaks.

Where Solitude Rules - Surprise Escapes

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Find real solitude amid the crowds at these secret stashes.

Where Solitude Rules - Wilderness Hideaways

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Lose yourself in a private paradise the crowds have overlooked.

Top 3 Dune Hikes

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Trek through a trio of wilderness playgrounds on shape-shifting mountains of sand.

Alone in a Crowd: Hiking Yosemite's North Rim

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Yosemite Valley may be popular–rightfully so–but it still holds secrets. Hike this long-forgotten trail on the North Rim, and you'll have the granite icons to yourself.

Natural Wonders: Three Treks to Life-List Phenomena

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Check out the world's hottest hydrothermal fumarole, Glacier's grizzlies, and a venus flytryp in North Carolina.

America's Newest Wilderness

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A quick guide to the best acres, trails, and views.

Top Cities to Raise A...

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Does your kid want to be an ice climber? How about a thru-hiker, or paddler? These cities have just what you need.

The Best Cities to Raise an Outdoor Kid: The Winning 25

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From Boulder to Juneau to Bozeman, see which cities made the cut for the best place to raise an outdoor kid, and why.

America's Best Dayhikes

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From dawn-to-dusk epics in Utah canyons to lazy-picnic blueberry strolls in Maine–plus hikes to peaks, redwoods, hot springs, beaches, and more–here are 100 ways to spend a perfect day on the trail.

Swimming Hole Hikes

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Time to cool down. Hike to these refreshing swimming holes and settle right into summer.

Three Trips to Natural Wonders

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Discover the world's oldest tree, America's biggest cavern, and Florida's largest herd of wild horses on these three treks.

Rip & Go: Glen Camp Loop - Point Reyes National Seashore

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Hike across forested hills to gape at ocean vistas just one hour north of San Francisco.

Top 3 Literary Hikes

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Thoreau, Hemingway, and Kerouac all went into the backcountry to find the right words.

Hot Springs: The Perfect Pool

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Here are the top wilderness soaks on the continent. Can you keep a secret?

Master the Steeps: High-Angle Hiking Trails

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First, check out our tips for healthy hiking on steep terrain in the May 2009 issue then, put them to the test on one of our favorite high-angle trails from California to North Carolina.

Globetrotter: Leo Le Bon, the Godfather of Trekking

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In this interview the founder of adventure travel dishes on his favorite wild places, oddest encounters, and the world's next great trekking destinations.

Insider's Guide: Yosemite National Park

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With these top day, weekend, and week-long hikes, you'll see more than your fair share of Yosemite's wonders.

Readers' Choice Awards 2009

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Discover the best hike in every state, as voted by BACKPACKER readers. Plus: your essential gear, most desirable tentmate, worst-ever adventure movie, and our picks for the best reader-submitted photos.

Top 3 Ice Hikes

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Witness glittering underground gems, skate across frozen ponds, and wander amid towering walls of ice. Just don't try to lick anything.

Phenomenon: Glacial Relics

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The Ice Age left its mark from Acadia to Yosemite. Here's scenic evidence.

Where Solitude Rules - More Tips and Tricks

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Alternative routes, where to find solitude in the Lower 48, and avoiding the crowds in America's most crowded park

Best Damn Weekend Ever: See California Condors in the San Rafael Wilderness

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We'll show you how to see these majestic birds in the wild.

Hikes and Trips in all 50 States

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Use our comprehensive state-specific pages to find hikes in your home state our a state you're planning on visiting.

Hikes and Trips in US Cities

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Use our comprehensive city-specific pages to find hikes near your hometown or in a city you're planning to visit.

Life List: Climb Mt. Whitney

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Climb the Lower 48's highest peak on a route with all of the thrills but none of the crowds.

Top 3 Night Hikes

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These dark-sky treks serve up perfect viewing spots for autumn's intergalactic bling in North Carolina, New Mexico, and California

Party Peaks

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Ten perfect summits for your next group hike

Thru-Hike The Roadless Sierra

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Thru-hike the most remote miles in California's range of light


The Works: Snowshoe the Sierra

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Pick your own path to an empty 14er.

Trip Finder: Indian Summer Hikes

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Fall camping season seems to go on forever with these fair-weather weekend trips.

America's 10 Most Dangerous Hikes - Mist Trail, Half Dome, CA

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Swallowed by Sierra scenery

Terror in the Trees

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Ghost stories always seem scarier beside a flickering campfire. So, dim your headlamp and scoot up closer: our writer-at-large explores the ghoulish beginnings of these age-old tales and shares a few of his all-time favorite blood-curdlers. We dare you to read on.

Above & Beyond

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The world's tallest tree towers above a secret location deep within the lush, tangled backcountry of Redwood National Park. Determined to find this giant, our correspondent discovers something more incredible than he ever imagined.

Walking the Talk

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First John Francis stopped riding in cars. Then he stopped talking. More than three decades, two continent-spanning hikes, and countless trail miles later, he's still following his remarkable path of protest–only now he's not alone.

Packing Out Waste: You Can Take It With You

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Hikers learn to leave (absolutely) no trace on high-traffic peaks and trails.

Trip Finder: Ridgewalks

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From the West Coast to the Rocky Mountains to New England, we've got nine epic ridgewalks just for you.

Thru-Hike the Tahoe Rim Trail

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Spectacular lake views, granite-edged trails, and surprising solitude will make you want to go in circles on the Tahoe Rim Trail.

Return of the Natives: Paddling and Hiking Channel Islands' Lost Gem

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After nearly two centuries of ecological havoc wreaked by invasive species, the gem of Channel Islands National Park is becoming a paradise again. ONLINE EXCLUSIVE: Watch a video and see two photo galleries from the island.

Hiking The Sierra High Route

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On this burly, 210-mile traverse, which crosses 33 passes and barely touches established trails, you can find Alaska-sized scenery, complete solitude, and just enough risk to keep things interesting.

Hike It: 4 Big Trips Made Easy

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Ready to dial up the adventure meter? Try out your digital skills–and go places most people can't–on these life-list journeys.

Quick Fix: Death Valley National Park

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Badlands, peaks, wildflowers: Catch the best of the California desert with this trio of hikes.

Rock Star: Brett Dennen

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Once a guide and counselor near Yosemite, up-and-coming musician Brett Dennen is now taking his backcountry jams to the masses.

Trip Finder: Stay-Dry Spring Hikes

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Stay dry on spring treks in Minnesota, New Mexico, and more.

Hot Springs: Soak Here Now

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6 more must-dip pools from Alaska to Hawaii

Where Have the Animals Gone?

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Scientists hike deep into California's wild high country to probe for answers.

Big Trips Made Easy: Glacier Peak Wilderness, WA

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Exploring a high, wild corner of the North Cascades

Big Trips Made Easy: Allagash Wilderness Waterway, ME

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Floating a liquid maze in the Northeast's lake-riddled forests

Big Trips Made Easy: High Sierra, CA

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Rambling a granite redoubt

The Grand Tetons: 5 Hikes, 7 Days (or so)

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How to retrace each segment of the author's perfect week from "A Perfect Week in the Tetons."

Big Trips Made Easy: Hayduke Trail, UT

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Finding total Southwest solitude

How to Thru-Hike L.A. County

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Thru-hike L.A. County? It can be done with Southern California's Backbone Trail.

Top 3 Get-There-Fast Hikes

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You can only get so far off the grid in a single day - that is, unless you take a shortcut into the mountains. Many ski resorts, including the three premier sites mentioned below, open a lift or two in summer and fall, offering an express route to places high and wild. There's no other way to get this deep into the woods this fast.


Trip Finder: 2-4 Day Warm-Weather Hikes

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Track the sun on these 2-4 day trips in the Southeast, Southwest, and Hawaii

Lost & Found

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John Donovan disappeared in a high-elevation blizzard, leaving rescuers and friends stumped. His backpack contained a miracle clue. Bill Donahue investigates.

How to See More Bats

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Whether you fear, respect, or applaud these complex creatures of the night, the tips below will help you find and observe them.

Don't Pay at the Pump: Photos and Mass-Transit Hikes

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After reading Dan Koeppel's latest urban hiking adventure "Don't Pay at the Pump" (September 2008), we guarantee you'll want to crank "Magic Bus" and ditch the car on your next trip to the trailhead. We can help. Our map team has assembled more than 25 hikes you can access via public transportation. Plus, check out more of Michael Darter's photos and read Koeppel's 2004 feature, "I Climbed Los Angeles," to learn about his slightly insane 19-mile L.A. staircase route.

Spend a Perfect Day in Joshua Tree National Park, CA

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Join Gregory Mountain Products master pack designer for a day in Joshua Tree National Park

Top 3 Easy Canyoneering Hikes

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If you've always dreamed of descending into the center of the earth, try one of these creekbed hikes.

Three Southwestern Hikes to Test Your Senses

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Joshua Tree, Zion, and the Guadalupe Mountains are three hike-worthy desert destinations.

Half The Weight, Twice The Fun: Hike The John Muir Trail

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Find out what happens when four people hike the 221-mile John Muir Trail in just a week. Then learn how to bag the classic in more sensible lightweight fashion.

The Plan: Doing Ultralight Right

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In 10 days, carrying just 25 pounds, you can pound through the John Muir Trail...happily. Get the plan.

The Gear: Cut the Fluff

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Shave pounds from your whole packing list.

The Hike: John Muir In a Week

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Got a few days off, a pair of healthy feet, and a pain threshold higher than Dean Karnazes? You can (possibly) blaze the length of America's Most Beautiful Trail

America's Best Campsites

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Whether you are after fishing holes or skinny-dipping, Backpacker tracked down the best campsites in the country

The Pacific Crest Trail's Sonora Pass

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You won't want to miss this breathtaking 8-mile dayhike.

The Pacific Crest Trail's High Sierra

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Some things are so inevitable there's no sense disputing them: death, taxes, and the unrivaled beauty of the Sierra.

Hell On Wheels

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Bob Coomber is determined to become the first man in a wheelchair to ascend a 14,000-foot mountain.

Weekend Adventures: Big Tree Hikes

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Get ready to feel puny--and profoundly grateful--on three hikes through ancient forests.

Yosemite @ $7.38 An Hour: Seasonal Work in the National Parks

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Our scribe-turned-pizzaman labors in the land of granite and pulls back the curtain on the seasonal-employment fantasy.

The Works: Trans-Yosemite Ski Tour

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Start packing now for a once-in-a-lifetime ski tour through silent, snow-draped Yosemite.

Climbing, Hiking, and Paddling in Los Angeles

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Forget Sunset Boulevard. The City of Angels' abundant coastline and steep canyons will have you creating your own walk of fame.

Paddling's Greatest Getaways

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16 wild ways to find backcountry solitude and big-time scenery. All this, and you can bring the ice chest, too.

Hiking Honeymoon: How to ruin a perfectly good marriage

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What happens when a couple's vows are tested by hard miles and hunger pains on the John Muir Trail? A sore-footed bride tells all.

Adventure Weekend: Hike Big Sur, California

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Scratch the picturesque postcard surface of Big Sur...and there's far more than you imagined, including hot springs and high-rise trails.

Ultimate Summer Escapes: The Best Dayhikes and Backpacking Trips Near You

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Coming soon to your city: far-out adventures that are shockingly close to home.

Backpack, Paddle, and Mountain Bike along California's North Coast

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See all (or any) of northern California's three faces.

The Unbearable Lightness Of Being Scott Williamson

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To hike from Mexico to Canada and back, a man needs strength and speed and luck. He needs something else, too. If only he knew what it was.

Epicenter: The Scene In Bishop, California

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Hike and climb-and then kick back-in a High Sierra sweet spot.

America's Hardest Dayhikes

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Push yourself on any of these challenging hikes

PERFECT DAY: Redwood National and State Parks, CA

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Here's longtime ranger Jim Wheeler's plan for an eye-popping adventure among the ancients.

Time 2 Go: See Newborn Animals

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Looking to catch baby animals taking their first step? You can't go wrong with these picks.

High Points: Mt. Whitney, California

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You could do it in a day, but don't rush this one.

Death Valley Adventure Guide

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Lose the sun-baked stereotype and bring thoughts of shady canyons and breezy passes.

I Climbed Los Angeles

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One small step for our stair-obsessed man, one giant leap for fitness freaks everywhere.

Hike Death Valley's Cottowood and Marble canyons

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Flowing water means a lighter load and an easier time exploring

Summer Hiking on the John Muir Trail

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A backpacker's go light heaven: thru-hiking California's High Sierra

A Hiker's Guide To Surfing and Snorkeling

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Use your backpacking skills at the best surfing, climbing, trail running, and even paragliding spots

Luxury Gone Wild At Ahwahnee

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A night in Yosemite's most famous hotel

Secrets of Yosemite National Park

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Sneak in the side door for a private viewing of the finest in California's High Sierra real estate.

California; Death Valley National Park

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Camping in Death Valley might give you the hottest day of your life.

Channel Islands National Park

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This wild paradise is the Galapagos of California.

Balloon Dome, Ansel Adams Wilderness

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Don't let well-known Sierra neighbors like Yosemite overshadow this stunning wilderness.

Climbing Yosemite: Mount Conness

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Tuolomne Meadows monarch Mount Conness has been a classic Yosemite climb for years -- and for good reason.

Climbing The Sierras: Banner Peak

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Try climbing the standout Banner Peak, just around the corner from Mammoth Lakes.

Climbing Yosemite: Matthes Crest

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Matthes Crest features superb climbing deep in Yosemite's backcountry.

Death Valley Warmed Over

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Time spent in California's Death Valley can be a life-enhancing experience.

Best Backpacking In California

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Our comprehensive guide to the best backpacking you can find in California.

Tahoe Rim Trail: A Heavenly Hike

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Twenty years of hard work near Tahoe yields a 150-mile path so high, you'll breathe "angel air."

Splendor Hiking The High Sierra

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Take the finest mountains in the world, add high-country meadows, glacial valleys, alpine lakes, pine-and-hemlock forests, and what do you have? A recipe for backcountry bliss.

Discover California's Point Reyes National Seashore

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In Point Reyes National Seashore, you'll find peace and quiet in the heart of California's earthquake zone.

Hiking California's John Muir Trail

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This magnificent trail travels through three California parks while showcasing the natural wonders Muir worked to preserve.

Hiking The Pacific Crest Trail

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Everything you'd want in a long trail.

Snowy Destinations

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Need someplace to go shoe with your snowshoes? Whet your whistle with one of these great places.

California's Chumash Wilderness: Spritual Salvation

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The condors know all about Chumash Wilderness, but luckily, the masses in Los Angeles don't.

Ansel Adams Wilderness: Witness To Magic

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With the click of a shutter, Ansel Adams captured the beauty and soul of wild places and showed us that in nature, there is magic.

Joshua Tree's Bloomin' Good Hike

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California: Journey through a desert to bear witness to some of the loveliest wildflowers you'll ever see.

California's Ahjumawi Lava Springs State Park

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In the shadow of magnificent Mt. Shasta lies a relic of ancient times.

Hoover Wilderness, California

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Lay claim to your own California mountain valley and bask in utter solitude.

Desolation Wilderness, Eldorado National Forest

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Behind the forbidding name lies California's glacier-polished playground.

California's Ishi Wilderness

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Ishi Wilderness trails run through stream-carved canyons, past stunning vistas, back to gold rush days.

California's Smith River National Recreation Area

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You're as likely to bump into Sasquatch as another human.

Lake Pillsbury, Mendocino National Forest, California

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Hiking and backpacking at its finest, through pastoral grasslands and forests of pine and fur.

Golden Trout Wilderness, Sequoia & Inyo National Forests, California

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Catch rainbows -- trout, that is -- in Rockhouse Basin's rivers, where you're more likely to see a wildcat than another human.

California's Trinity Alps: Dr. Seuss Hiked Here

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Observe the uncanny resemblance between the good doctor's famous Truffula Trees and a field of fuzz-topped flowers 5 miles up Long Canyon.

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, California

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Myths and cactus in California: A life-filled land of sand and mountains.

Santa Catalina Island, California

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Porpoises escort you to a rugged island where buffalo really do roam.

Hiking Henry W. Coe State Park, California

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California's second largest park has an impressive trail system.

California's Dardanelles

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Wondrous lava formations in the Sierra's granite kingdom.

California's Cottonwood Lakes

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The trails are lonely and the trout are always biting in this Inyo National Forest hideaway.

California's Yolla Bolly-Middle Eel Wilderness

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The best wildlife stronghold in California.

California's Sespe Wilderness

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A roadless wonder in California's Los Padres Wilderness.

San Gorgonio Wilderness: 2 Miles Above L.A.

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Sierra scenery at L.A.'s backdoor.

Goat Rocks Wilderness: A Real Eye-Popper

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Some say Goat Rocks Wilderness has the best scenery along the 2,600-mile Pacific Crest Trail. Decide for yourself.

Big Sur's Redwood Trees

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If the redwoods don't wow you, there's always the world-class California coastline.

California's Land Of "Thoughtful" Giants

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Redwood Meadow's massive trees and wild countryside have changed little since Muir passed through 100 years ago.

Mokelumne Wilderness Loop, CA

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Where 100 unknown Sierra miles wait.

California's Cucamonga Wilderness

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As ice-cream makers in Los Angeles once knew, the Cucamonga Wilderness is the essence of cool.

Bay Area Spring Flings

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Three Bay Area hikes that'll quickly make winter a distant memory

California's Carson-Iceberg Wilderness

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Dark, volcanic mountains soaring along the Pacific Crest make for a forbidding wilderness perfect for U.S. Marines in training -- or solitude-seeking hikers.

Earthquakes in California's Fish Valley

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When hiking California's Fish Valley, don't forget to pack your Richter scale.

Yosemite: Treasure Of The Sierra

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Forget what CNN and Your Daily News say about Yosemite's crowds and crime and traffic. the "treasure of the Sierra" is still a golden place for backpackers to escape.

California's Great Western Divide

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Can you find solitude in Sequoia National Park? You can if you go off trail.

California's Trinity Alps

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Secret scrambles and lakes abound in this northern California wilderness.

California's Redwood National Park

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Walk among giants in Redwood National Park.

Santa Catalina Island

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Find a new kind of California beach on the undeveloped shores of Santa Catalina Island.

The Faces Of Fall

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If you think autumn is simply a time to rake leaves, then you need to read our guide to the best of the fall season.

Treasure In San Francisco's Backyard

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More than 200 preserves, parks, and other protected wildlands lie within 40 miles of San Francisco, exceeding Yosemite National Park in size, biodiversity, and visitation.

The Men Behind The Bay Area Ridge Trail

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Galen Rowell talks about his and others' efforts to make the Bay Area Ridge Trail a reality.

Baja Mexico: South To The Sun

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Combine white sand beaches and gin-clear water with snow-free highland hiking, and you've got Baja, the perfect midwinter escape.

Wild As It Ever Was

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For almost half a century, California's rugged Ishi Wilderness hid "the last wild Indian." Even today, it is a place that can keep a secret.

Yosemite On A Bad Day Is Still Good

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Sometimes a place is so magnificent that it burns itself into your soul and overrides all sensation-even the urge to heave up your guts.

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