Sample the best of our crown-jewel lands on these superlative trips.
Hike Yosemite's granite-rimmed loop.
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.
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.
Enjoy this legendary park (without the legendary crowds) on a four-day trip through the Clark Range.
See scores of stunning images from the Grand Canyon, Denali, Yosemite, and more.
See Yosemite's river of ice, witness there-and-gone meteor showers in Hawaii, and mark your calendar for eight more fleeting natural wonders.
Witness a river of slush flow through Yosemite Valley.
Your favorite western hikes—from dayhikes to weekenders to multiday trips.
Escape front-country crowds on a trek to the park's idyllic interior.
Your favorite parks, weekend getaways, peak ascents, campsites, and more in the west.
Find the best skiing, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and winter camping trips in the U.S.
Haunted mountains? Vanished campers? Bloodthirsty creatures? An evil wind that lures hikers over a waterfall? We dare you to hike America's scariest trails.
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.
True tales from the front lines--and behind the scenes--of America's national parks.
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!
Catch the best views in the nation's marquee parks from the comfort of your computer. Prepare to drool...now.
Discover the rewards of winter camping on this easy snowshoe trek.
Hike Hawaii's all-world coast to a secluded beach.
The world's prettiest shoreline, giant pines, and Yosemite's premier view.
Explore lonely alpine scenery in this off-the-radar wilderness.
Trek 211 miles through hiker heaven.
Take a lightly trafficked trail into the word's biggest grove.
Bag a granite peak with big views and small crowds.
Get a highlights tour of the High Sierra backcountry.
Robert DeNike demonstrates how NOT to greet a bear.
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.
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.
Beat the crowds by tackling this classic dayhike by moonlight.
Catch these highlights from The National Parks: America's Best Idea
, then download maps to hike to them yourself.
Go ahead and hike to this park's famous lakes and waterfalls. Just watch your step–and your back.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Zero in on your perfect hike, from thrilling slots to soak-awhile hot springs.
Kelly Bastone hiked a long-forgotten trail through Yosemite's North Rim and documented the trek on video, in photographs, and using GPS.
With these top day, weekend, and week-long hikes, you'll see more than your fair share of Yosemite's wonders.
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.
The Ice Age left its mark from Acadia to Yosemite. Here's scenic evidence.
Swallowed by Sierra scenery
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.
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.
Graze blueberry patches, explore swimming holes, and tag the South's high points on this sultry hike.
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.
Send him out on a work trip. Let wilderness do the rest.
This question fuels the debate regarding how to help the aging national park system improve.
Trees, trees are everywhere, but sometimes there isn't a dry twig in sight.
3-D hike videos, complete trip planner pdfs, our interactive ParkFinder tool, and more.
Once a guide and counselor near Yosemite, up-and-coming musician Brett Dennen is now taking his backcountry jams to the masses.
The system was rigged, says a former ranger. Here's how to beat it.
Our map team has been hard at work plotting the coolest hikes. Check out May's selections here.
Tired of commuting in a car around our national parks? Catch the best backcountry bus.
Welcome to Yosemite, iconic American landscape, hikers' paradise, and all-you-can-eat home of the wiliest bruins on earth.
Head to Hawaii for three of the tallest
We surveyed more than 40 scientists, conservationists, and professional adventurers, then ranked the 15 parks that are most in peril from climate change.
Some things are so inevitable there's no sense disputing them: death, taxes, and the unrivaled beauty of the Sierra.
Write your own ticket to new adventures with these 10 territory-expanding skills.
Can I get married in a national park?
Our scribe-turned-pizzaman labors in the land of granite and pulls back the curtain on the seasonal-employment fantasy.
Start packing now for a once-in-a-lifetime ski tour through silent, snow-draped Yosemite.
A backpacker's go light heaven: thru-hiking California's High Sierra
A night in Yosemite's most famous hotel
Sneak in the side door for a private viewing of the finest in California's High Sierra real estate.
Don't let well-known Sierra neighbors like Yosemite overshadow this stunning wilderness.
Want a ceremony that reflects your passion for the outdoors? Here's everything you need to know to pull off a wilderness wedding.
Learn the weird science behind our addiction to waterfalls, and the location of the best trails in North America.
Tuolomne Meadows monarch Mount Conness has been a classic Yosemite climb for years -- and for good reason.
Matthes Crest features superb climbing deep in Yosemite's backcountry.
Our comprehensive guide to the best backpacking you can find in California.
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.
The greatest backpacking parks in the United States, chosen for their scenery.
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.
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.