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From the Field: West

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Our trail scouts' top local hikes

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.

Burn After Reading

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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.

National Parks: View Finder

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Go ahead, look again. And again. These images are worth a third, fourth, and then a tenth gaze.

National Parks: Yellowstone

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A forgotten explorer's route leads to off-trail, high-peak adventure and bona fide solitude.

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.

Readers' Choice 2011: America's Best Hikes

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The undisputed local experts—you—chose the top parks, trails, campsites, and weekend getaways from Alaska to Alabama.

Readers' Choice: Rockies

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

Trip Finder: Rockies

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

Print & Go: Heart Lake and Mt. Sheridan, Yellowstone NP

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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.

Print & Go Weekend Trip Planners

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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.

Secret Hikes: Yellowstone National Park

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What crowds? Lose yourself in the Lamar Valley on this weeklong 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.

Natural Wonders: World's Tallest Geyser, North America's Smallest Bird and Best Shade Tree

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Discover the world's tallest geyser, North America's smallest bird, and the country's best shade tree on these three treks.

National Parks Center

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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!

National Parks Hall of Fame: Photo Galleries

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Catch the best views in the nation's marquee parks from the comfort of your computer. Prepare to drool...now.

Northern Rockies: Gallatin Skyline, Yellowstone National Park

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Go high for the see-it-all hike in this iconic park.

Ultimate Rocky Mountain Destinations

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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.

The Rangers are Watching: Webcams in Yellowstone

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Are wilderness webcams good for the backcountry–or bad for privacy?

Mountain West Readers' Choice Hikes

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A weekend in Glacier, a quiet 14er, and the Rockies' best hot springs.

Readers' Choice Mountain West Hike: Santa Maria Spring, Grand Canyon NP

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Gaze into the world's most beautiful labyrinth.

Readers' Choice Mountain West: Mr. Bubbles, Yellowstone NP

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Relax in an effervescent bath far from the dayhiking crowds.

Readers' Choice Mountain West Hike: West Maroon Pass, CO

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Trip through kaleidoscopic color amid high-alpine splendor.

Readers' Choice Mountain West: Mills Lake, Rocky Mountain NP

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Get big payoffs on an easy hike.

Readers' Choice Mountain West: The Colorado Trail

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Thru-hike America's highest trail.

Readers' Choice Mountain West: Gunsight Pass, Glacier NP

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See the park's famed glaciers from a high mountain pass.

Reader Essays: Timber!

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Jon Heaton and his son survive a deadly Yellowstone windstorm.

National Parks Hall of Fame

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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.

National Parks Hall of Fame: Best Wildlife

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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.

Vanishing Act: Explore Yellowstone's Northern Fringe

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Disappear into Yellowstone's secret northern fringe, where you'll find a rejuvenated landscape and total solitude (except for the bison and grizzlies).

Watch It, Hike It: An Episode-by-Episode Guide to The National Parks: America's Best Idea by Ken Burns

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Catch these highlights from The National Parks: America's Best Idea, then download maps to hike to them yourself.

BACKPACKER 3D Trail Flyover Videos

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Fly these classic hikes in 3D with our guided tours.

Insider's Guide: Yellowstone

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From camping with wolves to fly-fishing smarts this insider's guide has you covered.

National Parks Confidential: Q & A with Filmmaker Ken Burns

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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.

Perfect Substitutes: Crowd-Free Destinations

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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.

National Parks Hall of Fame: Ranger Rated

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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.

National Parks Hall of Fame: Park Finder

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Zero in on your perfect hike, from thrilling slots to soak-awhile hot springs.

Hot Springs: The Perfect Pool

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

Wilderness Wonders: Hottest Geysers

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Superheated water sprays from Yellowstone ground.

Poll: What's Your Favorite National Park?

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Destination Nowhere

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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.

Beyond Destination Nowhere: Q&A with Mark Jenkins

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Mark Jenkins, the author of "Destination Nowhere," discusses his Yellowstone assignment to find the most remote spot in the United States.

Is Inadequate Funding the Main Problem Facing the National Park System?

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This question fuels the debate regarding how to help the aging national park system improve.

National Park Vacation Planners: 3D Videos and Downloadable Beta

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3-D hike videos, complete trip planner pdfs, our interactive ParkFinder tool, and more.

Hot Springs: Soak Here Now

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6 more must-dip pools from Alaska to Hawaii

Where Am I Lowest On The Food Chain?

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Want to hike where the most predators exist? Pack your courage and follow these directions.

The Future of the National Parks

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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.

Searching for Solitude: Mark Jenkins Photos and Interview

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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.

National Parks Report Card

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We surveyed more than 40 scientists, conservationists, and professional adventurers, then ranked the 15 parks that are most in peril from climate change.

Grizzly Details: Surviving a Bear Attack

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Hiker Gerald Holzer recounts a 2005 grizzly attack in Yellowstone.

Essential National Park Skills: The Ultimate Park Pass

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Write your own ticket to new adventures with these 10 territory-expanding skills.

3 Ways To See: Yellowstone

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Pick your poison with three epic adventures in Yellowstone: camping, canoeing, and ski touring

Trip Doctor: National Park Weddings

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Can I get married in a national park?

3 Ways To See Yellowstone

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Want to hike visit Yellowstone in winter? Follow our guide to get all the winter highlights.

The Lost Trail: Chasing Yellowstone's Nez Perce Path

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Hike a historic long path through Yellowstone--if you're lucky enough to find it.

Touched By A Grizzly

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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.

Best Backpacking In Wyoming

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

Baca Ranch: The Southwest's Yellowstone

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For years, hikers have dreamed of trekking in Baca Ranch's untouched, wildlife-thick backcountry. You'll soon get your chance.

Wildlife Myths And Manners

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When you have park visitors asking such questions as, "The animals aren't really wild, are they?" you have a recipe for disaster.

National Parks: Best Wildlife

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Where the words "wild" and "life" take on new meaning

Elksong

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At a campsite along the Snake River, the bugling goes on night and day.

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