Be A Backpacker Map Correspondent

Become an official BACKPACKER Map Correspondent and get FREE GEAR!

Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.


BACKPACKER map contributor in the field. (Alan Bauer)


An example of a BACKPACKER tracklog.

Follow these steps to create prize-worthy trips:

1. CREATE a user profile at

2. CHECK our trips database to make sure the hike you’re doing isn’t already done. New hikes only!

3. HIT the trail with your GPS and camera.

4. REQUIREMENTS: Snap 1-2 pictures per mile (at least 5 images per hike), create waypoints for key points-of-interest on the route (trail junctions, water sources, campsites, summits, overlooks, tricky spots, etc.), and, if you can, on-trail video clips. (Check out our detailed contest rules.)

5. UPLOAD the GPS track and multimedia content to Include an overview paragraph describing the trip, details and descriptions for each waypoint and point-of-interest, and trailhead driving directions.

6. CLICK the “Submit A Trip” button.

7. REPEAT. Hike and map like crazy from May 1, 2012 through October 31, 2012.

NOTE: Once your map reaches our standards for quality, we’ll add it to your tally. Remember, new hikes only! Repeats of trips on won’t count toward your total.


1. Colorado: Never Summer Wilderness: Baker Gulch to Bowen Gulch

2. Washington: Vancouver: Dog Mountain Loop

3. New York: New Paltz: Mohonk Lake and Sky Top Tower

QUESTIONS? Email the map team at

(Official Contest Rules)

* All equipment has been used in the field by our gear testers and bears requisite signs of use. Don’t worry, though: We won’t stick you with any mangled junk (that stuff goes back to the manufacturer with a note).