Backpacking in Yellowstone, Montana, Wyoming, Utah & More: Best Guided Hikes in the West.
Big Wild Adventures offers fully outfitted guided backpacking in the most beautiful wilderness lands of the American West and Alaska. We offer backpacking in Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons, and many other guided tours in the Montana, Wyoming and Colorado Rockies plus Washington’s Olympic National Park. Although we are best known for our Yellowstone backpacking trips and hikes, we also hike and backpack in the colorful wilds of the American Southwest, including incomparable hiking and backpacking in Utah canyon country. And we canoe the watery wilds of the remote upper Missouri River in north-central Montana. Please note that we do not offer lodge-based day-hikes or vehicle-based road tours.
We are a family business, owned by Howie Wolke and Marilyn Olsen with plenty of help from our son Josh, a Big Wild guide. Howie founded Big Wild Adventures in 1978 and has personally guided over 500 treks and hikes, so far. Our guides are our “extended family”, and all share a deep love of Yellowstone, the wilds and a commitment to share their knowledge and know-how with our clients. Howie and Marilyn live in their home where they work in their solar-powered office, in Montana’s Gallatin Range foothills, just north of Yellowstone National Park.
All of our guided hiking/trekking tours are multi-day wilderness adventures, and you will be backpacking (or canoeing) in a primitive environment, tent-camping on all trips in magnificent true wilderness for the entire trip! On backpack trips, everyone will carry a backpack with all you need to survive self-contained in the wilderness, including tent, sleeping bag and a portion of the group food. We offer a real old-fashioned primitive wilderness experience!
Just show up and leave all of the trip details to us. All advertised trip prices include our complete equipment package plus food (3 meals/day plus snacks), cooking gear, meal preparation, trip planning and taxes/user fees, pre-trip safety instruction, transportation from town to and from trail heads, and the services of our expert guide/naturalist staff.
Once you sign up for a trip and receive confirmation, we guarantee that the trip will run, regardless of the number of folks who have signed up. We will not cancel your vacation plans!
Professional Hiking Guides
Big Wild guides are the best in the business with decades of wilderness leadership; they are not inexperienced young adults. Our guides are trained in wilderness medicine and emergency rescue procedures. They are great naturalists who enjoy sharing their knowledge of each area’s unique flora, fauna and geology; they are also glad to provide any desired instruction in wilderness skills.
Yellowstone Backpacking: Trekking in Paradise
We don’t just live next to Yellowstone National Park, we know the wonders of the expansive Yellowstone backcountry better than anyone! Though most tourists never venture far from their automobiles, our Yellowstone backpacking treks are in true wilderness. In fact, because much of Yellowstone is bordered by large protected national forest Wilderness Areas, Yellowstone’s backcountry includes some of our country’s most remote wildlands south of Alaska. And the Yellowstone hiking terrain is so varied that each trip is radically different, a truly unique wild adventure. Join us on one of our guide/naturalist-led Yellowstone trips into the wild backcountry of the world’s first national park.
Popular Yellowstone Guided Hikes
In our Yellowstone guided hiking, you will experience the real Yellowstone, including vast herds of elk and bison to wolves and bear in a spectacular land of wildflower-filled meadows and expansive forest beneath snow-covered mountains. Our Yellowstone guided hikes are second to none and include: Northern Yellowstone Wildlife and Wildflower Extravaganza, The Lamar River Backcountry, Northeast Yellowstone Mellow Magic Mountain, Yellowstone Plateau Wild Off-Trail Trek, Northwest Yellowstone Gallatin Range, Southwest Yellowstone Bechler Waterfall Wonderland and Southern Yellowstone Late Summer Magic.
Big Wild Adventures has been authorized by the National Park Service for 36 years of Yellowstone backpacking. Our Yellowstone hikes are the best! And in addition to our Yellowstone guided tours, we also explore many other magnificent wildlands (including Montana backpacking and backpacking in Wyoming guided tours) throughout the American West and Alaska. If you wish to explore the real Yellowstone (its wild backcountry), don’t settle for less!
We specialize in remote and off the beaten track!
Scheduled Hiking Trips are generally for anybody at least 14 years of age – individuals, couples, groups of friends, parents/relatives with young adults – and provide a unique small group experience in some of the world’s most magnificent wilderness areas! There is a list of scheduled trips by region on the right side of every internal page of this website. View scheduled trips.
Custom and Family Backpacking Trips are a private wilderness experience with your group and our guide, and can be scheduled for any of our regular guiding areas. This includes our Yellowstone backpacking trips, backpacking in Utah, Montana and Wyoming backpacking and more. Remember, some areas are best enjoyed at certain times of the year. We can also run Custom and Family Trips in other areas, too. We’d love to suggest some great trip alternatives for your time slot! A Family trip is a great way to bond, and we love to get young people out into the wilds! Read more about our Custom and Family trips.
Big Wild Adventures offers top notch Utah backpacking, Yellowstone guided hikes, and guided hikes in several other states including Alaska.
We supply state of the art equipment, nothing but the best. If you bring your own gear (backpack + rain-cover, lightweight day-pack, tent, sleeping bag & pad, cup/bowl/spoon), you get a $250 discount. There’s also a $250 discount for your second trip in a calendar year.
No Prior Experience Is Necessary!
Commission available for travel agents.
Note: With just a few exceptions, all of the photos on this website are by Big Wild Adventures owners Howie Wolke and Marilyn Olsen. Nearly all were taken while guiding Big Wild trips.