Category Archives: Uncategorized

Yellowstone Backpacking and Fire Ecology, Part Three

To backpack in Yellowstone is to backpack in a wild landscape that has been shaped by wildfire. Most of Yellowstone is a complex mix of forest and meadow, mostly forest. And throughout most of the park, the dominant tree is lodgepole pine. There is plenty of spruce and fir and whitebark pine, and some Douglas-fir, […]

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Wildfire Ecology & Yellowstone Backpacking, Part Two

One misconception about wildfire is that it “damages” or “devastates” a landscape, and that the ensuing years are all about “recovery”. These are value-laden words, lacking in ecological context. In fact, natural lightening-ignited wildfire has been part of our western landscapes for many thousands of years, and phases of post-fire forest growth, from ancient forests […]

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Wildfire Ecology & Yellowstone Backpacking, Part One

Forests and grasslands of the western United States periodically burn. So long as there are periods of hot dry weather coupled with lightening strikes, wildfires will continue to be part of western landscapes. These ecosystems are exquisitely adapted to wildfire, and indeed, in some cases they are dependent upon periodic blazes. More on this later. […]

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Yellowstone Backpacking Food Safety, Part Two

As previously discussed, a simple backpacking menu is best, and that’s our philosophy on Big Wild Adventures guided hiking treks. Yet, because Big Wild is a commercial operation, we do bring a few carefully packaged luxuries, such as fresh produce and desserts (all prepared by our guides). So our menu for our guided hiking tours […]

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Yellowstone Backpacking Food Safety, Part One

Food safety on a backpack trip, in Yellowstone and elsewhere, begins with the effort to ensure that the food ends up in your digestive tract, not in that of a bear. Or, for that matter, in that of a mouse or squirrel! And this effort begins in the grocery store. When shopping for backpacking food, […]

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Guided Backpacking and Kitchen Safety, Part Two

In the previous post we discussed the need for clients to give our guides plenty of working space in the “kitchen area”, in order to avoid burns from either hot water or the campfire. This is important on our guided Yellowstone hikes as well as our guided backpacking treks throughout the Mountain West. Speaking of […]

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Guided Backpacking and Kitchen Safety, Part One

One of the most under-appreciated hazards of wilderness backpacking, including on our guided Yellowstone backpacking trips, is the food preparation area, or the back-country “Kitchen”. This kitchen is a mobile one, consisting of pots and pans plus a grill or camp stove or both, carried by the guide in order to make sure that his […]

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Guided Backpacking and Venomous Snakes, Part 2

First and foremost, do not handle rattlesnakes! What seems like common sense obviously isn’t,  judging by the behavior of some young males (see previous blog post for more on this) who skew the statistics upward in the annual tally of snakebite victims in the United States. In the previous post, I discussed the Darwinian implications […]

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Guided Backpacking and Venomous Snakes, Part 1

Arizona is the cradle of rattlesnake evolution, with more species of this pit viper than anywhere else. The southeastern U.S. is also rich venomous snake country, because you can add water moccasins, copperheads and eastern coral snakes to the rich rattlesnake mix. We’ve never encountered a rattler on any of our guided Yellowstone hikes, mainly […]

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Venomous Creatures On Our Guided Backpacking Trips, Part 2

In the previous post, I mentioned that so far, poisonous spiders, centipedes and scorpions are  found on most of our routes in the desert Southwest. New Mexico’s Gila Wilderness is included, though most of the miles on our Gila Wilderness trips  are too high in elevation for much worry about “creepy crawlies”. Nonetheless, on our […]

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Annual Trip Calendar

 

Capitan Lake - photo from one of our backpacking treks

List prices include our complete gear package and there is a $300 discount if you bring your own (see our Canoeing List, Backpacking List, and/or Questionnaire for details – found here). Also, we offer a $300 discount for the second trip in a calendar year. Scheduled trips are for persons ages 14 and over. Exceptions to the age requirement will be made by us on a case-by-case basis.

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