Planning ahead

Create great experiences hiking, backpacking and pursing other sustainable outdoor recreation by planning ahead. Here’s a primer for picking the best places and being prepared.

Basic preparation

The best wilderness hikes and other adventures onto public lands begin long before you get to the trailhead.

Gear and safety essentials

Outdoor recreation breeds innovation, but not all of it supports conservation-minded, sustainable fun. Here’s how to green your next gear buying trip.

Outdoor ethics

Hiking, backpacking and other outdoor recreation requires more than trail maps and cool gear. It’s also important to bring along a proactive attitude toward conservation, and a thoughtful set of outdoor ethics.

Sustainable recreation

Outdoor recreation can harm our wild places if we don’t minimize the impact of hiking, backpacking and other outdoor fun. By following these sustainability tips, you can protect wild getaways and the natural wonders each hold. 

Wilderness and pets

Wild places offer escapes for the whole family, whether you have two legs or four. But there’s more to hiking with your dogs than simply dropping the tailgate of your pickup and letting them run wild.

  • In the first of a three management plans to be released in 2015, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in Colorado missed a great opportunity to protect some of Colorado's most treasured landscapes—including the Dolores River, lands surrounding Mesa Verde National Park and recreation hub

  • When school was out for the summer in the suburbs of Manhattan where I grew up, my mom packed our little Subaru hatchback with sleeping bags, a tent, a cooler filled with fruit and sandwich meat, hiking boots, rain gear, and three kids, and headed West.  Like generations before and since, w

  • The Forest Service recently released a plan that could protect much of Colorado’s Thompson Divide from new oil and gas leasing. For years, this spectacular area has been threatened by oil and gas development.