Level 1: Easy

  • Hiking Distances
    Short distances with 4-8 miles of hiking per day with up to a 35 lb pack. 

  • Difficulty of Terrain:
    Relatively easy trails with no significant off-trail sections. Average daily elevation gains and losses of usually no more than 2500 feet. 

  • Commitment Level:
    Little commitment level. Usually camping no more than 4-8 miles from trailheads. No more than 2 nights in length.

  •  Previous Experience Required:
    Suitable for beginners who have never been on an overnight backpacking trip. Must have day hiking experience and be in good physical shape.

Level 2: Moderate

  • Hiking Distances
    Moderate distances with approx. 6-10 miles of hiking per day with up to a 35-40lb pack.

  • Difficulty of Terrain:
    Mostly on-trail with average daily elevation gains of approximately 3500 feet. May include very short off trail sections. 

  • Commitment Level:
    Somewhat committing, usually less than 8-10 miles from trailheads. No more than 4 nights in length

  • Previous Experience Required:
    Should have previous backpacking experience carrying an overnight backpack of 25-35 lbs on at least a one-night trip, or have multi-day overnight trekking experience in which most of your gear is carried for you. Must be in very good physical shape.

Level 3: Difficult

  • Hiking Distances:
    Long distances with 8-12 miles of hiking per day for multiple days in a row with up to a 35-40+lb pack.

  • Difficulty of Terrain:
    Mostly on-trail with average daily elevation gains and losses of approximately 3000 feet and possibly up 4000 feet. May include long off-trail sections. 

  • Commitment Level:
    Committing. Usually more than 8-10 miles from trailheads. No more than 8 nights in length.

  • Previous Experience Required:
    Must have previous backpacking experience carrying an overnight backpack of 30-40 lbs on at least a two-night trip. Very experienced day hiker and have hiked some off trail. Must be in very good physical shape with very good stamina. 

Level 4: Extreme

  • Hiking Distances:
    Long daily distances of 10-12+ miles per day for many days in a row

  • Difficulty of Terrain:
    Average daily elevation gains and losses up to 3000 feet with possibly days of up to 4000 feet. May include some off-trail sections, or could include difficult terrain some scrambling with an overnight pack (depending on the trip). 

  • Commitment Level:
    Very Committing. Usually more than 8-10 miles from trailheads. Committing and remote wilderness trip with some days spent more than 12 miles from trailheads. Length can vary from 3 days for off trail scrambling terrain or up to 21 days for on-trail terrain

  • Previous Experience Required:
    Must have previous wilderness backpacking experience carrying an overnight backpack weighing 30-45 lbs on multiple trips of at least 4 nights in duration, including some off-trail hiking. For scrambling trips, must have previous scrambling experience up to Class 3. Must be in excellent physical shape with excellent stamina.

 

 

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