How to Lose the Crowds in National Parks

A magical thing happens when you hike just a mile or two from trailheads in popular national parks: Crowds begin to disappear. Even better, go backpacking to really have solitude. Set the out-of-office reply and head off to one of these spectacular trips ranging from Yosemite to Zion to the Channel Islands and Point Reyes.

Week 08.04.2021
Regions Northern & Southern CA

Yosemite Magic Trick

Backpack Yosemite's High Sierra from Tuolumne Meadows

backpacking in Yosemite National Park High Sierra Loop
Hiker going up to Vogelsang Peak
Hiker looking at Lyell Fork of Tuolumne River in Yosemite
Yosemite’s High Country is magical and without crowds. At a lofty 8,700 feet, Tuolumne Meadows is one of the best trailheads for hiking or backpacking a land of smooth granite domes, high alpine meadows, jagged peaks, and sapphire lakes. Here's a 3-night backpacking itinerary...
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Anchor Yourself in Anchorage

Best Summer Adventures in Anchorage Alaska

Ptarmigan Portage Glacier Boat Ride near Anchorage
Portage Pass glacier hike near Anchorage Alaska
When it comes to the ultimate adventure basecamp, set your anchor in Anchorage. Located at the base of the Chugach Mountains, Anchorage gets you easy access to 60 glaciers to see, paddle up to, hike, fly over, or climb.
Your Best Summer in Anchorage

Zion the Prize

Backpacking Zion National Park

Backpacker on West Rim Trail in Zion National Park
Backpacker enjoying the Zion National Park scenery and sunset.
Primitive campsite with an orang tent among trees on West Rim of Zion National Park
Geological wonders, massive canyon views, and a bit of a grind to get to the good stuff … it’s all part of the blissful isolation you can find on the West Rim Trail at Zion, the fourth most visited national park in the country. Lose the crowds on a backpacking adventure starting
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Wild for Wildcat

Backpacking and Camping at Wildcat Camp in Point Reyes

Backpackers overlooking the bluff and down to the Pacific ocean at Point Reyes National Seashore near Wildcat Camp
Two people sit around a campfire located at the beach near Wildcat Camp in Point Reyes National Seashore
Backpacker hiking on the Coast Trail surrounded by yellow wildflowers in Point Reyes National Seashore
With seven sites strewn along a coastal bluff adjacent to the beach, Wildcat Camp is one of Northern California’s premier camping destinations in Point Reyes National Seashore. And there's one first-come, first-served spot...
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Island Traverse

Backpacking and camping on Santa Cruz Island on Channel Islands National Park

As the largest of the Channel Islands, Santa Cruz also has bragging rights to two mountain ranges. For a grand (and grandly scenic) tour, lace up the boots and go on a 15-mile (one-way) backpacking trek that traverses the eastern side of the island.
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Trending Stories NorCal

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  1. Three Beaches to the Wind

    This beautiful 7-mile (round-trip) coastal hike in the Marin Headlands connects three beaches: Muir Beach, Pirates Cove, and Tennessee Cove.

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  2. Muir Woods Through the Backdoor

    A backdoor entrance into Muir Woods? Hike a tranquil trail that starts in Mount Tamalpais State Park and quietly leads into Muir Woods, letting you avoid the busyness of the main parking area.

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  3. Cross It Off Your Bucket List

    Crosstown Trail San Francisco may be one of the most beautiful city walks in America, passing through less-visited nooks and crannies while also taking in greatest hits, including mosaic stairways.

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  4. Yosemite Magic Trick

    Yosemite’s High Country is magical and without crowds. At a lofty 8,700 feet, Tuolumne Meadows is one of the best trailheads for hiking or backpacking a land of smooth granite domes, high alpine meadows, jagged peaks, and sapphire lakes. Here's a 3-night backpacking itinerary...

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Trending Stories SoCal

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  1. Sponsored

    Sea Change

    Right in time for the balmy fall days, the crowds have left and Monterey Bay Aquarium is at its shoulder season best. Fewer people means relaxing with more room to roam and enjoy the animals, exhibits, and nearby outdoors for biking, hiking, and beaches.

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  2. High Sierra Lake Hop

    Situated just north of Yosemite is a High Sierra wonderland that gets a fraction of the crowds and is a fantastic destination for backpacking. The Emigrant Wilderness is 113,000 acres of granite ridges, wildflower-strewn meadows, and cobalt lakes.

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  3. Thanks, Annie!

    Annie’s Canyon Trail in the 1,000-acre San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve in Solana Beach includes the most unique quarter-mile you’ve ever maneuvered—through a sandstone slot canyon!

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  4. Glam Paddling in Long Beach

    Sea kayaking doesn’t get any more glamorous than paddling the storybook canals around Long Beach’s Naples Island! You thread your way through calm waterways surrounded by luxury ho

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