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Team: North
Thursday, August 1, 2002
Camping in the Glacier Backcountry
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Bob Ashley takes a walk through the fantastic wildflowers of Glacier National Park

Bob Ashley takes a walk through the fantastic wildflowers of Glacier National Park
Courtesy Dana Bell

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In Glacier National Park, as in all bear county, it is essential to hang all your food high in the trees

In Glacier National Park, as in all bear county, it is essential to hang all your food high in the trees
Courtesy Dana Bell

On this second day of the trek, the trekkers of Team North are shouldering their packs and continuing on their first backpacking adventure together. They're hiking through the backcountry of Glacier National Park, up the Belly River towards Elizabeth Lake, tonight's designated backcountry campsite.

In Glacier National Park, backcountry use increases every year. The Park Service requires a system of free permits for backcountry camping, and assigns designated campsites, each equipped with a fire ring and special poles for hanging food out of reach of bears. This system reduces human impact on the Glacier ecosystem, by reducing trampled vegetation, human-caused wildfires, and bears that have to be destroyed because they got a taste for human food. The Park Service educates all backcountry users in both Leave No Trace camping and hiking techniques and in bear-safe camping. Since Glacier boasts a healthy grizzly bear population, those trekkers better keep the candy out of their tents!!

August 1, 2002
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The Trek: A Public Lands Journey
The Journey, or Trek, involved two groups of travelers: one starting north from the Mexican border and the second headed south from the Canadian. Their route lay entirely on public lands, a feat that has never been accomplished before. The trek began on July 31, 2002 and ended two months later when the two teams met in Wasatch-Cache National Forest near Salt Lake City, Utah on September 27.

Read about the trek, check out journal entries and photos, and browse our educational exhibits.




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