Wildland Trekking: Our 2020 Review – Hiking Camping Guide

Wildland Trekking: Our 2020 Review

Wildland Trekking is a US-based travel and tour operator that offers Grand Canyon tours. The company also offers other tours in the Western U.S., East Coast of the Us and Canada. The company has several tours other destinations, including Canada, Iceland, Peru, Ecuador, and New Zealand. Several tour types are available.

Wildland Trekking, a hiking and adventure tour operator based in the U.S., offers tours of the Grand Canyon and surrounding areas. The company also provides trekking tours of New Zealand, Iceland, Peru, Patagonia, Ecuador, and Canada, among other destinations.

This tour operator has been around since 1999 and started offering tours to the Grand Canyon and other popular tourist destinations in the area in 2005.  

What Is The Product?

Image via Screen Capture of WildlandTrekking.com

Wildland Trekking offers dozens of tours for people of all ages. Most tourists take advantage of the company’s Grand Canyon tours and other North American hiking tours. Wildland also offers international tours in many exotic locations, including  South America, Nepal, and Tanzania, and Machu Pichu.

Visitors to the USA from Australia and New Zealand can choose from guided tours to Grand Canyon National Park, Sedona Red Rock Country and Havasu Falls in the state of Arizona.

Reopening, and Safety Concerns

COVID-19 shut down the country, and now that reopening has either begun in earnest or is in full swing, we can once again hit the trail. People may be concerned that group camping trips aren’t safe.

Wildland Trekking has put a comprehensive, common-sense safety protocol in place for their trips. Not only that, but they also offered a no-risk deposit for trips within the USA at the time of this writing .

If for any reason you or they need to cancel before your trip balance is due, you can get a full refund or keep your deposit on the books with them, indefinitely.

Safety procedures include masks when groups are in enclosed spaces. You can find a complete listing of them, here.

Do I Need Backpacking Experience to Go on a Tour?

You don’t need hiking or backpacking experience to go on a tour. Backpacking can be physically challenging, so the tours have a difficulty rating of one through five. Choose a Level One tour if you have no previous hiking experience or physical limitations.

Many tours take place at a higher altitude of 7,000 to 14,000 feet. People who live at sea level should increase their exercise routine for at least a few weeks before that trip. Contact your doctor if you have any health concerns about hiking at high altitudes.   

Product Specifications

The tours usually last a day to a week, although some tours may go on for up to 17 days. More extended trips include lounging, all (or at least some) meals, guided tours, and some transportation.  

Here’s a list of some of the most popular trekking tours available:

Image via screen capture

The four-day Grand Canyon and Sedona tours include a seven-mile one-way hike to explore Courthouse Butte and red rock sandstone formations in the area.  You’ll also stay at a rustic inn overnight and learn about the history of Sedona and visit Jerome, a 19th Century mining town. 

There are a few day trips to the Grand Canyon area for travelers with limited time. These trips include the full-service Grand Canyon Discovery Tour. The Discovery Tour features a hike along the Canyon’s South Rim.  You can enjoy scenic views of the Canyon and treks along Cedar Ridge or Skeleton Point on the South Kaibab Trail Day Hike 

Trips to Yellowstone National Park and surrounding areas feature a variety of trip styles. Choose from inn-based tours, ski/snowshoe tours, llama treks, and backpacking tours. The ski and snowshoes tours last from four to five days and feature up-close views of snow-covered geysers and thermal pools.   

Stock and Porter Trips 

Wildland has Stock and Porter trips to several U.S. and international destinations. Mules, horses, or llamas carry travelers’ gear. (In Iceland, equipment will be placed in a four by four vehicle so you will travel with light gear.) You’ll hike separately from mules, but you’ll hike along with llamas. 

You can add a porter to a trip for an additional fee. Porters carry up to 30 pounds of gear and set up and break down camps. Porters hike separately from the group. 

Wildland provides daypacks, tents, sleeping bags, trekking poles, and cooking gear for treks. 

Guide’s Choice Trip

There’s a Guide’s Choice trip for most trip styles and destinations at Wildland. A Guides Choice trip is one guides like the best and would choose on a personal outing. Most Guides Choice trips are unique or unusual, although some feature classic treks.

Booking Information

 Be aware that most trips are recommended for children 12 and older.  Call the company if your child is under 12, as they may be able to accommodate him or her. 

Most Grand Canyon, Rocky Mountain, and Utah-based trips have transportation to and from the trailhead. Contact the tour operator for transportation information about the tour you’re considering.

You’ll find pre and post-tour lodging information in the packet you receive after booking your tour. Information is also available on the company’s travel resources page. You can leave your car and luggage at your hotel while you on tour.

The cost of each trip includes:

  • A certified friendly tour guide
  • Hiking and camping permits, fees and reservations
  • Transportation from the town to the trailhead and back (in most cases)
  • Camping gear, cooking gear, and eating utensils 
  • Breakfast, lunch dinner and trail snacks on multi-day tours 
  • Lunch and snacks on day hikes 
  • Lifetime Family Hiking Memberships
  • Lodging at inn-based tours 

Check Wildland’s Packing List page for the items you should bring on your tour. There’s a separate page for every tour destination listed on the site. 

All guides are certified as EMTs or Wilderness First Responders. Guides carry satellite phones on multi-day hiking tours. 

Pricing

The pricing for the tour depends on the package you choose. The prices are calculated in U.S. dollars, so you’ll need to figure out the exchange rate from Australian to U.S. dollars to determine the cost if you are purchasing a tour while at home. 

How it Compares

Travelers from Australia and New Zealand may want to book tours through a local company before they embark, or book a day tour through a company located in their destination city. 

Here’s a look at how US-based Wildland compares to two other tour companies with offices in Australia.  

Wildland Trekking

  • Destinations: Four stars
  • Tour Types: Five Stars
  • Activities: Four Stars
  • Features: Four Stars 

Wildland is headquartered in Flagstaff, Arizona, USA, and most of its tours are in the Western U.S. The company has international tours in a few countries, including New Zealand, Canada, Europe, Vietnam, Ecuador, Nepal, New Zealand, Peru, Patagonia, European Alps, Tanzania. 

The company provides several choices in each tour type, from backpacking, base camp hiking, inn-based hiking, private hiking, and family hiking. Special tours include Level 5 trips for advanced hikers, Guide’s Choice and Women-Only hiking.   

Activities on tours include hiking, kayaking, shopping, biking, visits with natives and wildlife. Llama trekking is available on eight different tours in Peru, the Rocky Mountains, the Tetons, and Utah.

Meals, private transport, emergency equipment, and hiking pack are included with most tours.   

G Adventures 

  • Destinations: Five stars
  • Tour Types: Five Stars
  • Activities: Five Stars
  • Features: Four Stars 

G Adventures is headquartered in Toronto, Canada, but it has an outpost in Melbourne.

This tour operator has hundreds of destinations in Europe, Africa, South America, Central America, the U.S., Canada, North Africa, Middle East, Australia, Arctic, Antarctica, the Caribbean, and Asia.

The company has a tour type for most people. It features National Geographic Tours, National Geographic Family Tours, Classic Tours, Wellness Tours, Active Tours, 18 to 30something Tours, Local Living Tours, Family Tours, Marine Tours, and Rail Tours.

Local Living Tours are available in Europe, South America, and Asia. You may witness a shamanic healing ceremony in the Amazon or hike to a Buddhist monastery in Nepal.  

Depending on the tour, you may hike, bike, kayak, go rafting, shop, visits with natives and wildlife, or walk and sightsee. Every tour features meals and private transport. 

Crooked Compass 

  • Destinations: Five stars
  • Tour Types: Five Stars
  • Activities: Five Stars
  • Features: Four Stars 

Crooked Compass was founded in Sydney, Australia in May 2014. The company focuses on unique tours and destinations. You can learn a lot about the day-to-day life in a region by taking one of their local living tours, or have a classic tour experience.   

Destinations include Africa, Asia, Oceania, Middle East, Latin America, Europe, and Tours by Design. This company offers more tour types than most travel companies. The types include Active, Conservation, Photography, Festivals, Classic, Animal Encounters, Cultural Immersion, Chase/Race and Custom Tours  

 Activities run the gamut from light walking to intense sports and cultural immersion.  Crooked Compass activities include historical tours of castles and other sites, visits with native people, kayaking, hiking, and fishing.

These tours include all the basic features, like meals, small tour groups, and private transport. There’s a travel app, too. 

Pros and Cons

Here’s a look at the pros and cons of buying a tour package from this US-based company. 

Pros

  • Secure and comfortable
  • Knowledgeable guides 
  • Wide choice of tours
  • Can accommodate traveler requests with ease 
  • Trips are well-organized
  • Upbeat, fun trips and tour guides  

Cons

  • Based in the U.S.
  • Emphasis on Grand Canyon and the Western US
  • May be problems for travelers with conflicting schedules
  • Some trails are difficult to maneuver  

Conclusion

We recommend Wildland Trekking for Grand Canyon-based trips and international trips. The company is best known for its Grand Canyon, Yosemite, Rocky Mountain, and Joshua tree tours. Take advantage of these tours if you are visiting the Western U.S. 

There are many tour types available, from classic tours with light walking and private transport to advanced hiking tours. The company offers a dozen types of tours, discounted tours, and trips to several countries, including New Zealand. The majority of their tours take place in the U.S. 

We’ll give Wildland four stars for its knowledge guides and a wide selection of Grand Canyon and Western U.S. tours. Its tours in New Zealand, Ecuador, Iceland, Tanzania, and other locations are well-planned and executed.     

Janice Friedman
 

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 0 comments

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

Share this post with your friends!

Visit Us On FacebookVisit Us On PinterestCheck Our Feed