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Big Draft Wilderness

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Area Management

The Big Draft Wilderness is part of the 110 million acre National Wilderness Preservation System. This System of lands provides clean air, water, and habitat critical for rare and endangered plants and animals. In wilderness, you can enjoy challenging recreational activities like hiking, backpacking, climbing, kayaking, canoeing, rafting, horse packing, bird watching, stargazing, and extraordinary opportunities for solitude. You play an important role in helping to "secure for the American people of present and future generations the benefits of an enduring resource of wilderness" as called for by the Congress of the United States through the Wilderness Act of 1964. Please follow the requirements outlined below and use Leave No Trace techniques when visiting the Big Draft Wilderness to ensure protection of this unique area.

General Wilderness Prohibitions

Motorized equipment and equipment used for mechanical transport is generally prohibited on all federal lands designated as wilderness. This includes the use of motor vehicles, motorboats, motorized equipment, bicycles, hang gliders, wagons, carts, portage wheels, and the landing of aircraft including helicopters, unless provided for in specific legislation.

In a few areas some exceptions allowing the use of motorized equipment or mechanical transport are described in the special regulations in effect for a specific area. Contact the Forest Service office or visit the websites listed for more specific information.

These general prohibitions have been implemented for all national forest wildernesses in order to implement the provisions of the Wilderness Act of 1964. The Wilderness Act requires management of human-caused impacts and protection of the area's wilderness character to insure that it is "unimpaired for the future use and enjoyment as wilderness." Use of the equipment listed as prohibited in wilderness is inconsistent with the provision in the Wilderness Act which mandates opportunities for solitude or primitive recreation and that wilderness is a place that is in contrast with areas where people and their works are dominant.

Wilderness-Specific Regulations

Wilderness managers often need to take action to limit the impacts caused by visitor activities in order to protect the natural conditions of wilderness as required by the Wilderness Act of 1964. Managers typically implement 'indirect' types of actions such as information and education measures before selecting more restrictive measures. When regulations are necessary, they are implemented with the specific intent of balancing the need to preserve the character of the wilderness while providing for the use and enjoyment of wilderness.

The following wilderness regulations are in effect for this area. Not all regulations are in effect for every wilderness. Contact the Forest Service office or visit the websites listed for more specific information about the regulations listed.


-- No permit or fee is required to enter or camp in the Big Draft Wilderness.

-- Group size is limited to no more than 10 people per party.

-- All food and refuse must be stored in bear-resistant containers or suspended at least 10 feet off of the ground and 4 feet away from the supporting tree or pole.

-- Do not discard of any food, refuse, or bear attractant unless it is on a trash receptacle which has been provided by the Forest Service for that purpose.

-- Do not burn or bury food, refuse, or bear attractants.

-- As with all designated Wilderness areas, mechanical transportation (including wagons, game carts, bicycles, and other vehicles) is prohibited.


-- Camping is prohibited within 200 feet of any stream or trail.

-- Do not camp at trailheads.


-- Pack or saddle stock is prohibited on the Blue Bend Loop trail due to the trail’s steep nature.

-- Please note that many trails in the Big Draft Wilderness are steep and rocky and not conducive to stock use.

Learn more about why regulations may be necessary in wilderness.

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