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View Poll Results: What US state is best for living in the wilderness?
Alaska 33 34.02%
California 3 3.09%
Idaho 6 6.19%
Montana 10 10.31%
Oregon 1 1.03%
Colorado 1 1.03%
Arizona 6 6.19%
New Mexico 2 2.06%
Washington 12 12.37%
Wyoming 3 3.09%
Another state 20 20.62%
Voters: 97. You may not vote on this poll

Old 05-16-2016, 06:47 AM
1 posts, read 462 times
Reputation: 15


Pretty surprised Utah wasn't mentioned in the poll. I am heading to Utah within the next week or so to stay indefinitely. I'm currently unemployed, but I have plenty of wilderness gear and experience, and I'm not going to be a bum, soooo... My research shows Utah to be head and shoulders above other choices.

Here's what I've researched: First of all, there is PLENTY of national forest land in Utah, all of which feature plenty of national wilderness area. There's Uintah - 1 million acres, Fishlake - 1.5 million acres, and Dixie - 2.5 million acres. Total: 4.5 million acres of national forest in Utah.

I've noticed many people talking about avoiding forest rangers. In Utah, you don't have to do that. They have VERY liberal dispersed camping policies. Not so much in Uintah, where there is an annual limit to your legal stay. But in Dixie and Fishlake, there is no limit, only one rule.

In Dixie National Forest, the rule is, you can camp for 16 days at one site, then you have to move your camp at least 10 miles, where you can camp for another 16 days, etc., ad infinitum. In Fishlake National Forest, even more liberal - camp for 16 days then only have to move 5 miles. I may follow the rules, or I may not. If I've gone 16 days and haven't seen a ranger, I won't move unless I just want to move.

I have settled on Fishlake for the summer months. It's high elevation country - up to 14,000 feet above sea level in some parts, and it's in the central part of the state - so it's colder than Dixie. But in the summer, it's very temperate, and the fishing is rumored to be FANTASTIC. In the colder months, I will probably move my camp to Dixie, for lower elevations and a bit more of a southern location.

All of Utah's national forests feature lovely rivers and lakes WHICH ARE STOCKED WITH FISH BY THE STATE. I attribute this to Mormonism. The Mormons are proud of their state. They want abundance everywhere. That's my theory. In any case, there is one strip on the north end of the Green River in Utah which features the most trout per river-mile of any river in the world. The fishing in Utah is top-tier.

There are plenty of recreation options within a couple hours drive of Dixie (it's called Dixie, BTW, because when the Mormons first settled the area, the southern folk among them noted that the climate was very similar to the American southeast) - all the canyonlands of southeast Utah are essentially at your disposal if you get tired of pristine coniferous forest and clean flowing water.

Gear I'm taking with: 65L backpack, 2-man 4-season tent, -20 degree sleeping bag, fire kit, cooking kit, ultra-light camp stove, fishing gear, bear spray, 1 pair fleece winter pants, 2 pairs of wool-blend pants, 4 pair wool socks, 4 cotton t-shirts, 2 short-sleeve silk shirts, 4 heavy polyester fleece shirts, heavy winter jacket, light winter jacket, 4 pairs of shorts, hatchet, folding saw, 2 camp towels, and my trusty SOG multi-tool on my belt. I will probably also pack a light blanket since my sleeping bag tends to get hot in temps over 50. And that's it. I will be able to live there indefinitely, and quite legally, in relative comfort. I'm greatly looking forward to the adventure.

As for how long I'll stay, who knows? It might get tiresome at some point. Or it might not. If you see me, give a wave. (Tip: You won't see me)
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Old 05-16-2016, 06:51 AM
8,790 posts, read 4,713,823 times
Reputation: 2030
Alaska and Maine of the 48
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Old 05-16-2016, 04:03 PM
Location: Illinois
988 posts, read 593,270 times
Reputation: 1091
How has Wisconsin not been mentioned? It seems half the state works for its DNR, has the largest college of natural resources in all of North America (UW-Stevens Point).

I think people forget that most of the state's land is WELL north of Milwaukee and Madison.
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Old 05-16-2016, 04:03 PM
Location: Mount Prospect, Illinois
99 posts, read 85,122 times
Reputation: 147

Low population, very remote in the North.

But it's still close to Bos-Wash in case you ever go insane and need to go see civilization for a weekend.
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