Photo Essay: Packrafting Wyoming’s Absaroka Range

A journey into the wildest corner of the Lower 48

This is a special photo flipbook version of a story that first appeared in the May 2014 issue of Canoe & Kayak.

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By Forrest McCarthy

We follow large wolf tracks up a steep, muddy trail. At our last camp, 3,000 feet below, I’d swept grizzly shit off a patch of flat ground and rolled out my sleeping bag. Now, on the crest of Wyoming’s Absaroka Range, we navigate a maze of game trails worn into the alpine tundra over millennia of elk, deer, and mountain sheep migrations.

This is a big, wild place. The Teton and Washakie Wildnernesses, combined with adjacent roadless areas including the southwest corner of Yellowstone National Park, comprise a 2.1 million-acre road-free wonderland. Few humans ever penetrate the heart of it. (Continue reading about packrafting Wyoming’s wildest corner by clicking on the Issuu feature above.)

More: Don’t miss this photo essay from Forrest McCarthy’s packrafting trip to Bosnia.

—Check out more photo essays from C&K.

—Read our review of packrafts here.