In a country that boasts 58 national parks and hundreds of state parks, not to mention private camp grounds, it?s safe to say that camping is one of the United States? favorite pastimes. In a 2008 survey, over 29 million people reported that they had gone camping or hiking that year; by spring 2014, that number increased to 38 million. Another study, by the American Camper Report in 2014, put that number closer to 40 million people.
Natural scenes make people happy; the exercise, fresh air, and open spaces help to relieve stress, help people focus, and bring a sense of connection. Not only that, but families, couples, and friend groups are better able to interact and bond when they are away from the distractions of daily life and the constant bombardment of media and technology.
With so many amazing places to visit in the United States alone, it?s hard to choose. Obviously, many people choose to stay close to home, especially if they are looking for family vacation ideas on a budget, but once you?re out in the beauty of nature, you often feel miles away, even if you live nearby. Whether you stay close to home or travel hundreds of miles, there are many famous places to go. For instance, hiking the Appalachian Trail, Aztec Ruins in New Mexico, backpacking in Yellowstone, Flathead National Forest hiking trips, and other well-known wilderness travel trips are popular destinations. For these locations and others like them, it?s great to consider guided tour companies.
Here are five good reasons for hiring guided tour companies for your excursion:
1. To let someone else handle the travel logistics.
Finding tickets, making reservations, arranging transportation and lodging, are all much easier for travel agents and guided tour companies. Rather than spending hours making phone calls and keeping track of different timetables, costs and requirements, a tour guide can take care of it for you while you focus on other things. Often, guided tour companies can get special rates, too.
2. To let someone else drive.
There are several good reasons to let someone else do the driving. First, you?re more likely to get lost if you don?t know the area, even with GPS assistance. In addition, you don?t have to worry about parking and leaving your personal or rental vehicle unattended for the duration of your trip. Lastly, you have no worries regarding break-downs and repairs, which can derail a trip.
3. To save time.
An experienced guide knows the ins and outs of the area, the trip, the things you want to do and see, and can provide an efficient plan for your excursion that will help you avoid traffic, crowds, lines, and other time-wasting obstacles.
4. To learn about your environment.
Having a knowledgeable tour guide with you on wilderness adventure tours is a great idea. They will be able to point out different wildlife, as well as flora and fauna and their interesting properties. This can be educational and interesting but it can also save your life: the trained eye of your nature guide will easily spot that poison oak you?re about to step in, or guide you away from a bear den that you might never have realized you were near. While some of this could potentially be learned in a field guide, there is no substitute for the expertise and on the spot knowledge provided by guided tour companies and their staff.
5. To be extra safe.
Whether you?re alone or part of a family trip, using guided tour companies provides extra safety for your adventure. You may be experienced at hiking, rafting, and other wilderness adventure activities, you may know basic emergency medicine and carry a top notch first aid kit, but there are some situations for which that simply won?t matter. Quite frankly, a high percentage of people who go on wilderness adventure tours do not have enough first aid knowledge or sufficient supplies to handle basic emergencies. Guided tour companies do.
The United States offers hundreds of amazing outdoor adventures, from small local state parks to amazing national forests, and many private campgrounds too. Guided tours come in countless varieties, and offer many benefits. The great outdoors is waiting for you!