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outdoor person gift list

outdoor person gift

Over the decades we’ve seen many affiliate programs dissolve, but Amazon has always held true, which is why we still link to them. Total Escape has assembled over 60 unique Amazon Stores covering Outdoor Gear, Clothing, Packs w/ West Coast Maps, Destinations & Wilderness Books too.

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Gifts & Gear

Angeles Hiking
http://astore.amazon.com/angeles-hiking-20

Ansel Adams Wilderness Books
http://astore.amazon.com/ansel-adams-20

Arizona Hikes
http://astore.amazon.com/arizona-hikes-20

Baja California Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/baja-california-maps-20

Big Bear Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/big-bear-maps-20

Big Sur Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/big-sur-maps-20

Borrego Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/borrego-maps-20

Bridgeport California Books
http://astore.amazon.com/bridgeport-california-20

California Backpacks
http://astore.amazon.com/california-backpacks-20

California Tackle & Fishing
http://astore.amazon.com/californiatackle-20

Camp Batteries
http://astore.amazon.com/campbatteries-20

Camp Chair
http://astore.amazon.com/campchair-20

Camp Comforts
http://astore.amazon.com/campcomforts-20

Camp Tents
http://astore.amazon.com/camptents-20

Camp Gadgets
http://astore.amazon.com/campgadgets-20

Camp Kitchen
http://astore.amazon.com/campkitchen-20

Camp Kits
http://astore.amazon.com/campkits-20

Camp Lighting
http://astore.amazon.com/camplighting-20

Camp Soaps
http://astore.amazon.com/campsoaps-20

Camp Storage
http://astore.amazon.com/campstorage-20

Camp Tools
http://astore.amazon.com/camptools-20

Camp Water
http://astore.amazon.com/campwater-20

Camping w/ Bears
http://astore.amazon.com/camping-bear-20

Camping Coolers
http://astore.amazon.com/campingcoolers-20

Camping Stoves
http://astore.amazon.com/campingstoves-20

Camping Tables
http://astore.amazon.com/campingtables-20

Climbing Wear & Camping Clothes
http://astore.amazon.com/climbingwear-20

Coleman Gear
Coleman Shop
http://astore.amazon.com/colemanshop-20

Cycling Wear
http://astore.amazon.com/cyclingwear-20

Death Valley Books & Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/death-valley-20

Eastern Sierra Books
http://astore.amazon.com/eastern-sierra-20

Emigrant Wilderness Hikes
http://astore.amazon.com/emigrant-wilderness-20

Feather River California
http://astore.amazon.com/feather-river-20

Gold Country California
http://astore.amazon.com/gold-country-20

GPS Units
http://astore.amazon.com/gps-units-20

John Muir Trail Hikes
http://astore.amazon.com/john-muir-trail-20

Kings Canyon California
http://astore.amazon.com/kings-canyon-20

Klamath Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/klamath-maps-20

Lake Tahoe Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/lake-tahoe-maps-20

Lassen Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/lassen-maps-20

Los Padres National Forest
http://astore.amazon.com/los-padres-forest-20

Mendocino Hikes
http://astore.amazon.com/mendocino-hikes-20

Modoc California
http://astore.amazon.com/modoc-20

Mojave Desert Maps & Books
http://astore.amazon.com/mojave-desert-20

Mount Baldy Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/mount-baldy-map-20

Mount San Gorgonio Hikes
http://astore.amazon.com/gorgonio-hikes-20

Mount San Jacinto Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/mount-san-jacinto-20

Nevada Hiking Books
http://astore.amazon.com/nevada-hiking-20

Oregon Hikes
http://astore.amazon.com/oregon-hikes-20

Outdoor Magazines
http://astore.amazon.com/outdoor-magazines-20

Outdoor Books for California
http://astore.amazon.com/outdoorbooks-20

Outdoor Radios
http://astore.amazon.com/outdoorradios-20

Pacific Crest Trail Guide Books
http://astore.amazon.com/pct-guide-books-20

Paddling Wear
http://astore.amazon.com/paddlingwear-20

Plumas Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/plumas-maps-20

Rechargeables for Camping
http://astore.amazon.com/rechargeables-20

San Diego Hiking
http://astore.amazon.com/san-diego-hiking-20

San Diego Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/san-diego-maps-20

Santa Barbara Hikes
http://astore.amazon.com/santa-barbara-hikes-20

Sequoia Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/sequoia-maps-20

Shasta Maps
http://astore.amazon.com/shasta-maps-20

Sleeping Bags
http://astore.amazon.com/sleepingbags-20

Snowfall in California
http://astore.amazon.com/snowfall-california-20

Swiss Army Shop
http://astore.amazon.com/swissarmyshop-20

Washington Hikes
http://astore.amazon.com/washington-hikes-20

Yosemite Park Books
http://astore.amazon.com/yosemite-park-20

Gear for Outdoors

California Off Road Maps

Jeeping

Dirt roads, backroads, desert trails, OHV routes, single tracks, dunes, fire roads, gravel roads, 4×4 roads

When you wanna explore a new area, California has plenty of public land to offer. Off Road Maps can get you away from the crowds & the main staging areas. Maps can show you prime areas to ride & camp that you may not have ever imagined. Whether you seek secluded stream side camp sites, with some fishing or a dusty, long, desert trail that spans the entire Mojave desert, you can find these secret spots with good old fashioned topographic maps.

4x4 routes

4×4 Panamint Valley has numerous canyons & ridges to conquer w/ open desert (free) camping located below

Off-roading maps that Total Escape used to carry (altho some are no longer available):

Jeep Roads Atlas
Benchmark California Atlas


The most trusted full-state book-atlas that Total Escape recommends. When you must have a (hard copy) map for local road trips – Benchmark Atlas is the best one by far.

delorme
DeLorme California Gazetteer

National Forest Service State Parks California BLM backroads camping jeeping

  • SAN BERNARDINO OHV MAP (outta print)
  • HUNGRY VALLEY OHV MAP (outta print)
  • ANGELES FOREST OHV MAP (outta print)
  • ROCK CREEK OHV TRAILS (outta print)
  • MOUNT PINOS OHV TRAILS (outta print)

NorCal Backroads & 4-Wheel Drive Trails (book)

SoCal Backroads & 4-Wheel Drive Trails (book)

OHV maps California

California Off Road Areas


Awesome California locations w/ off-road trails nearby. DanaMite has compiled a list of first-hand knowledge information, links, photos, campsites, maps, all revolving around rural California. Check out the ever growing list and get ready to explore the back roads, like never before.

PDF Off Road Maps


OHV use, 4×4 camps, dirt trails, forest routes; Download maps for various off-roading areas in California.

Quatal Canyon

What the heck is it ???

4WD = 4 wheel drive
4×4 = (same as above)

2WD = 2 wheel drive
4×2 = (same as above)

AWD = All wheel drive
SUV = Sport Utility Vehicle

MTB = Mountain Bike
MX = Motocross (dirt bike motorcycle)
SNOMO = Snow Mobile (sled machine)

The past two decades have emerged with vehicle redesigns from well known brands, creating a number of new “utility vehicles” for the sport of off-roading (otherwise known as, burning gasoline while recreating in the outdoors). Here is a breakdown on the acronyms, but they all basically refer to much of the same “off road type vehicles”.

ATV = All Terrain Vehicle (quad)
MOHUV = Multipurpose Off-Highway Utility Vehicle
ROPS = Roll Over Protection System
ROV = Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle
RUV = Recreational Utility Vehicle
SxS = Side by Side Vehicle
SSV = (same as above)
UTV = Utility Task Vehicle

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/All-terrain_vehicle
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Side_by_Side_(UTV)

Common abbreviations for off-road on public lands:

OHV – Off Highway Vehicle
SVRA – State Vehicular Recreation Areas
BLM – Bureau of Land Management
NFS – National Forest (USDA)
MVUM – motor vehicle use map
PVT – private land / keep out

Big Bear Backroads

Ojai Map Elkins Flat

Around 2012 the National Forest Service printed up a bunch of nice off-road maps for various popular regions of California. Oddly, they told me not to sell them and I never heard anything about them again after that. Not even sure if these above are available to the public, but if you dig around you might find ’em.

off road maps

If interested, you could call the ranger station and ask about any local off-road maps. Mostly they have freebie one page print-outs, black & white to keep the crowds where they want them. Other times they might have real printed maps for sale at the station, the maps that can get you deeper into the terrain, with wild edges of reality nearby.

DanaMite

founder of Total Escape

Internet Pioneer

totalescape.com  – online since 1996


(before the dot com crash, before digital cameras, before GPS, before social media & way ahead of smartphones)

Sole creative force of Total Escape, Dana Williams left her 3D animation career to start living and working her dream job, online and off. Utilizing artistic talents, computer skills, a vast knowledge of California landscape and the simple love of nature to make it all come together for a killer web site called Total Escape. 20 years online means fresh content & updates every month; reworking web code every few years to keep up with various browsers.

“travel agent to the back woods”


Living close to the earth with organic gardening and rural living, DanaMite strives to offer California residents, new-comers and visitors unique, local destinations, concentrating on the outdoors – well away from the overcrowded, busy, urban cities and tourist traps. Total Escape can show you how to discover the secret, hidden spots on your public lands that the gov web sites will not even dare to mention.

Support this site

help keep

total escape

online





the independent source for California travel

NO CORPORATE sponsorshipCalifornia Camping Photos
No venture capital
No government subsidies
No annoying pop-up ads
No membership needed

 

Decades without a television set lends plenty of time for studying terrain, topographic maps, GPS coordinates and thousands of photographs to compile more than 8000 pages on just California travel. Far from the daily grind of everyday life, DanaMite continues in educating the public about local travel, camping, family farms, organic cafes, outdoor recreation, respecting the land, responsible use of our resources & how to get more enjoyment out of weekend travels.

outdoor girls

Things that started Total Escape:

 

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YOUR SUPPORT keeps Total Escape going:

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Expert Camping Pro California

20+ years of documenting back roads

Creekside Camping

California Creek Camping

California Camping CreeksClear cool stream waters flow from snow melt at 10,000′ elevation, down to these pristine camps at under 4000′ on both sides of the Sierra. The further you drive up the mountain, the better it gets. Where the Eastern Sierra side tends to be more dramatic desert like with sage brush, the western range is much more lush with ferns & dense trees.

Everyone dreams of it. The perfect camp, along the creek. Maybe a waterfall or two, a shady hammock spot & plenty of trees, a flat tent spot, maybe a view. A big, sturdy, rock fire ring (without a bunch of broken glass in it).

This dreamy camp isn’t only in your imagination, nor is it at the local county campground a few miles from home. This kinda beauty & rare finds are out there, deep in the back woods, the mountains. You gotta know where to look & what to bring in order to have a good, easy, relaxing time.

These secluded sites really are around in your favorite forest, way back there. Best of all, they are free.

forest mapsHaving the opportunity to camp in your very own private, secluded spot, along dirt roads, outside of the annoying rules and fees of a developed campground is a privilege. Use these lands wisely and be a responsible camper. Camp eco-wise! Respecting the land, knowing some basics and following fire safety precautions is all mandatory. A topographic hiking map or a National Forest map is optional, but highly recommended.

Creekside Camping CaliforniaCreek water can make an easy refrigerator if the cooler is full. Chill that bottle of wine, keep the watermelon cool .. just don’t forget about it. (cuz that kinda litter maybe a welcomed good surprise for the next camper.) Secure your wet creek valuables. Even a heavy watermelon can float! Put some rocks around items or tye them in a mesh bag, with rope, something to keep them from getting away in the swift water.

There is nothing that beats a good detailed forest map of where you are going. If you are the type of person who can never make a straight B-line for home on Sunday afternoon, and find yourself wandering just for the sake of wandering – then it’s best to have a larger state wide map like this beauty from Benchmark Maps.

California Creekside Camp Sites

Small Campgrounds on a Creek

Primitive Style – Dispersed Camping secluded camp sites

If you are the kinda sport who can really rough it, you may learn to love it. After your first real back woods camping experience, the privacy, serenity and beauty of the land will inspire and relax you so much, that the drawback on the lack of toilet won’t bother you.

Make a new hobby of learning how to stay away from the crowds. The less cars you see at camp, the better. Learn to be immersed within nature and enjoy your space outside. Unwind, next to the creek in the shade, with a chair and read for hours, or bring the sketchbook, or just daydream as butterflies go floating by.

Streamside Camping Basics

what you need:

capable vehicle – SUV or Truck, high clearance is best. 4×4 is NOT required. AWD wagons should be more cautious when venturing out on the back roads. 2WD is fine for most graded dirt roads, but way out exploring dirt roads, deep mud and snow is quite possible.

destination – Pick a locale. A general area you wanna check out. Not a quickie overnight deal, but an enjoyable lazy multi-day camping trip.

exploration – Narrow down a canyon or river that you have always wanted to explore. The Sierra Nevada & NorCal is the place to concentrate your efforts, as SoCal is near desert climate w/ way too much development.

more maps please – National Forest map or similar backroads Map/Atlas. Large topo maps may be too detailed, but will do okay for finding dirt roads (& backpacker trailheads also).

The more homework you do before hand, the better chances of finding that secret camp spot, especially on holiday weekends. Go ahead & call the forest rangers. Have your decent topo maps handy, along with pen and paper. That’s what they are there for. Have a list of questions on specific areas you want more info on. If you do the prep work well in advance, it makes a more enjoyable camp trip. Cuz you’ll be less worried about finding the ultimate places (before dark, or before the other guy does). With your new profound Wilderness Vision, you will have not only a plan B ready, but a plan C as well.

what to look for:

getting permits – If you really wanna camp like this, all secluded on the dirt back roads without the hordes of other campers nearby…. you’ll need a capable vehicle, a camp fire permit & the understanding of the concept “totally self sufficient campers”. This means bringing your own water, a bucket, a shovel, maybe some firewood, plus packing out all your own garbage, plus any litter left over by the last campers. It’s the least you can do, not having to make reservations. Visit the FireSafe page

it’s on your map – After you have a general area narrowed down, some place you always wanted to go, then it’s time to get your maps out & start reading them. Or at least staring at them – maybe over a meal, whenever you have free time to study it. Look for dirt roads, the further off the paved roads is not necessarily the better. Some of the best camp sites are within a few short miles from the pavement, so get them maps out & start visualizing.

gas up – Make sure you fuel your vehicle before you head into remote areas (like the ones we are mentioning). Maybe even an extra can of gasoline too, just in case.

the blue lines – You’ll know a decent road when you see it. When you start planning at home, you need to concentrate of what dirt roads are along what water sources. And will these streams be flowing at this time of year? Many are seasonal creeks & can dry up in summer. The most likely place to find great water flow is to look for the streams flowing directly into a major river or Lake/ Reservoir.

Are you willing to clean up your camp, before & after, leaving it pristine?
Yes indeed, it is free to camp outside of developed campgrounds.

Finding a Creek & Reading a Map

Fly Fishing Faire

Fly Fishing

Fly Fishing Workshops
Mammoth Fly Fish Streams

The only On-The-Water Fly Fishing Faire in the Western States. 3 ½ days of everything flyfishing. Classes for the complete novice all the way to tuning up the long distance cast for masters. Learn to tie your first fly. Catch your first trout on the fly. Maybe even let them go! On-the-water workshops with area guides from Bishop to Bridgeport, streams to lakes. Also tours, films and events for the non-anglers so the whole family can enjoy.

Annual event: September
818-200-1499

Eastern Sierra
Mammoth Lakes, CA

southwestcouncilfff.org/faire

Mammoth Fly Fishing

Another Scene From Fisherman's Heaven

Mammoth Fly Fishing