A few years ago I became aware of the Recreation.gov lotteries you can enter to gain access to remote areas or special privileges within US Federal Recreation lands. Since then I have been lucky enough to explore some truly magical parts of our country with some of my favorite people.
Below are images from my backpacking trip through the Enchantments in Washington, self-guided snow mobile tour through Yellowstone Nat'l Park, and within the Wave which is located in North Coyote Buttes Wilderness, AZ.
The way I approach these lotteries is to apply for them as they become "active". Different lotteries are open to enter at different times of the year, and some are open all year round. If I win, I take is as a sign that it's meant to be, and dive into planning the trip! From the time you find out if you've won, to the date on your permit, there is typically plenty of time to figure out how to make it all happen.
These experiences are once in a lifetime opportunities that bring me a sense of happiness and fulfillment few things compare to. So, if you ever have the chance, do what you can to make it happen. Whatever might be holding you back, is likely something you won't regret putting it on hold, leaving behind, or taking the risk for the memory and smiles that will last a lifetime.
Self-guided snowmobile tour of Yellowstone National Park
Photo by Michelle Clabby inside the Wave / Coyote Buttes North