Guided Overnight Backcountry Trips CUA



This CUA authorizes guided overnight backcountry trips with the appropriate backcountry camping permit.

General Provisions

  1. CUA holders and their guides must adhere to all Yellowstone backcountry regulations. Regulations may be found on the park's backcountry web page.
  2. CUA holders are limited to three groups per CUA holder each day. Maximum group size is 12, including guides.Multiple groups in the same area must be dispersed and not congregate. Multiple groups are not permitted tocongregate in a single campsite if the overall group size exceeds the campsite size limit. Groups must beequipped to camp, cook, and travel independently.
  3. CUA holders are encouraged to stay on designated trails. Specific areas may be closed to off-trail travel if impacts are noted.
  4. CUA holders may use only designated backcountry campsites for which they are permitted. CUA holders may not exceed campsite limitations for the number of people allowed at a campsite.
  5. Each group must include at least one guide. One guide on each trip must have relevant experience backcountryhiking and camping, including previous experience on the trails they are guiding.
  6. It is required that all guides and trip participants view the Beyond Roads End video, which can be found on the park's backcountry web page.
  7. The guide for any trip within the park must have a basic knowledge of map reading and must have a topographic map for the area of their trip. It is recommended the guide have a compass and/or GPS and betrained in their use.
  8. While in Yellowstone's backcountry, the CUA holder or guide shall remain with their clients for the duration of the trip.
  9. Each guide must carry a minimum of one can of bear spray and be trained in its use. Bear spray for clients is recommended.
  10. All guides must carry a first aid kit suitable for backcountry emergencies and and containing adequate supplies for the group size they are guiding.
  11. Guides will ensure that clients are properly attired for the current and forecasted weather conditions. Routes will be determined based on clients’ abilities and desires.
  12. A Backcountry Use Permit is required for overnight backcountry use and is available through the Centra lBackcountry Office, which can be reached at 307-344-2160 or
  13. There will be fees charged for backcountry permits. For the most up-to-date information on fees, please visit the park's backcountry web page
  14. Backcountry permit reservation procedures, terms, and conditions are reviewed and revised annually. CUA holders must abide by the nightly and annual campsite occupancy limits for commercial users. Having a CUA does not guarantee backcountry campsites will be available.
  15. Day hiking is an authorized use when associated with an overnight backcountry trip. An Environmental Education CUA must be obtained to conduct day hiking trips not associated with an overnight backcounty trip.
  16. Skiing and snowshoeing is not covered under an overnight backcountry CUA. Any business offering winter overnight backcountry trips must obtain a skiing and snowshoeing CUA in addition to the overnight backcountry CUA.
  17. For further backcountry guidelines and regulations, please refer to the information provided in "Beyond Road'sEnd" available under Additional Resources or on the park's backcountry web page.

How to apply for this CUA activity

  1. Complete CUA application packets should be submitted via email to
  2. Complete application packets include the documents listed below (click on the blue links below to download each document):
  3. If your application is missing any components listed above, we will inform you via the email address or phone number listed on the application. Any incomplete applications will be placed on hold until all required documentation is received.
  4. Once your application packet has been reviewed and approved, we will send the CUA, NPS Form 10-115, via the email address listed on the application.
  5. The CUA holder will then sign and return the CUA form(s) to The CUA is not final until the signed form(s) are received by our office.
  6. Submit a guide card request for any guides/employees that will be entering the park under this CUA at least two weeks prior to their first trip in the park.
  7. Complete and submit Annual Report Forms—Due by January 31st following the operating year.

Last updated: November 9, 2022

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PO Box 168
Yellowstone National Park , WY 82190-0168



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