Ranger Backpacking Trip

San Juan Registration 2022

Use the link above to print the forms

Ranger Backpacking Trip


  San Juan Wilderness, Colorado

July 20th-24, 2022

Base Camp is located at Molas Lake Campground,

(US Highway 550)

Space 21.  Check in time: 1pm)






The Ranger Backpacking Trip is a challenging and exciting activity for older boys and leaders. Those who participate have the opportunity to use many of the skills they have developed in the Lutheran Pioneer Program and also see some of the beautiful creations of our God.



By the early 1970’s Lutheran Pioneers had grown in the southwestern United States as we began to look for some type of National trip in that area. Mr. Zeke Jarcik, together with several other men from the Alchesay District, studied the possibilities and proposed two alternating trips.  Both would take place on land overseen by the Bureau of Land Management. (BLM)

One of the trips was a week-long backpacking trip into the San Juan Mountains of Colorado.  Basecamp is set up somewhere around Silverton CO and the 31 mile trip begins at the Molas Trailhead right outside of Silverton CO.  The hike begins at an elevation of approximately 10,000 feet and during the trip the group climbs to elevations of approximately 13,000 feet. During this trip the group is blessed to seem some spectacular country created by God!

The second trip developed is a backpacking trip through parts of the 45 mile long Paria Canyon of Arizona and Utah.  Basecamp is setup at Lee’s Ferry.  The hike begins up in Utah at the Whitehouse Trailhead.  The group travels down the Paria River crossing the river many times and finishing at Lee’s Ferry close to basecamp.  They also include some side trips into some of the most outstanding and world famous slot canyons in the world!  This includes an awesome 200 foot natural arch!  God’s creation is truly outstanding and displayed on this trip.


FUN FACT: Since its beginning in 1973, the Ranger trips had had groups varying in size between 10 and 48!



__________________Hiker Cost________________

The cost for the 2022 Ranger trip is $210 per hiker.  This covers the permit expenses and all of the meals during the trip and basecamp meals before and after the hike.  Hikers are responsible for their backpacking equipment and transportation.  There are a limited number of hikers allowed per permit so registration is 1st come 1st served!  A deposit of $100 along with the application is due ASAP.  The remaining $110 is due by June 1st 2022. 

Cancellations and Refunds:  Full refund for cancellations will be given up until the June 1st deadline.  Cancellations past that date will receive a 50% refund.


PLEASE mail Payment, application, Medical information & signed release to:

Bryan & Teri Guenther

570 E. Agave Dr.

Tucson Arizona, 85704


Checks made payable to: Lutheran Pioneer Rangers



________________Basecamp Cost_____________

Anyone is welcome at basecamp with a few different meal plan options.  Meals will be beginning on Monday July 18th dinner through Monday July 25th breakfast.  Meal plan choice and payment are due by June 1st, 2022.   The plans are as follows:

Breakfasts & Dinners (including Sunday banquet) -  $55.00 per adult (12yrs and up)

Dinners ONLY- $45.00 per adult (12yrs and up)

Sunday Banquet meal ONLY- $20 (12yrs and up)

Children under 12 years of age are free

*The base camp cook will do all possible to accommodate and avoid any food allergies but is NOT able to accommodate special dietary choices such as Vegan, Vegetarian, low carb etc.…..If you require such choices it might be best that you provide your own meals during the week.






This Lutheran Pioneer/Ranger activity is open to boys 15 years of age and older.  All applicants should be a member of an active Pioneer train or a former Ranger trip participant.  All who participate should have completed all of the Frontiersman requirements, the new Pioneer Climber requirements or have equivalent skills.

If this will be your first experience backpacking at high altitudes, the importance of physical conditioning cannot be overemphasized.  To help you prepare for the trips, the Ranger committee recommends the following:

  1. At least 30 days prior to the trip, take a multi-vitamin plus iron each day. This is important to help avoid altitude sickness.
  2. Running and other leg condition is crucial.
  3. Hiking with your pack (about 50 pounds) preferably on hills will pay dividends on this trip.


____________Information & Location_________

Base camp will be located in the Molas Lake Campground. US-550, Silverton, CO 81433. We have reserved space 21 from July 18th thru July 25th.  In addition, we have other close by sites reserved at the beginning and end of the trip to accommodate when the hikers are not on the hike.  Space 21 is our joint base camp location.  We STRONGLY recommend that the hikers arrive on the 18th to have time to acclimate to the very high elevation before the hike begins on the 20th.  Altitude sickness can be severe enough to cause the hiker to be unable to successfully accomplish the hike.

Committee Contact:

Bryan & Teri Guenther