Computer Column: Hiking With Dogs

[Ed: An article from Apex to Zenith #49 – Second Quarter 2000]
By: Roger Rowlett

My golden retriever on Eagle Mountain
Photo courtesy of

There are two hot button outdoor issues that can turn friends into enemies in a flash. One is mountain biking and the other is dogs.

This month, let’s discuss dogs.

I had always believed that dogs on the trails should be leashed — until I got one. He is not only a wonderful companion but has brought great joy to the hiking experience as I see the summits through his eyes.

I have set up a web site to outline the dog issues associated with highpointing at:

Dogs are welcome at most highpoints. They have even climbed Denali. However you should always keep in mind that your best friend is not necessarily a friend at all to others. Many people either outright hate dogs or are scared of them. And dogs don’t necessarily even like other dogs. In short, you must keep your dog under control.

You must also make sure that your dogs do not leave piles for others to step in — particularly in campsites and on trails.

I have compiled a list of restrictions or prohibitions on the web site. These are for California, Illinois, Maine, New York, North Dakota, Tennessee and Texas. In addition there are practical limitations on Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington and Wyoming.

The web now has lots of web sites devoted to hiking and travelling with your dogs. Here are some:

These sites provide a good overview of what to expect and offer bulletin boards.

Many sites list dog friendly accommodations. I have found all lists to be inaccurate. Motels and campsites change on a whim — and the trend is to prohibit dogs. You should never travel without knowing in advance whether a motel or campsite will accept dogs.

They sell everything from dog backpacks to dog first aid kits (is it really that different from the human kit?).

If you have pictures of your dog on a highpoint, please let me know. I would like to start a dogs on highpoints photo album.

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