James Peak Wilderness, Colorado


How We Work

Private inholdings remain the greatest threat to America’s wilderness. When inholdings are developed, they essentially tear a hole in the fabric of surrounding wilderness.  Some 180,000 acres of inholdings remain within federal wilderness areas.


The Wilderness Land Trust is the only national conservation organization dedicated solely to purchasing privately owned wilderness lands to ensure their preservation as wilderness. We have successfully completed over 412 land transactions throughout the West.  We are real estate professionals providing a bridge between private landowners who wish to sell their wilderness lands and the public agencies managing federal wilderness areas.

What we do:
The Wilderness Land Trust is committed to conserving wilderness. We buy wilderness property outright from willing sellers who wish to see their land protected. Once we acquire a wilderness property, we transfer it to a federal agency to manage the land permanently. We also partner with specialists in restoring natural landscapes.

Where we work:
We buy land in designated wilderness areas and in areas proposed for wilderness designation. We actively work in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.  

How we’re funded:
Private donors, public agencies, and foundations provide the funds needed to acquire properties. We pay for appraisals, legal services, surveys and the other costs of the transaction.

How we can help:
As a private, nonprofit organization we are able to act quickly to purchase land with a minimum of red tape. You’ll find our professional staff is responsive to your needs. Our team can help resolve complicated real estate issues such as boundary, title, and access matters. We work with local appraisers, lawyers, contractors and real estate agents. We provide environmental, political and fundraising expertise.


Working with The Wilderness Land Trust:


  • You are assured confidentiality.
  • You will receive fair market value for your property based on a certified, independent appraisal.
  • By donating a portion of the value of your property you may be eligible to receive tax benefits.
  • Closing can occur quickly.
  • You are assured that your land will remain forever wild.

If you are a landowner, please contact us to talk with someone from the Wilderness Land Trust about your land.








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Mount Shasta Wilderness, California






"Easy to work with."

-Landowner in ID


"Very professional."

-Landowner in NV


"Very Satisfying. This was a big job to put together - so many people involved."

-Landowner in WA