Cape Romain Wilderness Area

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“In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.”
~John Muir

By enacting the Wilderness Act of 1964, congress created the National Wilderness Preservation System and a legal definition of wilderness: the most intact, undisturbed wild natural areas left on our planet, the last wild places where humans have not developed with roads, pipelines, or other industrial infrastructure. They are areas where the earth and the community of life are untrammeled.

Cape Romain NWR Designated Wilderness Area
• On January 3rd, 1975, 29,000 acres of Cape Romain was designated as wilderness
• All of the refuge is designated wilderness, with the exception of Bulls Island, Garris Landing, and a band of marsh along the Intracoastal Waterway
• Welcome activities include: hiking, photography, wildlife observation
• Prohibited activities include: overnight camping, littering, use of weapons, starting fires, hunting, and the use of land-based motorized vehicles
• Molesting, injuring, or disturbing wildlife is prohibited

Cape Romain Wilderness


When enjoying any wilderness area, please follow the Leave No Trace (LNT) guidelines to help ensure these areas are left intact for future visitors. Recognize that high impact use threatens the untrammeled quality of wilderness. Wilderness was created for the “use and enjoyment of the American people in such a manner as will leave them unimpaired for future use and enjoyment as wilderness” without permanent improvement or human habitation.

LNT Principles:

• Plan ahead and prepare
• Travel/camp on durable surfaces
• Dispose of waste properly
• Leave what behind anything you find
• Minimize campfire impacts
• Respect wildlife
• Be considerate of other visitors

In summary, to follow LNT, you should “take only photos, leave only footprints.”

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Benefits of Wilderness

• Works as a filter, providing clean water and air
• Provides habitat for wildlife and preserves biodiversity
• Provides a place for outdoor recreational activities
• Works as a dynamic “laboratory” for medical/scientific research
• Benefits the local economy
• Aesthetic, spiritual, and existence value


 Four federal agencies manage and provide stewardship for our 109 million acres of wilderness:

• Bureau of Land Management: 6% of wilderness acreage
• Fish & Wildlife Service: 20% of wilderness acreage
• National Park Service: 41% of wilderness acreage
• Forest Service: 33% of wilderness acreage

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