wilderness area

noun, often capitalized W&A

Definition of wilderness area

: an often large tract of public land maintained essentially in its natural state and protected against introduction of intrusive artifacts (such as roads and buildings)

Examples of wilderness area in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Firefighters continued to focus on protecting structures at the ski area and search for areas to fight the fire along the rugged east flank of the wilderness area. Benjamin Romano, The Seattle Times, "Weekend lightning, wind spread wildfires across Washington state," 14 Aug. 2018 Public policy has badly overegged the incentive for homeowners to build in its tinder-dry forest and wilderness areas. Holman W. Jenkins, WSJ, "California Burns for Better Leaders," 15 Jan. 2019 Trump’s first stop on the continent was the west African country of Ghana—notable not for its wilderness areas but, historically, for being the major point of embarkation for African slaves. Klara Glowczewska, Town & Country, "Melania Trump Gave Us All a Valuable Lesson in How Not to Dress in Africa," 9 Oct. 2018 Zinke has presided over the largest rollback of federal land protections in US history, approved new development in wilderness areas, and opened up nearly all US coastal waters to offshore drilling. Umair Irfan, Vox, "Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke might face a criminal investigation," 5 Nov. 2018 The way lawmakers saw it, promoting the lands around Las Vegas as wilderness areas would diversify the tourism industry, attracting families — in addition to gamblers — to come to Vegas for recreation. Leah Sottile, Longreads, "Bundyville Chapter One: A War in the Desert," 15 May 2018 The pair were forced to spend a cold Monday night in the 63,960-acre wilderness area after getting lost while hiking, the California Highway Patrol's Valley Division Air Operations said on Facebook. Jordan Cutler-tietjen, sacbee, "Helicopter rescues hiker and her dog lost in Desolation Wilderness," 6 June 2018 The great challenge will be to produce enough food for this tremendous surge in population while also protecting enough wilderness areas to maintain some measure of the planet’s fast-depleting biodiversity. Mark Lynas, WSJ, "Confession of an Anti-GMO Activist," 22 June 2018 Olympic National Park is one of America's only wilderness areas that's uncrossed by highways and far from most commercial flight paths. Ken Jennings, Condé Nast Traveler, "Olympic National Park Is Home to the Quietest Spot in the Continental U.S.," 11 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'wilderness area.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of wilderness area

1928, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for wilderness area

The first known use of wilderness area was in 1928

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More Definitions for wilderness area

wilderness area


English Language Learners Definition of wilderness area

US : a large area of public land that is kept in its natural state

Comments on wilderness area

What made you want to look up wilderness area? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to affect and impair by alcohol or a drug

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