Join Reconnect Earth in Summer 2023 for an experience you’ll never forget: hiking, camping, and exploring social and environmental issues in Washington’s North Cascades mountain range. On one of our 4-9 day backpacking trips for college students and folks of roughly college age, you might sleep in a subalpine meadow, hike through groves of ancient old-growth trees, climb to the base of an alpine glacier, or stand on a ridge looking out at forest and mountains stretching away into the distance. Along the way we’ll discuss important topics like Indigenous land rights, colonization, impacts of climate change, and how make a difference on issues you care about.
Reconnect Earth trips are designed to be as accessible as possible, regardless of your income or level of experience in the outdoors. All of our trips have scholarship options, including scholarships covering up to about 80% of the tuition cost depending on the trip. And whether you’re a seasoned backpacker or have never slept in a tent before, we’ll make sure you have the support you need to thrive in the backcountry. Read on learn more about each experience:
Mount Baker Wilderness Immersion: July 13th-21st
Experience the mountain’s diverse natural environments, from subalpine meadows to giant glaciers to lush old-growth forests. We’ll spend the first part of the trip in Mount Baker National Recreation Area, visiting nearby viewpoints like Park Butte Lookout and Easton Glacier. Then, we will descend into the more primitive Mount Baker Wilderness and camp surrounded by ancient trees next to remote Elbow Lake.
During our time in the backcountry we’ll have plenty of time to delve into topics like Indigenous sovereignty and colonization, climate change, how to make a difference on issues you care about, and exploring our own relationships with the more-than-human environment. This 9-day trip is an ideal choice if you want to be truly immersed in a backcountry setting and perhaps stretch your edge a bit (though no prior backpacking experience is required). View more trip details. Tuition: $645
Forests and Peaks of North Cascades National Park: July 28th-August 3rd
On this 7-day trip we’ll follow the Bridge Creek Trail into the heart of North Cascades National Park, through forests of ancient cedars and Douglas-firs and valleys nestled between towering glacier-carved peaks. A highlight midway through the trip will be our day hike to the fire lookout on Goode Ridge, which on clear days offers stunning views of the surrounding mountain range. If we’re especially lucky, we might see some of the wildlife like black bears or martens (tree-dwelling members of the weasel family) who frequent this part of the park. Discussions we have along the way will focus on the human and natural history of the region and caring for more-than-human landscapes. View more trip details. Tuition: $510
Ready to join us in the mountains? Apply here (you’ll specify which trip you want to participate in on the form)
Mountain Glaciers and Meadows: August 18th-21st (female and non-binary participants only)
On this four-day trip especially for female and non-binary participants, get ready to spend four days exploring beautiful subalpine meadows and glacier-carved valleys in the National Recreation Area on Mount Baker, also known by its Indigenous name, Kulshan. We’ll hike to Park Butte Fire Lookout and the base of Easton Glacier, pausing to admire flowers, look for pikas and marmots among the boulders, and (weather permitting) take in amazing views. Our facilitated discussions will focus on root causes of environmental and social justice issues and how to harness your power as an agent of positive change. View more trip details. Tuition: $380
Cascade Pass Adventure: August 25th-27th
On this 2-night backpacking trip be prepared to experience some of the most stunning landscapes in a popular part of North Cascades National Park. We’ll start by hiking up and over Cascade Pass–keeping an eye out for marmots, mountain goats, and other wildlife–before descending into our campsite in a forested valley. Then, over the next couple days, we’ll hike to two of the most renowned and spectacular places in the national park: Horseshoe Basin and the Sahale Arm. Along the way we’ll talk about some of this special area’s unique ecosystems and issues that affect them today. This trip is a great choice for those looking to make the most of a relatively brief time in the backcountry. View more trip details.
Ready to join a trip? Take the first step and apply here! If you’re requesting a scholarship, you’ll have a chance to do so as part of the application process.
Want more information? Check out our summer trips Frequently Asked Questions page. For a preview of questions you’ll be asked to answer on the application form, see here.