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Immerse yourself in the majestic land and cultural heritage of the American Southwest on an expedition filled with adventure. At The Gulch, we take you on world-class backpacking and hiking excursions, and our expeditions are much more than that— you’ll explore Southwestern art mediums, natural sciences, arid farming, and ancient archaeology.  Plus you’ll backpack to pristine vistas, rock climb volcanic formations, mountain bike through ponderosa forest and so much more!  Take this opportunity to learn from the people and cultural traditions of this place we call home. Come explore with us. The adventure awaits…

Bachechi Speaker Series

Geology

Geology

Come explore some places off the beaten path and learn about the incredible geology and paleontology of the Southwest. There are amazing experiences for those who are brand new as well as those who would consider themselves experts. 

Native Arts

Native Arts

Learn a new skill in our rustic, open air studio from a skilled teacher. 

Cultures Past and Present

Cultures Past and Present

Step into a rich world of cultural history and explore the connections between those who have come before us and the people who live here today. 

Birding

Birding

Whether you’re an experienced birder or just bird curious, we have an option for you! 

Bird Trek Arizona

Bird Trek Arizona

Date: May 16th-24th, 2020
Ages 21+
6-12 members
Cost: $1450

Adventure

Adventure

Join us for rock climbing, canyoneering, mountain biking, and more! 

Archaeo-Astronomy

Archaeo-Astronomy

Dates: August 3-11, 2019
21 +
10-20 members
Cost: $1395

Gaze at the same stars as the people of centuries ago, in the lands and places many of them lived. Spend time taking in the sites and sounds of ancient (and current) desert life in Canyon de Chelly. Spend your evenings under star-filled skies gazing into telescopes and learning more about the relationship of the night skies and the early people of this area. Against the poetic backdrop of the red rock mesas, mountain vistas and pinon deserts of American Southwest, you will find yourself immersed in ancient culture, relaxed by days of living and sleeping outdoors, and inspired by the resilience and intellect of a people who have called this rugged landscape, “home”.Expect lots of good stories, laughter and great food, too!
Zuni Mountain YCC (Employment for Ages 16-18)

Zuni Mountain YCC (Employment for Ages 16-18)

Dates: 2020 dates TBD
Co-ed: Ages 16-18
10 crew members/session
Application open until positions are filled – Interviews begin TBD

Work opportunity for 16-18 year olds looking for professional development opportunities in the outdoor industry.

Prairie Trek (boys 14-16)

Prairie Trek (boys 14-16)

Date: June 22-July 27, 2020
Boys: Ages 14-16
15-20 members
Cost: $4900

Two backpacking excursions; live and work on a Navajo farm; learn to rock climb or master your technique; explore ancient Puebloan ruins; in-depth exploration of the science, art, archaeology, and food of the Southwest.
Turquoise Trail (girls 14-16)

Turquoise Trail (girls 14-16)

Date: June 22-July 27, 2020
Girls: Ages 14-16
15-20 members
Cost: $4900

Two backpacking excursions in Utah and New Mexico; live and work on a Navajo farm; explore ancient Puebloan ruins; in-depth exploration of the science, art, archaeology, and food of the Southwest.

Mountain Desert Trek (AGES 16-18)

Mountain Desert Trek (AGES 16-18)

Date: June 22 – Aug 6, 2020
Ages 16-18
All genders
15-20 members
Cost: $5900

Three backpacks in the mountains and desert of the American Southwest. Live and work on a Navajo Farm; develop your own projects in art, science, archaeology, food. Longest and most challenging of our expeditions.
Paleontology Trek (ages 14-18)

Paleontology Trek (ages 14-18)

Date: June 20-July 6, 2020
Ages 14-18
All Genders
10-15 members
$3275 (College Credit Included)

Find and excavate real dinosaur bones with professional paleontologists; earn four college credits for your work; learn to live and camp in the exotic badlands of New Mexico; “behind the scenes” tour of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History.
Outfit Expedition (ages 10-12)

Outfit Expedition (ages 10-12)

Session 1: June 20-July 6, 2020
Session 2: July 11-July 29, 2020
All genders: Ages 10-12
15-20 members
Cost: $2725
Introduction to outdoor living for younger and first-time campers. 10 Days at the Cottonwood Gulch Base Camp, summit Mount Taylor to watch the sunrise, Explore mushroom rocks, lava tubes, one-day river trip on the San Juan River.

Wild Country Trek (ages 13-15)

Wild Country Trek (ages 13-15)

Session 1: June 20 – July 11, 2020
Session 2: July 6 – July 27, 2020
Session 3: July 16 – August 6, 2020
Ages 13-15
(12 by instructor approval)
All Genders
10-20 members
Cost: $3550

Introduction to backpacking and rock climbing. 4-day backpack, explore the volcanoes of New Mexico, wander through Chaco Canyon, restore a New Mexico wetland, 7 days at the Cottonwood Gulch Base Camp.
Adventure Conservation Trek (ages 15-18)

Adventure Conservation Trek (ages 15-18)

Dates: June 20 – July 11, 2020
Ages 15-18
10-15 members
All Genders
Cost: $3275
Explore incredible climbing areas in the four corners region, meet local characters and adventure enthusiasts, and help save our planet at the same time! This trek will focus around conservation, rock climbing, mountain biking and general adventure in the Southwest.

Art & Music Trek (ages 15-18)

Art & Music Trek (ages 15-18)

Date: July 16 – Aug 6, 2020
All Genders: Ages 15-18
10-15 members
Cost: $3275

Let the wilderness inspire your art and music; work with professional artists throughout the Southwest; create pottery, rugs, and painting with Native American Artisans; spend two weeks as an artist-in-residence at our Cottonwood Gulch Base Camp, and one week traveling through New Mexico’s wilderness to inspire your creative side.
Get Outdoors (G.O.) Trek

Get Outdoors (G.O.) Trek

Session 1: June 20-June 26, 2020
Session 2: July 11-July 17, 2020
All Genders: Ages 12-14
15-20 members
Cost: $725

Join us for 7 fun-filled days of adventure, art and STEM programming. Located at our base camp in the Zuni Mountains of Western New Mexico, we will rock climb, hike, mountain bike and go caving. We will also learn how to work with pottery and silversmithing tools in our Arts Workshop.

Flocks and Rocks

Flocks and Rocks

Date: June 6th-June 14th, 2020
Ages 21+
10-16 members
Cost: $1450

Join geologist Jack Oviatt and ornithologist Arch McCallum for a fusion of their disciplines as we explore a little-known corner of the Southwest—Leopold Country. Aldo Leopold (1885-1948) created the academic field of wildlife management, helped found the wilderness movement, and proposed the Land Ethic as a guide to our place in nature. We will visit places from his early career that inspired his world view and were immortalized in his classic A Sand County Almanac, as well as learning about his connection to New Mexico through his wife Estella Bergere, a scion of the formidable Luna family. Along the way Jack will enthrall us with inanimate wonders from Pleistocene lake shores to Precambrian quartzite and Arch will reveal how birds common in Canada and others fond of Mexican deserts can all be found along our transect from the Rio Grande to the White Mountains. We’ll visit the radio telescopes at the Very Large Array (VLA) along the way. There is something for every naturalist on this expedition. Expect lots of good stories, laughter, and great food, too!
Family Trek

Family Trek

Date: TBD
Ages: All Ages
Cost: TBD

Unplug for a while, and explore the stunning Southwest with your family. Suitable for all ages regardless of camping experience.

- a limited number of scholarships are available. Email or call us for more information or an application -

The price for each expedition includes everything (food, transportation, staff, etc.) once you arrive in Albuquerque. Trekkers are responsible for their own transportation to and from the Albuquerque Airport, for personal spending money during the expedition, and for bringing the necessary personal gear on the packing list of their chosen expedition.

*Our cancellation policy

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