Wild Country Trek
An introduction to backpacking and the wilderness, science, and culture of New Mexico
The Wild Country Trek is an expedition designed for teens who are excited to get out and explore the great outdoors! This is an exploratory, yet challenging trek designed for both newcomers, and outdoor enthusiasts. The itinerary includes hiking, music, art, science, culinary skills, archaeology, adventure, and personal development as well as time to learn basics of expedition planning, packing, and preparation. It’s a great fit for young teens with a sense of adventure and there is no need for substantial wilderness experience.
The two sessions of Wild Country Trek have different itineraries and the itineraries vary from year to year (see Trek Description below for a sample itinerary). Both sessions will spend the majority of their time exploring the wild places of New Mexico and will have about a week to get to know Basecamp. While out exploring New Mexico, WCT trekkers will be introduced to backpacking through a short overnight trip followed by a 3-4 day trip later in their itinerary. Some years they head to the Gila National Forest and experience abundant water in the desert as well as the first Wilderness in the United States. Other years they head to the Pecos Wilderness and are stunned by mountain vistas and alpine lakes. Along the way, WCT trekkers will have the opportunity to meet with local artists, park rangers, or scientists to dive deeper into the history, culture, and ecology of the Southwest. Their knowledgeable staff will support them through challenges whether that’s the first time summiting a mountain, figuring out how to resolve conflict in small group settings, or learning to be a supportive group member. By the end, trekkers come away with new friends, outdoor skills, great memories, and self-confidence after three weeks of independence and exploration.
Dates: Session 1: June 19-July 10; Session 2: July 4-July 26
Minimum Group Size: 8* (In multiple small groups to abide by NMDOH group size restrictions if needed)
Maximum Group Size: 20* (In multiple small groups to abide by NMDOH group size restrictions if needed)
Elevation Range: 5,000 to 12,000 feet
Average Pack Weight: 30-35 lbs.
Course Starts and Ends: Albuquerque, NM
Full Cost: $3,850, scholarships available