Mark your calendars and save the dates of these exciting outdoor opportunities in the Trinity Alps Wilderness Area this 2023 summer season! Ascend is ecstatic to be offering a wide array of opportunities for adventure and stewardship for EVERYONE.
Youth Day Hike Series (June 19, 21, & July 6) – This introductory experience is designed for youth participants to enjoy an adventurous day in the outdoors with a trained Ascend Wilderness Guide. For the youngest age group of 6-9 years old a typical trip will be 2-4 miles. Older age groups (9-12, 12-15) will hike 5-8 miles round trip. Examples of hike destinations in the Trinity Alps include Lake Eleanor or Boulder Lakes for younger groups and Tangle Blue Lake or Stoddard Lake for an older group.
Youth Backpacking Trips – Ascend’s flagship program is a multi-day immersion youth backpack trip into wilderness, which has proven to foster personal and social development, leadership skills, and to spark interest in the stewardship of Trinity County’s environment, and beyond. During our trips we will have a variety of guests from various environmental careers joining the groups to teach participants about botany, fire science, Leave-No-Trace Wilderness Ethics, and more.
- Ages 9-11 (July 9-11) – This 3-day introductory backpacking trip is designed for youth who are just dipping their toes into independent outdoor adventures. Hiking distances are age appropriate and 2023 destinations are TBD.
- Ages 10-13 (July 22-26) – The 10-13 year old group will spend a full 5 days immersed in the backcountry of the Trinity Alps. The location of this trip is currently TBD, but is sure to have options for amazing vistas, alpine lakes, solitude, and communing as a group and in wilderness.
Youth Leadership Trip ages 12-14 (June 24-28) – For the 12-14 year old age group, Ascend offers a Leadership and Mentor training trip for youth who exhibit interest in a deeper wilderness experience or are considering being a Junior Wilderness Guide for future Ascend trips. During this backpacking trip youth will spend an afternoon participating in stewardship tasks in addition to supplemental leadership activities facilitated by Ascend Wilderness Guides for this specific trip. 2023 destination TBD.
Teen Trail Building & Work Experience Trip (June 23-29) – Ascend Wilderness Experience will offer a 7-day stewardship focused backpack trip for teens into the Trinity Alps Wilderness. The trip is open to teens ages 14-18 and will take place June 23-29th.
Four of the seven days will be devoted to stewardship activities while the remaining three days will be spent backpacking, hiking, and enjoying the back country. This trip offers valuable resume and skill building work experience and also serves the community and the wilderness by accomplishing important tasks under the leadership of Forest Service personnel and an Ascend Wilderness Guide. Participants should expect to work hard during days devoted to stewardship activities and will receive a stipend for their efforts.
Stewardship on the trip will include activities such as removing brush and digging. The trip is devoted to rehabilitating the trail system up Boulder Lakes trail to Foster Lake. It will include up to eight teens and all necessary gear, safety equipment, tools, training and food will be provided. The Forest Service will be providing pack mule support, which will transport all food, tools and camping equipment. Stewardship is a key element of this experience and we expect that all participants will actively participate in the project and maintain a positive attitude in a group setting throughout the trip. Participants on this trip will learn valuable skills and trail building techniques, especially if they have an interest in outdoor recreation career paths.
Teen Salmon River Fish Count (July 17-20) – New to Ascend’s offerings this year is an exciting opportunity for older teens to join the Salmon River Restoration Council for the annual Fish Count. This trip is designed for teens ages 17-18 and/or individuals who are pursuing education in environmental education, wildlife biology, etc. Participants will train with SRRC to identify fish populations and participate in the volunteer fish count, which involves navigating moderate stretches of river in wetsuits and snorkel gear. This river focused trip will also include a day of guided river rafting and removal of noxious weeds. Camping during this 4-day trip will take place at beautiful Nordheimer Campground along the Salmon River alongside youth crews from regional partners in the Klamath Mountains. As always, all gear, food, and transportation will be provided and Ascend Guides on this trip will be certified in Swift Water Rescue.
Adult/Multigenerational 2-day backpacking trip and/or day hike (July 29-30, Sept. 30) – Our Adult and Multigenerational hikes are open to all ages. We encourage teens to join this trip, however any participating youth under 15 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Stewardship is a key element of this experience and we expect that all participants, including youth, will actively participate in the project and maintain a positive attitude in a group setting throughout the trip. In 2023 we plan on hosting two trips. The first will be a 2-day backpacking trip in Canyon Creek that will hike 3 miles in to the sinks campground at the end of July. The second trip will be a day hike rehabilitating the East Weaver Lake trail from the top of Weaver Bally. Both trips will spend the day performing important maintenance on these popular trails and will include options for exploration and adventure.
Stewardship tasks involve brushing and clearing of trails, with some cross cut saw/log-outs with the supervision and guidance of trained Ascend guides and Forest Service personnel. All tools, food, trained guides and gear are provided.
Adult Stewardship – Waldorff Crossing (May 9-11) – Ascend is hosting a spring trip this year to care of this less travelled trail in the western Trinity Alps near the North Fork of the Trinity River. Waldorff Crossing is a lower elevation forested trail that provides the best access for pack mules to pick up specialists doing fish count dives down the North Fork of the Trinity River. Thus, Ascend Guides and participants will spend 3 days brushing to widen corridors and performing logouts to ensure safe access for users. **Applications for this trip are due ASAP**
Adult Stewardship Weekend – Rush Creek Lakes Trail (Oct. 14-15) – This 2-day adult car camping trip will work on the bottom 3 miles of Rush Creek Lakes Trail focusing on logging out fallen trees that are impeding this seldom used trail. Participants will hike 2-6 miles each day and car camp at Kinney Camp with their work crew. This is a great opportunity to meet like minded people, enjoy the camaraderie of working in a group, get great views along the trail, and train in safe use of hand tools and crosscut saws with certified guides.
Adult Backpacking Stewardship Trip (July 9-13/15) – Ascend Wilderness Experience will offer a stewardship focused backpack trip for adults into the Trinity Alps Wilderness that has the option to be either 5-days or 7-days depending on availability. We encourage participants to take full advantage of the full 7-day trip if possible!
Eight volunteers will have the opportunity to work alongside Forest Service and Ascend personnel in rehabilitating the trail system up Swift Creek. The area of focus is neglected and fire affected area around Parker Meadows where the trail needs to be rebuilt after the River Complex Fires in 2022.
Physical work will include activities such as removing brush and downed logs from trails, and digging to re-establish washed out or overgrown trail tread. Three of the five days will be devoted to stewardship activities while the remaining two days will be spent backpacking. All necessary group gear, safety equipment, tools, training, and food are provided in addition to pack mule support by the Forest Service to transport all tools, food and camping equipment into the backcountry. Any individual gear such as backpacks, sleeping bags, and sleeping pads are also available to borrow if needed.
This trip is guaranteed to be scenic and rewarding but also physically demanding. Volunteers must be prepared to live in the backcountry, be willing and able to work throughout the day on the project and maintain a positive attitude in a group setting.