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This 15-day adventure, June 16-30, in the epic wildlands and communities of the San Juan Mountains, explores the beauty and challenges of our western landscapes through the lens of stewardship. With community partners from Arizona and Colorado, youth leaders will actively practice stewardship to build personal and community resilience and reduce the impacts of climate change.
American Experience engages youth in three spheres of stewardship: Sustainable Community Development, Environmental Education, and Conservation & Restoration.
Sustainable Community Development: While in Durango, CO students will try their hand in adobe, cob and straw bale construction and learn a thing or two about high-elevation, organic farming and ranching.
Environmental Education: Over a 3-day wilderness, backpacking adventure, students will hike through the high passes near Silverton, CO to experience alpine lakes, streams, forests and meadows. Here, they will gain awareness and understanding of the ecology, culture, and economics of the San Juan Mountains.
Conservation & Restoration: In the old mining town of Creede, CO students will contribute to watershed restoration by planting trees, building stream stabilization features, and monitoring water quality in important habitats for fish, moose, and other inhabitants.
ITINERARY (subject to change)
|June 16||Tucson, AZ to Flagstaff, AZ|
|June 17||Flagstaff, AZ to Durango, CO|
|June 18||Durango, CO|
|June 19||Durango, CO|
|June 20||Durango, CO|
|June 21||San Juan Mountains, near Silverton, CO|
|June 22||San Juan Mountains, near Silverton, CO|
|June 23||San Juan Mountains, near Silverton, CO|
|June 24||San Juan Mountains, near Silverton, CO|
|June 25||Creede, CO|
|June 26||Creede, CO|
|June 27||Creede, CO|
|June 28||Creede, CO|
|June 29||Creede, CO to Flagstaff, AZ|
|June 30||Flagstaff, AZ to Tucson, AZ|
- Be organized. Your belongings must be packed within a single, large backpack and a small daypack. This may be a challenge, but the practice of packing light and mobile will help you be more organized, prepared, and comfortable. Also, it will help you to be a good traveler and team member.
- While traveling, it may be rainy, windy, cold or hot, so pack lightweight, easy-to-dry clothing that can be worn in layers.
- Remember your personal medications, and a copy of the prescription (in case you need to purchase medication).
- Do not overpack with unnecessary items.
- Do not pack a cell phone. That’s right…, student cell phones are not allowed. Instructors will have a cell phone available.
- A group music list will be created for your enjoyment while traveling.
☐ 3-4 shirts (long and short sleeved shirts)
☐ 2 pair of pants (light cotton or nylon)
☐ 1 or 2 pair of shorts or capris
☐ Socks, including some heavier socks for hiking
☐ Pajamas – only for sleeping
☐ Underwear (enough for a 15 day trip!)
☐ Long underwear or thermal clothing (top and bottom)
☐ 1 sweatshirt, sweater, or a fleece jacket in case of cold temperatures.
☐ 1 light-weight rain jacket or windbreaker in case of rain and wind.
☐ Sneakers or comfortable walking shoes
☐ Hiking boots or sturdy walking shoes
☐ Flip flops for use at camp and in van
☐ Hat (baseball cap or sun hat)
☐ Personal medications and a copy of the prescription
☐ Personal toiletries (small containers of shampoo, soap, toothbrush, tampons, etc.)
☐ If needed, eyeglasses, contact lenses, contact lens solution. Extra pair of glasses and/or copy of the prescription.
☐ 1 bath towel & washcloth
☐ Travel Journal
☐ Watch with alarm
☐ Camera (rechargeable batteries and charger)
☐ Small pillow (does not need to fit in your backpack)
☐ Liner for your sleeping bag (a thin sheet or blanket)
☐ Recreational items (book, games, etc.). No radios – a group music list will be created for enjoyment while traveling.
ITE will provide:
☐ Day pack – for items used during the day (lunch, journal, extra clothing, etc.)
☐ Backpack – for all items used while traveling
☐ Sleeping bag and pad
☐ Other items: if you need any of the above items, please inquire with ITE. We may have items to share.