Jackson, Wyo.— Wilderness Ventures, the oldest and most experienced adventure travel program for young people, offers unique Leadership Wilderness Adventures, International Adventures, and Leadership Expeditions for teenagers. These life-altering programs, set in some of the world’s most magnificent outdoor settings, are crafted for young adults who are just beginning their experiences in the outdoors or teenagers who are accustomed to outdoor life.
As Wilderness Ventures enters its 37th year of operation, the organization has successfully become the oldest and most experienced adventure travel program for young people. The organization was founded when owners Mike and Helen Cottingham led their initial group of ten young adults on an eight-week adventure throughout the Northern Rockies and the Pacific Northwest. Both have extensive experience in working with young adults. The enjoyment and satisfaction they gained from living in wilderness environments combined with their teaching experience prompted them to create Wilderness Ventures with the hope that many young men and women would be given an opportunity to have a similar experience.
“I have always wanted to see Europe for its awesome natural landscapes: the Alps, the Seine River, and so much more,” said Charlotte Corbo, who will be participating in the Southern Europe International Adventure in 2009. “I just wanted to see Europe by traveling on my own two feet and getting away from modern society for a bit to enjoy the natural gifts that are given to us for free—and without electricity.”
Wilderness Ventures offers amazing expeditions like these:
Each of the classic domestic leadership adventures, grouped by age, offers unequalled opportunities for personal growth. Participants in these programs will broaden their horizons through explorations in the finest wilderness and outdoor settings imaginable. It is within these remarkable and unique environments that students discover how to be adaptable, resourceful, and creative while engaging in a variety of challenging and fun activities. Leaders provide a nurturing and non-competitive environment, enabling each individual to grow and establish his or her own “comfort zone” beyond their pre-conceived limits. Through the emphasis on tolerance, encouragement, acceptance, and respect for others, Wilderness Ventures leaders enable groups to develop dynamic teams and accomplish profound individual and group goals.
The International Adventures take visitors to unique and exciting locations around the globe. Each destination is carefully selected to be sure it is both politically stable and visitor friendly. The small groups of ten to fifteen students and two to three highly qualified leaders allow for an amazing opportunity to explore other cultures firsthand, while engaging in a wide variety of fun and challenging adventure activities such as white water rafting, sea kayaking, trekking, snorkeling, sailing, and scuba diving. Depending upon the trip chosen, the itineraries and activities vary. Students could be hut-to-hut hiking in the mountains of Europe, sailing from island to island aboard a ship in the Galapagos, or traveling by sea kayak or backpack, spending nights in remote beachside villages or family rainforest farms. Regardless of the trip, students will have a life-changing experience and make friends for life.
The Leadership Expeditions provide wonderful extended wilderness travel for students who wish to concentrate their outdoor activities in one or two distinct environments. Because of their duration, groups are usually re-supplied by horse packer or by air drop. On expeditions of two to four weeks, participants learn and practice backcountry skills over and over again. During the course of these expeditions, students will learn to do everything themselves, from cooking a delicious meal to selecting a perfect campsite. The leadership curriculum not only emphasizes the development and perfection of “hard” outdoor skills but also teaches participants how to lead others in your group-skills which will translate into real life situations, in school, at work, or in sports. The emphasis on the “how’s” of leading and the importance of the group experience clearly separates Wilderness Ventures from other nationally known outdoor leadership schools.
“While I’m on this International Adventure, I hope to learn more about different cultures in Europe. My grandfather was from Barcelona, so I really wanted to learn about the Catalonian culture and such. I just find it fascinating how diverse the cultures are over there”, said Charlotte Corbo. “In addition, I hope that when I am in this outdoor environment, I will gain a better appreciation for the environment and find more active ways to benefit it.”