Olympic Sea to Summit Highlights
A multi-day sea kayaking trip in the San Juan Islands sets this trip apart, plus Olympic Natl' Park ~ it’s an Alpengirl Win!
DatesJul 18 - Jul 31, 2021
Ages12-14 (enter 7th-9th)
Tuition$3195 (airfare not incl.)
- Camp in Washington state
- Hike, explore Deception Pass
- 3-day Kayak San Juan Islands
- Rock Climb Mt Erie
- 2 Olympic backpacking trips
- Swim in oceans, lakes, rivers
- Coast Hike & Beach Camp
- Tidepool exploration
In Jillians words, 'Alpengirl rocks!' Jillian had an experience she will never forget! She came home from the Washington trip more confident and more mature than I have ever seen her. She learned that she could exceed her own expectations for herself, that she could work harder...
A Girls Summer Adventure Camp in Washington Olympic Mountains & San Juan Islands
From ocean tide pools to lush rainforests to alpine lakes - this Washington state summer camp will have you brimming over with enthusiasm for the wild places of the Pacific Northwest!
Set in Washington State's San Juan Islands and Olympic Peninsula, where ecological diversity abounds, this multi-adventure Alpengirl trip boasts two of our favorite backpacking trips as well as a sea-kayaking expedition guaranteed to dazzle the senses. The first spectacular hiking portion of the camp leads you out of the rainforest and up near Hurricane Ridge into the peaks of the Olympic Mountains, where you'll find yourself standing in a field of purple gentians and yellow glacier lilies, while admiring a 360-degree view of snowy peaks and Mount Olympus in the distance. A second backpacking adventure takes you backpacking in the rugged and scenic Pacific Coastal section of Olympic National park, where waves and sea stacks dominate the views.
If these best-of-the-best backpacking trips aren’t enough to get you to lace up your hiking boots, we’ll boost your inspiration by adding a 3-day overnight sea kayaking trip in the San Juan Islands, hiking and exploring local trails, rock climbing at Mount Erie, hot springs soaking, a campfire on the beach, and a grand finale in Port Townsend!
Day 1: Arriving at SeaTac International Airport in Seattle, WA, your Alpenguides will greet you and introduce you to the rest of your camp group. Icebreakers, name games, and get-to-know-you fun abounds before you and your new expedition mates hop in the van and drive to our first campsite.
Once we arrive, we'll learn how to set up our tents and enjoy the first of many delicious and fresh camp meals before settling into our tents for the night.
Day 2: Waking up refreshed and renewed, you'll grab your sleeping pad, head outside to an open space under the trees nearby, and set up for your first daily morning yoga session. After a strong morning stretch, we’ll fill our bellies with a yummy Alpengirl breakfast - perhaps Peach Cinnamon Pancakes - before packing up to meet our sea kayaking guides.
This afternoon we’ll enjoy a trail hike to reach the highest point on Whidbey Island at Deception Pass for great views of the Salish Sea, Mt Baker and the Cascade Peaks in the distance.
Days 3-5: It’s time for our first expedition! For the next three days, we’ll be on a sea kayaking and camping trip in the beautiful San Juan Islands.
First we’ll arrive to the islands by ferry to meet our friendly and knowledgable sea kayaking guides. The guides will help us pack our camping gear into boats, explain our route and provide us with an introduction to sea kayak paddling, handling and safety. Then, we’ll head out in our dual kayaks, with an Alpengirl at each helm! We’ll paddle about 2-3 hours to reach an island beach where we set up camp and gather firewood for a campfire tonight.
On day 2 of kayaking we’ll enjoy a full-day paddle around the island or to another nearby island and have opportunities for learning about natural history, exploring the intertidal areas, going birding or appreciating other local wildlife knowledge that the guides have to share with us. This afternoon’s adventure may allow us to see eagles, herons, otters, and seals with pups. We could opt for a sunset sea kayak or sunset hike on this night.
On our final day of kayaking, we’ll pack up our gear into the boats again and paddle back to our starting point and return by ferry back to the mainland. Tonight we’ll get wild with an Alpenolympic event and perhaps even a themed costume party dinner.
Day 6: The adventure never stops as we head from ocean to land. An afternoon of rock climbing on the solid rock of Mt Erie is in store, and at 1300 ft above sea level, it’s the highest point around with awesome views. We’ll learn proper climbing and belaying technique and even the girl who has never been on a wall before will get to call herself a climber at the day’s end.
We’ll be taking another ferry tonight as we make our way to a campsite in the Olympic Peninsula, where we will prepare for the best backpacking trip ever!
Day 7: Today is a rest and re-supply day with showers, and relaxation before our upcoming backpacking trips. There’s lots we can do today, it’s girls choice! Tonight may also be a great night for the Alpenwear Fashion Show.
Days 8-10: Before we arrive at the trailhead, your experienced Alpenguides will teach you how to properly pack your backpack, lift it safely onto your back, and adjust and carry it throughout the expedition. Packing only the essentials, we’ll leave our van and extra gear behind, grab our cameras, and hit the trail!
We'll be backpacking a scenic alpine loop near Hurricane Ridge in the Olympic Mountain Range. Stream-carved valleys, mountain lakes, and wildflowers will catch our eye, and a day hike will take us into stunning views of the surrounding peaks and glaciers. We'll cover about 14 miles in total, and have our backpacking confidence nailed when we return to the trailhead and head for the coast.
Days 11-12: The beach is our destination for an overnight backpack on one of the most stunning stretches of coastline in North America. Our route winds through the majestic trees of the rainforest, down to the pebbly shores of the Pacific. A 5.5 mile coastal hike will take us up and over several headlands on our way to a beachside campsite. We'll check out the local tidepool life, have some beach time, and who knows, maybe even dip our toes in the surf! Tucked into the forest, the booming waves will lull us to sleep on our last night in the backcountry.
In the morning, we'll say goodbye to the beach and rainforest, hiking back to the trailhead, and we'll say hello to our front country campsite overlooking the Straits of Juan de Fuca and the distant shores of Canada. We'll get cleaned up with hot showers tonight!
Day 13: For our last hurrah together, we’ll be able to sleep-in a little bit and then after yoga and breakfast we'll explore tidepools near our campsite. Then we'll start our drive back towards Seattle with a brief stop to explore the heart of downtown Port Angeles or Port Townsend where we enjoy window shopping and treats before arriving to our next campsite where we will have our traditional end of session awards ceremony and celebrate with our new Alpenfriends!
Day 14: It’s time to go home! Exchanging hugs with your friends, you’ll depart from SeaTac International Airport in Seattle, WA, knowing that you’ve had a ton of fun and accomplished great things as an Alpengirl and will be a part of our fantastic community for life. See you next summer!
PLEASE NOTE: Alpengirl reserves the right to cancel or alter any aspect of a program before or during a program, including program itinerary, activities or location for reason including but not limited to weather, environment, logistics or health hazards. If itinerary changes occur, we will substitute comparable alternatives, if possible. If there are significant itinerary changes, parent will be notified by email.
Trip Campsites & Amenities
Eight nights are spent in tents in public “front country” campgrounds where we have pre-assigned campsites with neighbors and campground hosts nearby, running potable water, and private outhouses or flushing toilets.
Six nights are spent in tents in wilderness “back country” areas where we will purify our water before drinking and learn and practice basic Leave No Trace camping skills such as how to select a campsite, how to go to the bathroom, and how to keep clean outdoors. ALL backcountry campsites in this itinerary have an outhouse available to us.
Why Choose This Trip
Girls who are looking for an adventure of land and sea in some of the most beautiful landscapes in the world will love this Olympic Sea to Summit session. This trip will have any outdoorsy girl anticipating her next backpacking trip the minute she gets home. From ocean to rainforest to alpine air, this trip isn’t one to be missed! If you like sea kayaking and hiking coastal areas and living in the mountains too - this is the trip for you! Limited to 8 girls in the group.