2022 Teen Expeditions

All participants receive a full-tuition scholarship. These expeditions are offered at no cost to the participant.
We are committed to creating a more diverse and welcoming outdoor community for Alaskans.
Who is eligible to apply?

Alaska teens who are excited about developing a stronger sense of community while learning outdoor skills. No outdoor or camping experience is required to attend these trips. No technical outdoor gear is required, we provide the essentials. Trips are for ages 13-18 years old. Students must meet the trip age requirement prior to the start date of the trip. Student Leader opportunities are paid positions available for high school and college students ages 17+ with previous leadership experience.

If you are interested in applying to become a Student Leader for one of our courses, please email education@akgeo.org.

All of the AK Geo teen expeditions start and end in Anchorage. If you live outside of the Anchorage-area and would like to attend a trip, we will provide transportation, food, and lodging once in Anchorage on the start date of the trip (orientation day) and the morning after the trip.

We are still accepting applications for 2022
Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis after April 11.
Questions? Check our Frequently Asked Questions page or contact education@akgeo.org | 907-771-8466

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Nome Archaeology Camp

We partner with National Park Service to host a Nome Archaeology Camp where teens explore the cultural heritage and history of the Bering Straits region. Teens investigate caribou drive lines, map cairn and tent sites, learn the tools to scan and re-print artifacts, and work alongside community elders to identify and catalog items. Teens become immersed in the cultural and natural landscape and become more familiar with National Park Service’s efforts to preserve the history of the region.

Open to high school students from the Bering Strait and Northwest Arctic regions. One trip offering. Nominations open Spring 2022. Check back for more details.

Photo Gallery

Homer Shorebirds Festival

May 5-8
Anchorage, AK

This program has passed – we are no longer accepting applications

Join us for an all-expense paid trip to the Homer Shorebirds Festival!  We will participate in several Festival-specific activities, including cool workshops, a boat tour, kayaking trip, and hiking. Trip participants will stay in a B&B lodge, and explore areas around Gull Island, Yukon Island in the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge, and tour the Pratt Museum’s new exhibit. Come enjoy the area in and around Homer for the spring bird migration, together with other people interested in shorebirds, birding, and getting outside.    

Ages 14-18. Program open to first 7 applicants. Please see “Course Details” for more information. Shorebird participants may still apply for and attend a summer expedition. Please note there is no pre/post course logistical support for students for this trip.

To join waitlist: please email education@akgeo.org with your name, age, contact information, and a short statement on why you would like to attend.

Schedule Covid-19 Policies

Please note there is no pre/post course logistical support for students for this trip.

This is a youth trip for current HS students. Teens on this trip will participate in several scheduled activities, including: an art workshop where they can paint birds on canvas or pottery, a Gulls and Glacier boat tour with a naturalist to view nesting birds and learn about glaciology, a day-long kayaking trip at Yukon Island, photography walk with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Rangers, and a film festival. Bring warm outdoor layers, rainwear, and a willingness to learn and explore, rain or shine! 

Ages 14- 18. Program open to the first 7 applicants. The trip will be from Thursday, May 5, 9:30 am to Sunday, May 8, returning to Anchorage at approximately 4pm. 

We will gather at the Alaska Geographic Building. 421 W 1st Ave, Anchorage AK 99501  

To Register please contact education@akgeo.org  Please include your name, age and contact information. Please provide a short statement on why you would like to attend.  

Questions:
Chris Conlon
907-771-8482

Iditarod National Historic Trail Building & Camping

May 31 – June 6
Anchorage, AK

Be part of Alaska’s history by constructing a new section of the Iditarod National Historic Trail, and a proposed section of the Alaska Long Trail – a significant trail project for Alaska. Spend your days immersed in the Chugach National Forest while working alongside rangers on a timeless project that will be used by Alaskan’s and visitors for generations while following in the footsteps of AK Geo alum by continuing the sections of trail they build in 2018 and 2019. Bring these newfound trail building skills to celebrate National Trails Day with Alaska Trails where you will have the opportunity to teach and work hand-in-hand with volunteers to create a better Alaska together. End each day at the small, peaceful Ptarmigan Campground, nestled in the trees along the Ptarmigan Creek. Eat warm food, enjoy a campfire, and explore the wonders of the creek while creating life-long bonds with your crew.

Ages 15-18. Please see “Course Details” for physical requirements. No experience required. 

Course Details Covid-19 Policies

Please note: We are not able to provide lodging or transportation in Anchorage before May 31st due to the holiday. Our trip will be leaving Anchorage at 12:00pm on May 31st.

Johnson Pass Backpacking

June 15 – June 20
Anchorage, AK

Immerse yourself in the spectacular peaks, whitewater creeks, and lush forested and alpine terrain of the Kenai Mountains. Backpack 23-miles along a section of the Iditarod National Historic Trail and the old Johnson Military Road, a wagon road that connected the boom towns along the Turnagain Arm. Learn fundamental backpacking skills while contributing to the longevity of the Chugach National Forest by helping with basic trail maintenance such as dispersing fire rings, brushing, trash pickup, collecting GPS coordinates to rangers. You will have the opportunity to explore this area deeply as you move to a new camp every night and meet with Chugach National Forest rangers, staff, and trail crews. 

Ages 13-15. Please see “Course Details” for physical requirements. No experience required.

Blackstone Bay Kayaking & Stewardship

June 24 – July 2 (*previously advertised as July 3 end date)
Anchorage, AK

Spend 9 days living, camping, and working on a glacial moraine beach in a stunning fjord on the western edge of Prince William Sound. Take a water taxi from Whittier to watch marine wildlife and listen to the loud, unique glacial sounds from Blackstone Glacier while working alongside Chugach National Forest backcountry rangers and staff on important conservation projects. Follow in the footsteps of AK Geo alum by further developing a more sustainable campground at 17-Mile Beach camp and spend each afternoon learning fundamental sea kayaking skills in the calm glacial fjord. Embrace the rest days to explore the coastline wherever the group desires via kayak or foot. Few people get to spend such a long time in this beautiful location; this unique experience will allow you to connect with and learn from the Prince William Sound with it’s community and rangers alongside you. In the evenings, enjoy a large basecamp where you can create life-long relationships with other Alaska teens. 

Ages 15-18. Please see “Course Details” for physical requirements. Participants must be under 250lbs because of the size capacity of our kayaks. No experience required.

Resurrection Pass Backpacking

June 26 – July 1 (*previously advertised as July 2 end date)
Anchorage, AK

Experience the remarkable landscapes of the Kenai Mountains and the Chugach National Forest along the classic Resurrection Pass trail. Backpack through 44-miles of a stunning glacial valley, experience various ecosystems, and explore a new camp each night while building self-confidence and community with other Alaska teens. Contribute to the longevity of Alaska’s only National Forest – the Chugach National Forest by stopping along the way to assist in basic trail maintenance. Connect and network with Chugach National Forest rangers, staff, and trail crews during this experience.  

This trip is offered to Anchorage-based teens and Refugee & Immigrant Services clients. Ages 15-18. Please see “Course Details” for physical requirements. No experience required.

Eshamy Bay Sea Kayaking & Stewardship

July 6 – July 12
Anchorage, AK

Look for invasive species and explore the calm, peaceful water of Eshamy Bay. This unique community building experience is your opportunity to create a healthier Prince William Sound while learning from Chugach National Forest backcountry rangers and Chugach tribal members from the Chugach Regional Resources Commission. Guest scientists and local experts will be part of the expedition, including marine and wildlife biologists, community leaders, and public land management organizations. As a group, you will take knowledge from their experiences while you discuss with your AK Geo instructors to plan a full-day kayaking and hiking excursion before your trip ends. Enjoy the marine wildlife and peaceful Prince William Sound while building self-confidence and developing life-long friendships with other Alaska teens.

Ages 13-15. Please see “Course Details” for physical requirements. Participants must be under 250lbs because of the size capacity of our kayaks. No experience required.

Lost Lake Backpacking & Glaciology

July 8 – July 14
Anchorage, AK

Immerse yourself in the rugged peaks, high alpine meadows, alpine lakes, rainforests, and glaciers of the Chugach National Forest and Kenai Fjords National Park in one remarkable experience. Backpack to a new camp every night, enjoying warm food around a campfire while creating life-long bonds with other Alaska teens. Create a unique connection to the Chugach National Forest by participating in basic trail maintenance to keep the Lost Lake and Primrose Trails healthy for continued use. After days of backpacking, enjoy a drive to the exceptional Exit Glacier in Kenai Fjords National Park to meet with their rangers and discuss how glaciology affects your community.  

Ages 13-15. Please see “Course Details” for physical requirements. No experience required.

Blackstone Bay to Culross Passage Sea Kayaking Expedition

July 18 – July 28
Anchorage, AK

A true expedition in the spectacular Prince William Sound. Paddle across glacial fjords and through island passages to a new camp each night while creating lifelong friendships with other Alaska teens. Experience ultimate freedom as you and your group kayaks with everything you need for the week. Learn outdoor living skills, how to read marine charts, and embrace the simplicity of knowing all you have do each day is kayak to your next camp. You will contribute to the longevity of the beautiful Prince William Sound by stopping along the way to help with basic maintenance, such as dispersing fire rings, brushing, trash pickup, and sending GPS coordinates to rangers where camps need more assistance. Spend the evenings cooking food and enjoying time next to a fire on peaceful beach camps. 

Ages 16-18. Please see “Course Details” for physical requirements. Participants must be under 250lbs because of the size capacity of our kayaks. No experience required.

Denali Field Camp: Session I

July 24 – July 29
Anchorage, AK

Experience the untamed wilderness of Denali National Park in a way that few get to – a week side by side with National Park Rangers, Scientists, Cultural Specialists, and Sled Dogs. Explore the ecology and cultural heritage of Denali National Park, learn about park science, participate in Citizen Science, and practice wilderness travel skills. You will be able to enjoy the quiet of nature while camping in tents at a peaceful campground in Denali National Park. Deeply immerse into Denali with a night at our AK Geo and NPS Teklanika Field Camp, enjoying the last night with your new friends with a cozy yurt and wall tents.

Ages 13-15. Please see “Course Details” for physical requirements. No experience required.

Culross Passage Sea Kayaking Exploration

August 1 – August 8
Anchorage, AK

Paddle in this island passage amongst massive Chugach peaks while developing lasting bonds with other Alaska teens. Learn fundamentals of camping, kayaking, and navigation while your group decides where to paddle and explore each day. Experience unique vantage points of the Prince William Sound on short hikes to vistas and lakes while keeping an eye out for humpbacks, orcas, and seals. Contribute to the longevity of the Prince William Sound by stopping along the way to help with basic maintenance, such as dispersing fire rings, brushing, trash pickup, and sending GPS coordinates to rangers where camps need more assistance.  Spend peaceful evenings at beach camps with your new friends.

Ages 13-15. Please see “Course Details” for physical requirements. Participants must be under 250lbs because of the size capacity of our kayaks. No experience required.

Denali Field Camp: Session II

July 31 – Aug 5
Anchorage, AK

Experience the untamed wilderness of Denali National Park in a way that few get to – a week side by side with National Park Rangers, Scientists, Cultural Specialists, and Sled Dogs. Explore the ecology and cultural heritage of Denali National Park, learn about park science, participate in Citizen Science, and practice wilderness travel skills. You will be able to enjoy the quiet of nature while camping in tents at a peaceful campground in Denali National Park. Deeply immerse into Denali with a night at our AK Geo and NPS Teklanika Field Camp, enjoying the last night with your new friends with a cozy yurt and wall tents.

Ages 13-18. Please see “Course Details” for physical requirements. No experience required.

Our Instructors

Alyssa

Alyssa

Alyssa, originally from a small town in Pennsylvania, has been working in the outdoors since her first seasonal job brought her to Skagway, Alaska back in 2008. With over a decade of experience across the cruise, resort, and luxury travel industries, she has been known to make bucket list adventures come true. Her passion for exploring has taken her all across North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa, which has inspired her to pursue a career that allows her to work in some of the most enchanting places in the world. As a travel professional, wilderness guide, and Leave No Trace educator, she endeavors to support individuals and organizations within the outdoor and tourism industries to become more sustainable and eco-conscious, especially in Alaska, as climate change continues to present ever increasing challenges throughout the state. Alyssa is a Wilderness First Responder.

Joey

Joey

Joey is our Logistics Coordinator. He ensures that all the trips have the gear, food, and all the little things you forget to think about that are needed to be successful while on an expedition. Joey is originally from New England and moved to Alaska in April 2021. Joey’s professional experience in the outdoors has been through trail construction and outdoor education throughout various parts of the United States, which has extended into volunteer engagement, at-risk youth education, and leading many backpacking trips. Joey worked on the Chugach National Forest in Girdwood last season and really enjoyed exploring the area, especially sea kayaking in the Prince William Sound. Joey had such a good time here in Alaska that he decided to stay for longer than just a season, and is now a student at Alaska Pacific University working on a degree in Outdoor Studies. Joey is a Wilderness First Responder.

Kaden

Kaden

Born in Florida, Kaden knew the heat and flat landscapes were not meant for him. He moved to Valdez, Alaska in 2015 after taking a gap year to explore on extended expeditions in Chilean Patagonia. He has been Kayak and Glacier Guide out of Valdez since 2015 and more recently worked as a Wilderness Therapy Guide with Alaska Crossings out of Wrangell, AK. Kaden is excited to share with you his knowledge and passion about the Alaskan landscape, coastline, and history. He is certified as a Wilderness First Responder, Leave No Trace Master Educator, and ACA (American Canoe Association) Level 2 Coastal Kayaking Instructor.