Our Backyard

Cascadia Adventure Education School is based in the heart of the Cascade Mountain Range beneath snowcapped 12,276’ Mount Adams, a wilderness region surrounded by a spectacular landscape of forests, rivers, waterfalls, and mountains.  We can’t say enough about the natural treasures in the region that await your visit.  Here are a few notable destinations we will explore depending on what course you take:

Gifford Pinchot National Forest

This vast forest of 1.3 million acres includes old growth forests, pristine lakes, alpine meadows, and a section of the famous Pacific Crest Trail.  Mt. St. Helens, an active volcano and snowcapped Mt. Adams, are center pieces of the Cascade Mountain Range and tower over the Gifford Pinchot National Forest.  Here we’ll explore, set up a backcountry camp and participate in an environmental service project.

Mt. Adams Wilderness Area

We’ll trek high into the alpine regions and access the seldom visited east side of Mt. Adams – a designated wilderness area.  Here you will learn no trace camping skills, glissade on summertime snow fields, glass the glacier carved valleys for signs of mountain goats, and enjoy the solitude of camping in the wild above timberline.  Secluded mountain lakes invite a swim and remarkable viewpoints will reveal up to five Cascade Mountains including: Mt. Adams, Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Rainier, Mt. Hood, and Mt. Jefferson.

Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area

Known for its world class waterfalls and lush forest, the spectacular gorge is home to the mighty Columbia River.  The Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area will serve as our backdrop while you hone your kayaking skills, learn about river rescue techniques or practice your rock climbing moves on local cliffs and crags.

White Salmon Wild and Scenic River

Many students say rafting down the Class IV rapids of the White Salmon River is definitely a highlight of any Cascadia course.  You’ll become part of a six-person paddling team, and with a professional river guide at the helm, you’ll navigate your way downstream through drops, turns and ledges sporting such names as triple drop, the flume, corkscrew and maytag.

Trout Lake Natural Area Preserve

With binoculars and discovery packs we’ll set out on mountain bikes, follow a single track and search for wildlife, natural riverside pools and secret swimming holes.  This wetland surrounding Trout Creek is a birding paradise with hundreds of Cascadia residents and migrants.  Close to the preserve we’ll investigate a geologic natural wonder– a quarter mile long underground lava tube cave with a mysterious story at its terminus.

The John Day River

The Pacific Northwest is known for supporting several diverse bio-regions.  The John Day River in located in the heart of Oregon’s high desert and is the longest free-flowing river system in the continental United States.  You’ll practice paddling your kayak through a scenic canyon with cliffs and palisades towering more than 1200 feet above the river.  Also, we’ll visit paleontological sites along the banks and hear the folklore associated with the historic homesteads we will float past.


Oregon Adventure Camps, Teen Adventure Sports, Alaska Teen Camps, Washington Wilderness Camp

Jim Wells