California

Wilderness, Service & Adventure

$3,995

*Airfare purchased separately

14 days

Trip duration

7th-9th

Grades

14 days

June 27 - July 10, 2024

San Francisco

Arrival & Departure

$3,995

Tuition

14 days

Trip duration

June 27 - July 10, 2024

7th-9th

Grades

*Airfare purchased separately

Overview

Experience the bounty of California’s most magical landscapes through exploration and meaningful service on this two-week adventure! Explore the splendors of Yosemite National Park while working alongside park rangers on important conservation projects. Standup paddle board through the crystal clear waters of Lake Tahoe, rock climb on world-class cliffs, and learn to surf at one of Northern California’s most enchanting beaches as you soak in the warm summer sun. Trek across the beautiful and iconic Golden Gate Bridge and explore the wonders of San Francisco. Take a journey this summer that will not be forgotten by you or those you impact!

Highlights

  • Hike the Stunning Landscapes of Yosemite National Park Exploring Granite Cliffs, Stunning Waterfalls, and Picturesque Alpine Meadows
  • Work to Protect the Natural Spaces Around Yosemite National Park and Lake Tahoe
  • Rock Climb Tahoe's Granite Cliffs With Expert Guides
  • Visit San Francisco’s Iconic Sights like the Golden Gate Bridge and Fisherman’s Wharf
  • Learn to Surf the Gentle Rolling Waves of Stinson Beach
  • Standup Paddle Board the Stunning Blue Waters of Lake Tahoe
  • 7th - 9th Grade Program: 10 Hours of Community Service
  • 10th - 12th Grade Program: 15 Hours of Community Service

Get the itinerary

Adventure

Take a refreshing hike along the towering waterfalls and granite spire of Yosemite National Park. Watch the sun set behind the cliffs of Half Dome. Take surf lessons on the world-famous breaks and gentle rolling waves of the Pacific Ocean. Learn how to rock climb on Tahoe's stunning cliffs and Standup Paddle Board on the beautiful turquoise water of lake Tahoe surrounded by lush pine forests.

Local Conservation

Join local conservation organizations in maintaining local trail networks around Lake Tahoe. Lend a hand on important projects in Yosemite National Park and the Groveland Ranger District — building, preserving, and maintaining natural areas that grant visitors access to the outdoors. The 7th - 9th grade program will come to a total of 10 hours of community service. The 10th through 12th grade program will provide for 15 hours of service.

Wilderness Skills

Take in the extensive landscape of Yosemite National park and practice the Leave No Trace principles while exploring wilderness ethics. Learn to set up a tent, cook on a campstove, and roast marshmellows over the campfire. Search for constellations and shooting stars in the night sky upon completion of impactful projects with the National Forest Service.

Common Questions

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Summer weather in Northern California can vary greatly. Expect warm weather throughout the itinerary (80 to 90s). Some areas can reach into the low 100s. The coastal areas can be milder and in the mountains, the days are generally warm, but the evenings can sometimes be chilly. All throughout the state, you may encounter fog (San Francisco), high heat (American River), chilly nights (Lake Tahoe), or afternoon storms (Yosemite). Daytime temperatures can be as warm as 100°F and nights as cool as 40°F.

ARCC has been operating programs in California for several years, and we have built relationships with a variety of individuals, small communities, and organizations who enjoy hosting ARCC student groups. On this program, we prepare and serve food to communities struggling with homelessness in San Francisco, build trails in Lake Tahoe, and work alongside Park Rangers to help conserve the natural habitat around Yosemite National Park.

You will sleep in tents in National Parks, State Parks, and beautiful private campsites. All campgrounds are “front-country,” meaning you will be close to the group van at every site. All campgrounds have restroom facilities and running water for cooking, washing hands, etc. Many campgrounds have showers on-site as well. You will sleep in groups of 3-4 in tents supplied by ARCC. Please make sure you check the California Service Clothing & Equipment List and remember to bring your own sleeping bag and pad.

Each group will travel together, with their two leaders, in a 15-passenger van. If you would like to bring music for these rides, feel free to bring a music player or CDs. If you bring an iPod or MP3 player, make sure to bring a radio adapter, as most of our vans do not have an MP3 jack. In San Francisco, we use public transportation and our own feet to see the sights.

The group will work together to create each menu and prepare the meals throughout the duration of this trip, with occasional meals out during travel days.

Vegetarians and medical dietary requirements (i.e. allergies) are catered for. It does help if we are informed of this prior to the departure date.

We suggest bringing spending money of roughly $75/week. Most cash should come home, but you will want some personal money to pay for airline baggage fees at the airport, souvenirs/gifts, laundry, extra snacks, and emergencies (lost items, clinic visits, etc.). A small amount of cash and ATM cards usually work best.

If you are traveling to California from somewhere in the United States and are under the age of 18, airlines do not require photo identification. It is a good idea to travel with a picture I.D. if possible, but it is not necessary to bring a passport. A school identification card with your photo on it is best, but a library card or credit card with your name on it is also helpful. If you are traveling to California from somewhere outside of the United States, you will need to bring your valid passport.

Have questions? Speak to one of our Program Directors, give them a call at (415) 332.5075 , they love talking about their trips!

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