Bellingham is known for its bustling college campus, its friendly residents and, perhaps most of all, its access to some of the world’s best sea kayaking, rock climbing and hiking. Every year thousands of tourists travel from all over the world to hike in the Chuckanuts, backpack through the Cascades and paddle around the San Juan Islands. Luckily, these amazing wonderlands are right here in Western’s own backyard.
Western’s Outdoor Center is dedicated to getting students outdoors, and this fall their excursions are better than ever. Over the course of the year the Outdoor Center will be promoting their excursions under two different categories: single-day outings and overnight trips. From afternoon rock climbing adventures on Mt. Erie to sunset sea kayaking trips in Bellingham Bay, the single day excursions offer a quick and exciting getaway for all students. Single day trips are great for students with little or no outdoor experience and who want to familiarize themselves with the greater Bellingham area. The overnight options, including backpacking trips in the North Cascades and weekend surfing retreats in British Columbia, provide students with a more thorough outdoor experience. No previous experience is necessary for any of the overnight excursions, just come prepared for a full weekend of action packed fun.
Sunset Sea Kayaking - $20
October 10 and 15
Students can participate in Sunset Sea Kayaking tours in Bellingham Bay. Starting at 4:00 p.m. in the Marine Park, students will paddle south along the spectacular Chuckanut shoreline to Larrabee State Park.
Rock Climbing Mount Erie - $45
Join in for a daylong rock-climbing trip at Mount Erie. Learn the basics of rock climbing on mild features or advance your skills on more difficult routes.
Hike the Chuckanut Mountain Range - $5
Take a day hike through the Chuckanut Mountains. Just minutes from
Western’s campus, this hike will be a great opportunity for students to
explore one of Bellingham’s afternoon delights.
Surfing trip to Tofino, British Colombia - $100
A surfing excursion to Tofino, British Columbia offers help for students to learn to surf with professional instructors, explore the beautiful town of Tofino, or even participate in the Queen of The Peak Tofino Surf Contest.
Rock Climbing North Twin Sister Peak - $70
With this trip, students have the opportunity to climb the 6,600-foot North Twin Sister Peak. Students will mountain bike through the Mount Baker
National Forest to the base of the mountain, then have the option to attempt the summit.
Mountaineering for beginners: North Cascades - $90
This trip allows students to familiarize themselves with the beautiful North Cascades mountain range. In a classroom made up of ancient glaciers and towering peaks you will acquire knowledge on basic mountaineering and alpine camping.
Anne Williams, a participant in the Outdoor Center’s Western Outdoor Orientation Trips, came away from her excursion with new friends and fresh experiences. WOOT! is a 6 day excursion that the Outdoor Center offers to incoming Freshman at the beginning of each Fall term. Anne signed up because she wanted to get to know people who like the outdoors. During her backpacking trip through the Chuckanut Mountains, she recalls jumping into lakes after longer days and sharing stories around the campfire every evening.
“It’s easier to connect with people without the everyday distractions,” she said.
Anne plans on participating in more excursions this fall and is looking forward to skiing for her first time at Mount Baker.
Whether students want to learn more about Bellingham’s outdoor recreation or are simply looking for an escape into the wilderness, Western’s Outdoor Center Excursions are perfect for you. Learn more about Fall Excursions and other activities by visiting the Outdoor Center at VU 150 in the bottom floor of the Viking Union or by visiting their website as.wwu.edu/outdoor.