Sign up for Winter 2024 Excursions here! Registration will open at 10am on Tuesday, January 9th.

Outdoor Center Excursions

The Outdoor Center enhances opportunities for students and other members of the WWU community to involve themselves in outdoor recreation activities. We have a host of in-person events available to all so come join us in exploring the outdoors and connecting with ourselves and others! All Outdoor Center excursions are either free or low-cost. 

Excursions offers a fun, accessible, and affordable way to get outside for students, faculty, staff, and alumni. Emphasis is placed on group involvement, developing and refining skills, responsible environmental practices, fostering diversity, enriching the academic experience, and promoting life-long learning. On our excursions, we attempt to engage all of our participants in fun and absorbing activities based on their comfort and ability levels. This will mean checking in with everyone to see what they want out of the trip and checking in multiple times during the trip to assess how the trip can best fit the groups' needs. We believe that there is a way to balance the excitement level of an activity and the perceived risk/exertion for each of our participants so that everyone can leave our program having learned something and enjoyed themselves.

Winter 2024 Registration

Registration for all fall quarter excursions that require sign-ups will open on Tuesday, January 9th at 10:00am using this link. You will be required to sign our Hold Harmless form as well as pay for your trip (if applicable).

Trips have a limited number of spots and typically fill up fast - registration is first-come, first-serve. Students will have the option to place themselves on a waiting list once trips are full but there is no guarantee that any spots will open.

Scholarships and Trip Costs

The Outdoor Center recognizes that the cost of Trips will be a barrier to some students who are interested in participating in our trips and events. To try and reduce those barriers, 3 spots on each trip with an associated cost will be reserved for students who are experiencing financial insecurity. This scholarship is intended for, but not limited to students who are: Pell eligible, first gen, experiencing financial difficulties, of the Global Majority or experience marginalization in another form that leads to financial difficulty. To receive a spot please email VOR Program Coordinator at crandab2@wwu.edu with your name, phone number, address and desired trip. No other information is required, and we trust your experience is valid. Spots will be reserved the first 2 weeks of the quarter and then opened to the general student body if not used.

Difficulty Ratings Explained

Informed consent is critical, and we want you to be aware of the activity you are signing up for. Each trip has a difficulty level listed in the description: Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced. Below you will find a detailed description of what that entails. Please reach out to your student Excursions Coordinators @ as.oc.excursions.coord@wwu.edu and as.oc.excursions.coord@wwu.edu with any questions.

Beginner: Beginner Excursions cater to those individuals who are interested in trying something new! Generally, these introductory experiences are designed to be more laid back and not too strenuous. Most importantly they are created for those who do not have prior experience in the activity. Activities may range from educational experiences to artistic activities and anything in between! These excursions are great if you are looking to learn new skills, gain exposure to new activities, foster community, and have a great time outside!

Intermediate: Intermediate Excursions are a great option for those who would like to explore new challenges and build upon past skills. If you are looking to explore more difficult trails or embark on longer, more strenuous adventures, this activity category is for you! These Excursions are designed to safely instruct participants on more technical skills, and to dive deeper into the activity at hand. Outings often include less introductory material, but still ensure that participants are fully informed on the activity at hand! These are a great option if you are looking to step outside of your comfort zone, continue to explore these awesome activities, and meet new people!

Advanced: Advanced Excursions are designed to build upon prior experience and solidify technical skills in outdoor recreation. Participants must have experience in the associated activity and feel competent, but still open to growth in their individual skill sets. Designed to explore more challenging recreational activities, expect a higher level of potential difficulty on these Excursions. These are great if you are looking to build upon past experiences and use old skills in new ways. Come explore new aspects of your favorite activities, and of course have a great (and safe) time!


For disability accommodations, questions or requests please contact our Outdoor Center Co-Coordinators at as.oc.excursions.coord@wwu.edu or call 360-650-7677 at least two weeks before the trip.

For any other questions or feedback, you can also reach out to our Outdoor Center Co-Coordinators, DM our instagram or call the front desk at the Equipment & Bike Shop at 360-650-3115


How many trips can I sign up for?

  • 1 trip per quarter that has an associated cost! We have limited number of spots available on each trip and hope to serve as many students as possible. You may sign up for as many Adventure Break trips as you would like.

The trip I wanted is full. What do I do?

  • Once a trip is full you may register for our waitlist. If a spot becomes available on a trip you will receive a text from the Outdoor Center.

I am on a waitlist for a trip. When will I know if a spot is available?

  • You will receive a text from the Outdoor Center if a trip becomes available. You must respond to that text within 1 hour to confirm your spot and come into the Outdoor Center to complete trip registration.

Can I register more than 1 person for a trip?

  • Nope! Please have your friend sign up individually.

I am signed up for a trip and I can no longer attend. What do I do?

  • Cancelations are in person ONLY in the Outdoor Center (Viking Union 150).

I already went on a trip this quarter but got a spot from the waitlist? Is that alright?

  • If you have already been on an Excursion through the Outdoor Center, consider giving other folks the same experience that you had.


Adventure Breaks - FREE!

Moonlit Wilderness Trek: A Full Moon Night Hike

  • Wednesday, January 24th from 5:00-8:00pm
  • Join us for a night hike up the Chanterelle Trail near Lake Whatcom as we bask under the light of the full moon. The moderately challenging route is about 5 miles and 1,000 feet elevation gain on gravel and dirt.
  • Essential Eligibility: Ability to walk on inclined and uneven surfaces.
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner


  • Wednesday, January 31st from 3:00-6:00pm
  • Acro is a fun and engaging yoga practice that involves acrobatics, and someone “flying” or being lifted by another person. Bring a friend and be ready to play, be goofy and move your body. This activity will involve touch, movement, and close contact at times.
  • Essential Eligibility: Comfortable being in close contact with another individual
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Whimsical Fairy Homes Workshop

  • Wednesday, February 7th from 3:00-6:00pm
  • Come select the perfect twigs and leaves to add to an enchanting fairy house. Let your creativity run wild and unlock your inner child whilst constructing whimsical homes for the tiniest of magical residents.
  • Essential Eligibility: None
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Lake Padden Trail Run

  • Wednesday, February 14th from 3:00-6:00pm
  • Lace up your sneakers to end your Wednesday feeling good with a jaunt around the lake! We will play games and form community on this Wednesday romp.
  • Essential Eligibility: Ability to run, jog, and walk on potentially slippery and uneven ground.
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Chuckanut Bike Tour

  • Wednesday, March 13th from 3:00-6:00pm
  • Balance school work with a mindful bike ride! The ride starts at Western and cruises down to the Interurban Trail. We will be exploring the Chuckanut Mountains via bike from campus and seeing how the trails connect from campus to Clayton Beach.
  • Essential Eligibility: Ability to ride a bike comfortably.
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Clinics and Instructional Courses – FREE!

Knot Tying

  • Wednesday, January 17th from 3:00-6:00pm
  • Want to learn the ropes of knot tying? Stop by and join us for an evening of learning how to tie a variety of knots that can be used for a wide variety of purposes. All are welcome.
  • Essential Eligibility: None
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Mountaineering Clinic

  • Wednesday, February 21st from 3:00-6:00pm
  • Are you interested in mountaineering? Want to get an introduction to the sport, but don't want to commit to climbing a mountain yet? This is the place for you. We will meet at the outback farm to learn and ask questions about mountaineering. In addition we will introduce specific mountaineering equipment and practice foundational skills. This is a space to be curious and have fun!
  • Essential Eligibility: Ability to sit outside in potentially cold weather for a few hours.
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Backcountry Cooking Clinic

  • Wednesday, February 28th from 3:00-6:00pm
  • Want to beat the blues this Winter? Join the outdoor center in an all-inclusive backcountry cooking workshop to learn how to make the finest gourmet grub on your next outdoor adventure. You will learn how to utilize an MSR Whisperlite Stove and backcountry cooking kit to prepare a curry meal.
  • Essential Eligibility: No prior experience needed.
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Savor the Dessert: Backcountry Cooking Clinic

  • Wednesday, March 6th from 3:00-6:00pm
  • Come learn how to spice up your dessert game in the backcountry from our top-rated Michelin star backcountry chefs! You will learn how to use a Dutch Oven to make tasty cinnamon rolls. Bring your friends and come hungry. All are welcome to join!
  • Essential Eligibility: No prior experience needed.
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Single Day Trips – $20

Introduction to Backcountry Skiing

  • Saturday, January 20th
  • Interested in learning about the basics of backcountry travel and avalanche safety? Look no further! Come join us for a day of skills based, beginner backcountry skiing around Koma Kulshan.
  • Essential Eligibility: Must have the skiing/snowboarding skills to ski variable snowpack and ungroomed runs. Ability to hike and ski moderate distances.
  • Required Pre-Trip Meeting: Outdoor Center 1st Floor Viking Union Tuesday, January 16th from 5:00-7:00pm
  • Difficulty Level: Intermediate

Koma Kulshan Snow Cone and Showshoe

  • Sunday, January 21st
  • Experience the beauty of Mt. Baker by Snow Shoeing at Artist Point! After spending the day traversing the snow-covered trails, sit down to enjoy a delicious snow cone! This is the perfect blend of outdoor adventure and frozen treats!
  • Essential Eligibility: Ability to maintain a sustained walking pace in snowshoes for up to five hours.
  • Required Pre-Trip Meeting: Outdoor Center 1st Floor Viking Union Tuesday, January 16th from 5:00-7:00pm
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Introduction to Skiing and Snowboarding: Koma Kulshan Ski Day

  • Sunday, February 4th
  • This winter program is designed for any student that wants to learn how to ski or snowboard. The cost includes transportation and Mount Baker’s Best for Beginners Package (ski/snowboard rentals, lift ticket, and a 1.5 hour lesson) and winter memories that’ll last a lifetime!
  • Essential Eligibility: No prior ski or snowboard experience is needed.
  • Required Pre-Trip Meeting: Outdoor Center 1st Floor Viking Union Tuesday, January 30th from 5:00-7:00pm
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Advanced Backcountry Ski Tour

  • Saturday, February 10th
  • Spend this Saturday exploring the incredible backcountry terrain of Koma Kulshan while refreshing on the basics of backcountry travel and avalanche safety! This trip is designed for folks who love snow, have experience backcountry skiing/snowboarding, and feel comfortable hiking and skiing up to 10 miles per day.
  • Essential Eligibility: Must have the skiing/snowboarding skills to ski variable snowpack and ungroomed runs as well as the ability to hike and ski up to ten miles per day. Must have previous experience backcountry touring. Please be prepared to be in the snow and cold but warmed by our activity and hearts.
  • Required Pre-Trip Meeting: Outdoor Center 1st Floor Viking Union Tuesday, February 6th from 5:00-7:00pm
  • Difficulty Level: Advanced

Alpine Stargazing

  • Saturday, February 24th
  • Come join us for an epic stargazing adventure at the base of the Mt Baker Ski Area. We will enjoy snow in an alpine environment, big ol' mountain views, colorful winter sunsets, and a peak into the constellations of the winter season. This trip is designed for any and all people who want to appreciate the night sky with their fellow students, and maybe learn some SCIENCE too!
  • Essential Eligibility: None
  • Required Pre-Trip Meeting: Outdoor Center 1st Floor Viking Union Tuesday, February 20th from 5:00-7:00pm
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Hannegan Pass Snowshoe

  • Saturday, March 2nd
  • Let’s strap on some snowshoes and embark on an awesome adventure with the Outdoor Center. Come and join us snowshoeing up Hannegan Pass Road, as we will be surrounded by the amazing, snow-covered scenery of the Northern Cascades.
  • Essential Eligibility: Ability to maintain a sustained walking pace in snowshoes for up to five hours.
  • Required Pre-Trip Meeting: Outdoor Center 1st Floor Viking Union Tuesday, February 27th from 5:00-7:00pm
  • Difficulty Level: Intermediate

Overnight/Extended Weekend Trips

Nordic Skiing at Steven’s Pass - $60

  • Saturday-Monday, February 17th-19th
  • Join us for a weekend of exploration down south! We'll head up the Steven’s Pass Center for some mellow cross-country skiing and group bonding. Never been on skis before? No problem: cross-country skiing is a great place to start!
  • Essential Eligibility: Comfort on your feet and moving for extended periods of time.
  • Required Pre-Trip Meeting: Outdoor Center 1st Floor Viking Union Tuesday, February 13th from 5:00-7:00pm
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner

Lummi Island Kayak Tour and Camping - $40

  • Saturday-Sunday, March 9-10
  • Come join the Outdoor Center for a kayak tour across Bellingham Bay and a night camping on Lummi Island. We'll explore the coastline and open water while trying to spot elusive sea creatures. Focus will be placed on teaching kayak paddling techniques and overnight touring. No past kayaking experience needed.
  • Essential Eligibility: Ability to sit comfortably in a kayak for a prolonged period.
  • Required Pre-Trip Meeting: Outdoor Center 1st Floor Viking Union Tuesday, March 5th from 5:00-7:00pm
  • Difficulty Level: Beginner