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Join other women on this bucket-list adventure on the PCT and open up a new world of possible adventures!
Gain the ability and confidence to execute your own backpacking adventures, all while in the supportive and empowering company of other adventurous women. Spend four days hiking 32 miles of the iconic Pacific Crest Trail through Oregon's stunning wilderness and learn the valuable skills needed to plan and execute solo backpacking trips. Led by experienced female guides, the goal is to create a learning experience that's open to all who identify as female.
Begin your adventure at the Rare Earth Adventures office in Troutdale, Oregon for a gear check and to learn the basics of how and what to pack. From Troutdale, you'll travel to the trailhead and begin your adventure at Little Crater Lake, which is a very unique and beautiful spring fed lake. This portion of the PCT is filled with dense forest and packed dirt and you'll pass by many lakes and tons of wild blueberries and huckleberries. You'll hike between 8-12 miles per day, depending on group abilities, and the elevation gain/loss is moderate each day.
Throughout your adventure, you'll be guided by the experienced and trained women of Rare Earth Adventures. As outdoor experts, these women love the outdoors and are dedicated to showing their guests the best of the Pacific Northwest's wild backcountry. They love to share their knowledge with others and aim to pass on their skills so you can get out and explore on your own. During the tour, you'll receive in-depth instruction in backpacking techniques and subjects such as using a map and guidebook to plan logistics and daily hiking distance, how to find and set up a campsite, locating and purifying water, cooking meals and the use of different types of portable stoves, basic trail first aid, and navigating with a compass. Thanks to the skills you'll learn here, you'll have the knowledge and the confidence to start backpacking on your own. The Pacific Crest Trail is just the beginning!
You should plan to arrive in Troutdale or Portland (only a 20 minute drive from Troutdale) the day before the start of the trip since you'll be starting your adventure early on day 1.
Meet at the Rare Earth Adventures office in Troutdale at 8:00 am. The morning will be spent planning your meals, checking gear, and learning to pack efficiently. You'll also prep some homemade backpacking meals. When the group is ready, you'll be shuttled in an REA van to the Pacific Crest Trail at Timothy Lake (an hour and a half drive). At the trailhead, you'll review the day's itinerary and identify potential water sources and camping spots.Hiking mileage: 5-8 milesElevation gain/loss: +780 feet / -530 feetMeals included: Lunch and dinner
For the next two days you'll cover between 10-12 miles daily, depending on group pace, campsite choice, and the location of water sources. Throughout the day, during breaks from hiking, you'll also be covering skills such as basic first aid, map and compass navigation, different techniques for purifying water, etc. In the evenings your guides will discuss techniques for finding a good campsite, setting up camp, “Leave No Trace” principles, and the use of different types of backpacking stoves.Hiking mileage: 10-12 miles (each day)Elevation gain/loss: +1,600-2,250 feet / -1,200-1,500 feetMeals included: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner (both days)
Today you'll hike out and meet the shuttle at the trailhead. The trip will conclude at Ollalie Lake, where you'll have a fresh lunch and the option to swim or rent a canoe before heading back to Portland.Hiking mileage: 4-6 milesElevation gain/loss: +450 feet/ -130 feetMeals included: Breakfast
Rare Earth Adventures was formed in June 2006, and is owned and operated by two former USAF Survival-Evasion-Resistance-Escape (SERE) Specialists. They started REA to provide the best guide service in the Pacific Northwest, bringing the locals to the backcountry and removing the stigma that the backcountry is scary and difficult. Today Rare Earth Adventures has become a well known name in the Pacific Northwest for the level of quality and diverse trips that they offer. All of their guides are Wilderness First Responders, so safety will be at the forefront of your adventure. They are constantly in a state of improvement, always looking for the next great adventure. From surfing Oregon's beautiful coastline, snowshoeing with the family on Mt. Hood, or summiting some of the areas prominent peaks - every trip they offer includes not only an epic adventure, but the education to empower you to get out on your own!
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Please note that a minimum of three participants are required to confirm each departure date. Do not make any travel arrangements until you receive confirmation from Rare Earth Adventures.
Yes, we have private departures available on this trip! Private departures offer more flexibility to travel when it suits your group. A private departure can be reserved with four or more people. Additional costs may apply depending on your group size. Please contact our Adventures Team to explore pricing and check on availability.
Every effort will be made to run each trip, however, severe weather may cause the trip to be rescheduled.
Yes, this particular trip is designed for all who identify as female. This includes your guides, who will be women.
Troutdale is an easy 20 minute drive from Portland on I-84. If you are flying in, the nearest major airport is Portland International (PDX), where you can rent a car and drive the rest of the way to Troutdale.
Rare Earth Adventures provides MSR Hubba-Hubba 2 person tents, which are lightweight and well-suited to backpacking. You'll either be sharing a tent or can choose to carry your own tent. There is no fee to have your own tent, you'll just be carrying a bit more weight.
Solo travelers are definitely welcome and encouraged. If you would like your own tent there is no additional fee, however you'll have to carry a bit more weight.
Each group has a a minimum of three and maximum of eight participants.
No previous backpacking experience is required, you'll just need to be in good shape and able to carry a 40 pound pack over distances up to 15 miles per day. For training, Rare Earth recommends going out on several day hikes, 5-8 miles in length, with 1000-2000 feet of elevation gain. You should also wear a backpack with some weight, even if it's just a day pack. You can fill it with 3 or 4 liters of water to get used to carrying the extra weight and if you have your backpacking pack even better!
The trip includes lunch days 1-3, breakfast days 2-4, and dinner days 1-3. The meals will mostly be prepared by guests before the group departs. Food will include dehydrated meats and veggies and quick cooking grains such as quinoa and rice noodles. Some pre-prepared dehydrated meals may also be used. Dietary restrictions can be accommodated, please notify Rare Earth Adventures in advance.
Most expenses during the hike are covered. You should allow extra money for guide tips (if desired) and money for lunch on the drive back.
A full packing list will be provided upon booking, however plan to bring appropriate clothing and footwear for backpacking as well as a sleeping bag, sleeping pad, and backpack.
We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance for all trips. Travel insurance allows you to seek reimbursement if you are forced to cancel your trip for unforeseeable reasons, or if you need to cover medical help, emergency transport, and/or theft or accidental damage while traveling. We recommend VisitorsCoverage as a provider.
We recommend you visit the local government websites where you plan to travel and review the required documentation for entry, current restrictions, and general recommendations for travel within the area. We encourage you to also visit your home country's embassy website if you are traveling to a foreign country. Requirements can change rapidly. Please be sure you stay abreast of the requirements and restrictions for anywhere you plan to visit. You can also enroll in the U.S. government’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) and you will be sent updates if the situation in your destination changes. You can find the program link at https://step.state.gov/.
Yes! Book confidently with Free Cancellations within 72 hours of booking. After 72 hours, cancellation fees will apply. New For 2021 Departures: We’re providing more flexible booking options on this trip. Up to 30 days prior to departure*You may postpone your trip up to 30 days prior to departure with no fees or penalties. You will have the option to: 1) Select a new travel date within two years of your original departure date, or 2) Receive a lifetime store credit toward a future trip. Standard cancellation fees will apply.*Please note, when choosing a new date, you must choose a date within the same travel season in 2022 or 2023 to avoid any additional trip costs. If you choose to cancel, you will receive a lifetime credit, minus cancellation fees, towards a future trip.Less than 30 days prior to departureIn some cases, you may have the option to postpone your trip within 30 days prior to departure.If this is available at the time of your request, you will have the option to:1) Select a new travel date within one year of your original departure date. Additional trip costs may apply and new dates are subject to availability, or 2) Receive a lifetime store credit toward a future trip. Standard cancellation fees will apply.For more information on our Travel Cancellation Policy please Click Here.
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