First Year Journey: The Trips

Your adventure awaits. Choose your journey from one of the options below.

Rock Climbing and Backpacking in the High Sierras

Travel deep into the heart of California's world-famous Sierra Nevada mountain range—the high country revered by naturalist, conservationist and author John Muir. You’ll start with a hike into the mountains, immersing yourself in the rustic beauty of alpine lakes and thousand-foot granite walls. You’ll be introduced to the sport of rock climbing and its many facets.

Known for their beauty and vast wilderness, the High Sierras offer a great place to practice minimal-impact recreation.

No prior backpacking experience is necessary; however this trip includes hikes with moderate elevation gain and is recommended for students who are confident in their physical fitness. Cost: $445, Scholarships available.

Canyoneering, Mountain Biking and Hiking in Zion National Park, Utah

Explore the southwestern corner of Utah for an authentic desert experience in Zion National Park. You’ll experience a wide array of adventures: canyoneering (rappelling into canyons and pools), mountain biking, and hiking two of Zion's world-class trails: The Narrows and Angels Landing.

No prior mountain biking or canyoneering experience required, however this trip includes hikes with moderate elevation gain and is recommended for students who are confident in their physical fitness. Cost: $445, Scholarships available.

Water Multi-Adventure in San Diego, California

Looking for the California beach experience?  Head down to San Diego for our Water Multi-Adventure.

Your group will travel to the Mission Bay Aquatic Center in sunny San Diego, Calif. When you arrive, you will be fully immersed in a variety of beach adventures: sailing, paddle boarding, night kayaking, tubing, and of course, surfing. You’ll also have plenty of time for beach volleyball, body surfing and soaking up the sun.

Participants should be confident in their swimming abilities. Cost: $495, Scholarships available.


Coastal Camping and Sea Kayaking in the Channel Islands

Venture off to California’s Channel Islands, where you’ll experience a rich ecosystem populated by wild foxes, seals and a variety of marine life.

Located off the coast of Ventura, the Channel Islands are renowned for fantastic sunset displays. You’ll start with a ferry out to Santa Cruz Island, a place populated solely by a handful of campsites and a ranger cabin, and spend two days indulging in sea kayaking and cave exploration.

Cost: $495, Scholarships available.

Backpacking and Camping in Havasu Falls, Arizona

Head to Arizona to visit a secret gem located just outside of the Grand Canyon.

You’ll embark on a 10-mile, canyon backpack trip (considered one of the nation’s Top Ten) before arriving at Havasu Falls, a luscious oasis occupied by the Havasupai Indian community. Once there, you’ll swim in crystal blue waters beneath the cascading falls and relax along the riverbank.

No prior backpacking experience is necessary; however this trip includes hikes with moderate elevation gain and is recommended for students who are confident in their physical fitness.  Cost: $445, Scholarships available.

 

Backpacking and Climbing on the Pacific Crest Trail in Idyllwild, Calif.

Experience the excitement and diversity of Southern California's mountains all in one accessible area—Idyllwild, Calif.

You’ll explore peaks that rise up to 11,000 feet, backpack and hike on the famous Pacific Crest Trail, and get introduced to the sport of rock climbing at some of the best sites in Southern California. You will also have the opportunity to develop your leadership skills and discover your unique leadership style.

No prior backpacking or climbing experience is required; however this trip includes hikes with moderate elevation gain and is recommended for students who are confident in their physical fitness.  Cost: $375, Scholarships available.

Southern California Adventure

Seeking a one-of-a-kind experience that will introduce you to the variety of outdoor adventures Southern California has to offer? This trip allows you to sample a wide range of local activities.

You will be introduced to camping on the Bear Paw Preserve, located 30 minutes from campus. At night, you will get the chance to learn introductory outdoor skills such as campfire building, camp set up, and backcountry cooking.  During the day you will participate in Southern California classic adventures like surfing, rock climbing, and an introductory backpack.

Cost: $375, Scholarships available. This trip is a great way to learn about many of the outdoor adventures Southern California has to offer.

Camping and Hiking in Big Sur, California

Discover the sweeping ocean views, rocky beach coves, and mountainous terrain of Central California's coastline. 

You’ll travel to Julia Pfeiffer State Park and hike through the Ventana Wilderness in Big Sur, where you will ascend through Redwood groves, wind along the Big Sur River, and capture breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean. Along the way, you will gain wilderness skills such as water purification, camping and hiking techniques, and “leave no trace” principles while exploring the classic California Coast. 

No prior camping experience necessary, however this trip includes hikes with moderate elevation gain and is recommended for students who are confident in their physical fitness. Cost: $445, Scholarships available.


Tuolumne Meadow, Yosemite National Park, Calif.


Visit one of the nation’s most celebrated national parks, while also helping to preserve its beauty.

You’ll set up base camp in the heart of Yosemite National Park’s Tuolumne Meadows and from there launch into a variety of outdoor activities: hiking, camping and exploring areas such as Lambert Dome and Tenaya Lake. During your stay, you will acquire vital camping and hiking skills and participate in a service project.

Cost: $445, Scholarships available.

Best Friends Animal Society Community Service, Kanab Utah

Celebrate over 25 years of Community Service at Redlands by participating in our original Service First Year Journey.

Join us as we head to Kanab, Utah, to work with Best Friends Animal Society, which runs the nation’s largest no-kill sanctuary for companion animals. Along with volunteering with Best Friends, you’ll also get the chance to explore the landscape of southern Utah.

Your journey will include growth, community development, and the kind of adventure that makes a First Year Journey so memorable.

Cost: $375, Scholarships available.



Southern California Environmental Service

Get to know Southern California through environmental service on this new First Year Journey.

We will be working with the Wildlands Conservancy, the largest non-profit nature preserve system in California, to explore, understand, and serve our local environment.  Students will spend their days engaged in various service projects  at Bear Paw and Oak Glen Preserve, both located 30 minutes.  In addition, students will stay at the Bear Paw Lodge participating in community meals, campfires, and more.

Cost: $275, Scholarships available.

Santa Cruz Backpack

Discover the sweeping ocean views, Redwood Forests, and mountainous terrain of the Santa Cruz mountains.  You’ll travel to Northern California and backpack through the Santa Cruz Mountains, where you will ascend through Redwood groves and capture breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean. Along the way, you will gain wilderness skills such as water purification, backcountry camping and hiking techniques, and “leave no trace” principles while exploring the Northern California Backcountry. 

No prior backpacking experience is necessary, however this trip is recommended for students who are confident in their physical fitness. Cost: $445, Scholarships available.