WISE works with the US Bureau of Land Management Glennallen Field Office to lead a series of youth-centered hikes each summer in the Copper River Basin. Boreal forest, mountains, rivers, kettle lakes, mud volcanoes, and waterfalls provide the backdrop for engaging activities and lessons on Leave No Trace principles and environmental science.
These activities are geared towards youth, but all ages are welcome. Children under 8 must be accompanied by a caregiver. Please call the WISE office at 822-3575 at least a day in advance to sign up for hikes, so we can plan a safe experience for all. Limited transportation is available, please request a ride when you call and we will work out the details.
Summer 2017 Hike Schedule Thursday June 1 Hike Liberty Falls Trail, Mile 24.8 Edgerton Highway. This sweet little trail is a perfect introduction to family hiking. We will meet at the trailhead at 10am. The trailhead is not at the Liberty Falls campground, but on its own road a hundred yards East. The first hike of the season is a great chance to review safety and what-to-bring for summer adventures. This trail has steep sections, so sturdy footwear is a must. We will plan on eating lunch at the top while enjoying views of the Wrangell Mountains. Thursday June 15 Hike Tolsona Mud Volcanoes, Mile 173 Glenn Highway. Meet at the Tolsona Wilderness Campground at 11am. We will hike for about a mile through boggy trails to the fascinating “cone” of the mud volcanoes, a hands-on lesson in local geology, and the potential to make plaster casts of animal tracks. Mud boots and old clothes recommended! NEW Thursday, June 22 Art Hike, Copper Center School Trail 10am Join us at the Copper Center School, on Silver Springs Road, Old Richardson Highway for a gentle hike in the boreal forest. We will paint birdhouses and create windchimes to add to the trail decorations. Please call the WISE office to sign up! Thursday, June 29 Hike in Tangle Lakes Archaeological District. We will drive up to the Denali Highway to explore and learn about the history and archaeology of this amazing area. Call for more details about meet-up location and reserving a place in the van. Thursday, July 6 Hike in the Slana Area, details to be announced. Wednesday, July 26 Hike Aspen Trail, Glennallen. Meet at the trailhead on Co-op Road at 11am. We will be exploring the Boreal Forest and practicing our tree ID skills.
Camps and Other Youth Activities
June 16-18 Wild Plants Workshop with Janice Schofield, Author of Discovering Wild Plants. Kenny Lake Community Hall. Hands-on exploration of edible, medicinal, and useful local plants. $200, a few spaces still available. $100 scholarship available for local youth who would like to participate. www.wise-edu.org/wild-plants-workshop/html July 11-13th Aquatic Ecology Camp for 10-14 year old students. We will camp at Silver Lake for three days of muddy, slimy fun in the lake and nearby streams and wetlands. Space limited, call to sign up 822-3575. $50 fee per camper, scholarships available. More information here July 17-21 Kenny Lake Library Book Camp reading and fun for students who have completed Kindergarten up to 5th grade. Older youth are invited to attend as camp counselors. For more information call 822-5831. August 1-4 Geology Backpacking Trip in Wrangell-St. Elias National Park. We are teaming up with Wrangell Mountains Center in McCarthy for this adventure for 12-18 year olds, which includes backpacking, camping on the glacier moraine, and hiking with crampons on the Root Glacier with a geologist. $100, scholarships available. Limited space, sign up early at 822-3575. August 8-10 Tangle Lakes Adventure for 10-18 year old students, in partnership with Alaska Department of Natural Resources. Learn about being on a trail crew as we assist with the clearing and marking of a new trail. We will also pick blueberries, canoe, and fish. $40, limited spaces available
For day hikes, all participants should be prepared with a day pack, sturdy hiking shoes, raincoat, warm layers, lunch/snacks, water bottle, and any medications or first aid needs. You may also want a camera, binoculars, sunscreen, sunglasses, and insect repellant. For camps, participants will be sent a “what-to-bring list,” and there will be loaner gear available.