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Yosemite Association Announces Full Roster of Educational Outdoor Adventures for 2010

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Date: February 25, 2010

Yosemite Outdoor Adventures offer interactive and fun-based learning experiences that appeal to all interests in the scenic wonderland of Yosemite National Park. Guided naturalist hikes to lesser-known destinations, Half Dome treks, family camping programs, plein air art and backpack courses are just a sampling of the wide range of affordable learning adventures offered by the acclaimed non-profit organization, Yosemite Association (YA) during 2010.

A total of 62 field courses designed to appeal to a ranger of ages, interest and abilities are outlined on YA’s website, www.yosemite.org. Held in the spectacular setting of Yosemite National Park, the 1- to 7-day programs address a diverse range of subjects including photography, geology, animal tracks, cultural history, outdoor skills, astronomy and botany. The 2010 Outdoor Adventures catalog is free and available online at www.yosemite.org or by calling (209) 379-2321, ext. 17.

YA expects continued growth in private guided trips offered to groups and organization, tailored toward their specific interests. "If the dates for certain courses don’t fit with busy schedules or if a specific topic is appealing, we can customize a course exactly to your needs," said Pete Devine, the Association’s Resident Naturalist. "This naturalist guide service is ideal for all types of groups, from friends and family vacations, to wedding parties or company meetings.”

For this year, several significant field seminars are scheduled based on past popular appeal.  Notable offerings include:

  • Alpine Botany Backpack Trip: Co-sponsored by UC Berkeley’s Jepson Herbarium, this 4-day course is taught by Steve Botti, the author of the landmark “Yosemite Flora.”  Participants will backpack into the highest elevations of the park’s Wilderness to survey the burst of plant life in late summer.
  • Family Camping Jamborees: Two four-day sessions take place in the cool high country of Tuolumne Meadows.  Naturalists will lead easy hikes for families and provide evening entertainment, while all the cooking is done for participants.  People only need to bring a tent, sleeping bags and the kids. 
  • A Park for All People: A series of three courses explores the little known history of African-American, Chinese and Latino people in Yosemite.  Their early influence was important then and their future influences will be, too.
  • Photography courses that include backpacking and the ‘moonbow’
  • Backpack trips, including Backpacker magazine’s North Rim trek
  • Two Indian basketry courses taught by the famed Parker women
  • A course in writing nature/outdoor books for children
  • Several art courses in Wawona, Yosemite Valley and Tuolumne Meadows

In the autumn, the Association will repeat its unique hiking trip to explore the natural history of Yosemite’s two sister national parks in China.  Past participants were delighted by their stunning landscapes, wildlife and meeting with Chinese rangers.

Founded in 1923, the Yosemite Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to the support of Yosemite National Park through its volunteer, publishing, outdoor education and other programs. The Association recently merged with the Yosemite Fund and will continue to supplement the National Park Service’s interpretive services, museum and research programs.

Yosemite Outdoor adventure participant do not have to be a member of Yosemite Association/Yosemite Fund to attend field courses. However, those who wish to become a steward of Yosemite can join the Yosemite Association with memberships starting at $25 per year. Membership benefits include discounted motel rates in and around Yosemite, a 15% discount on all Outdoor Adventures, subscription to the quarterly journal of the Association, 15% discount on all books, maps, posters, and calendars, and regular emails newsletters.

For further information contact Pete Devine or Yosemite Association Public Information 209-379-2321, ext. 17.

Did You Know?

Artwork by student

Youth from local communities show off their artistic talent through poetry and art in Yosemite National Park’s Gateway Expressions Art and Poetry Contest. Families and park staff celebrate the creative talents of these local students through a special exhibit at The Ansel Adams Gallery in the fall.