Looking for adventure? Our BackCountry programs include rock climbing, hiking, paddling and/or camping, led by our certified and experienced wilderness guides. These programs range from half-day excursions to 12-day adventures. Locations and itineraries vary widely; we’ll work with you to customize your experience to best fit the needs of your team.
Rome, GA | half to full day
Our wilderness guides will lead you down the Etowah River. The trip involves good exercise, minimal rapids, and the natural beauty of the river. You’ll be dropped off at one of three put-in sites, depending on the length of your experience. Trips last anywhere from two to seven hours.
Canoeing down the Buffalo River
Ponca, AR | 7 days, 6 nights
The nation’s first designated National Scenic River, the Buffalo River flows through massive limestone bluffs, over both swift running rapids and quiet, tranquil pools.
On the way to the river, your group will spend one night at Pinnacle Mountain State Park. From there, you’ll spend five days on the river, paddling during the day and camping at night. On the last day, after taking out, we’ll spend the evening at a riverside cabin, processing the entire experience together. We’ll then travel back to Rome, GA in the morning.
Sea Kayaking to Cumberland Island
Cumberland Island, off the coast of St. Mary’s, GA | 5 days, 4 nights (minimum) – 6 days, 5 nights or more (optimal)
Experience the thrill of sea kayaking to the rugged beauty of Cumberland Island, home to over 9,800 acres of Congressionally designated wilderness.
You’ll spend one night at Crooked River State Park, setting out in kayaks for the Island the next morning. The next two to three nights will be spent on the island, hiking and exploring the breathtaking live-oak forests. You’ll then kayak back to Crooked River State Park and spend the evening discussing your experience with your guides and your team before returning to Rome, GA in the morning.
Note: This BackCountry experience involves moderately strenuous kayaking.
ROCK CLIMBING TRIPS
Rock Climbing/Rappelling at Rock Town or Lost Wall
Pigeon Mountain, outside of Lafayette, GA | full day or weekend trip (two nights)
Full Day Trip (minimum of nine hours)
Get an early start for Pigeon Mountain and hike about one mile to the rock formations at Rock Town. Lunch and snacks are provided.
One or Two Night Trip
Includes primitive camping and time at Lost Wall, an additional climbing site on the mountain.
Rock Climbing/Rappelling at Sandrock
Cherokee Rock Village, Sand Rock, AL | one full day (minimum seven hours)
Enjoy a full day of climbing and rappelling on natural cliff faces. We’ll adjust the difficulty level of the climbs based on the needs and abilities of your group. At the end of the day, we’ll do an “extreme” hike as our guides lead your team through amazing rock formations, squeezing, ducking, and contorting to make it to the end. Lunch is provided.
HIKING / BACKPACKING / CAMPING TRIPS
Northeastern Georgia | 4 days, 3 nights
Our wilderness guides lead you through Section 1 of the Appalachian Trail, from Woody Gap to the Southern Terminus Approach Trail at Amicalola Falls State Park. You’ll receive expert instruction in tent set-up, cooking with backpacking stoves, building bear hangs, and other outdoor skills. Discussion times focus on what each team member is learning from the experience.
Backpacking in Rocky Mountain National Park
Rocky Mountain National Park, near Denver, Colorado | 7 days, 6 nights
Snow covered valleys. Craggy peaks. Crystal clear mountain lakes. Explore all this—and so much more—at Rocky Mountain National Park.
We’ll stay the first two nights in the group campground, acclimating to the elevation and reviewing essential skills for backcountry camping. We’ll then spend the next three days and three nights in the backcountry of the park. On the final night, we’ll rest and process the experience at a YMCA lodge, and then fly back to Atlanta the following day.
Backpacking in the Cohutta Wilderness
Cohutta Wilderness area, northeast Georgia | 4 days, 3 nights
Hike one of the many beautiful trails in the Cohutta Wilderness area. It features a variety of trail scenery and difficulty levels, from Jack’s River Trail with 40+ river crossings, to the Panther Creek Trail with steep climbs and crashing waterfalls. We’ll work with you to determine the best route.
Our time together begins with instruction in tent set-up, cooking with backpacking stoves, building bear hangs and other outdoor skills. Throughout the trip, our wilderness guides will lead designated processing times that will help everyone in your group get the most from this experience.
Camping/Hiking in Cloudland Canyon
Rising Fawn, GA | 2 days, 1 night to 2½ days, 2 nights
Cloudland Canyon Sate Park is considered by many to be the most scenic park in North Georgia. You’ll take in waterfalls, sparkling streams, scenic overlooks, and picturesque vistas.
Our wilderness guides will lead your group on hikes along the canyon rim and down into the canyon itself. You’ll also receive expert instruction in outdoor skills including tent set-up and cooking with backpacking stoves.
Camping on Lavender Mountain
Berry College mountain campus, near Rome, GA | 1-2 nights
This experience is a great add-on to a ropes course challenge or retreat. Our guides will instruct your team in outdoor skills like tent set-up and camping cuisine and then you’ll set off for secluded, primitive campsites.
Guides are available to camp out with your group if you’d like, and programming is flexible. We’ll work with you to determine the best course.
Backpacking on Cumberland Island
Cumberland Island, off the coast of St. Mary’s, GA | 4 days, 3 nights (minimum)
Experience the wild beauty of Cumberland Island, one of the largest undeveloped barrier islands in the world.
You’ll set out on this excursion from Rome, GA and stay one night at Crooked River State Park. The next morning you’ll take the ferry to the island. You group will spend two days and two nights on the island, backpacking in to a campsite situated among like oaks and a five-minute walk from sand dunes and the Atlantic.
During our time together, the guides will provide expert instruction in a number of outdoor skills, including tent set-up, cooking with backpacking stoves and building bear hangs. They’ll also lead designated processing times so every member of your group has a chance to share and discuss their experience on the island.
The trip ends on the fourth day with a ferry back to the mainland and return travel to Rome.
Backpacking in the Smokey Mountains
Smokey Mountain National Park, Tennessee and North Carolina | 5 days, 4 nights
Hike by crystal clear mountain streams. Trek along the open ridges of the Appalachian Trail. Journey through one of America’s densest temperate rain forests. You’ll find all of this—and much more—backpacking in the Smokey Mountains.
You’ll spend the first night at a campground near Smokey Mountain National Park and then head into the park in the morning. Along the way, our wilderness guides provide expert instruction in tent set-up, cooking with backpacking stoves, building bear hangs and other outdoor skills. They’ll also lead you through designated processing times that allow for everyone to share and learn from this experience.
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