GO Trek 1

Summer Trek




Overview of GO Trek 1

Join us for 7 fun-filled days based at Basecamp!  Each day you will wake up in rustic, open air cabins surrounded by nature in a Ponderosa and Juniper forest.  Some days, we will pack up and take off for an adventure like caving, rock climbing, or hiking to explore New Mexico and learn new skills. Other days, we will stay at Basecamp to take advantage of all the knowledge that Cottonwood Gulch staff have to offer. Each evening there will be a delicious dinner, games, and campfire activities. Prepare yourself for a star-filled sky, new friends, and an exciting week of learning new things.

While at Basecamp, trekkers will have the opportunity to learn new skills like metalsmithing, animal tracking, plant identification, mountain biking, farming, cooking, music, and rock climbing. The exact specialties of our staff vary from year to year, but we always have an incredibly talented and knowledgeable team that is excited to introduce trekkers to new skills as well as offer deeper exploration for those already familiar with a topic. Each year the itinerary varies; see below for a sample itinerary.

GO Trek is a great way to get to know what a Cottonwood Gulch summer is like and can serve as a prelude for Outfit Expedition (10-12 year old) or Wild Country Trek (13-14 year old).

GO Trek 2024 Pricing Structure: Choose Your Gift

This year, we are incorporating a different pricing structure for GO Trek. We invite you to build inclusive community and change a life. Someone’s about to change yours. A past trekker sponsored your child’s trek this year, and now you have the opportunity to sponsor the next trekker by paying/passing the gift forward. Choose your gift according to your values and means. We have attached a form that details this process to the GO trek application. Simply fill out the application linked to the “Enroll Now” button and it will guide you to the “Choose Your Gift” form.

Note: Your gift (formerly known as tuition cost) does not influence acceptance into our programs. Our application process is completely separate from all gift and payment processes. Trekkers are accepted into all programs based solely on their application and ability to participate fully in the Trek.

Age Range: 8 - 10

Gender: All welcome, Male, Female, Non-binary

Min Group Size: 8

Max Group Size: 15

Instructors: 3

Elevation: 5,000 to 8,000 feet

7 Days on Trek

Cost: $Choose your gift

June 9-15, 2024

Enroll Now

Ages: 8 – 10 Only

Ages: 8 – 10 Only

Skills Outcomes

Grow and strengthen these skills


Camp Craft

Outdoor Living


Community Living

Leave No Trace Awareness

Trek Details

People: Who we are

GO! Trek invites 8-10 year olds to our Basecamp to spark a connection between them, the Gulch, and the
outdoors. GO! trekkers are welcomed to experience the essential value and innate joys of discovering our
place within our environment, our community and ourselves.

  • Self-Discovery: GO! Trekkers are the youngest trekkers at the Gulch. This experience is for kids
    looking to learn about who they are in connection with the outdoors. It is an opportunity for youth
    to discover what they enjoy and what they can share with others in regards to simply going outside
    and exploring the spaces around them.
  • We Can!: GO! trekkers can do it. We know they can. Being away from home can be a huge challenge,
    and we know that GO! trekkers will rise above and beyond. With guidance from staff, older trekkers,
    and visiting experts/educators, GO! trekkers will grow and learn to be more resilient, capable young

Places: Where we go

GO! Trek spends every night at Basecamp as an structured introduction to living in the outdoors. Most days
are spent at Basecamp, getting to know the area and exploring the acres of forests, stream beds, mesas and
open fields.

  • Basecamp: GO! Trek 1 spends ~ 6 days at our Basecamp. This time is dedicated to introducing a
    trekker to our Basecamp. As trekkers get to know Basecamp- the Mesa, the Cha-oh, the Nature Arts
    Workshop, the Mess hall, the Museum- they will develop a relationship to place and nurture an
    independence that comes with familiarity as they navigate the area.
  • Day Trips: GO! Trek 1 goes on several day trips within a short driving distance from Basecamp.
    These locations include El Malpais, El Morro, Bluewater Lake, and other nearby areas within the
    Zuni Mountains.

Projects: What we do

GO! Trek asks “ How do I live comfortably in the outdoors?”
This trek revolves around access to an outdoor experience and gaining confidence in the basic understandings
required to move through those experiences. 8-10 year old’s will spend 6 days building up the skills necessary
to feel more comfortable outside and to begin to learn the values.

  • Technical Skills Development:
    • Outdoor comfort: Trekkers will learn to be prepared with the basics for an outdoor
      excursion. This includes:
      • Outdoor health and safety; learning about hydration, sun-protection, finding shelter,
      • Learning to pack a daypack.
      • Learn to set up a tent.
      • Learn the basics of Leave No Trace principles.
    • Basecamp: GO! Trek will develop an initial understanding of Basecamp’s inner workings.
      They will learn to participate in Basecamp’s “details,” and start to feel comfortable navigating
      throughout the property.
    • Sleeping Outdoors: Trekkers will sleep in cabins throughout the week, and camp in a tent on
      the last night. This provides a scaffolded experience to gain comfort sleeping away from
  • Fun in the Outdoor Classroom: 
    • Cottonwoods programming: GO! trekkers will attend Cottonwoods regularly, learning about
      a variety of topics from our Basecamp Specialists, including ecology, visual arts, forestry,
      poetry, fort-building etc.

Trek Log


“We built forts, watched arrowhead making, studied crawdads, and painted with Donna. Mannix, “I studied clouds but there were too many storm clouds until the end.”

Fire and Ice

Mannix: “It was interesting,”

Lilli: “It was pretty cool.The ice collected in the cave,” Lilli.

Rebecca: “The ice cave was cool and it was hot on the volcano,” Rebecca.

Willow: “I don’t know.”

Resources for Parents

Summer 2023 Itinerary

The trek itineraries vary year to year, depending on permits and staff expertise

Day 1

Arrive and get to know everyone

Day 2

Rock climbing

Day 3

Cabin in El Malpais

Day 4

Cottonwoods at Basecamp

Day 5

Slot Canyon Hike, camp in Zuni Mountains

Day 6

Cottonwoods at Basecamp, final banquet

Day 7

Head Home

Need Assistance or Have Questions?

Fill out the form below and a staff member will contact you soon.

*All locations and itineraries are subject to change given permitting and fire restrictions.