Quartz Trek

Summer Trek

DETAILS

ENROLL NOW

MORE INFORMATION

Overview of Quartz Trek

Cottonwood Gulch is thrilled to introduce Quartz Trek into our 2023 season. This trek is designed to run parallel to Turquoise Trail and Prairie trek; 5 weeks during the summer with a specific focus for genderqueer and nonbinary youth.

Quartz is one of the most abundant minerals, and is prominently featured all across New Mexico and the Southwest. It is known for its adaptability and durability, bringing forth beauty and functionality when used or seen, and this trek is meant to provide a similarly versatile space for genderqueer and nonbinary 14-16 year olds.

When participating in groups with shared experience, trekkers can encourage each other to grow whilst identifying with each other in a foundational way. Quartz Trek will offer a transitional space for trekkers to experience more time in the field, and expand their understanding of the surrounding communities. Asking “How can I learn from this place, this experience, these people?” allows this trek to focus on establishing healthy, harmonious relationships between trekkers and who/what they encounter. How do we give back to the places and people we learn from? QT strives to answer this question from their distinct perspectives by incorporating restoration work with organizational partners, leading activities for younger trekkers at Basecamp and listening to the communities they meet along the way.

This trek links young people with intersecting identities and challenges them to recognize their roles and responsibilities to each other and themselves.

Age Range: 14-16

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

Min Group Size: 8

Max Group Size: 18

Instructors: 3

Elevation: 5,000-13,000 feet

34 Days on Trek

Cost: $6,550.00

6/30-8/5

Enroll Now

Trek Details

Focus: Identity/Role in Community

People: Who we are

Cottonwood Gulch is thrilled to introduce Quartz Trek into our 2023 season. This trek is designed to run
parallel to Turquoise Trail and Prairie trek; 5 weeks during the summer with a specific focus for genderqueer/nonbinary
youth. Quartz is one of the most abundant minerals, and is prominently featured all across New Mexico and
the Southwest. It is known for its adaptability and durability, bringing forth beauty and functionality when
used or seen, and this trek is meant to provide a similarly versatile space for genderqueer and nonbinary 14-16 year olds. QT
focuses on further developing identities as members of a greater community, with an emphasis on
accountability and mindfulness. This trek links young people with intersecting identities and challenges them
to recognize their roles and responsibilities to each other and themselves.

  • Personal Identity Within a Community: Quartz Trek is guided by questions of self-discovery and a
    mindfulness of pre-existing groups and spaces. QT asks:
    • Who am I?
    • Who do I want to be?
    • Who lives/lived here?
    • What can we learn from each other?
  • Collaboration and Cooperation: QT incorporates projects with community partners that are highly
    knowledgeable about the land, culture, and history of the southwest. Active listening allows for
    trekkers to foster their roles as future leaders and honest members of the community.

 

  • Shared Experience: When participating in groups with shared experience, trekkers can encourage
    each other to grow whilst identifying with each other in a foundational way. This is the first year the
    Gulch will have a trek specifically designed for genderqueer youth; QT is meant to empower young
    people to feel capable, confident amongst their peers and that they truly belong in these outdoor
    spaces.

Places: Where we go

Quartz Trek spends 5 weeks connecting with the Southwest, driven by a focus to establish healthy,
harmonious relationships between trekkers and who/what they encounter.

  • Basecamp: QT spends ~ 2 weeks throughout the summer at our Basecamp, connecting and listening
    to the land and people they encounter in the Zuni Mountains of Northern New Mexico.

 

  • On the Road: QT spends ~ 20 days on the road, divided into 2 road loops; one in the areas
    bordering New Mexico and Arizona which includes visiting the Chaco Canyon region as well as
    traditional Zuni, Hopi and Dinélands and another in Northeastern New Mexico, visiting the Taos
    area which includes Wheeler Peak and Gold Hill.

 

  • In the Backcountry: QT backpacks in Carson National Forest and the Navajo National Monument

Projects: What we do

How do we give back to the places and people we learn from? QT strives to answer this question by
incorporating moments of genuine connection and humbling responsibility which we believe is critical for
young people today.

  • Taking Action Through Hands-on Experience:
    • QT will focus on taking action in the communities they visit which may include traditional
      ecological knowledge driven restoration projects such as building one rock dams for
      watershed restoration, mapping and plotting sections of land and removing invasive species
      from a particular area.
    • Trekkers will lead programming on a topic they were inspired by in the field, and may
      participate in Rendezvous logistics; taking on active roles in planning and facilitating the day’s
      events.
  • Technical Skills Development:
    • Front-country camping: Trekkers continue to expand on their technical skills, gaining
      comfort in front country camping (tents, tarps, road kitchens and groovers)
    • Backpacking skills: QT spends enough time in the backcountry that trekkers are able to
      strengthen their backcountry skills packing backpacks, using Whisper-lite stoves, navigating
      with a map/compass and setting up camp.
  • Confidence in Adventure:
    • Backpacking in Arizona and Northern New Mexico: QT goes on two backpacking trips to
      build up confidence in the backcountry and provide a scaffolded experience (first backpack
      1-2 nights, second backpack 4-6 nights).
    • Introduction to Mountain Biking: QT trekkers will learn mountain biking techniques and
      maintenance.

6/30-8/5

Enroll Now

Resources for Parents

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.