Parent Testimonials

This was Aleksa’s second AT experience and definitely not the last one! Last summer, Aleksa went to Yellowstone and this year she joined California Challenge. There is nothing better to describe my kid’s experience than the fact that she can’t wait till next summer to hopefully meet some old and new friends in Alaska! Adventure Treks provides a safe, inclusive, encouraging, and supportive environment for kids who want to experience new adventures, discover their abilities, learn their limitations, gain new skills, and meet like-minded friends. AT gave Aleksa chance to take a break from constant peer pressure and social media interactions. She was able to give herself the opportunity to reflect and discover and get greater appreciation for the world and life around her, people, environment, wildlife, etc. After a busy, often hectic and stressful school year, AT gave her a chance to actively restore herself, build confidence, learn new skills, make new friends and rediscover herself as a better person. She speaks highly of all her instructors as amazing friends and true mentors. Every year she comes back with new skills and lifelong memories. She comes back more mature, confident, caring with new skills and appreciation of herself and others. But most important she has fun and comes back happier. AT is very well organized and safe. I feel comfortable sending my child to the camp and leaving her in hands of such nurturing, skilled, supportive and fun people. – Kasia Dolecki, Surrey, British Columbia

Coen is an introverted classic teen who, if given the option, might take the easy way out. However, AT has sparked in him a new love for outdoor adventure, travel, meeting new people. It has broadened his horizons in ways he didn’t expect, and he’s proud of the physical and intellectual challenges AT has helped him conquer. Exposure to sights, sounds, people and skills that we cannot get in NC. And as a parent presenting them to my son, these would not have the same impact on my teen’s willingness to accept new adventures the way AT brings it to him. – Lauren Figge, Pittsboro, NC

AT has been one of the most impactful experience of my daughter’s life. I just wish we learned about it much early as she was only able to participate for two years because she is now off to college. Every child should experience AT, and as many times as possible. It is difficult for the parents as you will only get to speak with them a couple times, but AT is excellent with sending out trip blogs (often written by the students) and posting photos. When you read the blogs and see the photos, you will notice a sparkle in your child’s eyes that wasn’t there before. This is because they have pushed themselves to do things they most likely didn’t think they were capable of, all while being surrounded by the most encouraging and authentic group of leaders and kids they have ever met. – Dorothy Ottolia, Rancho Palos Verde, CA

AT is the best investment you could consider for your children during their teenage years. One that will be a game-changer for them. The best thing grandparents, godparents, parents, and anyone else could contribute to for a long-lasting present (instead of other gifts rather donate a contribution). It’s probably the best experience they can have for building confidence, maturing, working together in a group towards a common goal, developing stamina, practicing endurance, and contingency planning. – Nannette Reuther, Cheltenham, England

I cannot give a more enthusiastic endorsement of AT and how good it will be for other parents’ kids. They will remember it for the rest of their lives. Everything at AT is so incredibly professional and well-organized. Ivan absolutely loved both of his AT trips. Your professionalism and communication is fantastic. AT is really an amazing organization. – Dan Levitt, Denver, CO

AT has been the highlight of our daughter’s year since her first trip in 2021. What better way to spend a part of summer than in nature, with other teenagers, in the capable hands of amazing trip leaders and guides? It was a huge financial investment for us, and not taken lightly, but it was worth every penny for the sense of connection and belonging to the group, and reverence for the natural world, that was fostered and sustained through AT adventures. Education at its best. You really know teenagers. While my husband and I value the wilderness experiences and calculated risks of the adventures, we have been so impressed at the organization and planning (all the behind the scenes work) that goes into the programs. You are creating life-changing and life-shaping experiences, grounded in the restorative power of the natural world. – Catriona Moore, Durham, NC

Adventure Treks is once-in-a-lifetime experience that helps prepare teenagers for going out on their own. My son has had a great experience, and I would recommend it to others. – James Nickerson, Leander, TX

Aidan has had a great time the last three years on his trips. He has gained confidence with each trip and grown as a leader. It’s an opportunity to experience new challenges and environments and see different parts of the country with great people. The program is well run and well organized. Staff communication was very good, and any questions we we had were answered quickly and thoroughly. Instructors were professional and competent. – Meghan Strong, Tempe, AZ

I thought the trip (from a parent’s perspective) was well planned, well communicated, and well executed. I thought the preparation information was excellent, and communicating with the AT office staff was wonderful, especially with Amanda—she is awesome. – Dayna Davitz, Arlington, VA

AT has been a life-changing experience for our children and will always have a very special place in our hearts. – Raquel Garrido, Santo Domingo, DR

My son speaks glowingly about the entire experience. He loved his instructors, he learned a lot, he challenged himself physically, he made new friends, and he had fun. I am so impressed with Adventure Treks. I appreciate the thoughtful philosophy and culture that is intentionally cultivated to support belonging, community, friendship, growth, learning, communication, challenge, respect for others and for the earth, play, joy, awe, safety, collaboration, humor, and of course, adventure. My son had a wonderful experience. – Erika Bright, Cincinnati, OH

Adventure Treks was the perfect experience for our son, who will enter high school next year. He made great connections with his instructors and fellow students, was surrounded by nature’s beauty every day, and came home a more confident and grounded young man. This was a wonderful experience for Renzo. He absolutely loved it! – Tina Stone, Novato, CA

We were looking for something for Caitlin to do this summer that stretched her physically and emotionally, while giving her a sense of independence. California Challenge delivered on all this. She not only had a blast, bonding with other teens and instructors over the 24-day trip through fun activities, but she walked away with a better understanding about how every individual is important to the functioning of a group. She learned about collaboration and teamwork and if done right, any activity can be fun! Caitlin has not stopped talking about all the amazing things they did hiking, whitewater rafting, biking, climbing, and just hanging out on logistics days. She loved every moment of it and came home all fired up to continue finding adventure in everything she does! – Cathy Cole, Hong Kong

Daire loves Adventure Treks and always wants to go back. He grows and learns so much about himself. I love watching it. It’s transformative and a rite of passage. – Marika Reinke, Seattle, WA

I dropped my son off with a bunch of strangers to disappear into the woods for 16 days. I saw pictures of him with mountains, crossing streams, sea kayaking, rock climbing, and generally goofing off as teens do, being outside in nature with incredible views every day. When he came home, he was glowing, tired, and full of stories to share (which is unusual because he is usually more reserved with sharing). I can see how proud he is of himself for overcoming the worries and fears he had, and an increased confidence in stepping outside his comfort zone. I also loved that the spend 16 uninterrupted days playing in and experiencing nature, away from screens and other distractions. It is a gift these days to be able to do that for a teenager and I think one that will continue to keep giving in his life. – Judy Le, Houston, TX

Adventure Treks is such a professional organization. The communication from beginning to end was simply amazing. Not only did this help our son feel ready before the trip but also during the trip, there were lots of photos being taken and sent back home which I know made him feel happy about sharing all the fun adventures he was having during his trip. Hayden had the best time of his life. – Lee Kirkley, Pompano Beach, FL

Simon had a wonderful time, learned a huge amount about being in the wilderness and taking responsibility for his own gear and meal prep, and saw some of the most beautiful places on the continent. He also had the opportunity to get to know a neat group of kids and create a special community. He loves traveling and seeing new and different places—the BC trip delivered. It offered him the chance to be in a totally new environment and to learn some of the skills so he could thrive in it. I think the combination of exploring a new place and doing so while taking care of some (though clearly assisted by the excellent instructors) of his own needs was a winning one for him. The instructors were top-notch, all of the details of the trip were clear and well communicated, and the logistics went off without a hitch. – Lila Berman, Philadelphia, PA

We have two children; they are different in every way, and yet they both came back having a great time. The company and staff are well organized, the instructors were terrific, and the itinerary created a lot of opportunities for challenging them physically and mentally, for connecting and collaborating closely with new friends and with their instructors. I think they developed their collaboration skills, by working with the group, to get normal daily tasks completed, as well as difficult hikes done in time. I also think the whole experience gives you each person a more full appreciation for nature. – Matt Freedman, Aspen, CO

AT sets the bar for overnight experiences for our family. Every staff member at AT is incredibly caring, experienced, and so skilled at building community. The activities are seriously challenging and lead to a deep feeling of confidence that carries my son from summer to summer. My son came home feeling so confident and successful. This program is so thoughtfully designed and executed, and it shows. – Nicole Wilson-Spiro, Wilton, CT

My child had the time of her life! She had an opportunity to live and connect with peers in a supportive, social environment free from internet distractions. She was challenged personally while being supported by these peers and her instructors daily. She came home feeling good about her accomplishments. – Stephanie Brodsky, Sacramento, CA

The friendships with the students and the instructors drove the experiences home: doing amazing things and learning to be more independent and self-reliant in an atmosphere of support and caring. I love the program, the organization, the communication and the values of AT. And I love the fun my child had on the trip! And how he grew. – Phoebe Sade, Seattle, WA

I’d describe my son’s AT experience as broadening, adventurous, full of personal growth, fun, and invaluable! We have great enthusiasm and confidence in AT, and it and the instructors offered our son an amazing wildernesses experience, tons of fun, and more than I can even articulate! The organization was always professional and diligent with communication. The AT experience overall exceeded our expectations. – Sarah McGrath, Orofino, ID

It was an amazing program all around. I was so impressed with the organization, the communication, and the outstanding experience you provided for my son. It was an incredible opportunity for my son to grow and develop new capabilities he never knew he had, while also having the time of his life. – Shana Hansell, Amherst, MA

Michael liked Adventure Treks very much. This was Michael’s first experience away from home in the outdoors; he embraced it and had a lot of fun and made friends. The experience was memorable and will continue to be. Most valuable was him learning that he is able to do much more than he thought he could. Also, being part of a team and learning how to work together. The activities were amazing! Most importantly, the staff was very supportive and engaging. – Lissette Bryce, Wyckoff, NJ

The experience that you gave Layla was incredible, and I don’t know another way for a 15-year-old to experience the ability to grow and learn real responsibility and how to work with others. One of the first things Layla said to me at the airport was “I think I want to go back.” This was music to my ears. It will teach your child skills that they cannot learn at home, and they will come back a different kid in an awesome way. I would be happy to recommend this program to anyone. Having her learn to work with others to achieve a goal and experiencing things that are not easy. Our kids are all so spoiled these days (we can’t even help it), so it’s good for them to do “hard stuff.” – Mark Rothberg, Atlanta, GA

It’s an incredible opportunity for teens to test some limits in a guided environment. It’s well run, safe, and fun! – Amy Flanzer, Burlingame, CA

AT has well-coordinated and planned activities set against gorgeous scenery where teens are able to build relationships, practice responsibility, and strengthen resilience in a device-free space. It’s a great combination of physical challenge, social growth, and resilience-building. – Amy King, Chapel Hill, NC

AT is a great way to learn new skills, new challenges, make friends, and experience things many others never will. It’s such a great experience of being outside away from electronics and pushing to new limits. – Carrie Powers, Harrisburg, NC

Adventure Treks’ summer adventures are a peak experience for my son. He’s completed the Pacific Northwest Adventure and California Challenge the past two summers and has found a place where he can enjoy physically rigorous adventures in beautiful natural areas within a positive and mutually supportive peer group. He has cherished the close relationships formed through AT and feels a part of that community. As a parent, I trust AT’s ability to uphold the adventuring spirit while teaching the participants how to do so safely. It really has been life-changing for him! – Dena Shehab, Portland, OR

Your kids will be challenged in ways that aren’t really possible in their normal, everyday lives. They learn and grow from the experience and truly test their own resilience and come out stronger at the end. What an amazing experience. Ryan has talked about an adventure or activity or moment every day since he’s been back. He loved the challenge, doing things he’d never done before and meeting new people and making good friends. It was exactly what we hoped for as his parents. – Fran Thorpe, Bethesda, MD

AT is a highly beneficial experience for all teens, as so many spend so little time disconnected from social media and modern life. Spending active time in nature is extremely essential, and I am so happy that the kids got to experience and love it. – Dina Aly, Egypt

This was a great opportunity for our son to stretch himself while spending time outdoors, which he really enjoys. We had enough information ahead of time to know what to expect, what to bring, and airport logistics. An instructor called us the week before and answered lingering questions. During the trip, Adventure Treks set the expectation that we wouldn’t get updates when they were in remote areas, which put me at ease. The mix of activities meant that my son could both do things he was familiar with (hiking, biking) and try new things (rafting, climbing) in a safe and supportive environment. While tired, our son was beaming when we picked him up at the airport, and is already planning to come back next year. I do believe his experience helped increase his confidence and deepen his love for the outdoors. – Laura Machado de Wright, Redmond, WA

My son came home standing a little taller and more confident in himself. This type of trip is incredibly valuable for teens. My son learned a lot, developed more independence, and had an amazing time! Both my boys have gone with AT, and I’ve always been happy with the quality of the program and instructors. – Mary Katherine Patterson, Orinda, CA

It was what we hoped—challenging physically, but he also had a fine time being away from his devices. Based on this experience, he’s hoping to do another outdoor adventure next year. He had a good time, and it felt well organized. – Joel Johnson, Scottsdale, AZ

Children who attend Adventure Treks have so much fun they don’t want to come home… at least not right away! I would have never guessed my daughter (who was not a big camper) would want to go on successive trips that are longer and longer in duration because she loves AT so much. She loves being with the friends she has made through her trips, she enjoys the different adventures they go on and pushing herself to do things she hasn’t done before. It has been a great experience for our daughter! – Kelli Scott, Manhattan Beach, CA

All the things! When our 14-year-old son returned from Adventure Treks, it was obvious he had grown up a lot in 13 days. We noticed maturity in his identity, community, responsibility, decision making, and physical resilience. Our son had a great experience. The trip was well-planned and executed. – Amy Barklage, St. Peters, MO

John started off not feeling very comfortable sleeping in tents with complete strangers but within a couple of days, he had already made some friends and was having a blast. He’s looking forward to another trip next year! – Taylor White, Argyle, TX

Amazing! Grace had the opportunity to see a part of this country that she never would be able to. She lived outdoors for three weeks, navigating the woods for basic needs. She was able to experience so many cool things like summiting Mt. Shasta, rafting the American River, and living and working with other people, most of whom were strangers. Grace learned so much on this trip about herself. – Summer Burke, Scotch Plains, NJ

The AT program is a gem! My two children have done a total of four trips in past three years. AT continually has top-notch instructors, who genuinely care for your children. AT’s authenticity is unmatched, and its focus on safety is why it is the number one program. AT is giving kids an opportunity to dive into nature, experience socializing with no devices and discover confidence that can not happen at home. There is incredible and thoughtful planning that goes into each trip. As parents we appreciate the pictures and updates which are consistent and fun! The effort given by the entire AT team exceeds expectations every year. It’s magic! – Carey Macaleer, Brooklyn, NY

Adventure Treks provides an unforgettable experience that kids today cannot get in their home environment. Socially, they interact without electronics, so they resort to “old-fashioned” entertainment: talking, singing, telling stories, playing games, and reading. Physically, they are challenged beyond what they think they can do, sometimes hiking 10 miles in one day. Environmentally, they are stripped to the bare minimum, sometimes resulting in sleeping under the stars, which was a favorite with my daughter. They learn to become resilient and independent in a short period of time, resulting in making strong bonds with their group members. This is truly a unique experience for teenagers in today’s world, and one that I think allows them to grow in unexpected ways. Amazing experience, very well organized, good instructor to student ratio, and the safety of the students comes first. – Michelle Maynard, Chapel Hill, NC

I would tell them to not hesitate a moment! As a parent of one of the kids who was young in the group, he could have been shy and fallen back but AT gave him love, courage, confidence. He loved it! What a cool experience! The autonomy has to to be one of the most valuable aspects of AT that Tiger gained. He came home so cool, confident, and self sufficient. He learned it’s actually fun to make your own meals and set your own tent/bed. He has been to “regular” summer camps for years. This was like none other. He was on his own and felt it, in a hugely gratifying way. – Emily Barker, Nashville, TN

Adventure Treks surpassed all our expectations and offers the ideal summer experience for your teenager, immersing them in nature and unplugging from devices. It’s not your typical camp with cabins and campus activities; instead, it focuses on teaching invaluable life skills that cannot be learned elsewhere. The program’s administration excels in communication and organization, while the instructors are exceptional. Your child will come back forever changed after attending. My son returned transformed, brimming with renewed energy, passion, determination, and happiness. It provided him with an array of new friendships, thanks to the device-free environment that facilitated quick and meaningful connections with fellow students . Moreover, he has developed a newfound interest in hiking, rafting, and the great outdoors.  My son returned transformed in the most positive manner—rejuvenated, enthusiastic, driven, joyful, and having forged numerous new friendships. He encountered opportunities not easily available in MS, leaving a lasting impression. His newfound love for the outdoors has ignited a desire to join the Alaska adventure next summer alongside his new friends. Don’t hesitate to provide your child with the experience of a lifetime at Adventure Treks. It promises an unforgettable journey that will leave a lasting positive impact. – Ashley Burke, Madison, MS

Emerson had an amazing experience! She made lasting friendships, proved to herself she can take on a challenge and succeed, and she learned more outdoor living skills. Being device-free was refreshing and healthy and gave her a much needed break from school-year pressures. This trip gave her more confidence in herself and a greater appreciation for the beauty of our country and nature. It is the best thing we could have done for her! – Emanda Lenet, Owings Mills, MD

Adventure Treks combines outdoor adventure, physical and mental challenges, new friends, camaraderie, teamwork, accomplishment, and personal growth all into one program. It will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for your child they will never forget. I believe the program provided an exceptional experience for my son in every respect, from student and instructor interactions, to communication with parents, to program organization, to the fun and challenging activities they engaged in. Even instances where something didn’t go well for my son provided an important experience that teaches him how to handle challenges in life and how he should respond when he makes mistakes or others do something he disagrees with. – Geoff Hamilton, San Diego, CA

Jack had the most amazing experience with not only the things he did but with the people he met. Everything is so organized! The physical challenges are valuable but the relationships he formed are incredible. – Jamie Cappo, Brooklyn, NY

These trips allow kids to experience once-in-a-lifetime, action-packed adventures and are molded to foster positive fun relationships with new friends from across the United States. Hannah had a wonderful experience. – Jenna Jongquist, Clover, SC

Adventure Treks facilitates memorable outdoor experiences in the wilderness that both meet young people where they are at (by choosing well-loved foods, teaching them the basics of caring for themselves and others in the backcountry), and challenge them at their edges (by encouraging them to go further or higher on a climb than they have before, by introducing them to new places and outdoor sports, and by asking them to lead cooking of those well-loved foods). Adventure Treks is amazing; it provides unique opportunities for young people to try new things and have thrilling and memorable experiences. I love how youth learn outdoor and relational skills from responsible instructors, and I would highly recommend it. – Nora Timmerman, Flagstaff, AZ

Ceanne made new friends, went amazing places, and tried new activities. She loved rock climbing! She was so happy to have no social media around with other kids. It was incredibly well organized, inclusive, professional, and fun. – Barbara Kopicki, San Francisco, CA

This was our first trip with Adventure Treks, and compared to other similar trips our children have attended with other organizations, Adventure Treks seemed to have the best understanding of how to balance the challenges and fun. Also, the consistent positive messaging from the instructors made an impression on our daughter. Everyone from AT who we came into contact with from day one was professional, thoughtful, and thorough, and the trip was everything we hoped it would be. – Richard Gieson, Cincinnati, OH

Adventures Treks trips have provide both of our daughters the opportunity to step outside their comfort zones, both physically and socially in safe and accepting environments. Whether on a two-week trip to Colorado or a four-week trip to Alaska, the experiences offered to the kids allow them to challenge themselves with the support, love, and encouragement of the instructors and other students. On the trip, the kids can be kids without the worry of social media. They interact face-to-face with one another and develop bonds unlike anywhere else that can connect them for life. The trip can truly be transformative in a teen’s life and be something they look forward to doing every summer. – Laura Sklenicka, Atlantic Beach, FL

My son gained confidence and was proud of his accomplishments because he achieved things he never had before. He had the best summer of his life. – Aly Gutierrez, Springfield, VA

My daughter will have memories she will cherish forever; she will definitely never forget this trip. AT gives attention to every detail— nothing is left out in terms of security, and this is very reassuring for a parent. The instructors are fantastic and clearly love what they are doing. They create a close bound between everyone. The trip strengthened her confidence, teamwork skills, leadership. AT is always here from beginning to the end, and they respond quickly to any question. – Caroline Estier, London, England

Adventure Treks did a fantastic job planning this trip and communicating with us leading up to Alex’s trip. He had the time of his life on this trip and made friends with kids from as far away as Panama. He enjoyed every part of his trip, even the logistics day. He wants to go back to Jackson Hole as soon as he can. This trip was transformative. He’s more confident in himself and has a better understanding of what’s important to him. He said that his instructors were amazing people and he really enjoyed spending the two weeks with the entire group. The trip helped him build his confidence. Communication with Adventure Treks was perfect and helped us get through missing him for two weeks. – Nick Russell, Kirkland, OH

Adventure Treks is a great opportunity to give my teen a unique experience that he will remember for the rest of his life. AT teaches kids how to work together, rough it, get away from electronics, and get to know people from other parts of the country (and world). – Matt Dossey, Katy, TX

Absolutely incredible experience of a lifetime. AT is an extremely well-run, thoughtful organization. They anticipated all the details down to the first day picture and email to the parents so we could see their smiling faces. AT was challenging, inspiring, and definitely a lot of fun. – Jennifer Gates, Concord, MA

AT has truly been life-changing for my girls. The people and the community are what make it an unparalleled experience. The ability to create such an intense, welcoming, kind community that truly lets kids be themselves is magical. To really make friendships without technology and outside pressures allows them to be themselves. And of course they loved the outdoors, the challenges and the adventures along the way. Well-run, appropriately fun, and challenging—a terrific experience. – Rachel Berger, Cabin John, MD

Adventure Treks has been transformative for Charlie. It has helped him build self-confidence, independence and a deep love of the outdoors in a really loving, supportive community of friends and instructors—an important antidote to the typical technology-obsessed high-school experience, in other words. The friends he made will probably last a lifetime, and he’s grown so much by learning how to lead and work within a group. We came to Adventure Treks through a friend who couldn’t say enough about it, and we have been as enthusiastic in our recommendations. You guys do an incredible job. – Michael Oneal, Oakland, CA

Fifteen nights in a tent, carrying a heavy backpack for days at a time, getting wet and muddy, no electronics at all, and not knowing a single other person at the outset sounds like a recipe for a miserable teenager. But my son came home with a huge smile and is already talking about next summer. The independence, varied activities, supportive staff, and focus on FUN made this one of the best experiences my son has ever had (and he’s traveled to more than 15 countries and done plenty of outdoor adventuring before, so that’s saying a lot!). – Laurie Fitzgerald, Dublin, Ireland

Adventure Treks has literally been life-changing for our son. He just finished his third trip, and each one has been a wonderful experience. It has given him a life long love for the outdoors, independence, confidence, leadership, camaraderie, patience, and relationships. Our son’s experience with Adventure Treks has also helped guide him to find the right college and degree. The trips have given him the confidence and independence to start college without wavering. Our son has formed life-long friendships and a love for the outdoors. – Michelle Dudley, Louisville, CO

Griffin raved about every single aspect of the trip. He returned home energetic and engaged. We felt that communication, logistics, quality of instructors, etc. were all fantastic. – Ashley Reid, San Anselmo, CA

AT is a great program that helps teens take calculated risks and pushes them out of their comfort zone. This experience helps them develop confidence in themselves that they can do hard things when obstacles arise in the future. This is the fifth trip that my children have taken through AT, and we have had many positive experiences. – Julie Morris, Durham, NC

AT is a well-run, supportive, tech-free adventure with new challenges and friends. This is a great way to prepare for additional independence and to build confidence while having fun. – Jessica Munzel, Irvington, NY

AT is an amazing adventure filled with an endless array of outdoor challenges that my son and his group conquered together. Each step of the trip brought Jack closer and closer to his fellow adventurers. He fell in love with the outdoors and now wants to conquer the Alaska trip. He learned so much about himself and really grew as a person. It is awesome program, and my son loved it. – John Gates, Concord, MA

We were impressed with the selection process to ensure a good group as well as the attention to detail and thoughtfulness in every aspect of the planning. Our son experienced great personal growth on the trip as he discovered new abilities and learned new skills. He made new friends and learned he can rough it and deal with uncomfortable situations (like heavy mosquitos). – Didi Friedman, Glencoe, IL

Noah loved his experience in Yellowstone; he loves hiking and camping and came back with a great level of confidence in taking on challenges and having experiences that he chooses. He learned a lot about himself and is already looking forward to his next adventure. – Rebecca Burrows, San Francisco, CA

This was Grace’s first AT trip. AT has been such a formative experience for her brother that I think she has always been curious to know what all the fuss was about. She wanted to see if she could do it. And actually we wanted to see if she could do it, too. Mission accomplished! As parents, you search for experiences that will stretch and grow your child; from their earliest age you share books and music and art and sports and travel with them. But you CANNOT provide your child the experience AT can—because they can only stretch and grow in some crucial ways in your absence. AT challenges your child physically, socially and emotionally, but with lots of support and care and fun. It’s everything you want for your kid. The discomfort and physical challenges of the trip were really good for my daughter. The first backpack on the Olympic Peninsula was really hard for her, but afterward she was exhilarated by her accomplishment and by the bonding her group did through the challenge. And I also believe she loved all that time spent with her peers, away from phones and school, quality time without academic or social pressure. She absolutely loved that. – Laura Miller, Cabin John, MD

Josiah went in open and excited but apprehensive. He knew nobody on his trip or anybody who had ever been on an Adventure Treks trip. When I picked Josiah up from his trip, he was proud, calm, and inspired. He is a blessed kid who has been given wonderful opportunities, and Adventure Treks was one of his most favorite of all his life experiences. He made incredible friends, loved his instructors, had exciting experiences, and is negotiating daily regarding how to visit his friends in other cities. He said, “I loved it. One of the best communities I’ve ever been in.” Thank you, AT. – Sarah Weinberg, San Francisco, CA

Allison went on an Adventure Treks trip last year, and it was the highlight of her year. This year, she returned for Ultimate Northwest and once again, it was the highlight of her year. She loved the friendships and the challenges and the natural beauty of the places they went. Adventure Treks is a trustworthy, highly professional organization that understands teenagers in every aspect. They can articulate honest and thorough responses to parent questions, and they hire instructors with extensive outdoor leadership skill and experience, and who are also in tune with the developmental aspects of teenagers. I felt sure that AT could provide structure, rules and supervision and cultivate a culture of respect and agency for the groups and for each child. This year, my daughter said the group was great and that she became really close to a couple of the members. She said everyone was respectful and found their people. – Catriona Moore, Durham, NC

Adventure Treks was such a great opportunity for my daughter to experience a beautiful part of the country she’d never seen, as well as, physical challenges and meeting new people. The first thing she said upon her return was to tell me what trip wanted to go on next year. Excellent. 5 stars all the way. – Sarah Bruno, Palm Beach Gardens, FL

We heard great things about Adventure Treks from our friends and the dates were perfect. We were then very impressed with Amanda and with how professional everything seemed. This experience was a once-in-a-lifetime, indelible experience for our daughter. From the moment that she landed, she knew that she was in good hands. Her instructors were professional and clearly experienced, the various protocols were well thought out (placing kids in different small groups as a means of getting to know each other better, etc.), the details of everything related to the adventure were impeccably implemented. She made wonderful friendships, laughed more than she has in years, had experiences she will never forget. She was the most bubbly that we have seen her in YEARS and could not say enough about how wonderful the people were and how close she became to several of the other kids on the trip. This was truly a life-changing experience that we are all immensely grateful for. I just want to know how you did your magic. I am blown away by this experience that Emmy had. Don’t change, ever. – Jill Holland, Cabin John, MD

My kids wanted a coed outdoor challenge where they could learn new things, get outside their comfort zone, and meet people different from their friends in NYC. All of these were accomplished! My daughter had an amazing time at AT. She met interesting people, pushed herself beyond what she thought she was capable of (she described some hairy moments in a whitewater kayak), and learned new skills. She was surrounded by other kids who were accepting and also pushing themselves. The instructors were top-notch and safety-focused and provided excellent support. Also, one of my favorite things about camp (always) is being off electronics for three straight weeks. – Susan Blank, New York, NY

We trust AT, and our children loved the adventure, backpacking, and other activities, but more important, they learned to connect with peers and become more confident and independent. They really enjoyed making connections and felt supported. Mel and Henry gained a deep appreciation and love for the wilderness that I could never give them by just hiking in NJ. They said AT was life-changing and wish they could do it forever! – Monica Cantor, Morganville, NJ

We were looking for an adventure activity for Jonah, but were uncertain about Outward Bound or NOLS at this point. We were very happy to find Adventure Treks with its focus on both outdoor adventure and social interactions (community-building). Our child is interested in so many outdoor adventures that as parents we aren’t active in (mountain climbing, bouldering, multi-day backpacking trips, to name a few). It was great to have Adventure Treks care for our child and guide him in all of the above and more. He loved it. Everyone was kind and supportive. Just great!!! – Ron Pernick, Portland, OR

It is hard to describe how this experience helped my daughter grow and learn about herself. At first Keira was apprehensive about meeting total strangers and sharing tents, food, and experiences. She ended her trip with sadness over having to say goodbye and came home with amazing stories of happy times and difficult challenges that she crushed! The best part was making new friends eye to eye without the use of social media. She talks to her new friends almost daily! Thank you so much! – Bob Nyberg, Tucson, AZ

My child returned happy, more independent, more positive, and with new friends all over the country! He loved AT! He raved about the instructors and students. Everything was awesome! – Tiffany Drilling, Atlanta, GA

Bridger is a pretty introverted person and was somewhat apprehensive to go to Adventure Treks. But he made friends quickly and had a really incredible summer. He had experiences that he could not have found anywhere else! His limits were tested, and he found that he didn’t reach the boundaries of his own limitations. He discovered that he was stronger and more capable than he had realized. So cool! Excellent. I felt that the communication was really first-class. You all were clear and very responsive. I felt very at-ease with all elements of the program due to this kind of responsiveness. And Bridger LOVED the instructors. He wasn’t sure what to expect, and he was very impressed with how approachable they were, and how sweet and inclusive they were. Nice work in your hiring, AT! We’re so happy Bridger was able to go to AT this summer! – Mike Caulkins, Flagstaff, AZ

We absolutely love everything about AT! Amanda and Dmac are amazing, the attention to detail and the quality of instructors and programming is the best! Our son really loved the group on his trip and felt that it was a fun, diverse and supportive group. He really loved his instructors and I think that they had a large impact on how much he loved his trip. I can’t think of anything that y’all could do any better! – Emilie Samet, Greensboro, NC

Dash had a great time getting to know his instructors and peers. He got out of his comfort zone, and even participated in an activity he already knew he didn’t like. He had a great time and learned a lot! Communication was great. We already have a level of comfort with the AT community, so we didn’t need a ton of communication. We got just what we needed before the trip. During the trip, Amanda was great in helping me out when I realized I wouldn’t be available on phone call day! – Sarah Wessell, Chapel Hill, NC

It was the “best thing Elle did all year” last year. The “most fun thing ” she did… and we took great vacations and had some cool experiences… BUT CLEARLY, this is all about the program! WHAT THEY GAIN IS NOTHING THAT WE (as parents) CAN GIVE THE M. It’s something they gain internally that can not be bought or taken from them. PRICELESS. She loves the community. She can only smile anytime an AT story is told. YOU ALL HAVE THEY KEY… It’s all authentic and real! – Elizabeth Lenihan, Glenview, KY

Hayley loved it last year and wanted to go back. She seemed to grow in confidence after her first trip, so we were excited to send her again. This year, Hayley had fun, made friends, gained a great deal of independence and confidence in herself, and is able to communicate her needs better in a group. – Maurine McAdams, Chicago, IL

You’ll spend lots of time before the trip planning and worrying. During the trip, you’ll be waiting for a phone call, picture, or blog post. After the trip you’ll hear stories every day, for weeks. Totally worth it. Great program; we were new to it, but everything happened as advertised. Happy to recommend to anyone. – Justin Hersh, Gaithersburg, MD

Adventure Treks allows your children to learn independence, responsibility, and experience new communities and activities within a safe environment. It gave our child an opportunity to experience challenging activities in a community of his peers, while still having fun and being under the watchful eye of competent instructors. Our child had a blast. He’s mentioned stories, inside jokes, challenges, and the natural beauty of the trip every day since he’s been home. He enjoyed the trip and the people more than he thought he would. Communication with AT was great. We felt informed and in the loop at all times. – Tara Peterson, La Habra, CA

AT is an excellent opportunity for development; as Whitman said, “Now I see the secret of the making of the best persons, it is to grow in the open air and to eat and sleep with the earth.” My daughter had a great time! – Mijail Serruya, Merion Station, PA

AT went beyond our expectations in the areas of safety/expertise of the instructors, organization, experiences, and friendships our child had. Overall, it was a huge growth and learning challenge for our daughter. She says that her group are all still close and open with one another. Everyone helped, lead, and remained supportive throughout the trip. Amanda was very responsive and caring. Kyle was incredible—he is warm, caring, reliable, and I felt he had the kids’ best interest and safety in mind at all times. – Marney Whitney, Chapel Hill, NC

It was an amazing trip filled with incredible instructors, students, and activities. Adventure Treks was very organized from the moment that I first called with questions through to the end of the trip. Landon thoroughly enjoyed the trip and can’t wait to go on another one next summer. I think it was valuable that Landon was part of a community and worked together as a team with other students and instructors to make all of the activities possible. It was great that he was able to strengthen life and social skills. Communication with the AT office was excellent. Before signing my son up for the trip, I had many questions and Amanda always made time to answer all of my questions. When his Yellowstone trip was canceled, AT was transparent and quickly helped us to find another trip. Kurt called before the trip and it was comforting to hear directly from a instructor who would be on the trip. I found the webinar before the trip to be very informative and helpful. Thank you! – Christine Tamaddon, Stevenson, MD

We love AT! We were referred by a family friend, and we feel so fortunate to have discovered and experienced what AT has to offer. The growth and independence that we feel our daughter achieves with each trip is the reason we return. The physical challenge is daunting but such a great way for her to prove to herself that she can do anything. The bond with instructors and other teens from around the country is so strong, and I love that lifelong friends are being made—especially as some of them start to think about college and having friends in different parts of the country. When our child comes home from camp, the sadness she feels missing her summer adventure friends and the great outdoors makes it so worth it. All of these things make for an incredible summer experience that we hope she will have again and again. What a gift this is to teens! Thank you for all that you do to offer these life-changing experiences. – Meredith Alderson, Austin, TX

Two of my daughters participated in different California Challenge trips separately over the last two years. We had hoped for both of them that they would not only have fun, memorable experiences, but also ones which would promote a sense of confidence and independence. Adventure Treks delivered much more than we had hoped for. The activities and environment did in fact create many fun and rewarding challenges. But it was the caring instructors and the thought that was put into the trip which created meaningful group experiences which allowed my daughters to grow as people. They have maintained many of their friendships from their trips and have been eager to return for more Adventure Treks experiences. – Robb Ellis, Simpsonville, SC

An incredible experience, all three trips over consecutive summers, that built on each other in challenge, length of time, leadership skills, resilience, and, ultimately, confidence. The friendships gained by our son have endured. The inclusivity is bonding. The places visited and the journeys to reach them were astounding. Such beauty. Some of the best times of our son’s life were on Adventure Treks trips. – Anne Fiorito, Oakland, CA

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