IVY - The World's First Social University
September 7 - 10, 2017
Join Us For
IVY Yosemite | Outdoor Adventure & Wilderness Survival Training
Globally renowned as one of the greatest wonders of nature in the entire world, Yosemite is famed for its breath-taking hiking trails, majestic waterfalls, stunning granite cliffs, and ancient sequoia trees. Join us as we set out on epic hikes, learn how to navigate, make fires, read the stars, and put our ultimate survival skills to the test in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains. Top highlights include: Adventure hiking in the Giant Sequoia Forest, epic Tunnel View, and the stunning Vernal & Bridalveil Falls (suitable for all levels); wilderness survival and outdoorsmanship training with expert local guides; stargazing, astrology and astronomy lessons IVY bonfires, BBQs, jam sessions & outdoor parties; relaxing on the beach; and more!
Pre-Trip Welcome (Optional):
Thursday, September 7 — Meet us in San Francisco!
- Gather with fellow members for a fun IVY Welcome Reception in San Francisco to enjoy drinks and discuss all things Wilderness & Survival. Out of town members will book their own accommodations for this optional first night, and we are more than happy to help!
Friday, September 8 — Camping 101 at Yosemite
- Depart San Francisco early on a gorgeous drive to Yosemite National Park, spotting the Bay Bridge and Alcatraz before heading into California’s farmland in the beautiful San Joaquin valley, which produces more fruits and vegetables than all of Australia!
- Stretch your legs during a 2-hour hike to see the massive, ancient giant sequoias (some of which are over 3,000 years old!). Enjoy a picnic lunch and bask in all the beauty and fresh oxygen. Here we’ll start your wilderness education with a little flora and fauna 101—how to identify trees, medicinal plants, and most importantly for our purposes, poison ivy (the bad kind of ivy).
- Arrive in Yosemite Valley and feast your eyes on the iconic Tunnel View — featuring awe-inspiring granite monoliths and Bridalveil Falls. Falling from a misty 617 feet high, Ahwahneechee folklore advises that inhaling the mist of the waterfall would improve one’s chance of marriage. A famed vista for good reason.
- Stop by El Capitan to see if any seasoned rock climbers are up to the steep challenge today!
- If you’ve never camped before, no problem. Once we get to our campground, we’ll learn the basics of outdoorsmanship and ‘No Trace’ ethic and etiquette as we visit the home of over 400 species of vertebrates, including fish, amphibians, reptiles birds, and mammals. We’ll learn our bear hangs and bear run-ins, essentials of knot-tying, build our campsite (surprisingly easy!), and pitch a proper tent with new IVY friends.
- Build a campfire together. Harder than it looks? We’d say so. Extremely satisfying? Absolutely.
- Nothing builds community like cooking a meal together. Get a lesson in making fireside fare with fresh ingredients, and dine on steaks, portobellos, and s’mores. #nom
- Pass the flask as we get toasty by the open flame, and are serenaded by acoustic singalongs under the stars. Have an instrument? Bring it! All are welcome in this woodland jam session. Cheers!
Saturday, September 9 — Hike to All the Views
- Rise and shine with the sun each morning, and energize with a coffee and breakfast of champions for our adventurous days of hiking.
- Ready your day pack and head out for a full day of glorious guided hiking, breaking up into small groups for varying levels of intensity. We will also refresh our survival skills with a quick water safety course covering filtration and the importance of hydration, then getting intermittent lessons in orienteering using a map and compass.
- Explore Yosemite in small groups for multi-level hiking options. For a moderate hike, trek to the Vernal Fall footbridge with pleasant views of the Merced River both up and downstream as well as Vernal Fall. For those interested in a challenging, intense adventure, options will include a 6-hour trek in nature’s granite stairmaster towards the top of Vernal Fall or Nevada Fall, with its easily recognizable bent shape and cascade sometimes called the “giant staircase.”
- Enjoy a picnic lunch amidst the wildlife, waterfalls, and gorgeous overlooks. Throughout our training, we’ll also learn to coexist with animals and insects, from camping with black bears and mountain lions, managing insects and bees, and respecting deer, bighorn sheep and other mammals the park is home to.
- Hiking not for you? No problem! Sketch, read, and wander Yosemite Village and the visitor’s center, stop by the theatre with a movie on the history of Yosemite, and enjoy the Ansel Adams Gallery. You can also arrange your own horseback ride or sit back and witness the expert rock-climbers on their multi-day quest up El Capitan.
- After snapping many, many group selfies with arguably some of the world’s best backdrops, head back at the end of the day to the campsite to freshen up for dinner. A splash in the Merced River at sunset might be just what you need after our long hike! (We’ll also offer a little wilderness hygiene training for those interested.)
- Celebrate and relax together tonight while whipping up a delicious cookout dinner and stargazing, learning the fundamentals of astronomy and astrology. Check out star charts and look for constellations, or look through binoculars at some of our planetary neighbors. Nothing like good-old-fashioned camping in America.
Sunday, September 10 — Merced and Meadows
- Sunrise Hike and Tree Yoga for early risers
- Enjoy a tasty breakfast — french toast, coffee, and fresh fruit, anyone?
- After we practice “No Trace” camping and break down our campsite (and apply ample sunscreen), take the leisurely afternoon to soak up the last bits of nature goodness near Upper and Lower Yosemite Falls. Lounge on the beach to fill up on Vitamin D, stroll (frolic?) through a verdant meadow, or photograph Half Dome and Sentinel Dome like the Ansel Adams you are.
- After a final IVY picnic, we’ll depart Yosemite to return to San Francisco, reminiscing on them good times and arriving by 8pm in time for transfers to fly onwards to home destinations.
We have an extremely limited number of available spaces, and we expect them to go very quickly. Pending availability, we’ll confirm your reservation and process your final payments on Friday, June 16. The special IVY Yosemite Adventure & Wilderness Survival Getaway package will cost $99 non-refundable deposit + $799 final payment and cover all fixed costs, including shared accommodations in tents and camping site; all meals and drinks on the itinerary; all in-state transportation, admission to Yosemite National Park, and all proposed activities. This trip is non-refundable once your full payment is processed. If you’re interested in bringing a guest, please email us via firstname.lastname@example.org!
Members are Responsible for:
- Flights to and from SFO airport. Airfare is an added cost due to the varied home destinations of travelers, although through our partners, we're able to offer select discounted airfare (pending availability). If you're interested, please reach out to the IVY Flight Concierge with your ideal dates, airports & departure times via email@example.com.
- Tents are double occupancy unless a private tent is requested at an additional cost of $99 (subject to availability).
- Meals and drinks outside IVY offerings.
- Optional accommodations in SF on Thursday, September 7
- Optional travel insurance (inquire within)
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