Today's Lesson: Learning There's No "I" In We
Water Bottles

Expedition Survival Tip

When climbing a mountain, remember reaching the summit is only half the battle. Coming down requires equal energy and focus.


What We Do

The core Big City Mountaineers program is a week-long wilderness mentoring expedition where urban youth are given the opportunity to experience the beauty and challenges of the wilderness alongside supportive adult mentors.  What had begun as a simple backpacking trip with an urban, at-risk teen 20 years ago has now evolved into a documented and well-tested progression of experiences coupled with opportunities for reflection and learning.

BCM Impact in Their Own Words from Big City Mountaineers on Vimeo.

BCM Weeklong Expeditions:

  • Provide wilderness mentoring opportunities to under-resourced urban youth age 13 to 18
  • Cultivate relationships between youth and caring adult mentors
  • Offer a unique 1-to-1 ratio of adults to youth
  • Improve teen self-awareness and personal responsibility
  • Promote group development and effective communication
  • Partner with existing youth development agencies to better address the ongoing needs of under-resourced youth.
  • Deliver safe wilderness expeditions led by professional field instructors

Who We Serve

  • 71% are from single parent or guardian-led households;
  • 83% are from families living below the poverty line;
  • 80% have parents with no more than a high school education;
  • 62% have never traveled beyond their county of residence.