It’s not all work and no play on a VISIONS teen travel program. Participants become part of the fabric of daily life in the community, shopping at local markets, attending festivals, playing games with children, conducting interviews with elders, and attending workshops with artisans.

Weekends are set aside for even bigger activities, travel excursions, site-seeing and recreation.

One activity that participants of VISIONS Alaska high school summer travel program relish every summer is ice climbing in the Wrangell Mountains. Our adventure is led by St. Elias Alpine Guides, a company that has safely led expeditions for more than 35 years. Nestled deep within the Wrangell’s, St. Elias is based in the remote, but popular summer town, of McCarthy. As any VISIONS alumni family will reiterate, VISIONS takes safety seriously, and working with our guides in Alaska is no exception.

Participants break into small groups and gear up for the big day of ice climbing. For most, it is their first time. We camp overnight in McCarthy, looking up on Mount Blackburn, the highest peak in the Wrangell’s and fifth highest in the U.S. Flowing down from Mount Blackburn is the Root Glacier, right in McCarthy’s backyard, and the destination for this exciting climb.

Read about the overall VISIONS Experience: service, culture, adventure.

VISIONS in The New York Times