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Wonderland Circumnavigation | Ryan Ghelfi and David Laney Trip
September 11 @ 4:00 pm - September 15 @ 5:00 pm PDT
93 Miles, 3-Day Stage
Woooh Baby! It’s commitment time. We’ve seen steady steady interest in our Wonderland Circumnavigation for the past 4 years. Last year we sold out 3 trips early in the year. This year we are psyched to announce 6 weeks of trips! Chances are high that all these trips will SELL OUT. If this trip is on your list, you would be wise to register today.
At 14,410’ Mt. Rainier rises up from lowland valleys in an immense display of rock, ice, and majestic beauty. Circumnavigating the mountain’s glaciated flanks lies the Wonderland Trail. This 95-mile loop gains and descends 23,810’ as it weaves through ancient forests, flows through flower filled meadows, and climbs the many steep ridges cut by the mountain’s glaciers and rivers. To travel this trail is to experience the ecosystems, beauty, and savagery of the mountain.
Wednesday, Day 1: Meet in Ashford WA
We meet runners at 4pm at Whittaker Mountaineering in Ashford WA. This is a great place to purchase or rent any last minute gear. We spend the first night at Big Creek Campground, just outside of the park. Aspire serves and evening meal and we go over routes, risk management, and gear in preparation for the run.
We make this day an early start, its big. Runners generally complete this day in 10-12 hours, but the spread has been as wide as 9-17 hours. 5 big climbs, river crossings, lake swimming, old growth forests, high meadows, and big views await. As will all your gear and plenty of hot food, showers, and beer at Mowich Campground.
This is the “light” day of the trip. From Mowich Lake we send runners on the Spray Park section of the Wonderland. Why? Because big waterfalls, alpine meadows, and ridge lines that touch glaciers are amazing. The magic continues along the Carbon Glacier, Winthrop Glacier, Skyscraper Pass, and Berkley Park, before the trail leads directly into the White River Campground.
Somehow it’s possible for each day of this trip to get better. The trek through Summerland and over Panhandle Gap, into Indian Bar, and up the Cowlitz Divide easily competes for some of the best trail miles on the planet. 20 miles into the the Wonderland Trail crosses pavement at Box Canyon. Here we have an aid station and a 3:00 pm cutoff for runners making the final climb to Reflection Lakes, from which it is almost literally “all down hill”. Once in Longmire we have dinner and drinks. We celebrate, we congratulate, and eventually say our goodbyes.
This trip begins and ends in Longmire WA. We meet runners in Ashford WA just outside of the park on Wednesday evening. We also provide a shuttle to and from SeaTac airport on Wednesday afternoon and Saturday evening, this shuttle is NOT included in the course fee. All those booking flights should plan to fly home on Sunday. Runners who drive personal vehicle leave their cars in the backpackers parking lot in Longmire WA.
Our basecamp will be at a different drive in campground each night. Aspire will provide lively camp amenities for a remote but comfortable “glamp” style experience. Runners will need to provide or rent a personal tent, sleeping bag, pad, etc.
2019 WOMEN’S ADVENTURE SCHOLARSHIP
We want to encourage more women getting into wild places, blazing their own trails, and sharing the ups, downs, twists, and turns of their journey. While the narrative has long been about the lone, often male, explorer pitting himself against the elements, we look forward to new narratives and stories created and shared from wild women.
All Women’s Trips are a celebration of community and connection shared among women who love playing in the mountains. Each stunningly beautiful trip is enhanced by the uniquely awesome vibe of ladies-only adventures.
Wonderland Circumnavigation: 95 Miles, 3-Day Stage. August 14-17, 2019
Stehekin: 50 Miles, 4-day Stage/Retreat. September 26-29, 2019
Sawtooth Backcountry, Weekend Wilderness, October 11-13
Scholarships are intended to support individual female athletes venturing into wild spaces. Our hope is that as scholarship recipients share their stories of adventure they will contribute to an inspiring and growing narrative of female-focused wilderness exploits.
A Free entry on one of Aspire’s Women’s trips: Wonderland, Stehekin, or Sawtooth Backcountry
2 months of personalized coaching from Dasher Performance
Gear from our sponsors:
Personalized, leather-bound Adventure Journal from Pine Daisy House
Who Should Apply
We are deeply interested in the personal stories of our applicants and we are seeking individuals who are able and excited to share their story of adventures with others. We encourage a diverse field of applicants in terms of age, race, experience, and backgrounds. Applicants need not have overcome any specific hardship or have a deeply compelling story, a desire and a passion to explore is sufficient!
By applying you are joining a network of women who are passionate about elevating the visibility of women adventure athletes. Even if you don’t think you are a “competitive” applicant, we want to hear from you. We invite ALL female athletes and adventurers to sign up and follow the adventure. Applying is deliberate act of joining a community of women who love to explore and move through wilderness spaces. Signup and follow the stories of your fellow females.
Initial applications will be accepted between May 1st through May 19th.
From the initial application pool, 3 finalists for each trip will be selected and invited to submit a one page essay on: How moving through wild spaces is empowering to me as a woman.
These essays will be due on May 26th.
Winners will be announced on June 1st.
One application per person.
Applicants must be female and 18 years of age or older.
All scholarship entrants agree to receive promotional materials from Aspire and partners.
Each of the 9 finalists who are selected agree to make their essays public.
Scholarship recipients agree to contribute updates, including photos, from their training and trip experiences to be shared on Aspire’s and partners social media channels.
Event details subject to change; check event websites for details.