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Inner Odysseys (IO) is an organization dedicated to mentoring and expeditions that combine experiential learning, physical and mental challenges, and healthy rites of passage. Developed by wilderness guides and therapists, IO believes that when young people are taken out of the classroom and exposed to nature, physical challenge, and experiential learning...

Summer Expeditions


Rising up from the Sacramento River valley, the Sierra Nevada mountain range boasts thirteen peaks over 14,000 ft, glaciers, pine forests, alpine lakes, glacial tarns, and hot springs. Participants will trek through river valleys surrounded by glacier carved granite mountains, camp in lodgepole pine forests, swim in quaint alpine lakes, and hike the jagged peaks of mountains still lightly covered in the snow of winter.



Young Men's Group (ages 14-18): July-August TBD

Young Women’s Group (ages 14-18): July-August TBD

Both trips require at least 6 hours of participation on the Sunday when the group returns.





The trip starts the Sunday the weekend before our expeditions departure.  During this time we will have an opportunity for everyone to get to know each other as well as pack and prepare for the logistics of our trip.  



On the date of departure participants will gather in Orinda early in the morning  to load their gear into our group van before driving 3 hours to 5 Lakes Basin just west of Lake Tahoe.


Participants will spend the first ⅓ of the trip having fun, getting acquainted, and learning the basics of outdoor living curriculum.  Our curriculum includes; basic first aid, leave no trace ethics, backpacking and camping skills, basic mountaineering skills, map and compass navigation, identification of local flora and fauna, basic astronomy, and expedition leadership.  We’ll be spending our days hiking local peaks and swimming in alpine lakes and our nights together staring back and forth between the vast expanse of stars and fire light. Ask any of our previous participants, our trip operates on the three following values in the order provided; safety, fun, learning.  


After everyone has acclimated to the mountain environment we will enter the phase of the trip that we call finals.  Finals is about student leadership.  In this phase we turn over the curriculum to the students and follow their navigational leadership as they take us across a section of the Sierra Nevada.  It’s up to the group how the itinerary is carried out.  After finals we take a break together, relax, swim, and take it easy       


The last section of our trip includes a 24 hour solo experience where students spend a night out in the woods by themselves.  While we monitor for safety students will have a 24 hour opportunity to connect with themselves free from technology, peers, and distraction.  Students return form solo via a rites of passage ceremony.  



On our final day we will be returning early to debrief our experience together and  share a slide-show with parents.  We ask that as many family members join for the slideshow as possible.  


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