I nearly flunked biology in college and don’t really do the “outside” thing, so believe me when I say there couldn’t possibly be a less likely candidate for an intense 3-day hike tracking grizzly bears through the glorious Centennial Mountain Range. And yet here I sit, exhausted but exhilarated, and there’s only one thing I can think about: I want more! 

  Founder, Executive Director, NatGeo Adventurer of the Year, and wicked harmonica maestro Gregg Treinish challenged me to grow both as an outdoorsman and as a conservationist. I learned to recognize all types of wildlife tracks, traces, hairs, and scats; I learned about the scourge of Blister Rust and the pressure it places on grizzly habitat; I discovered the ethos of Leave No Trace camping; but most of all, I learned that anyone, regardless of experience, can make a difference. That this could be possible, with a group that included such a diversity of backgrounds (everyone from a college biathlete to… well, me, a desk-hugging filmmaker from the prairies!) is a testament to the simple genius that informs all elements of the ASC. So sign up! Get out there! Make new friends! Learn something new! You might surprise yourself.

– Refah Seyed Mahmoud