Home » Trip Schedule » Backpacking


Backpacking involves carrying all your food and equipment on your back and hiking to a site accessible only by foot. Usually there are many rewards for the hiker enroute to the campsite. Our trail groups are generally 8-12 people. Each trip is led by Outdoor Rec. Trip Coordinators who are experienced in backpacking. Group equipment, such as tents, stoves, cooking gear, is included in the trip price. Generally, no experience is necessary, only enthusiasm!  

Upcoming Trips

JULY 15-17  (Friday – Sunday)
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park, TN
Cost: $93
Sign-up by: 6 pm on Wednesday, July 13


1. You must be part of VU and have an @vanderbilt.edu email address.

2.  Click HERE to sign up and pay on-line!

Pre-Trip Meeting:  Tuesday, 7/12 at 5:00 pm at the Outdoor Rec. Center, 2600 Children’s Way.

Come explore the backcountry of the most popular park in country!   It’s a relatively long drive, but this park is worth it!  We have not yet secured our permits, put we plan on car camping at the Cosby Campground on Friday night and begin hiking on Saturday.   Expect to hike 5-8 miles each day.  The scenery should be spectacular and the temperatures are cooler in the Smoky Mountains.  Hiking boots are advised.  This trip is limited to the first 6 people who sign up. Estimated trip duration: 3 pm Fri. – 7 pm Sun.



Date:  May 21 – 29 (Saturday – Sunday)
Location:  Yosemite National Park, CA
Pre-Trip Meeting:  6 pm Wed. March 23 at the ORC.

Cost: $595 + your airfare to and from Sacramento, CA
Registration Fee: $200 can be paid on-line, the rest can be paid in later months.

Sign-up by: 6 pm Wed. March 23

The Summer adventures continue with the Outdoor Recreation Program and this years trip to Yosemite National Park, located in the high sierras of central California. Home to some of the most famous and captivating scenery in the world, we will have a chance to see and explore the impressive granite cliffs and domes, rushing waterfalls, alpine lakes and giant sequoia trees. This trip will include a 4-day backpacking trip and 2.5 days of day hiking. The elevation in the park ranges from around 3,000 feet to 13,000 feet so participants need to be in good shape for this trip. We will mostly be hiking from around 4,000 feet to 7,000 feet in elevation and 6 – 11 miles per day. This will be a trip to remember!

Cost includes:   Van transportation (from / to Sacramento Airport), wilderness permits, camping, entrance and other fees, in-camp food, and group equipment.

Click on this:  Yosemite web for a colorful PDF with more info!

For more information regarding this trip please contact Linda Rosenkranz, VU ORP Director, at (615) 343-7898 or via email at outdoorrec@vanderbilt.edu







Trip Information

Most trips are designed for a small group of people (10-12), and many of the trips require no previous experience. The fee for each trip covers the activity, transportation, in-camp food, camping fees, and group equipment. For more information, look for flyers around campus or stop by the Outdoor Recreation Center (at 2600 Children’s Way and behind the new Vanderbilt Recreation and Wellness Center) during ORC rental hours. This is also where the Pre-Trip Meeting takes place. Trips are open to all VU students, faculty, staff, and VRWC members. Alcohol is not permitted on any trip.