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The Northwest’s Columbia River Gorge, Mount Rainier & San Juan Islands

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Road Scholar
Program #16179RJ

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8 Days | 7 Nights
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. Minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding, and rewarding, programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.


These instructors are participating on at least one day of one date of this program.
Please note that changes may occur.

Joseph Couture

Joseph Couture is an expert on the geology and history of the Pacific Northwest. He studied geology at Portland State University and criminology at Southern Oregon University, and combined the degrees for his interest in forensic geology (geo-criminology). He is an accomplished lecturer on topics ranging from the Hawaiian Volcanoes to the Granite Plutons of Acadia National Park in Maine.

Cindy Hansen

Cindy Hansen is education curator for The Whale Museum. Born in Gary, Ind., she earned a degree in zoology with a focus on marine mammals at the University of Washington in Seattle. While working as a naturalist onboard a whale-watching fleet, she fell in love with the San Juan Islands and the Orcas who live in the surrounding waters. Cindy has also worked with Orca Network for several years as a naturalist onboard the Washington State Ferries.

Michael Balise

Michael Balise was born and raised north of Seattle. As a faculty member at Skagit Valley College, Michael teaches math, oceanography, geology, and more. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Washington in geophysics by studying glaciers in exotic locales. Michael also holds a B.S. in atmospheric sciences and a B.F. in forest resources. He is an experienced sailor and kayak guide. Michael has lived on San Juan Island for the past 20 years, and is happily married to his wife Magda. Michael is the proud father of two grown sons; one currently attends college and the other son resides in China.

Mary Kalbert

Mary Kalbert is a former on-line columnist and author of “Reflections on Life in the San Juan Islands,” a series of essays on everyday life and island living throughout the seasons. She earned her degree in business administration and retired after 30 years of a combination of federal and self-employed positions. Her involvement in charitable work has led to national and international speaking opportunities. Mary and her husband share their island home with one high maintenance cat.

Nancy Spaulding

Nancy Spaulding is an artist who has been inspired by San Juan Island since moving there in 1978. Nancy’s work has been featured on the covers of numerous books and magazines, and can be found in museums and galleries throughout the Pacific Northwest, and she is a founding member of the San Juan Island Artist’s Studio Tour.

Currently selected:Prices Starting At:
Jul 14 — Jul 21, 2013 waitlist only  

Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

at no additional cost on this date ...
7 nights of accommodations
19 meals: 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 6 dinners
5 Expert-led lectures
9 Field trips


Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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