Classroom to Trail: Nature, History and Song in the Methow Valley
Join experts and scholars at one of the world’s top 100 hotels, Sun Mountain Lodge, where you’ll learn about a wide variety of topics and discover the beauty of the North Cascades.
Rating (5)
Program No. 2050RJ
4 days
Starts at

At a Glance

The serene and breathtaking Methow Valley in Washington State’s North Cascades is not only the setting for learning, it’s also the subject of two of three invigorating courses based at a mountaintop luxury resort. First, a longtime resident colorfully recounts the mining boom of the 1890s and then details life today in the valley. Then lace up your hiking boots for easy, naturalist-led walks amid Aspen groves and pine forests. Finally, hear of the men and women who settled the Northwest — seafaring explorers, trappers, miners — in the songs written by these very same pioneers.
Activity Level
Easy Going
Minimal walking and standing.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Go inside the natural world of the picturesque Methow Valley with a fascinating slide presentation, then venture outdoors with an expert to see it yourself.
  • Taught by one of the West’s favorite folk singers, hear a lively mix of stories and songs that emanated from the Northwest’s hardy explorers.
  • A local who has lived a lifetime in the Methow Valley spins colorful tales of the valley that are right out of the Wild West.

General Notes

Due to the nature of this program, listening devices are not available.
Featured Expert
All Experts
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Dana Visalli
Dana Visalli is a devoted naturalist who works as a rare plant botanist throughout the American west. He publishes a quarterly journal of natural history, runs a children’s ecology summer camp, and maintains an on-going inventory of the flora and fauna of his home watershed. Dana teaches taxonomy classes at home and abroad, and in 2008 gave a workshop in Iraq to Iraqi botanists. He has published three books on wildflower identification, the “Northwest Wildflower Series.”

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

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Hank Cramer
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Dana Visalli
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Suggested Reading List
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