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Trips & Travel

 

Cancellation Policy: Cancellations more than one week prior to a class are subject to a 15% cancellation fee. Cancellations with less than one weeks notice are non-refundable; please consider your payment a donation to the Gardens.

 

A Guided Walk - Forest Bathing

 

Experience the relaxing practice of forest bathing: shinrin-yoku. Bathe in the atmosphere of the forest through mindful engagement of the senses. Studies suggest that a regular practice of forest bathing may be associated with a reduction in blood pressure, heart rate and stress hormones. During this walk, the guide invites ways to engage the senses for closer connection with the surrounding nature. You will move slowly and mindfully through the forest as you are guided through a series of invitations to engage your senses for closer connection with the surrounding nature. The walk begins at 9 a.m. (this does not include travel time to get to the walk starting point) and lasts 2.5 hours. Detailed information about location will be emailed out about a week before the walk.

 

Price: $30, $25 member

Instructor: Leona Campbell

Leona is a professional photographer and owner of Wind in Pines LLC, which provides public and private forest bathing walks in the greater Denver area. Leona is a certified forest therapy guide, through the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy (ANFT).

 

Special Instructions: All walks begin at 9 am (this does not include travel time to get to the walk starting point), and will last 2.5 hours. Detailed information about location will be emailed out about a week before the walk. All locations will likely be near the foothills, within about a one hour drive or less from Denver.

 

Cherokee Fall Nature Hike - At Cherokee Ranch and Castle

Those lucky enough to have hiked Cherokee Ranch know that there are a wealth of habitats and a rich flora that distract your eyes downwards, even as the vistas of the rugged backbone of the Rockies and distant misty towers of downtown Denver tempt you to look further away. One thing is for sure you will never be bored on a Cherokee hike! This year we are starting much earlier for better birding. But the plants will already be awake!

 

In Fall the Sumac and plums are turning color in the gullies, and the oaks are showing some burnished bronze. Fall is a fabulous season on Cherokee Ranch: Senecio, Aster and Goldenrod are everywhere. Blazing star paints purple spikes in the tousled mats of buffalo grass. The Spotted Towhee bird can be overlooked in the spring and summer, is more visible now since many of the spring and summer residents have started their fall migration. Two species of Jays – Scrub and Steller’s can now get the attention they deserve. They can be “missed” in spring and summer as we look at the other species.

 

Tour Guides: Panayoti Kelaidis and Lynn Willcockson

Price: $25, $20 members

Special Instructions: Please wear comfortable shoes and bring your own supply of water for a 2 hour adventure. Plants don't really care how you dress for the field trips but BIRDS DO!! It is easier to see birds if you DO NOT wear white or other very bright colors i.e. yellow, orange or red. Also, bring your binoculars: they can be used for both birds and plants.

 

Directions and details for your hike will be emailed to your email address approximately one week before your hike.

Hike location:

Cherokee Ranch and Castle

6113 N Daniels Park RD

Sedalia, CO 80135

Cherokee Late Summer Nature Hike - At Cherokee Ranch and Castle

Those lucky enough to have hiked Cherokee Ranch know that there are a wealth of habitats and a rich flora that distract your eyes downwards, even as the vistas of the rugged backbone of the Rockies and distant misty towers of downtown Denver tempt you to look further away.

Late summer is an excellent time to observe the bounty of both flora and fauna rolling through the hills of Cherokee Ranch: Aster and Goldenrod are everywhere. Blazing star paints purple spikes in the tousled mats of buffalo grass. Mid- summer bird activity continues at Cherokee as well. It is possible to see three species of hummingbirds as they stop to feed to store up energy on their way to Central America for the winter. The Mountain and Western Bluebirds have finished nesting and the young (juveniles) are seen throughout the Ranch property. There is no better place to soak up the sun than on a late summer plant hike and bird watching adventure at Cherokee Ranch.

 

Price: $25, $20 members

Special Instructions: Please wear comfortable shoes and bring your own supply of water for a 2 hour adventure. Plants don't really care how you dress for the field trips but BIRDS DO!! It is easier to see birds if you DO NOT wear white or other very bright colors i.e. yellow, orange or red. Also, bring your binoculars: they can be used for both birds and plants.

Directions and details for your hike will be emailed to your email address approximately one week before your hike.

Hike location:

Cherokee Ranch and Castle

6113 N Daniels Park RD

Sedalia, CO 80135

Cherokee Summer Nature Hike - At Cherokee Ranch and Castle

Those lucky enough to have hiked Cherokee Ranch know that there are a wealth of habitats and a rich flora that distract your eyes downwards, even as the vistas of the rugged backbone of the Rockies and distant misty towers of downtown Denver tempt you to look further away. One thing is for sure—you will never be bored on a Cherokee hike! This year we are starting much earlier—for better birding. But the plants will already be awake!

At the beginning of Summer the grasses have greened up, although there may still be snow on the higher peaks, when we walk through meadows full of the bounty of early summer this is the peak season for many of the loveliest wildflowers; including One-sided Penstemon (Penstemon virgatus), lupines and Monument plant. It is also peak season for the Broad-tailed Hummingbirds that have made their way back from Mexico and Central America to nest at Cherokee. We will learn how to identify the male Broad-tailed Hummingbird just by hearing it fly as it darts between scarlet gilia trumpets. Two species of bluebirds and swallows will be active at this time as well as the tiny (4 ½ in) Blue-gray Gnatcatcher that has returned from its winter grounds as far away as Central America to nest at Cherokee. Summer is prime time for viewing the plant and bird life at Cherokee, folks!

 

 

Price: $25, $20 members

Special Instructions: Please wear comfortable shoes and bring your own supply of water for a 2 hour adventure. Plants don't really care how you dress for the field trips but BIRDS DO!! It is easier to see birds if you DO NOT wear white or other very bright colors i.e. yellow, orange or red. Also, bring your binoculars: they can be used for both birds and plants.

Directions and details for your hike will be emailed to your email address approximately one week before your hike.

Hike location:

Cherokee Ranch and Castle

6113 N Daniels Park RD

Sedalia, CO 80135

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cherokee Winter Nature Tour - At Cherokee Ranch and Castle

Those lucky enough to have hiked Cherokee Ranch know that there are a wealth of habitats and a rich flora that distract your eyes downwards, even as the vistas of the rugged backbone of the Rockies and distant misty towers of downtown Denver tempt you to look further away.

 

Whoever says winter is the “dormant” season? Wise naturalists know that nature does not sleep, you can now SEE those birds flitting in the bare branches. Buds are set on everything, and there is much more than just bark, branches and berries to liven a walk. You can see two species of Chickadees and Nuthatches that never stop in their search for food and there are a few last lingering hints of flowers. You will be surprised at how many evergreens there really are; not just pines and junipers and Oregon Grape, but many of our native shrubs and forbs keep living foliage and rosettes through the winter: they are still hard at work chlorophyll pumping! You might also be surprised to know that some Dark-eyed Juncos fly all the way from the Pacific Northwest and even Canada to winter at Cherokee. Other winter species include Flicker, Woodpeckers and a resident Red-tailed Hawk. What better time and place than Cherokee Ranch in the bright, winter light.

 

 

$20 member, $25 non-member.

 

 

 

 

* Plants don’t really care how you dress for the field trips but BIRDS DO!! It is easier to see birds if you DO NOT wear white or other very bright colors –i.e. yellow, orange or red. Also, bring your binoculars: they can be used for both birds and plants

* Please wear comfortable shoes and bring your own supply of water for a 2 hour adventure

*Directions and details for your hike will be emailed to your email address approximately one week before your hike

 

 

Relational Rewilding: Becoming Animal - The Secrets of Stealth for Improved Wildlife Watching

Autumn is an ideal time for watching wildlife, so rewild yourself and see more animals by learning basic tips for blending in with your environment. Do you want to observe more than fleeing deer and birds? How do you activate a more respectful and effective engagement with the wild world? Join us for a fun and enlightening outdoor class that discusses tracking, animal senses, stealth strategies and human/animal relationships. Engaging your animal-self will not only change the way you move through nature, but also how you move through life.

 

Price: $30, $25 member

Instructor: Kimberly Beck is passionate about facilitating deep relationships between people, nature and animals. Kimberly holds a Masters degree in Counseling and a Bachelors degree in Outdoor Education and Plant Biology. Currently she is owner and operator of both The Canine Effect, her dog training business, and Relational Rewilding Nature Guiding. Kimberly has designed and led environmental and humane education programs at state parks, outdoor education centers and animal shelters throughout the country. She is a Master Naturalist, a Native Plant Master, and has participated in continuing education programs through Wilderness Awareness School, 8 Shields Institute, and The Tracking Project - training in cultural and natural awareness, animal tracking, plant studies, bird language, primitive skills, and community building.

Special Instructions: Walk will take place exclusively outdoors; please dress accordingly for weather, bring sunscreen, hat, water, and lunch if desired. Be prepared for walking and light hiking.

Class length does NOT include drive time to or from our meeting place to the hiking location.

Location:

Genesee Park

Specific location details will be sent out about a week prior to the hike.

 

Relational Rewilding: Positively Poisonous - Befriending Toxic Plants for Greater Safety

Does the fear of poisonous plants hinder your engagement with nature? Cultivate greater safety and confidence in your outings through awareness and identification of toxic plants. Many Colorado species contain potent toxins that are dangerous for people to touch or consume. Yet, most also have beneficial qualities ecologically, medicinally and/or spiritually. Take a gentle walk to open your senses and engage your mind with an exploration of both toxic and non-toxic plant families. 

 

Price: $30, $25 member

Instructor: Kimberly Beck is passionate about facilitating deep relationships between people, nature and animals. Kimberly holds a Masters degree in Counseling and a Bachelors degree in Outdoor Education and Plant Biology. Currently she is owner and operator of both The Canine Effect, her dog training business, and Relational Rewilding Nature Guiding. Kimberly has designed and led environmental and humane education programs at state parks, outdoor education centers and animal shelters throughout the country. She is a Master Naturalist, a Native Plant Master, and has participated in continuing education programs through Wilderness Awareness School, 8 Shields Institute, and The Tracking Project - training in cultural and natural awareness, animal tracking, plant studies, bird language, primitive skills, and community building.

Special Instructions: Walk will take place exclusively outdoors; please dress accordingly for weather, bring sunscreen, hat, water, and lunch if desired. Be prepared for walking and light hiking.

Class length does NOT include drive time to or from our meeting place to the hiking location.

Location:

Sunday, July 7 Clear Creek Trail, Golden

Friday, July 26, Denver Botanic Gardens at Chatfield

Specific location details will be sent out about a week prior to the hike.

Relational Rewilding: Survival and Edible Plants

 

Rewilding hikes teach how to move in nature with more awareness, confidence, knowledge and reverence. This hike focuses on survival and exploration of edible plants in the local foothills. Participants learn plant identification, foraging styles and responsible gathering principles through a rewilding lens. Plant and rewilding knowledge sharpens awareness and senses, is useful in the backcountry and fosters a deeper connection to your local ecology.

 

 

Price: $30, $25 member

Instructor: Kimberly Beck is passionate about facilitating deep relationships between people, nature and animals. Kimberly holds a Masters degree in Counseling and a Bachelors degree in Outdoor Education and Plant Biology. Currently she is owner and operator of both The Canine Effect, her dog training business, and Relational Rewilding Nature Guiding. Kimberly has designed and led environmental and humane education programs at state parks, outdoor education centers and animal shelters throughout the country. She is a Master Naturalist, a Native Plant Master, and has participated in continuing education programs through Wilderness Awareness School, 8 Shields Institute, and The Tracking Project - training in cultural and natural awareness, animal tracking, plant studies, bird language, primitive skills, and community building.

 

Special Instructions: Walk will take place exclusively outdoors; please dress accordingly for weather, bring sunscreen, hat, water, and lunch if desired. Be prepared for walking and light hiking.

Class length does NOT include drive time to or from our meeting place to the hiking location.

 

Location: All location details and directions will be sent the week before class.

 

June 15: Corwina Park. Participants will be instructed to meet at a park-and-ride to carpool.

June 19: Meyer Ranch Park

 

 

Trip - Natures' Adaptations: River to Desert with Denver Botanic Gardens

Experience the ecological beauty of one of the West's most beautiful classrooms. Join Denver Botanic Gardens and Centennial Canoe Outfitters, Inc., for a leisurely, guided and outfitted 31-mile canoe trip through the Escalante and Dominguez Canyons Wilderness Area on the Gunnison River. Paddle beside high walls of red sandstone and shale deposited during the age of the dinosaurs and take interesting side trips into deep box canyons that leave you awed by the immense geological time record and relaxed by the silence of the wilderness. Observe the massive cottonwood trees along the river bends that support huge nests of blue herons, hawks and eagles. As you canoe, camp and hike along the scenic Gunnison River, learn how human, plant and animal life have adapted to this unique river and desert environment and how local, native cultures used plants. Explore the river's vegetation, including some rare plant populations found only in this region and use these plants as inspiration in arts and crafts.

 

Price: $450, $420 member

Instructor: Centennial Canoe Outfitters Inc. will provide the guides, gear, and expertise. Our wetland ecologist facilitator will be TBD.

Trip Level: No previous canoeing experience is necessary to join the trip. Minimum age 18.

Special Instructions: Participants will meet at the Gunnison River Escalante Bridge on August 16th at 6:30 a.m. Participants will receive directions and additional information at least one week prior to the trip. Registration deadline is July 24.

Centennial Canoe Outfitters (CCO) will provide guides and all gear including food.

Personal camping equipment, personal clothes, and toiletries will need to be provided by the participant. Camping equipment, including a tent, sleeping bag, chair and pad can be rented from CCO. Please contact CCO at 720-283-0553 and mention that you are registered for the Denver Botanic Gardens Trip.

 

 

Trip - Wildflowers of the Rocky Mountain Region - RMBL

 

The small town of Gothic is an historic site for many reasons. An old mining town, a point of access to incredible displays of the Southern Rockies wildflowers, and the world famous RMBL (Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratories). Join two of the authors of  Wildflowers of the Rocky Mountain Region  as we get an insider's look at this beautiful location and have a couple of days to explore the surrounding areas on guided hikes. You will learn about the high elevation pollinators and their importance to the alpine ecosystems. On hikes you will get to experience a variety of the areas interesting hikes and use that Wildflowers of the Rocky Mountain Region book you have been studying. High sagebrush steppe, Montane forest, Wildflower meadows, and right at hand is the quaint and quirky town of Crested Butte. We will be staying in the cabins on the RMBL site and living like and amongst the scientist whom hone their craft in this one of a kind living laboratory.

 

Price: $1050, $890 member, $500 deposit due by June 25 to reserve spot.

Guides: Mike Bone and Sonya Anderson

Additional Details:

All rooms are double or triple occupancy.
Room assignments will be made based on gender.
All meals are included in the dining hall.
Participants should bring a warm sleeping bag, RMBL does not provide blankets or sheets.
Participants are responsible for cleaning their cabin during their stay, there is no maid or cleaning service.
Check-in is at strictly 2 pm on the day of arrival.

 

See RMBL website for more details. www.rmbl.org

 

Trip - Wildflowers of the Rocky Mountain Region - Southern Rockies

 

Experience the wonders of the southern Rockies with two Denver Botanic Gardens horticulturalists and authors of Wildflowers of the Rocky Mountain Region  (2018). This trip is based in Pagosa Springs, a popular destination with natural hot springs in the middle of town, a beautiful backdrop of the Rockies, a convergence of natural habitats and diverse flora. This trip includes three unique day trips that showcase a small portion of the diversity of the Pagosa area. Explore alpine, montane, steppe and riparian habitats; visit waterfalls and unique geological formations; and enjoy late season wildflowers. In the evenings, dine in local restaurants and breweries and relax in the hot springs.

 

Day 1: Travel Independently to Pagosa Springs

Group dinner and welcome at a restaurant in Pagosa Springs

Free time to visit the hot springs

 

Day 2: Scenic Drive and Hike

Scenic drive to trailhead

Wildflower hike: explore diverse plant communities and unique geology

Picnic lunch

Return to Pagosa Springs

Dinner: on your own

Talk given by a local expert on Pagosa Skyrocket

 

Day 3: Visit Historic Creede

Bachelor Historic Mining Loop - sightseeing and botanizing

Picnic in Creede’s city park or lunch at a local restaurant

Explore the town, shop, visit museums or take a short hike with views of area

Return to Pagosa Springs

Dinner: on your own

Free time to visit hot springs

 

Day 4: Return to Denver on your own

 

 

Price: $1,250, $1,100 member $500 deposit due by June 20 to reserve spot.

Guides: Mike Bone and Jen Toews

Additional Details:

Participants, plan to hike at least 4 miles in the elements.

Dinner on the first night and breakfast at the resort cafe on site is included. All other meals are on your own.

All participants will stay in a double occupancy room and will share a room at the Springs Resort and Spa. pagosahotsprings.com

24-hour access to the hot spring pools

Itinerary subject to change.

 

 

Wild Foraging Mushroom Basics

Head to a secret location with wild mushroom enthusiast Michael Heim for a day trip/mushroom foray and a walk in nature. Gain a firm handle on the foundations of mushroom identification as you locate a variety of medicinal and edible fungi growing in the wild. Discuss mushroom anatomy and learn the skills for contrasting mushrooms that may be poisonous with those that may inspire a dinner party. Bring your field guides to unlock some nature! Return with a better understanding of what it means to hunt for mushrooms and maybe some fungi for tasting.

 

Price: $40, $35 member

Instructor: Michael Heim

Based in Boulder, Colorado, Michael Heim has led forays for Denver Botanic Gardens, the Center for Integrative Botanical Studies and the Boulder Living Arts School. In 2014 chefs from all over the U.S. joined Michael on a wild mushroom foray sponsored by the Chef's Collaborative Summit. That same year he presented at the annual Bioneers Conference, held at Colorado University, exploring the exciting topic of myco-remediation. He produced and facilitated a two-day medicinal mushroom workshop with revered herbalist Robert Rogers, author of  The Fungal Pharmacy.  In 2015 Michael studied lab technique and mushroom cultivation under Dr. Daniel Tura of Aloha Medicinals. He has taught mushroom cultivation classes for Boulder High Country Mushrooms, Cow Town Grangers, Botanica: A Festival of Plants and The Growhaus in Denver.

 

Special instructions: Please note, Mother Nature is a wild beast and we cannot guarantee the number or variety of the mushrooms we will find. Bring a positive attitude and your hiking apparel (i.e., long pants, hat, good footwear), as well as water, snacks and lunch. It may be possible that we will be walking at elevation and on varying groundcover for several hours. All participants should come prepared for weather in the high country.

- Capacity is strictly limited.

- We will meet promptly at the (TBD) meeting spot in order to arrange carpooling and to have a brief discussion on what to expect for the day. Location details will be emailed about a week prior to the program date.

- The class will be emailed should weather be an issue or be cause for cancellation; all students will be refunded should the weather not cooperate.

 

 

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