Current Trip Information

Remember: You must be a member of Desert Survivors with a release on file to join in with one of these trips. Join Desert Survivors if you are not yet a member.

If you are new to Desert Survivors or contemplating joining one of our interesting desert trips as a new member please read General Trip Information at the bottom of this page.

Many of our popular trips, particularly car camps on 3 day holiday weekends, tend to fill early and quickly, so plan accordingly. We ask that if you do secure a reservation with a trip leader, please be sure to use it, but if you cannot keep the reservation then advise the trip leader immediately to allow someone on standby to take the open slot.

Other backpacking trips tend not to fill to maximum at all times and may have an open space or two. If you find yourself with an open weekend and want to join in, try phoning the trip leader, space may still be available.

Most of our trip leaders ask that you contact them directly by telephone. This enables the leaders to assess your skills and abilities and to answer any questions or concerns that you may have. Your safety and enjoyment while on the trip is just one of their many concerns. They want you have fun and the trip to be a rewarding experience. This also enables the trip leaders to build a "balanced group" that will enhance everyone's enjoyment of the trip.

Upon securing a slot for the trip you will be mailed additional information concerning the meeting area, car pooling, last minute changes,  etc.

Click here for your Overnight Backpacking Checklist.


FALL 2018

Trip leaders may add trips during the schedule period.  Refer to this webpage for updates.


These trips and events are for current Desert Survivors members.  Lapsed in your membership?  Want to join?  Please go to THIS PAGE.

Download a pdf of the Summer 2018 Trip Schedule mailer.

    September 22, 2018 (Sat) 5:30 p.m.
Los Angeles Area TBA
For our So Cal members, here’s a chance to meet and greet Desert Survivor members living nearby. Bring your friends interested in learning more about DS and join us in celebrating the arrival of Fall, when the desert temperatures become less formidable and Autumn welcomes new adventures. All members welcome. BYOB and a favorite dish to share. Co-hosts: Bob Lyon and Marisa Seaman.
For more information, contact Marisa Seaman or (510) 872-5341

    October 12–14, 2018 (Fri-Sun)
Mission San Antonio De Padua, Jolon, CA
Enduring months of travel and the hardships of desert and mountain, the expedition led by Juan Bautista de Anza reached Mission San Antonio on March 6, 1776, where they were received with a warm reception. Desert Survivors plans a similar welcome for you when you join us at the Mission for a weekend of fun and intriguing activities with your desert-loving friends. The Anza Expedition will be the subject of guest speakers, along with musicians who will perform music of the Spanish era in California. We plan a hike in Los Padres National Forest and a docent-led tour of the Mission. Camping is on the Mission grounds. Happy Hour Friday night and a potluck Saturday eve. Our Annual General Meeting is Sunday, where we will discuss organization issues and elect a new board of directors. All members are encouraged to attend. Further details in September.
Contact Activities Director: Marisa Seaman or (510) 872-5341

    October 19–21, 2018 (Fri-Sun)
Inyo Mountains Wilderness
The Saline Valley Salt Tram was built in 1912 to transport salt 13.4 mi. over the Inyo Mountains to the Owens Valley. Last used in 1935, its wood towers and steel machinery remain today as a National Register Historic Site. Small trees have taken root near the tram towers, making them susceptible to destruction in a wildfire. With a BLM crew, we will help establish firebreaks around several of the structures. We will carpool to the Inyo crest in 4WD high-clearance vehicles for a two-night car camp at 8,700′ We will reach the work sites on foot and use hand tools to remove small pine trees. This promises to be a rewarding experience in one of the most awe-inspiring places in the desert. Limit 8.  Contact Leader: Nick Blake

    November 3–4, 2018 (Sat-Sun)
Mission Creek Preserve, Desert Hot Springs, CA
The weekend will feature presentations and discussions on a wide variety of issues toward preserving our deserts as vital wilderness. All Desert Survivors are encouraged to attend; the general public is welcome. No limit.
Contact: Nick Blake

    November 9–11, 2018 (Fri-Sun)
Death Valley National Park
Lemoigne Canyon is one of the southernmost canyons in the Cottonwood Mountains. We’ll hike from the Emigrant area off Hwy 190 into the canyon, make camp, and explore the narrows, side canyons, and Lemoigne cabin and mine. May make a side trip into the north fork of the canyon. On the return, if there’s time, may visit the Kerdell Prospect in a nameless canyon south of Lemoigne. Expect 6-8 mi. hiking per day, mostly cross-country; carry all water. Limit 8.  Contact Leader:  Barbara Bane (928) 607-6316

    November 16–18, 2018 (Fri-Sun)
Death Valley National Park
Details of this trip were not finalized at publication time. We will camp one night in Centennial Flats, west of Death Valley NP. From there we will hike to view nearby petroglyphs—one of the bighorn sheep glyphs became the inspiration for the Desert Survivor logo. Other hiking/camping locations could include: Fossil Falls (formed after the last ice age when the Owens River coursed through a basalt flow); Darwin Falls outside of Panamint Springs; and a rock art site near Keeler. We have contacted the China Lake Naval Weapons Center to arrange a tour of Little Petroglyph Canyon in the Coso Range above the base. This world renowned site contains one of the highest concentrations of petro- glyphs in the US and is truly amazing. If successful, this all-day trip will be included on our itinerary. There is a $45 per person fee for this tour and the US Navy re- quires a three-week lead time to perform background checks on all participants. Limit 12. Contact: Michael Wells

      Note new date for this trip.
    December 1 – 3, 2018 (Fri-Sun)
Borrego Springs, CA
There is much to see and explore between Salton City and Borrego Springs along the northern route into Anza Borrego Desert State Park. Off Highway S22 there are a myriad of hidden treasures. Road conditions and time permitting, we will venture onto the back roads and explore slot canyons, a calcite mine, the “Pumpkin Patch” of concretion rocks, Truckhaven Rocks, and Collins Valley. Some of these areas may require arduous hiking. We will camp at Coachwhip Canyon and watch the sunset over Font’s Point. High clearance 4WD vehicle REQUIRED for sections of the trip. High clearance suitable for campsite. We will arrange carpooling for day excursions requiring 4WD. Limit 15.  Contact Leader:    Marisa Seaman (510) 872-5341

    December 8, 2018 (Sat)
San Francisco Bay Area
Join us at 6 p.m. for our annual holiday party to meet old and new members, share food, add or get rid of old gear at the auction, and meet the new board of directors. Contact Coordinator:    Marisa Seaman
(510) 872-5341

Annual membership ($30) required for trips unless the participant has Honorary Membership status.  A $25 donation may also be requested by the leader at the trailhead. This donation is voluntary.  Each participant must sign a general liability waiver and to list emergency contacts before departing on the trip. Trips are cooperative in nature. Some trips may be exploratory (not previewed by trip leader). Conditions may be difficult and the unexpected may occur. Consult with leader for details before deciding to go on trip. Trip sign-up procedure: You must call or write leader in advance to reserve space and receive a map and detailed trip description. Leader will confirm your sign-up. Due to past instances where participants signed up for a trip and did not show, a trip leader may require a $20 reservation fee.  Trip participants will learn if the fee is required during the confirmation with the leader.  This fee will be refunded at the trailhead.
•    As noted in trip write-ups above, some leaders have set limits to the number of participants.
•    Sign-ups are first come, first served. A waiting list will be maintained to fill any spaces that arise due to drop-outs. Please notify the leader ahead of time if you are dropping out.
•    As noted in write-ups, some leaders have set beginning and end dates for signing up.
•    Desert Survivors’ trips begin at the designated trailhead. While trip participants are expected to cooperate with the trip leader, each participant is responsible for his or her own safety. In particular, trip participants are responsible for safely transporting themselves to and from trip locales.
•    Desert Survivors encourages trip participants to carpool as a means to increase driver safety while reducing costs, energy consumption and environmental impacts. Trip participants are responsible for making their own carpool arrangements. Desert Survivors recommends that trip participants make equitable arrangements to share costs, and that all arrangements and financial compensation should be clearly negotiated in advance.