Wilderness Welcome Orientation Trips

Stay healthy and get out in the Alaska wilderness. A big part of enjoying life in Fairbanks is embracing an active, outdoor lifestyle. UAF Outdoor Adventures offers Wilderness Welcome Orientation before the traditional New Student Orientation. Start your time at UAF right by participating in this from August 18-22.

During Wilderness Welcome students from all over the U.S. and the world get to know each other while they explore Alaska's vast wilderness. No experience is required, but all students will be challenged. 

Follow the Link below to our website specifically dealing with WW and great information to get you prepared for the week!


Trip options to choose from
Denali Backpacking

Strap boots to your feet and a pack to your back, because you will be walking the beautiful Kesugi Ridge in Denali State Park. This open ridge hike is above tree line and overlooks the 6000m Denali and the rest of the Central Alaska Range. This is an amazing wilderness trip that has four days of awesome views and challenging hiking, and you might even see a bear!


Multi-sport (Camping, glacier hike, canoeing, Rock Climbing)

We will head to the Eastern Alaska Range and set up camp.  From our base camp, we will do a day-hike up onto the awesome Gulkana Glacier.  We will also take a trip to Fielding Lake to canoe, and hike in the surrounding hills.   We will be deep in the wilderness exploring this little visited part of Alaska.  We will also do a second day-hike out the Red Rock Canyon road to get some great views of the Canwell Glacier and the rest of the Eastern Alaska Range. Additionally, we will spend an afternoon rock climbing at Bear Creek.

   gulkana glacier

River Rafting Trip 

We will either float the Delta Clearwater into the Tanana river, the Chulitna river, or the Gulkana river depending flow rates of the rivers during that time of the season. These trip offers participants to experience what an Alaskan river trip is like with the comfort of our trip leaders being at the helm to navigate these splashy rivers! This trip is ideal for all physical ability levels. We will spend 3 nights on the river with the options for side hikes, splashy rapids, and fun sandbar campfires.

ww raft

Schedule of Events

Day 0
August 17, 2023

Students should arrive in Fairbanks on this day. Transportation from the airport can be arranged. Students who plan to live on campus can move into their residence hall that day. Students living off-campus will need to provide their own housing.  Anyone arriving before 8.17.2023 will need to provide their own housing before this day.

Day 1
August 18, 2023

Wilderness Welcome begins @ 11am! This day will consist of pre-trip meetings, brief tours of campus and Fairbanks as well as taking care of new student business like the Polar Express cards and the campus post office. It will also serve as a day to allow students to get over any jet-lag. Personal errands should be taken care of prior to meeting at 10:00 a.m. this day. Once the program begins, students will be very busy and will need to be there for the day's activities. We will provide lunch and dinner for this day! 

Day 2-5
August 19-22, 2023

Students will depart for the field on one of our different four-day adventures. The morning will be spent driving, but students will be hiking by lunchtime. On Tuesday, students will return from their trips in the late afternoon. There will then be a large group BBQ after all the gear has been cleaned up, and then the students spend the night in their residence halls. All meals will be covered during Wilderness Welcome.

Day 6
Wednesday August 23, 2023

This is the first day of traditional Orientation.

ww logo


Trips cost is $395 for Fall 2023.

The price includes transportation, food, equipment, instructors.

This price also includes early move in to campus housing. Early move in starts on August 17th.

Meals are provided starting with lunch on August 18th through dinner on August 22nd.

Students must provide footwear, clothing and personal items. All other equipment for the trips is provided if needed. A complete packing list will be mailed after we receive your registration.

Sign up

2023 Registration Form

To Register,  fill out the registration form and submit a deposit of $50 to reserve your spot. 

Deposits can be submitted over the phone at 907.474.6027, or you can mail cash or check to P. O. Box 757450, Fairbanks, AK 99775.

Email  uaf-oa-staff@alaska.edu with any questions! 

Space is limited, so don't hesitate to register. Registration closes 7.23.2023.!

UAFAA support logoThank you to the UAF Alumni Association

It is through continued support from the UAF Alumni Association (UAFAA) that Wilderness Welcome and other Outdoor Adventures trips can include equipment use with trip fees. UAFAA recently support OA's purchase of a new raft and backpacks.