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Smithsonian Journeys Offers New Tours of the Great Outdoors in 2009

January 22, 2009

Smithsonian Journeys is pleased to present two new adventures for travelers looking to stay closer to home in 2009. With nine outdoors itineraries and 12 departures, there are plenty of options for those looking to explore America’s and Canada’s backyard. Each journey features easy-to-moderate hikes through the regions’ most fantastic landscapes and a close look at native flora and fauna, and tours will be accompanied by expert naturalists, geologists and astronomers.

The first new domestic outdoor Journey for 2009 is “Yosemite in the Spring,” May 17-22. Travelers will join naturalist David Wimpfheimer to explore the Yosemite Valley’s famed granite formations of El Capitan, Half Dome and Sentinel Peak while learning about conservations efforts. Daily nature walks and hikes allow participants the opportunity to spot bobcat, coyote and avian wildlife and enjoy relaxed pursuits such as a tour of the Ansel Adams Gallery and a night of stargazing. Accommodations are at the historic Wawona Hotel and Yosemite Lodge, both located within Yosemite National Park. Prices start at $2,795.

In the summer, Journeys offers “Glacier and Waterton National Parks,” Aug. 7-13. Top naturalists lead hikes and white-water rafting trips for any age or skill level through Glacier Trail and the Flathead River where there is ample opportunity to spot moose and bighorn sheep. Participants will stay at fine lodges in and around the parks, including Lake MacDonald Lodge on the scenic shores of Lake MacDonald. Prices start at $2,995.

Past outdoor favorites will be offered again in 2009 starting with “Death Valley Adventure,” March 22-27, and “Big Bend’s High Desert Landscapes,” April 1-7. Information on all other domestic adventures can be found on the Smithsonian Journeys’ Web site at by selecting “Hiking/Walking” under the “Special Interests” search tab. 

About Smithsonian Journeys
Smithsonian Journeys is the educational travel program of the Smithsonian Institution, with over 38 years dedicated to life-enriching experiences abroad. Annually, more than 250 expert-led international and domestic itineraries offer travelers exclusive access and unforgettable experiences. For more information, call 1 (877) EDU-TOUR (338-8687) or visit

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Betsy Brand
(202) 633-6055

MaryBeth Mullen
(202) 633-6028