About CLC

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Cascade Leadership Challenge is a Seattle-based nonprofit organization that provides outdoor adventures and leadership opportunities to teenagers and young adults ages 14-25. Our events and expeditions challenge members to develop skills, persevere through difficulties and stretch themselves into highly capable people. Along the way, members build confidence, cooperation and trust.

Cascade Challenge members travel throughout mountains, rivers and marine environments of the Pacific Northwest. Our most ambitious expeditions have taken us to Alaska and Nepal, specifically Denali and the Mt. Everest region.

Our youth and advisers are constantly planning new adventures. By being in constant motion, Cascade Challenge is able to offer exciting experiences for both our experienced adventure travellers and our brand new members.


CLC’s program year has two seasons. During the school year, September-May, short events of one or two days are planned for nearly every weekend. During the summer months, the focus is on expeditions lasting one to four weeks. Events during the school year stand on their own as exciting and rewarding experiences. They also serve as training and preparation for the big expeditions of summer.

Cascade Challenge has three crews, each specializing in a form of adventure travel: Backcountry, Rock & Alpine and Watersports. Youth may go on outings organized by any of the crews but must chose one crew as "home base."

Additionally, our Explorer in Residence (EiR)program supports truly epic expeditions, which, like all of CLC’s events, are youth-led and adult-advised.


CLC is not a commercial, money-making outfit. Our trips are run on a break-even, cost-sharing basis and our leaders are volunteers. We hold several fundraisers a year to cover ongoing program costs and the purchase and care of equipment. Members pay a $30 annual fee. Generally, our trip fees run from $25-40/day, unless there are extraordinary travel or equipment costs.

We do not want any youth who would otherwise be able to participate in CLC, to be excluded because it is too expensive. Our payment motto is “Pay what you can, get in the van”. It has worked so far, because we have many generous supporters (like you?) who help us make the financial ends meet.