North Cascades Institute seeks to inspire a closer relationship with nature through direct experiences in the natural world.

Our mission is to conserve and restore Northwest environments through education. Since 1986 we have helped connect people, nature and community through science, art, literature and the hands-on study of natural and cultural history. Our goal is to help people of all ages experience and enjoy the mountains, rivers, forests, people and wildlife of the Pacific Northwest – so all will care for and protect this special place.

North Cascades Institute is committed to innovation and excellence in environmental learning and leadership in the nonprofit community. We believe that sustainable communities are built on healthy environments, vibrant economies and social equity. Toward that end, four key themes run through all our programs:

  • The convergence of natural and cultural history, science, humanities and the arts
  • Human history as integral to the history of landscapes and wild lands
  • Respect among individuals and the broader community
  • Exploration, reflection and stewardship in the out-of-doors

Teaching all ages, we offer:

  • Seminars and retreats
  • School programs and summer youth adventures
  • Graduate M.Ed. in environmental education
  • Teacher education and internships
  • Volunteer stewardship programs

In 2005, North Cascades Institute opened North Cascades Environmental Learning Center. A partnership with the National Park Service and the City of Seattle, the Learning Center is surrounded by millions of acres of protected public lands. It is a hub of discovery into one of the wildest, most biologically diverse landscapes in North America. Learners of all ages come to explore and participate in innovative programs that inspire and enrich their lives.


Board and Advisory Council