Base Camp Learning and Lodging

Base Camp Learning and Lodging

Base Camp Learning and Lodging

Event Details

North Cascades Environmental Learning Center
Institute staff
Quadruple Accommodations
Quadruple (Shoulder Season)
Triple Accommodations
Triple (Shoulder Season)
Double Accommodations
Double (Shoulder Season)
Single Accommodations
Single (Shoulder Season)
Hostel Accommodations
Tuition Includes
Guided outdoor activities in North Cascades National Park, lodging and three meals

Based on guidelines from Washington State and regional health authorities, North Cascades Institute has cancelled all programs and events and closed the Environmental Learning Center through the end of August. We hope to resume modified operations in September. You can find ongoing updates at

Overnight learning adventures and accommodations in the heart of north cascades national park

Flexible, affordable, enriching and fun, Base Camp offers you the opportunity to explore and learn about “the American Alps” while enjoying the comforts of our award-winning campus in the heart of North Cascades National Park. It's a unique way to visit the Diablo Lake area for the first time, stop over as you travel across the Cascades on a road trip and launch or conclude your national park camping, hiking, biking, paddling or climbing adventure.

Read updates about program impacts due to the coronavirus

Each night of Base Camp includes:

  • North Cascades Environmental Learning Center Accommodations
    An inspiring outdoor learning adventures offering hands-on exploration of the natural and cultural history of North Cascades National Park
  • Accommodations in our comfortable lodges
  • Three delicious meals made with locally-sourced, organic ingredients

Sample Activities:

  • Learn about the ecology of the Diablo Lake neighborhood on naturalist-led hikes (including snowshoe hikes in the winter season!)
  • Birding walk with learning activities like sound mapping, binocular training and hands-on exploration of our taxidermy specimens
  • Macroinvertebrate exploration with microscopes
  • Evening Dam walk and discussion of the Upper Skagit's cultural history
  • Explore Diablo Lake on the Salish Dancer, our big canoe (weather-dependent)
  • Mystery skulls using our collection of over 100 skull replicas and real skull
  • Scientific illustration and field sketching drawing classes
  • Early evening "crepuscular crawl" exploration

*Note: Activities change throughout the year depending on the weather, seasonal opportunities, group interest and abilities


The evening dam walk is a participant favorite Base Camp activity.

Base Camp Pricing

Base Camp pricing is determined by how your family or friends group fill a lodge room. All lodge rooms contain 2 bunk sets (4 twin beds)

Pricing: Regular season (May-Oct) / Shoulder Season (Nov-Apr)

Private (single accommodations) - $195/$165
Couple (double accommodations) - $128/$113 each
3 People (triple accommodations) - $103/$92 each
4 People (quadruple accommodations) - $90/$78.75 each
Hostel* - $85/$75 each

* hostel pricing is the cost of sharing a room with up to three randomly-assigned participants.  We do not guarantee a room with your requested roommate under this option, and you may be lodged in a mixed-gender room. Please do not select this if you have participants under 18 in your group or are uncomfortable in a mixed-gender room. The number of occupants per room will be determined on the total number of hostel guests each night.

We encourage people to bring their own bedding and towels but have linens for an additional rental fee of $10 per person for the duration of your stay. Children under 3 are free.