‘Passport to Adventure:’ Museum of Western Colorado announces 2014 trips & tours | PostIndependent.com

‘Passport to Adventure:’ Museum of Western Colorado announces 2014 trips & tours

Caitlin Row
While participating in the The Museum of Western Colorado’s Africa tour Aug. 1-15, 2014, visitors will see elephants, as well as zebras, giraffes, primates and more.
Submitted photo |

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For a full listing of “Passport to Adventure!” museum trips and tours in 2014, visit www.museumofwesternco.com or call 970-242-0971, ext. 212.

The Museum of Western Colorado’s main office is located at 462 Ute Ave., in downtown Grand Junction.

It’s a new year in Grand Junction, and with it comes the added bonus of another 365 days of educational travel with the Museum of Western Colorado.

The 2014 “Passport to Adventure!” trips and tours program kicks off with its first trek of the year quite soon — a snowshoe trip in Ouray on Jan. 16. More than 30 group activities in 2014 — spanning local, regional, national and international locations — are available for sign-up now.

“We are taking people where history and science actually happen,” Museum of Western Colorado curator of anthropology and trip guide Zebulon Miracle said.

“We offer everything from exploring the backyard of our region to taking folks clear around the globe. There’s truly something for everybody.”

According to museum executive director Peter Booth, “the trips and tours program offers us the opportunity to take the (educational) mission of the museum and expand it out into the community.

“We’re teaching people about western history and heritage in the museum, and then we’re going out with our patrons to learn in the community, the West, and beyond.”

This year, the museum’s day offerings include: Exploration of rock art in Moab, Utah, on March 8; a tour of Rabbit Valley’s paleontology trail March 22; canyoneering in the Colorado National Monument on May 10; a boat trip along the Colorado River on May 31; a walking tour of Aspen, Colo., on June 12; a boat tour through Black Canyon on the Gunnison River June 19; a trip to see ghost towns in the San Juan Mountains Aug. 7; and more.

Multi-day offerings include: A trip to Denver museums Feb. 27 through March 1; a trip along the Santa Fe Trail from Missouri to New Mexico May 18-23; an exploration of Colorado’s mineral resources and energy economy June 23-26; a river tour of Cataract Canyon in Canyonlands National Park July 6-10; a tour of western National Parks Aug. 25-31; and a Revolutionary War tour of Boston and New England Oct. 3-10.

International trips include: A tour of China, including the Zigong Dinosaur Museum, from June 8-20; a tour of Kenya and Rwanda in Africa, including wildlife safaris and rare mountain gorillas, from Aug. 1-15; and a tour of Normandy and France in honor of D-Day from Nov. 12-22.

The trip to China is particularly interesting to Miracle because travelers will learn about a recent, ground-breaking discovery — dinosaur fossils with evidence of feathers.

“It’s really changing how scientists are looking at dinosaurs in general,” he said.

For 2015, the museum is already starting to plan an adventure to New Zealand and the Grand Canyon.

“Trips are something that we’re very proud of,” Miracle said. “We don’t just take people places to sit on a beach; we expand horizons and understandings of the world. That’s why we do these trips as a nonprofit.”

Prices range widely depending on trip length — from a $45 day hike to an almost $10,000 week-long trip to Africa. Museum members also receive a discount over non-members.

Transportation and lodging costs are included in multi-day trip prices. Meals are not part of the price, unless “otherwise noted,” the 2014 trips and tours booklet said. A deposit must be made on multi-day trips to reserve a spot.

All ages are welcome, and families are encouraged to sign up for trips, Miracle noted. Trip sizes are generally small — around 18 people or less.

For a full listing of museum trips and tours in 2014, visit http://www.museumofwesternco.com or call 970-242-0971, ext. 212.

The Museum of Western Colorado’s main office is located at 462 Ute Ave., in downtown Grand Junction.

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