2016 Gila Wilderness, Presidential Range, San Juan Range

Warriors to Summits 2016 was a series of three backcountry expeditions for veterans with disabilities. Two teams of veterans from all eras and with a range of disabilities were selected to participate in Expedition I, the Gila Wilderness of New Mexico or Expedition II, the Presidential Range of New Hampshire. Select alumni from Warriors to Summits 2014, 2015, and 2016 teams then had the opportunity to apply to take part in Expedition III, an epic journey that targeted multiple summits in the San Juan Mountain Range of Colorado.

This series of expeditions provided a grueling yet rewarding mental and physical challenge to all the veterans participants, who have a desire to make a change in their life.

  • Expedition I: Gila Wilderness (Completed)

    Enlarge imageA view of the Gila Wilderness in New MexicoExpedition I will take place in the spectacular canyons and vistas of the Gila Wilderness in New Mexico from June 11-17th. This seven-day expedition will include a team of thirteen veterans, four No Barriers Leaders and a photography team to capture the experience.
    Your expedition begins at the airport in El Paso, Texas where you will be greeted by your expedition leaders and new teammates. Your first day will be focused on prepping for the challenges ahead and building immediate bonds with your fellow veterans. You will be provided all the gear and food you need for the expedition ahead. Your first days on the trail will be spent exploring the beautiful slot canyons of the Gila River navigating multiple river crossings. Over the course of five days, your team will work together to navigate 37 miles through the backcountry maze, including a ascent of Hells Hole Canyon, exploring the Gila Cliff Dwellings, and taking a dip in an awesome back country hot spring – recovering from the miles. Throughout the expedition, you will carry your personal gear and some group gear, and will bond with your cook group as you prepare backcountry masterpieces at camp to fuel the next day’s mileage. Throughout the experience, your leaders will be there to facilitate our No Barriers curriculum and remind you that what’s within you is stronger than what’s in your way. After the expedition, alumni are welcomed into the No Barriers family for ongoing support from our community and the possibility to be eligible for future opportunities, including Expedition III: San Juan Range.

    Review the trip:

    • Location: Gila Wilderness, NM
    • Eligibility: Veterans of all eras and genders, with a VA disability rating and proof of service
    • Essential Eligibility Criteria (EEC): Please review EEC here
    • Duration: 7 days total, including 5 days in the backcountry
    • Focus area(s): No Barriers Warriors curriculum, Backpacking
    • Dates: June 11 – June 17
    • Expedition FAQs: View our Frequently Asked Questions here
    Map of the Warriors to Summit Gila Wilderness Expedition
  • Expedition II: Presidential Range (Completed)

    Enlarge imageA View of the Presidential Range in New HampshireExpedition II will take place in the iconic mountain traverse of the Northeast, the Presidential Range in New Hampshire from July 9-15th. This seven day expedition will include a team of thirteen veterans, three No Barriers Leaders and a photography team to capture the experience.

    Your expedition begins at the airport where you will be greeted by your expedition leaders and new teammates. Your first day will be focused on prepping for the challenges ahead, building immediate bonds with your fellow veterans and heading North towards New Hampshire. You will be issued all the gear and food you need for the expedition. Your first days on the trail will begin in the quiet woods of New Hampshire, as you move up above treeline to begin traversing from mountain top to mountain top. Over the course of five days, your team will work together to navigate 20 miles, along ridge lines to dramatic views of the surrounding area. Throughout the expedition, you will carry your personal gear and some group gear. Your team will stay in the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) backcountry huts along the way, sleeping in bunks and preparing food together. Throughout the experience, your leaders will be there to facilitate our No Barriers curriculum and remind you that what’s within you is stronger than what’s in your way. After the expedition, alumni are welcomed into the No Barriers family for ongoing support from our community and the possibility to be eligible for future opportunities, including 2016 Expedition III: San Juan Range.

    Review the trip:

    • Location: Presidential Range, NH
    • Eligibility: Veterans of all eras and genders, with a VA disability rating and proof of service
    • Essential Eligibility Criteria: Please review criteria here
    • Duration: 7 days total, including 5 days in the backcountry
    • Focus area(s): No Barriers Warriors curriculum, Backpacking
    • Dates: July 9 – July 15
    • Expedition FAQs: View our Frequently Asked Questions here
    Map of the Warriors to Summit Presidential Range Expedition
  • Expedition III: San Juan Range (Completed)

    Enlarge imageA view of the San Juan Mountain Range in ColoradoExpedition III team will be comprised of thirteen Warriors to Summits alumni, selected from 2014 Mission Mt. Whitney Team, 2015 Team Gannett Peak, the 2016 Gila Wilderness Team, and the 2016 Presidential Range Team. After careful selection for this unique expedition, the newly formed team will meet for the first time at Colorado State Forrest State Park in Colorado on August 19-23. This training will be focused on forming new bonds and preparing for the demanding challenge ahead in the San Juans. Colorado State Forrest State Park is the largest state park in Colorado with several 13,000 foot peaks the team will target. The team will spend multiple days above 10,000 feet working through the No Barriers curriculum and building additional mountain skills and endurance.Expedition III begins at the Grand Junction, CO airport, where the team and expedition leaders meet before heading west and gearing up for the epic adventure ahead. This expedition includes traveling approximately 30 miles over the course of 8 days, all surrounded by the towering peaks and valleys of the San Juan Mountain Range. The team will take on the challenge of attempting multiple 13,000 foot summits, traveling at altitude and culminating with above 14,000 feet on Mount Sneffels. The team will experience long, grueling days on the trail. They will lean on each other, and harness their mental and physical grit to move through the beautiful and rewarding Colorado wilderness. Along the way, they will build a new rope team of veterans and recommit to the No Barriers Life.

    Review the trip:

    • Location: San Juan Mountains, CO
    • Eligibility: Veterans from Warriors to Summits teams 2014, 2015, 2016
    • Essential Eligibility Criteria: Please review criteria here
    • Duration: 10 days total, including 8 days in the backcountry
    • Focus area(s): No Barriers warriors curriculum, Mountaineering
    • Training Dates: August 19 – August 23
    • Expedition Dates: October 1 – October 10 **Team members selected must be available for both the training and expedition dates.
    • Expedition FAQs: View our Frequently Asked Questions here
    Map of the Warriors to Summit San Juan Range Expedition

If you are a veteran, family member, or veteran provider and have questions or need assistance with the application; please contact Nate at warriors@nobarriersusa.org. If you have media inquiries, please see our Media Center for details & media contact info.