Pioneers - Tacoma - 2019

Youth Program


Year-Round Adventure for youth age 6-9 and their families!

 Pioneers membership is $400 in total for the year. A $70 deposit is required and the remainder can be paid in full or in monthly installments.

We offer financial assistance! To apply for financial assistance click here.

About Pioneers

Our Pioneers Program provides youth ages 6-9 and their parents/guardians with the opportunity to get outside once a month. Pioneers is designed to expose youth to a variety of outdoor activities and have fun! Participants will have the chance to climb, hike, snowshoe, paddle, explore, and learn how to be safe in the outdoors. The group will be supported by Mountaineers staff, but parents will be expected to be active participants in planning, supervising, and possibly even leading some trips. Staff will provide opportunities for parents to advance their own outdoor skills, as well as learn key skills for leading kids safely in the outdoors. This program will focus on skill-building for both youth and adults, and on building an outdoor community.

Pioneers is a club and requires a time commitment and program fee of $400 (which can be paid in monthly installments). In return, members gain a community of outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy spending time learning skills together. As families grow through our programs, lifelong friendships are built. When graduates of our teen program come home from college, they meet up with other Mountaineers friends to go hiking, backpacking and climbing. This program is just the beginning.


Parents are welcome and encouraged to participate along with their child. We have had many parents join us who had no prior outdoor skills and greatly enjoyed learning alongside their kids! If you have an older child (age 10-13) you may decide if you would like them to join the Explorers Program, or you may have them join Pioneers along with their  younger sibling. Younger siblings may also come along on trips as long as the parent is present and supervising them. Use your best judgment as to whether the trip difficulty is appropriate for a younger child.


Members meet one Tuesday evening per month at the Tacoma Mountaineers to plan trips and practice skills, and then go on at least one weekend outdoor trip per month. Trips will include easy hikes (5-6 miles max) and backpacking trips, rock climbing, lake kayaking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, camping, snow shelter building, and more. 



All trips are supervised by adult staff and/or trained volunteers. Parents are expected to be active chaperones for at least 50% of trips and meetings, either by helping drive carpool, participating in the activity and helping provide supervision, or helping instruct. Carpool drivers can be reimbursed at 24 cents per mile. All staff and volunteers must pass a background check and be certified through The Mountaineers in any skill they are teaching or trip they are leading. 


Outdoor equipment can almost always be borrowed from The Mountaineers when given enough notice (usually 1-2 weeks prior to trip).  See the gear list below for more details.


Pioneers  membership is $400 for the year. An $70 deposit is required for your first month. The remainder can be paid in full, or in monthly installments. Your Pioneers membership costs cover: staff time, transportation costs, gear, camping fees and permits, and food for longer trips. At your first meeting, you will choose how you want to pay the remainder of your Pioneers membership fee. Opting out of payment for a month because you missed the trip is not allowed.

Note: Youth ages 6-9  register as participants, and therefore pay the registration and program fee. Parents should register for the Pioneers program as a  Chaperone (there is no fee for this).

Program Requirements

This program has no scheduled activities.

Required Equipment

All required equipment, with a few exceptions, is available to be borrowed from the Mountaineers. Before each trip, an itinerary/packing list will be distributed to the group that details all necessary gear and information for the trip. 

If families want to bring their own gear, here are some items you may find useful for most trips:


Hiking boots

Wool socks

Non-cotton active clothing and insulating layers

First Aid Kit


Program Materials

There are no materials for this program.