2018 Deployments

Urban Native Waterlife™ Explorations | Oakridge, OR | May 25-28, 2018 In partnership with Meyer Memorial Trust THREAT LEVEL 2


About this deployment
This is where we bridge the gap between inner-city youth and military veterans through an incredible,culturally-rich deployment along the Willamette River. Connecting the dots between the urban riverto seeking out lost, hidden treasures of indigenous culture - all while exploring the aquatic lifeand learning the river's personal history. We will also implement a Knowledge Tribute, where we willnavigate the land and river seeking out specific landmarks, treasures, or species that are native to the land. By understanding our local river and the surrounding area, we then begin to understand andconnect more with the community to protect and preserve and find healing. We deepen our minds and souls along the river while exploring the art of fly fishing and building a knowledge-base in conservation to become ambassadors of the natural environment. Partnerships SRI will strive to connect with and recruit from include PPS Title VI Indian Education, Urban Nature Partners PDX, Sista Sistah and other local organizations serving inner-city youth of color.

Deployment Goals
• Explore our local Willamette River's natural eco-system
• Instill and apply conservation-minded practices
• Learn fly fishing • Raise the awareness of Mother Nature’s healing and foster mentor relationships
• Provide a platform for youth leaders to take on leadership roles alongside veteran mentors

Camping, Trekking, Canoe, Entomology, River Reading, History, Native Culture, Outdoor Leadership Development, Conservation Advocacy, Field Reporting

Cross-Cultural Science Expedition – Bears Ears | Utah |
June 21-26, 2018

About this deployment
Known as one of United States of America’s most iconic landscapes and considered an imprint on the rich cultural history of America, Bears Ears is at the threshold of politically charged discussions and threats to our Native tribal communities. Soul River Inc will mobilize youth and veterans into the Grand Gulch, often considered an ‘outdoor museum’ because of its dense concentration of Ancestral Puebloans’ ruins and rock art, it is a destination that offers many opportunities for recreation, exploration and discovery. As a whole, the Grand Gulch Primitive Area sprawls over 37,580 acres of canyons and mesas. Many of the ruins are 800 to 1,200 years old. Around every corner in Grand Gulch and its adjoining canyons, you will see the real dwellings, buildings, tools, pottery, art and other signs of civilization left behind by the ancestors of the region. The canyon is thought to have been one of the most densely populated areas before colonization in North America. It is surmised that a severaldecades-long drought at the end of this period made those who called Grand Gulch home head for more precipitous environs, leaving the ruins behind.
SRI will be merging with one of the four tribes that is most greatly impacted by the recent Bears Ears political events. Our goal is to align with the tribal community and provide support through a project that will leave them with a resource or something that they are able to utilize which will support their efforts to maintain their culture and land. The project will be hands-on skill-building and develop young leaders to be advocates and activists.

Deployment Goals
• San Juan River float and explore natural eco-system
• Instill and apply conservation-minded practices
• Learn fly fishing • Raise the awareness of Bears Ear healing and foster mentor relationships
• Provide a platform for youth leaders to take on leadership roles alongside veteran mentors

Camping, Trekking, Canoe, Entomology, River Reading, History, Native Culture, Outdoor Leadership Development, Conservation Advocacy, Field Reporting

Angler’s Quest – Owyhee Canyonlands | Nyssa, OR |
July 6-9, 2018

In partnership with Oregon Natural Desert Association

About this Deployment
Back by popular demand and the fight for our public land still needs all of our voices! Soul River Inc. will be mobilizing youth and veterans back to the Oregon’s pristine and surreal Owyhee Canyon Lands. A treasure that is still unknown by many urban dwellers. It’s remote, wild, deep dark night skies, red rock canyons, blue ribbon brown trout streams and untouched land boasts natural conditions that have prevailed for generations. Literally this place is truly amazing!!! As ambassadors to Mother Nature, Soul River Inc. considers it our role in honoring this land’s past, embracing it in the present, and protecting it for the future. We plan to harness the young minds of inner-city youth and the matured minds of veterans with the passion and spirit to share this vast land of beauty filled with hundreds of miles of wild, scenic rivers with preserved river habitat with a crazy feel of adventure. Participants explore this uncharted desert ecosystem while also learning about conservation and protection of our shared public lands.

Deployment Goals
• Explore the Owhyee Canyon land river natural eco-system
• Instill and apply conservation-minded practices • Outdoor leadership
• Learn fly fishing
• Raise the awareness of Mother Nature’s healing and foster mentor relationships
• Provide a platform for youth leaders to take on leadership roles alongside veteran mentors
• Advocacy of the Wild Owhyee - Youth Leaders and Veterans meeting with congressional staff

Camping, Trekking, Entomology, River Reading, History, Native Culture, Outdoor
Leadership Development, Conservation Advocacy, Field Reporting

Conservation & Humanitarian Task Force | Arctic Village, AK
July 17-August 1, 2018

In partnership with Wilburforce Foundation and US Fish & Wildlife Services

About this Deployment
Soul River Inc will work in collaboration with the Gwich’in community to protect rugged landscapes, adventure through story and culture, witness nature’s global conditions, awaken our voice, stand sideby-side as youth leaders and veterans assist in making a lasting supportive change. We will establish an environmental, educational basecamp to engage, build, and advocate for one of our planet’s few remaining pristine ecosystems - the Arctic. 

This deployment is the pinnacle of joint efforts, combining veterans and young leaders of tomorrow into a folding partnership with the Gwich’in community. Through a cultural immersion and environmental engagement, SRI will lead a joint task effort into building and developing a constructional experience based on needs of the Gwich’in community. Whether it’s building a play ground for the children, putting in solar-powered street lights, helping construct a community center for youth, or helping repair picnic tables in communal spaces, the mission is to help be a part of the solution. This deployment will essentially reveal a larger, more communal image of this Arctic tribal community’s reality due to global warming. We will implement an interactive, non-traditional classroom in the village where SRI will observe and discuss concerning issues and gross impacts both environmentally and socially, with the Gwich’in community. SRI will partner with conservation and environmental justice influencers, such as members of the Wilderness Society and USFW allies, to build a bridge between SRI youth leaders and congressional leaders and policy change-makers. Together, we will be the voice in the Lower 48 for the Gwich’in community in order to support the efforts of protecting the Arctic and it’s refuge system.

Deployment Goals

• Take grassroot efforts to protect the environment and strengthen understanding of environmental issues
• Create links among Gwich’in youth and community and SRI youth and community.
• Discuss impacts of climate change, wildlife, ecosystems, culture, etc.
• Instill community-building leadership skills in youth
• Build and repair side-by-side amongst multiple, diverse communities
• Apply conservation-minded practices
• Provide a platform for public policy and advocacy (post-deployment)

Camping/Off-the-grid Camping, Trekking, Fly Fishing, Entomology, Fly tying, Scientific Inquiry andJournaling, Outdoor Leadership Development, Land Navigation/Map Reading

Angler’s Quest – Ochoco Mountains | Prineville, OR |
August 13-18, 2018

In partnership with Oregon Wild

About this Deployment
The Ochoco Mountains are home to stunning old-growth ponderosa pine forests, sparkling streams, and abundant wildlife. This off-the-beaten-path forest is far from the mental noise of text and emails; where youth leaders will live, learn, and travel in the backcountry, pushing beyond comfort and convention to establish a deeper understanding of their own skills and to build confidence as a leader.

Soul River Inc veterans and youth leaders will work with Oregon Wild on a five day/four night deployment exploring the beautiful and secluded Ochoco National Forest in central Oregon. This deployment will combine outdoor adventures in old-growth forests and rugged river canyons with education on forests and fire ecology, horses and horse packing instruction, fly-fishing, and real life leadership experience.

The first part of this deployment will take place at scenic Walton Lake. From here, SRI will travel to different parts of the forest to participate in fly fishing clinics, day hikes, trail work, and ecology and conservation lessons. This deployment will culminate in a two day/one night backpacking trip up Lookout Mountain with the aid of horses. Camping at the summit of the highest peak in the Ochocos, we will explore how youth can find their own voice and skills as a leader, and advocate for the protection of wildlife and wild places.

Deployment Goals:
• Learn to fly-fish on the Wild and Scenic North Fork of the Crooked River
• Meet and interact with horses and people who explore Oregon’s wilderness on horseback
• Develop a deeper understanding of old-growth forests, and the role forest fires play in healthy forests
• Develop an understanding and appreciation for the role of wilderness on our public lands
• Instill the skills, awareness, and competence to make every group a team; to empower all people, of all backgrounds, to feel comfortable and confident in the outdoors
• Encourage a strong work ethic by engaging in physical stewardship work maintaining the local hiking trails
• Learn backcountry camping, hiking skills, trail etiquette, map reading, and land navigation
• Outdoor leadership skills training and development
• Provide a platform and structure for youth leaders to take on leadership roles alongside veteran mentors

Fly-fishing, backpacking, horse-packing, conservation advocacy, forest ecology, backcountry camping, cooking, travel skills, outdoor leadership development


Monday10:00AM - 6:00PM
Tuesday10:00AM - 6:00PM
Wednesday10:00AM - 6:00PM
Thursday10:00AM - 6:00PM
Friday10:00AM - 6:00PM

Contact us

keep in touch

Soul River Inc

1926 N Kilpatrick St,

Suite B,

Portland, OR 97217

Phone. 503-954-7625

Email. info@soulriverinc.org