Examine everything carefully, hold fast to that which is good.
1 Thess. 5:21

Creation Encounter
2016 Tour Schedule

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Past and Present Tours:
2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011


Geology and Fossils of the Central Oregon Coast

February 5-7, 2016

The "base camp" for this special family weekend is South Beach State Park, just south of Newport, OR. On this 3 day/2 night adventure, you will learn amazing evidences for God's special creation and the Flood and subsequent Ice Age that you may never have imagined seeing at the beach. Highlights will include fossil hunting on the beach, seeing evidence for forests off today's coast which were living hundreds or even thousands of years ago, and evidence for a giant offshore earthquake about 300 years ago. We will also have a tour of the Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area, a special Saturday evening program in the Group Meeting Yurt and in Depoe Bay, a tour at the Whale, Sea Life & Shark Museum and the whale watching station.

In addition to the tour fee, participants will pay for their own overnight accommodations and their meals. The suggested donation of $100 for families ($50 for individuals) for this special weekend includes any admission fees to all the above activities, all guiding and instruction from a biblical creationist perspective, and a special field notebook of pertinent information. There are limited places left for this first come-first served weekend, so please register ASAP, and follow the instructions below. Once you have registered, to hold and "activate" your registration, mail your tour fee check made out to: "John Hergenrather," 1086 Tucker Road, Hood River, OR 97031.

For more information please click here: Coast Trip Details & Bring List; and for our "flexible" itinerary click here: Dynamic Itinerary. After you have read both of these, if you have any other questions feel free to email: John@CreationEncounter.com or call (541) 490-3396.



Creation Mysteries of the Gorge

March 12, 2016 (Weather permitting)

On this favorite family outing we take several short hikes, and collect cobbles transported 400 miles by Noah's Flood and find petrified wood. In some places the wood is only charcoaled and is still burnable, though it is said to be 15-16 million years old! On this trip students will handle "rock solid" evidence for a young earth and a global Flood and we will discuss why this is important for our faith and our confidence in the accuracy of scripture. We will also encounter amazing plants and animals that reflect the handiwork of God.

Meet at Starbucks near the Hood River Bridge at 9:00 am and return by 3:30 pm. This and other day trips, are "follow the leader" car caravans. So we may be able to carpool at Starbucks. The suggested donation is $25 for families or $15 for an individual, and includes a useful fieldbook for the Gorge from a creationist perspective. Register below; more details will be sent a few weeks before the trip.

Register for Waiting List


Wildflowers & Creation Mysteries of the Gorge

April 2, 2016

This fun-packed, hands on day trip is similar to our March 12 trip. But we will take less time to collect cobbles and petrified wood and more time to enjoy the wildflowers in the area. Flowers as well as migratory birds and other wildlife are abundant in springtime in the East Columbia River Gorge. With a few short hikes, we will encounter amazing plants and animals that speak of the hand of our Creator. But our focus will be on identification and photography, for those interested. We can expect 30-40 species, if past experience proves true.

Meet at Starbucks near the Hood River Bridge at 9:00 am and return by 4:00 pm. The suggested donation is $25 for families or $15 for an individual, and includes a useful wildflower ID key and other creation information. Register below; more details will be sent upon registration.

Register Online


Custom Trip

April 9 & May 28, 2016

These dates are open for School or Youth Group Trips – Contact John@CreationEncounter.com if you are interested.

Natural Arch along the Deschutes River


Deschutes Wildlife Hike

April 23, 2016
Skillfully engineered bushtit sock/nest using spider webs for strength.

Plentiful wildlife and sunny weather usually greet us on this leisurely 4½ mile round trip walk along the Lower Deschutes River. Some of us may choose to "walk the extra mile" to find petrified wood and discuss the Flood conditions that fossilized it. Led by Steve Hayley, John Hergenrather, and Marianne Pike, we will encounter a variety of plants and animals and rocks, but our emphasis will be the abundant bird life. Passing through beautiful stream-side habitat, we will watch many kinds of migratory birds and discuss the marvels that our Creator has endowed them with. We will also see remnants of the old Oregon Trail, find occasional granite boulders and muse on how they got there.

Meet at 8:30 am (return by 3:30 pm) at the south end of the Deschutes River Campground. The suggested donation is $25 for families or $15 for an individual. The price includes a useful field book on pertinent subjects. To facilitate wildlife sightings, there is limited enrollment, so register early for this round trip walk.

Register Online


Klickitat Butterflies, Bugs, and Blooms

May 14, 2016
Anise Swallowtail on Balsamroot Sunflower

Led by guides Caitlin LaBar, Arthur Dunn and Marianne Pike, the Klickitat River Canyon is an excellent area for enjoying butterflies, bugs, dragonflies, and beautiful wildflowers. Just north of Lyle, there is also an isolated population of rare butterfly milkweed right next to a spring of naturally carbonated mineral water. On this new trip, we will walk for 2 or 3 miles along a nearly level old paved road is which is perfect for strollers and wagons. We will have a few inexpensive butterfly nets available, but you are welcome to bring your own. Also bring hats, sunscreen, and LOTS of water!

Meet at the Lyle Trailhead parking lot (on Hwy 142 just north of Hwy 14) at 9:30 AM. The suggested donation is $25 for families or $15 for an individual and includes useful butterfly and wildflower ID keys and other creation information. Register below; more details will be sent upon registration.

Register Online


Forest Ecology Along the Clackamas River

May 24, 2016

The upper Clackamas River drainage in the Mt. Hood National Forest is an ideal place in which to study and enjoy Oregon's westside forest. This field trip will be in the form of a mini-course on forest ecology, based on the material taught in the biology program at Multnomah University. Participants will observe old-growth forest as well as sites that have been clearcut logged. We will see the large 36 Pit Fire burn of 2014, learn how to core trees and measure their height, net aquatic organisms in the Clackamas River and identify the major forest plants. Discussion topics will include evidences for design in the forest ecosystem and biblical stewardship of forest resources. Hiking distance will be about 4 miles, some being off-trail. Dr Keith Swenson, Professor of Natural Sciences at Multnomah, along with Ruth Hazen, will lead the trip.

We will meet at 7:30 am in the Science House at Multnomah University and carpool to the forest. Return time will be about 5:00 pm. Suggested donation will be $25 for families or $15 for an individual. Please register below. Details will be sent prior to the trip.

Register Online


Butterflies at the Volcano

June 4, 2016

This is a joint tour led by Paul Taylor (Mount St. Helens Creation Center) and Caitlin LaBar (Creation Encounter). It will begin at the Center with presentations by Paul about Mount St. Helens and Caitlin about butterflies in the area. We will then caravan to the Hummocks Loop for a short hike, then cross the road to Coldwater Lake for lunch. Among other things we will learn fascinating things about the recovery of flowers and trees after the eruption and how that affects the recovery of butterflies and other animals. After lunch, everyone is welcome to explore Johnston Ridge Observatory and the Forest Learning Center before returning to the Center, where there will be light refreshments and Caitlin will have a display of butterflies and other insects set up for viewing.

Meet at 9:00 AM (location to be determined; will be near Castle Rock), and return around 3:30 PM. The suggested donation is $25 for families or $15 for an individual and includes a butterfly ID key. Register below; more details will be sent after registration.

Register Online


Ice Age Lakes and Ancient Man of Lake County, Oregon

June 11-15, 2016
Lake Abert and Abert Rim

Join us as we explore this new area for our Creation Encounter adventures and study the geology, biology, archaeology and paleontology of this high desert region through biblical worldview "glasses". This region was once very different than it is today, and the clues to understand what it once was will be all around us. A few thousand years ago this was a well-populated, forested-lake area – a hunting and fishing paradise! Many rock faces in the area tell the story. Coyote Short, of Paiute descent from Boise, has helped our own Kalvin Morauske interpret some of the petroglyphs and pictographs of the area. Rusty Nance will help us study the clear night sky with telescopes and binoculars. Other highlights include soaking in the Hart Mountain hot springs and studying the fantastic variety of migratory birds at Summer Lake Wildlife Refuge, with the help of Steve Hayley. A short stop at the unique "Lost Forest" and associated volcanic sand dunes on the way home will round out our High Desert Adventure. Expect to make new friends, find lots of obsidian arrowhead chips and perhaps some fossils. Our Creation Encounter team looks forward to the fellowship, friendship and mutual encouragement of exploring God's great creation together!

Paiute horse and rider?                     Cinnamon Teal

The suggested donation for this five day, four night adventure is $135 per family or $90 for an individual. The donation does not include campground fees, but does include any permits or entrance fees required for our activities, plus all guiding and instruction, and several educational handouts and an activity book for kids.

We are planning to meet Saturday evening, Jun 11 at the Abert Rim Oasis RV Park located 20 miles north of Lakeview, OR where we plan to spend 4 nights. There are only informal tent sites there and electric & water hookups available for RVs (no sewer hookups). There is a Men's and a Women's plumbed restrooms with one shower in each and several outdoor faucets. Rates will be reasonable, but we haven't nailed down prices for our group yet. We encourage participants to camp, but some may choose to stay in a motel in Lakeview. Limited places are available for this camping adventure, so if interested please register below. More information will be sent after your registration.

Below is a 2 minute video of our Land of Fire & Ice Trip of 2013. Especially the last half relates to what we will see on this coming trip.

Register Online


Mount St. Helens Day Trip – Harmony Trail to Spirit Lake

July 7, 2016

This day trip will provide a good introduction to Mount St. Helens. The highlight will be a 2.5 mile (round trip) hike on the Harmony Trail to Spirit Lake and the floating log mat. In addition, we will visit an old growth forest, historic Bear Meadow, Meta Lake, and Windy Ridge. Teaching will be based on a biblical creation worldview. Professor Keith Swenson and Ruth Hazen will lead the trip. Please note that moderate physical fitness is required as we will be hiking a total of about three miles and there will be a 600 foot uphill climb coming out from Spirit Lake.

We will meet at 7:00 am in the Science House at Multnomah University and carpool to the mountain. Return time will be about 7:00 pm. Suggested donation will be $25 for families or $15 for an individual. Please register below. Details will be sent prior to the trip.

Register Online


Deschutes Raft Overnight

July 10-11, 2016

This two-day adventure along the beautiful Deschutes river country, features an overnight campout at Maupin State Park, a full day of rafting, which is fully provisioned by Peak 7. Safety on the river is a major emphasis with the Peak 7 ministry. Led by DSA members Steve Hayley, Rick Thompson and Marianne Pike, we will present a creationist perspective on the biology, geology and the bright night-sky stars of the Deschutes Canyon.

The suggested donation for this trip is only $135 per person. This cost includes fully outfitted rafts and all permits and first-class equipment for a great two day adventure! It also includes two lunches, one dinner and a breakfast, all guiding and instruction, and a field book on the Deschutes River Canyon from a creationist perspective.

Limited space is available for this trip. If interested, please register below and mail your check with the suggested donation to hold your spot. More details and particulars will be emailed to you after you register. If you have any questions, please email Marianne at Canterberry@hotmail.com or you can call her cell at 503-894-0841.

Register Online


Bighorn Basin – Best Place in the World to View Flood Geology

July 11-15, 2016
Entrance to Clark's Fork Canyon

This special field study tour will be led by author Michael Oard. The Bighorn Basin, located from 50 to 100 miles east of Yellowstone, likely shows more features of Flood geology than any other small area in the world. You will see pre-Flood (creation-week) rocks and the planing effect of the beginning of the Flood at the Great Unconformity. Early Flood sedimentary rocks are exposed with the basal Flathead Sandstone, the equivalents of which cover the upper crust over half of North America. Also noted will be the lack of erosion between layers. Late Flood tectonics and erosion is displayed at many locations resulting in planation surfaces, quartzite cobbles transported for long distances, water gaps, and pediments. Glacial material is superimposed over the Flood rocks. The Flood-caused ice age is dramatically represented at Clarks Fork Canyon by a huge end moraine which caused a large ice age lake. In this one canyon most of the geological column is visible. An added bonus is the Heart Mountain landslide.

This 4 day family-vehicle-caravan tour will make its "base camp" (or your motel) in Cody, Wyoming. The trip will officially begin Monday evening, July 11 in Cody and officially end Friday afternoon, July 15 at Specimen Ridge in Northern Yellowstone. We encourage participants to make their own arrangements to visit Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks either before or after the tour. The suggested donation for this five day, four night adventure is $135 per family or $90 for an individual. The donation does not include campground or motel fees, but does include any entrance fees required for our activities, plus all guiding and instruction, and several appropriate handouts from a creationist perspective. Limited places are available for this educational adventure, so if interested please register below. More information will be sent a month before the trip.

Register for Waiting List


Mount St. Helens Day Trip – Loowit and Step Canyon Hike

July 13, 2016

This strenuous day hike will visit the most devastated part of the blast zone, including Loowit and Step Canyons and the Pumice Plain. Teaching will be based on a biblical creation worldview and include discussion of both catastrophic geologic processes and rapid biological recovery. Leaders will be Professor Keith Swenson and Ruth Hazen. Please note that a high degree of physical fitness is required for this trip. We will hike a total of about 11 miles, the last 2 of which are continuously uphill at a moderate grade. The trails cross creeks and may in places be unstable due to loose volcanic debris. Also, there is no shade so ample fluids must be carried by each person.

We will meet at 7:00 am in the Science House at Multnomah University and carpool to the mountain. Return time will be about 7:00 pm. Suggested donation will be $25 for families or $15 for an individual. Please register below. Details will be sent prior to the trip.

Register Online


Christian Leaders Bus Tour

July 27, 2016

Led by DSA members Keith Swenson, Professor of Natural Sciences, and Rick Thompson, Lake Missoula Floods specialist, this is a chance for pastors and other Christian leaders to experience, at no cost to them, a great creation field trip. Also this is an opportunity for DSA members to invite leaders who may be uncertain about the importance of the origins debate. This has been a very significant experience for leaders when they see the evidence first hand and realize how it affects our view of scripture. It is exciting when we can help Pastors and congregations address this issue in a more informed way. We encourage you to partner with us in this mission by inviting your Christian leaders and come along with them by purchasing your space on the bus and perhaps theirs as well. Please consider donating to our DSA scholarship fund to help cover the cost of Christian leaders so we can continue to offer this educational bus tour. If you would like to donate to this, please make your check payable to DSA and write "Pastors trip" on the check and mail to DSA at: PMB 218, 465 NE 181st. Ave., Portland, OR 97230. If you have someone to register or have any questions, please call (503) 257-0144. Thanks.



Creation Mysteries of the Gorge Trip

August 6, 2016

This second trip Creation Mysteries trip is essentially a repeat of the March 12 trip. Actually we are offering this popular trip three times this year: March 12, August 6, and October 22. On all three we will see multiple evidences that recent and catastrophic processes laid down most of the rocks and fossils, and not millions of years of natural processes. The suggested donation is $25 for families or $15 for an individual and includes a useful fieldbook of Gorge information from a biblical creationist perspective.

Register Online


Custom Trip

August 13, 2016

Available for a Youth Group Trip – Contact John@CreationEncounter.com if you are interested.



Damascus Christian School Retreat (Yellowstone/Grand Tetons)

August 26 - September 3, 2016

This is a custom camping trip planned in cooperation with the teachers at Damascus Christian School and Creation Encounter leaders. During the Biblical Flood, northwest Wyoming seemed to receive more than its share of destruction. We marvel that today that this is an area of unparalleled beauty. This reminds us of His handiwork in our own lives; He has "redeemed our life from destruction" and given us "beauty for ashes." The Senior Class Retreat is an important opportunity to strengthen class unity and have the students consider how they want to impact their school their final year.



Horizon Christian School Retreat (John Day Fossil Adventure)

September 26-30, 2016

This is a custom trip planned in cooperation with Horizon Christian School and Creation Encounter. Rich fossil deposits and fascinating geology and scenery make the John Day area an excellent outdoor classroom. While digging fossils we will discuss the story that they tell about pre-flood life on earth and the catastrophic conditions that buried them. We will also explore other astounding evidences for Noah's Flood, examine Indian pictographs, and have plenty of time for fun and fellowship. Our base camp will be the Fish House Inn and the Presbyterian Church in Dayville, OR.



West Gorge Trip

October 1 or 8, 2016

The West Gorge trip is designed to explore the major creation evidences between Troutdale and Cascade Locks. Collect quartzites in the Troutdale Formation which have come from over 450 miles away and discuss their significance. Examine petrified wood from the Eagle Creek formation. Enjoy Herman the Sturgeon and other fish at Bonneville Dam and discuss the worldview issues implicit in the interpretive signs there. Trip ends at Cascade Locks with the fascinating geological and historical evidence for the legendary Bridge of the Gods.

Meet at 8:30 am at Lewis & Clark State Park in Troutdale from where we will caravan together. Trip ends about 2:30 pm. The cost is $25 per family, $15 per individual. Please register below and more details will be emailed a few weeks before the trip.

Register Online


Creation Mysteries of the Gorge Trip

October 22, 2016
Early fall is a beautiful time of year to be in the Gorge

We are offering this popular trip three times this year: March 12, August 6, and October 22. Please see the March 12 description of this day trip. The suggested donation is $25 for families or $15 for an individual, and includes a useful fieldbook of Gorge information from a biblical creationist perspective. Please register below and more details will be emailed a few weeks before the trip.

Register Online


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