Why Should I Join?
We offer a wide variety of activities: car camping, RV camping, hiking, back-packing, river rafting, kayaking, skiing, potlucks, movie nights, game nights, UNO card parties, bowling, volleyball, day trips, parties, sailing — the list goes on and on: Summer, Fall, Winter and Spring. If you have an interest we haven’t covered, let us know and we’ll put it on our calendar of events (but we may recruit you to lead the activity).
Who are the Great Outdoors?
Great Outdoors California is the largest gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender/queer/ally outdoor recreation organization in the western United States. We are inclusive of everyone regardless of sexual orientation or identity. GO is a registered not-for-profit organization.
Our charter is outdoors education. There are other chapters in Los Angeles, Palm Springs, Orange County/Long Beach, and San Diego. The activities of each chapter are open to members of all the chapters.
The club was formed in 1977 as an alternative to meeting people in bars. The club motto was: “Out of the bars and under the stars.” That has been, and continues to be, our goal.
Our activities cover all the beautiful and unique locations of Southern California – and sometimes beyond — including beaches, local mountains, High Sierras, deserts, lakes, rivers – again, the list goes on and on.
Friendship and Fun
In addition to everything mentioned above, and maybe the most important thing is the fun, fellowship, and friendship we offer. Ask any member and they will be happy to tell you about the great people they have met in Great Outdoors and the strong friendships developed.
A Day or Night Hike is usually scheduled each month. Whether you like the Pacific Ocean lapping at your feet at Jalama Beach, or kicking up the dust along Sycamore Canyon, we’ve got a hike for you! Do you like walking along with a Full Moon overhead… We choose from a variety of trails and locations. To see this month’s scheduled Day Hikes, check out our calendar of events. By the way, if you’re itching to lead a hike, come to our monthly meeting and we’ll consider adding your favorite hike to our monthly calendar.
Monthly Meetings and Socializing
Something is happening every month with our Santa Barbara/Ventura County Chapter. Our Monthly Social Meetings are the 3rd Wednesday of every month. Couples, singles, experienced campers, RV’rs and novices come together to discuss upcoming trips, listen to guest speakers, schedule day hikes, and share their love for camping and the great outdoors. Come socialize with members over dinner beginning at 6:45pm. We start the activities at 7:00pm when our General Meeting begins. Based on attendance, we’ll have a 50/50 raffle. View our library of local trails and camping information such as the “10 Essentials of Camping.”
Leadership Roles, Officers, and Core Group
Click here to meet our Officers and Core Group. Each of these positions are fun and fulfilling. Qualifications? You need only organize one event per month in addition to attending Core Group Meetings. If you are unable to take on the entire position, we have something for you too. Maybe you're available to lead a single hike or event on a one-time basis, or willing to host a potluck, or would like to suggest your favorite park or beach.
Interested in making suggestions for upcoming day hikes, trips and other events? Would your group like to make announcements at our meetings if appropriate? You are welcomed to attend our Core Group Meeting, 6 pm – 6:45 pm just prior to our monthly meetings at Rusty’s Pizza, in Santa Barbara.