Got Questions?

Here's (almost) everything you need to know about Wilderness Union and you can always go to our event page to sign up for our next info session.
General & Membership

What is Wilderness Union? (Are you a hiking club?)

Wilderness Union is more than a hiking club! We are a professional, mission-driven outdoor adventure company. We offer community/membership-based programming and services that enable urban professionals to get out of the city and into the wild. We organize regular hikes but we do just about everything. We paddle, we camp, we bike, we skate, we ski and we socialize together. If you can think of it, we've probably either done it or have plans to do it in future!

Check out our adventures programming and previous adventures to get a better sense of what we do.

Why do you charge a membership?

Unlike companies that offer one-off adventurous experiences, Wilderness Union is building a community of young urban professionals who share a passion for outdoor and connecting with nature and like-minded people.

Your membership fee supports all of the activities that go into running Wilderness Union like:
- Building a member community and offering a wide range of member resources and benefits such as partner discounts and gear rental for members' use;
- Safely offering a massive range of activities at affordable prices. We offer our adventures at a 20-40% discount compared to comparable tour companies;
- Offering our own fully-insured transport and employing highly qualified, certified wilderness guides.

What types of membership do you offer?

We currently offer two types of membership, Annual and Quarterly, both allowing a member to access the same range of benefits, with a slight difference in the number of guest passes included. You can learn more by checking out our membership page.

If you are currently on the Annual plan and switching to the Quarterly plan, your change will only take effect after your current annual membership cycle ends. However, if you are upgrading from the Quarterly Plan to the Annual Plan, your change will take effect immediately. We will prorate the remaining amount of your quarterly fee and apply it towards the annual fee.

What does trial membership include?

We offer new members (those who never tried our services or had an active plan with us before) a free-month trial regardless of which type of membership you sign up for. Trial members can enjoy regular member benefits other than partner discounts.

How do Guest Passes work?

Depending on the type of membership you have, you will have a certain number of guest passes per your membership cycle. This will allow you to bring a guest, who is not a Wilderness Union member, to join a (paid) adventure at the same cost as our members.

You can use one guest pass per trip, along with transport as long as we still have space in the van when you sign up. All guests will need to sign a waiver to be able to join adventures. The cost for your guest will be added to whatever money you owe for the adventure.

Some adventures may not be able to accept guest passes, which we will make clear on the adventure page. Our free social events sometimes allow guests, and you don't need guest passes for those events to bring friends.

Can I use trip credit towards my membership fee?

No. Unless otherwise indicated, the credit we offer is trip credit that can only be applied to adventure costs.

How often do you add new member benefits?

We are committed to continually improving our member offerings. We'd love to hear which other benefits you'd like to see!

What is your refund policy for membership?

Membership fees are not refundable.

Community and Members

Who are your members?

Our members are mostly professionals in the GTA area aged between 20 and 45. We have entrepreneurs, scientists, artists, actors/actresses, lawyers, consultants, developers, medical professionals, architects, teachers, adventure hounds, literal hounds and more.

Wilderness Union is as much about the conversations you'll have with other members as the adventures. We think we count some of the most interesting people in the city among our members. Chances are, if you feel the same itch to get out of the city, if you love to discuss the bigger questions in life and if getting off the beaten path appeals, then Wilderness Union will be for you.

How often do you organize member socials?

We normally organize at least one member social per month, which you can see on the upcoming event page. We also have member-run club and social activities that take place very regularly. Once you become a member, you will gain access to our Discord channel where all member-organized activities are communicated.

How do you communicate with members?

Most member communications take place in our Discord server and we occasionally send emails to share news and updates to members and non-member subscribers. So once you become a member, you will need to join our Discord server.

We rarely send text messages or call you unless in emergency situations (e.g., if we don't see you at the designated meetup time for an adventure). So if you receive messages or calls that ask you for sensitive information, please take caution and reach out to us on Discord or through email if you are not sure.

How do you build a safe member community?

We care deeply about our members' experience and try our best to provide a safe environment for members.

We designed our member application in a way that allows us to have a sense of who you are, and we review each application carefully before approving it.

We have a clear Code of Conduct that new members are asked to review and agree to. We are also building a stronger mechanism to ensure we can effectively deal with inappropriate member behaviours not in alignment with our Code of Conduct, which includes having a Member Care Leader.


Where do you go?

Typically, a couple of hours up the 400, heading North into Shield country around Muskoka, Haliburton and the Kawarthas. Our 'Rural Hikes' are at areas within about 90 minutes of Toronto. We also run regular urban adventures in Toronto to some wild and hidden spots that will give you a new perspective on the city. Occasionally we go further afield for more ambitious and longer trips. You can always see what's coming up on the Upcoming Adventures & Events page.

How often do you meet?

Wilderness Union came about as an antidote for feeling stuck inside during colder months. We want you to have a reason to get outside each weekend.

We offer at least one adventure a week, so you'll always have an option for an outdoor adventure at the weekend.

What happens in Winter?

We switch to winter activities. We've got a great roster of events planned for the winter including skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing and even dog sledding!

How long do trips last?

Normally, all day. We tend to leave the city early (ie. before 9) and be back just after sunset. In summer we also run camping trips that range from a night or two up to week-long adventures.

We are planning for more shorter trips, half-day adventures in 2024 so you have more options.

How big is the group?

We only organize small group adventures to ensure you get the best experience. Most of our trips have no more than 18 members.

Our social events have larger group sizes.

What if I don't have a car?

We organize transport for every adventure that is not accessible by local transport so you'll always have an affordably priced lift if you need it.

Where do you leave from?

We typically meet close to Keele TTC station on the West End but add a stop at Union for occasions when we're heading East of the city.

What if I'm late for the ride?

Out of respect for other members, we always leave right at the time shared on our schedule. This means we'll leave without you. We'll give you plenty of notice of when to meet us along with a suggested time to show up in advance so you won't be caught unaware.

What should I wear?

We share a detailed list of what you should bring in advance of each trip. Your regular active wear will be good for most of what we do, paired with trail shoes or hiking boots. Where you need anything out of the ordinary, like ice spikes or river shoes, we'll let you know and, where necessary, secure rentals for you.

How fit do I need to be?

For your safety and enjoyment, we suggest that you should have a decent baseline of fitness. We organize everything from leisurely adventures that most people can do to hardcore back country trips that embrace some suffering. Rest assured, we always give a difficulty rating in advance for each of our trips so you can decide how much you want to take on and discuss suitability before committing.

What is your COVID/Sickness policy?

If you have any symptoms of a cold/flu/COVID, we ask that you don't attend. Any fee from that trip will be applied towards your account as trip credit.

What happens in case of bad weather?

Mostly, we grin and bear it! If things are looking really miserable or unsafe, we'll message you as far in advance as possible to either change the adventure or cancel altogether. Any fees already paid will be applied against your next adventure with us or, in the case of cancellation, refunded.

What's your cancellation and refund policy for adventures?

If we postpone a trip, your fees will be applied towards your account as trip credit. If we cancel a trip, you'll receive a full refund within one week through your original payment method. Because we plan adventures based on your registrations, we're not able to offer refunds for trips that you cancel or turn up too late to join. Where there are exceptions to our usual refund policy, that will be listed on the event description.

How does trip credit work?

As long as you have trip credit in your account, we will automatically apply it towards your next adventure. Trip credit is valid on WU hikes, camping and transport but not on special adventures or socials. The maximum amount of trip credit you can use per trip is $25.

How does equipment rental work?

We've got a growing supply of outdoor gear that includes canoes, packrafts, backpacks, tents and winter gear. All the gear is available to members for our organized trips as well as one off rentals for independent adventures. If you'd like to know more about specific equipment, get in touch through the contact form.


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