Wild About Outdoor Adventures

Dan Sizer BA ’16 introduces aspiring adventurers to the backcountry of Eastern Oregon and beyond through his wilderness experience company, Go Wild: American Adventures.

As an L&C student, Dan Sizer took international students on hikes to his native Eastern Oregon. These excursions led to the launc... As an L&C student, Dan Sizer took international students on hikes to his native Eastern Oregon. These excursions led to the launch of his company, Go Wild. Above: Dan at Tierra del Fuego in South America.

Dan Sizer BA ’16

BA in East Asian studies

Professors Andrew Bernstein (history) and Jennifer Hubbert (anthropology)

Consider venturing south of the popular Wallowa Lake (with an experienced guide) 


When Dan Sizer BA ’16 leads aspiring adventurers to the alpine lakes and sweeping mountain ranges of his native Eastern Oregon, he notices they often express awe—and sometimes surprise. 

“It’s amazing how many people who live in Portland have never been east of the Cascades,” Sizer says. “The reaction I often get is, ‘Oh, my gosh, I didn’t know this existed. I’ve never seen stars like this before.’” 

Go Wild: American Adventures, the wilderness experience company Sizer founded in 2017, is dedicated to connecting visitors from around the world with the rural outdoors. Based in Baker City, Oregon, Go Wild is a one-stop shop for those seeking adventures off the beaten path, from traditional backpacking and mule packing to camping and packrafting tours. 

There is no shortage of opportunities for exploration in the region—Eastern Oregon is home to some of the largest wilderness areas in the state. The terrain is varied; some trips traverse the canyons of the high desert, home to bighorn sheep and soaring birds of prey, while others lead to clear glacial lakes that reflect the mountaintops. 

While other companies in the outdoor recreation industry offer standard backpacking and camping trips in areas with heavy foot traffic, Go Wild focuses on memorable experiences built around underappreciated routes. Each trip is a learning experience, with guides offering information about the surrounding ecological environment. Go Wild also partners with local businesses. Food, drinks, and other goods are sourced from nearby towns and business owners, and responsible tourism is a top priority. 

“We do a lot of trail stops, talking about the flora and fauna, as well as the cultural history of the land. It’s a different mode of exploration and moving through the wilderness,” Sizer says. 

Sizer traces the origins of Go Wild to his college years at Lewis & Clark. He was a student worker in the Academic English Studies (AES) program, where courses enable English language learners to develop an advanced level of proficiency in English and intercultural competency. Sizer began taking the program’s international students to the trails of Eastern Oregon that he had hiked since childhood. He found gratification in their first-time experiences of the beauty he had come to take for granted—camping under the pines and hiking on less-frequented trails. 

Today, Go Wild largely provides private trips, although Sizer expanded his offerings in 2023 to cater to solo travelers and others who may enjoy a communal experience. The business has grown organically through word of mouth and a strong base of repeat customers, which includes families, couples, and corporate groups. Half of his clientele are based in the Northwest, while the other half come from states outside the region and countries like Tanzania and Japan. Sizer says former Lewis & Clark students often become Go Wild customers without realizing he is a fellow alum. He recently finalized the details of an alumni trip that will run in early August.  

Outside of Oregon, Go Wild is now providing custom one- to-four-week private trips in Colombia, with adventures that span the Amazon, the Andes, the Caribbean, and elsewhere. It is a natural extension of Sizer’s mission to share the wonders of the backcountry with a greater audience, providing high-quality experiences that show respect for the land and those who inhabit it.