A Brief History of
Environmental Experiences, Inc.
Environmental Experiences, Inc. owes its existence to the vision of the late Dr. Frederick W. Cropp III, long-time Professor of Geology at The College of Wooster, Wooster, Ohio (www.wooster.edu). Fred was a 1954 graduate of Wooster and obtained his Masters and Ph. D. degrees in Geology from the University of Illinois. A stellar classroom teacher, Fred also served as Wooster's Vice-President for Academic Affairs from 1967-77. Upon retirement from administrative duties and before his return to the classroom, Fred took his first trip through the Grand Canyon in 1978 with a graduate school friend. He was immediately taken with the splendor of the Canyon from the perspective of the Colorado River and decided that he needed to return.
In 1980, Fred organized and ran his first Colorado River Trips. He engaged Hatch River Expeditions as his outfitter, and we have been so pleased with their service that Hatch has been our exclusive outfitter ever since. The 1980 and subsequent trips were organized out of The College of Wooster. Every year more people wanted to accompany Fred on these trips, and a loyal following ensued.
In 1989, when The College of Wooster learned that it had to discontinue such trips, Environmental Experiences, Inc. was formed. The non-profit corporation was incorporated with the Secretary of State of Ohio on May 7, 1990. The original members of the Board of Directors were F. W. Cropp, J. Douglas Drushal, and Thomas W. Cropp. In our first year we gained tax-exempt status through the Internal Revenue Service.
Fred continued to run trips through 1997 when he retired from the College. Since that time, Environmental Experiences trips have been organized by Doug Drushal (firstname.lastname@example.org) of Wooster, Ohio, and Tom Cropp (email@example.com) of Mount Vernon, Ohio. Doug's first Canyon trip was the famous "high-water year" of 1983, when River flows approached an incredible 100,000 cfs. Doug has returned at least every other year since 1997. Tom's first trip was in 1984, and returned nearly every summer for many years thereafter, often as a staff "swamper" for our outfitter, Hatch River Expeditions. Tom is a veteran of nearly 50 trips through the Canyon.
Different geologists have accompanied trips since 1997. Dr. Abraham Springer, a Wooster graduate, where he studied under Fred Cropp, followed by graduate work at The Ohio State University, and now a member of the geology faculty at Northern Arizona University (www.nau.edu) has served as our consulting geologist on most trips. We have also been joined by Dr. Greg Wiles, a member of the Geology faculty at The College of Wooster, who did his undergraduate work in geology at Beloit and his graduate work at SUNY Buffalo.
Environmental Experiences, Inc. has run high-energy trips through the Grand Canyon of the Colorado for nearly three decades and has introduced several thousand participants to the majesty of one of the most special places on earth. We plan on continuing the legacy of Fred Cropp for many years to come.
We invite you to become a part of our history.