Our Mission
We are a nonprofit organization dedicated to connecting everyone to the benefits of outdoor recreation throughout Southwestern Pennsylvania. We provide a variety of activities that inspire an active lifestyle, promote the region’s unique amenities, highlight its excellent quality of life, and foster a greater appreciation for the environment.


  • The TriAnglers Lunchtime Fishing Tradition

    June 21, 2016

    By: Karen Gainey (Venture Outdoors Participant, Volunteer, and Fishing Guide) & Lora Hutelmyer (Youth Program Manager at Venture Outdoors)

    Karen Gainey was a Certified Fishing instructor with the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission but had primarily concentrated on lakes and impoundments when she was first asked by Sean Brady to become involved with TriAnglers in 2002. She was skeptical about the quality of fishing that the Pittsburgh rivers offered. She is originally from the Detroit area and the rivers there weren’t the cleanest but agreed to give these rivers a try.

    Karen and Sean agreed that Point State Park offered the best location for TriAnglers so Venture Outdoors started advertising the program.

     » Read more about: The TriAnglers Lunchtime Fishing Tradition  »

  • Getting to Know Our Staff: Fifteen Questions with… Jessica Wiegand

    June 14, 2016

    By: Erica Ankney, Communications Intern

    There’s a lot of behind-the-scenes brain power that goes into planning your favorite programs, be it public, family-friendly, or custom outings. Learn about those who work inside so you can get outside.

    As part of our regular series that introduces you to the Venture Outdoors staff, this week we’ll be interviewing Jessica Wiegand, our Communications and Media Coordinator.

    1. Briefly tell us about your background: where did you grow up, where did you go to school, and what brought you to Venture  Outdoors?JW 1
    I usually just tell people I’m from the woods because I’m from Cascade,

     » Read more about: Getting to Know Our Staff: Fifteen Questions with… Jessica Wiegand  »

  • Second Installment of Street Photography with Venture Outdoors

    June 7, 2016

    By: Suni Lynn Lee, Volunteer Photographer

    Another Venture Outdoors activity that presented me with some unexpected street photography was a meeting I had at the Sarah Heinz House on the Northside in preparation for the recent Annual Leadership Meeting. I arrived a little early, and, while I waited for the meeting, I took out my camera and explored the area around the school. I didn’t have a lot of time, but I found this scene:


    Had it not been for the guy in the bright orange ski cap walking up the hill,

     » Read more about: Second Installment of Street Photography with Venture Outdoors  »

  • 3000 Feet Down to the Worlds Largest Sand Trap

    May 31, 2016

    By: Kenn Howard

    Long-time member and volunteer Trip Leader, Kenn Howard, has a website devoted to stories of his adventures attempting to climb to the highest peak in each state.  He also tells stories about his life on the trail as a hiker, backpacker and trip leader.

    3,000 feet down to the world’s largest sand trap–Golf Guadalupe Peak, Texas

    It’s 3,019 feet up from trailhead to the highest point in Texas. For the first time on today’s summit hike, the Guadalupe Peak Trail levels a bit which is to say it becomes less steep.

     » Read more about: 3000 Feet Down to the Worlds Largest Sand Trap  »

  • Some Early Memories of Kayak Pittsburgh

    May 24, 2016

    By Mike Schiller, Founder and Past Executive Director, Venture Outdoors

    Why Kayak Pittsburgh

    In the year 2000 and the start of the Western Pennsylvania Field Institute (WPFI – which ultimately became Venture Outdoors) in 2001, very few people were kayaking the rivers around downtown Pittsburgh. I would cross paths with Rob and Lisa Pfaffman, Mike Lambert, Ben Ledewitz, Sean Brady and a small handful of other devotees, but often had the rivers all to myself. It felt unfair to keep all the fun to myself.


    Lots of other cities had kayak rentals,

     » Read more about: Some Early Memories of Kayak Pittsburgh  »

Kayak Pittsburgh


Both locations of Kayak Pittsburgh are now open 7 days a week!

Please click here for more information and times.

Featured Outing


Fourth of July Fireworks Paddle

July 4, 2016 

7:00 – 10:30 pm

Enjoy the 4th of July Fireworks from a front row seat. Starting at 7PM we will take a leisurely paddle upstream and as the sun sets we will float back down toward the Point to take our place in the front row for the best fireworks display in Pittsburgh! Previous paddling experience required.  Minimum age 8 years old with parent in tandem.

Sign up here!