New Courses for Summer 2018

By Molly Herber

Jan 29, 2018

Putting a new course together is good practice for tolerance for uncertainty. We try to answer questions like, will folks be excited about canoeing the Adirondacks this year? Or would they rather go on an all-girls backpacking expedition in the Olympic National Forest? In the end, we have to do the same thing we do in the backcountry—use the information available to make a decision, and then see what happens.

For the summer of 2018, you’ll see some courses that are brand new, like our Adirondack Service Expedition, and some that are variations of old favorites, like our Wind River Wilderness course for 18 to 22 year olds. We certainly loved putting these courses together, and we hope they’re something that you love, too.


Adirondack Service Expedition

students wearing backpacks use trekking poles to cross a rocky creek in the Adirondacks
Photo by Kirk Rasmussen

"This new course allows participants to develop a sense of stewardship by doing meaningful work and giving back to the Adirondack Park. A service-oriented expedition allows students to implement NOLS ethics to leave the backcountry better than it was found. Students will get to work side by side with land managers and experience the wilderness of the Adirondacks." —Lindsay Yost, NOLS Northeast Program Manager

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Adirondack Canoe Expedition for Ages 16 & 17

several canoes on calm lake in the Adirondacks as seen from the bow of a canoe
Photo by Kirk Rasmussen

"One of the most timeless ways to explore the Adirondacks is by canoe. Students will travel through ancient waterways, linking together lakes, ponds, and rivers that were once part of old tradeways. There will be opportunities for fishing and even potential peak ascents." —Lindsay Yost

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Alaska Women’s Backpacking - Adult

two students wearing backpacks use trekking poles to hike across a grassy slope in Alaska with glassy river to the right
Tara Pesman

"We get excited about choosing routes that get to the heart of our most dramatic wilderness. Last fall, we rolled out the maps with our renowned bush pilot, Mike Meekin, to find the most intriguing landing strips to begin these unique courses." —Ashley Wise, NOLS Alaska Program Manager

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The next courses—all 10 of them—are new variations of current favorites. See which ones are a good fit for you or someone you know.

Wind River Wilderness - 18-22 Only

Looking for a route backpacking in the Wind River Range
Photo by Ella de Bruijn

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Girls Wind River Wilderness - 16-17 Only

NOLS Students smiling in the Wind River Range
Photo by Anna Stubbs


Women’s Pacific Northwest Backpacking

students wearing backpacks hike up a rocky trail single file in the mountains
Photo by Trip Davis

See Course


Pacific Northwest Girls Backpacking Adventure

Six teenage girls stand together on a rocky expanse in the mountains and raise their arms up holding hands
Photo by Lila Sternberg Sher

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Rock and River - 16 & 17 Only

Students in two rafts with oars on a muddy river with tall canyon walls
Photo by Sophia DeVita

See Course


Adirondack Girls Backpacking Adventure

Two students take a break while backpacking in the Adirondacks
Photo by Alex Costanza

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Women’s Rock Climbing

Preparing to traditional rock climb in the Wind River Range
Photo by Paloma Farkas

Whitewater River Expedition - 16 & 17 Only

NOLS students paddle rafts on calm brown water surrounded by canyon walls spotted by vegetation
Photo by David Morgan

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Women's Wind River Wilderness - 18-22 Only

students wearing backpacks wade single file along the edge of a lake, using trekking poles for balance
Photo by Nicholas Byrne

Scandinavia Women’s Sea Kayaking

paddlers in kayaks in Scandinavia as sun sets over mountains and dark clouds
Photo by Lydia Daniels

See Course

[Editor's Note: As of 1/28/2020, NOLS is not currently offering Women's Rock Climbing, Girls Wind River Wilderness - 16 & 17 Only, and Wind River Wilderness 18–22 Only. Check out our current expeditions here.]

Written By

Molly Herber

Molly is a NOLS instructor and writer. She loves the smell of her backpack and does her best writing before 7:00 am. When she's not scouting the next post for the NOLS Blog, she's running and climbing on rocks in Wyoming. Follow her on Instagram @mgherber

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