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Casey Adams

Casey Adams
Casey worked as a writer and PR specialist for NOLS.
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Recent Posts

'An American Ascent' Earns Best Picture, Best Director

By Casey Adams on 2/5/15 3:55 AM

“An American Ascent,” the film documenting NOLS Expedition Denali, earned Best Film and Best Director honors at the San Diego Black Film Festival this weekend.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, Expedition Denali, NOLS Alaska

Join Us at the Chicago Travel and Adventure Show

By Casey Adams on 12/17/14 4:04 AM

For over 11 years and 54 shows, travel enthusiasts from around the country have been dreaming, planning and finding their next vacation at the Travel & Adventure Show. NOLS will be present at the upcoming event in Chicago, as well as shows this spring, and you can get a free ticket to join us by using the code EXHNOLS.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes

No Windpants Here

By Casey Adams on 10/31/14 8:35 AM

All of us at NOLS (the goofballs in costumes and the casual Friday crowd alike) wish all of you a very happy, adventurous Halloween.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes

What Wilderness Means to Us

By Casey Adams on 10/16/14 2:33 AM


To me, Wilderness means we still have a place to go. A place to go immerse in pure, fresh water, a place to go sit on top of a ridge and watch the sun dip below the horizon, a place to go and enjoy the peaceful quietness of an alpine meadow on a sunny summer day. We still have a place to be us.

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Topics: Environmental Stewardship

NOLS Thanks In-Town Staff

By Casey Adams on 10/15/14 11:14 AM

Each year, NOLS hands out a few awards to instructors, community members, alumni, and in-town staff to recognize their hard work, dedication, and positive changes in the world.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes

What Wilderness Means to Us

By Casey Adams on 10/15/14 1:37 AM

As a kid camping in the Wilderness on our annual father-son camping trips to Wyoming's Bighorn Mountains, the grandeur of the untrammeled alpine has always been a source of inspiration, reflectiveness, and challenge for me. Since making my career as a Wilderness advocate, I have come to appreciate the Wilderness legacy that has been bestowed upon us by so many great conservation heroes: people like Olas and Mardy Murie, Aldo Leopold, and John Muir. Because of their vision, I can take my children to those same special places that my dad took me, and discover those places anew through their eyes.

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Topics: Environmental Stewardship

What Wilderness Means to Us

By Casey Adams on 10/14/14 7:48 AM
Dale Lescher photo
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Topics: Environmental Stewardship

What Wilderness Means to Us

By Casey Adams on 10/8/14 9:42 AM

I have spent my whole “adult” life guiding in the wilderness! The feeling that we have in this country is beyond words. Aren’t we so lucky that those with insight were able to put aside these lands in perpetuity, where man is “only a visitor?” It just seems incredible that we have these jewels for ourselves and future generations and they will remain essentially untouched. As has often been said, “They aren’t making that any more.”

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Topics: Environmental Stewardship, wilderness, The Wilderness Act, 50th Anniversary

Introducing the First Annual NOLS Exploration Film Tour

By Casey Adams on 9/29/14 2:07 AM

This year marks the inaugural NOLS Exploration Film Tour, a series of free events hosted by NOLS that feature outstanding short films created by or about NOLS grads and instructors. The tour has been a hit thus far. After four events—Fairbanks, Anchorage, Bellingham, and Olympia—we are still having fun and learning a lot.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes

Join Us at the Dallas Travel and Adventure Show

By Casey Adams on 9/26/14 5:04 AM

For over 11 years and 54 shows, travel enthusiasts from around the country have been dreaming, planning and finding their next vacation at the Travel & Adventure Show. NOLS will be present at the upcoming event in Dallas, as well as shows this spring.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes

Thoughts From the Field: Rediscovering My Calling

By Casey Adams on 8/4/14 8:10 AM

Thoughts From the Field: Rediscovering My Calling

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Topics: Alumni, NOLS Australia, Live the Dream

Fremont the Backpack

By Casey Adams on 7/31/14 2:04 AM

Fremont the backpack sat in a heap

Of bags, tents, and jackets, three feet deep
He waited there for a future cold weather snap
When Nate finally would have time to repair his strap

Fremont remembered his first trip out
He hadn’t an idea what the Winds were about
Back then he was Deuter pack 2602
And his nylon was shiny, factory new!

Johnny the student carried him over ridges and creeks
Together they scrambled over so many peaks
One day they hiked and hiked what felt like nonstop
Until they found themselves on Fremont peak, right at the top!

Johnny was so happy that he marked the event
By naming his trusty pack after their first mountain ascent.
Over the next few weeks, Fremont and Johnny traveled together
The land was so rugged and so was the weather

Fremont became less shiny and acquired more wear
His nylon was breaking and he needed repair
Johnny’s instructor taught them packs could be sewn
So that buying a new one could be postponed

He showed them his gaiters and other gear
Which he would probably keep using for many a year
“Take care of your things and repair them here!
You’ll eliminate work that NOLS staff must endure.”

Fremont came back into town with a little red patch,
A mark that adventure never comes without a scratch.
He hung out, rested, and became ready to spring
For the excitement the next course could bring

A few days later Fremont met Carrie Jean,
A young energetic girl of sixteen.
The first night at camp Carrie forgot
To put her snacks in the bear fence, and guess what they brought?

A little brown mouse who nibbled right through
Fremont’s fabric and into her shoe
“Eek!” she said in the light of the morning,
“My gulch crunch is gone and the ants are swarming!!”

Fremont was dragged across granite and mud
His zipper was dirty and could not be tugged
"Help" he cried, though only the tent could hear,
"Someone please teach this girl about gear!"

The tent sighed and let Fremont under his fly,
He could do little but at least he could keep Fremont dry.
So after three long weeks Fremont returned to the base
Bashed, bruised, and torn all over the place.

Kevin gave him one long look and shook his head
“Not back to the gear room, but the back pile instead!”
So that’s where Fremont is and that’s where he’ll stay
Until the base has a cold, slow, quiet day.

-By Kaybe Loughran

Amit puts a patch on a puffy coat that just came off of a course

The staff at NOLS works hard to keep their gear in working order. Students are sent into the field with good quality stuff. Due to the nature of NOLS courses, gear never stays pristine, but NOLS instructors use these opportunities to teach students how to repair their own things. According to Kevin McGowan, who runs the gear room, whatever can be repaired in town can also be repaired in the field. Students are equipped with stove and tent repair kits as well as patch kits and a speedy stitcher for all sorts of gear. They learn repair techniques and important lessons about taking good care of their belongings. Students are often issued used gear with character and history. Puffy coats may be marked with small patches, but they are just as warm as any other jacket.

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Topics: Educators Notebook

Thanks for the Experience

By Casey Adams on 7/30/14 3:00 AM

Dear NOLS,

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Topics: Live the Dream

That's Not the NOLS Bus!

By Casey Adams on 7/28/14 4:43 AM

The Monday morning walk to work was a little different for NOLS Headquarters employees this week, as they were greeted by a 1970 Crown bus at the building entrance.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes

'An American Ascent' Screened Before a Sold-Out Audience

By Casey Adams on 7/9/14 2:30 AM

By Aparna Rajagopal-Durbin, NOLS Diversity and Inclusion Manager and Expedition Denali Coordinator

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Topics: Behind the Scenes