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NOLS
NOLS is a nonprofit global wilderness school that seeks to help you step forward boldly as a leader.
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Announcing New Expeditions for Summer 2020

By NOLS on Jan 16, 2020

Photo by Mara Gans.

This summer, kayak past Alaska’s towering ice-blue glaciers. Or go backpacking in the majestic snow-capped peaks of the North Cascades.

It’s the start of a new year, and we’re celebrating with seven new courses. Summer 2020 might be the perfect opportunity to pursue the outdoor adventure of your dreams!

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Topics: education, new courses, NOLS Expeditions, announcement, affinity

Celebrating NOLS in the New Year

By NOLS on Jan 9, 2020
Paul Petzoldt instructing a group of NOLS students in the early years of the school. Photo from NOLS archives.

January 2020 is a month of great reflection and celebration at NOLS. It marks the:

  • Welcoming of our first female president,

  • Paul Petzoldt's 112th birthday,

  • our 55th year educating students in the outdoors, and

  • 50 years of NOLS in homes across America.

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Topics: NOLS, anniversary, history, paul petzoldt, documentary, stories, Terri Watson, 55th anniversary

New Year, New Outdoor You

By NOLS on Jan 6, 2020
Photo by Rich Brame. 

It's a new year and 12 months stand before you with unlimited possibilities for adventure and learning. Alaskan summers have endless days to enjoy, the northern Rocky Mountains are yours to climb, and the refreshing ocean waters of Baja await your sea kayak. And have you been considering earning your Wilderness EMT? This can be the year to make it all happen.

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Topics: goal, education, trip planning, #optoutside

A Can of Calm: Applying Wilderness Medicine in Disaster Zones

By NOLS on Dec 19, 2019

A ShelterBox tent lit up with solar lights on the island of Barbuda after hurricanes Irma and Maria devastated the Caribbean. Photo by Ned Morris.

NOLS Wilderness First Responder grad Ned Morris is a volunteer ShelterBox Response Team member (SRT). SRT members deploy to areas of natural disaster or conflict-based migration, and help families who have lost everything due to natural disaster or violence. ShelterBox provides shelter solutions, including tents or house repair kits, as well as water purification systems, solar lighting, cooking sets, and much more. There are just over 100 active Response Team members in the world; less than 40 in the U.S. Read the following Q&A to learn more about Ned's humanitarian work with ShelterBox and how his WFR helped prepare him for this role.

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Topics: Wilderness First Responder, wilderness medicine, NOLS Wilderness Medicine

Spring Break 2020: Get Ready for Adventure

By NOLS on Oct 1, 2019

Photo by Molly Hagbrand.

Make your spring break an adventure. Forget the crowded ski resorts or touristy beach vacation—it’s time to do something different.

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Topics: Baja Sea Kayaking, rock climbing, education, backcountry skiing, NOLS Expeditions, spring break

Welcome to NOLS India: Expeditions in the Himalaya

By NOLS on Aug 12, 2019

Written by Annalise Grueter and Manohar D'silva. 


Photo by Kirk Rasmussen.


A line of solemn, snow-capped giants stretches across the three northernmost states in India.

These soaring peaks belong to the world’s highest mountain chain: the Himalaya.

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Topics: Himalayas, Himalaya, Educators Notebook, NOLS India, cultural expedition, stories

Start Dreaming: Summer 2020 Expeditions Now Online

By NOLS on Jul 31, 2019

Camping on a summer day in the Yukon. Photo by Ari Bruns. 

Dreading the end of summer? We are too, just a little.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, Adventure Courses, NOLS semester, education, announcement, classic courses

Winter & Spring 2020 Expeditions Now Online

By NOLS on Jun 11, 2019

Kayaking in New Zealand. Photo by Lisa Moen.
 

Summer's here, and we want you to savor every single late-evening walk and early morning paddle.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, education, backcountry skiing, Prime, splitboarding, announcement, spring break, affinity

Instructor Expeditions of 2018

By NOLS on Mar 25, 2019

How do you become a better educator? There’s no one best answer, but continuing to be a learner yourself is certainly up there.

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Topics: whitewater, Training, kayaking, Educators Notebook, instructor, mountaineering, rock climbing, education, Instructor Development Fund (IDF), Instructor expedition

Your 8 Favorite Wilderness Medicine Posts of 2018

By NOLS on Dec 19, 2018

While wilderness medicine is a constantly evolving field, some things stay the same—like people wondering whether it’s really ok to suck out snake venom, or the steps of the Patient Assessment System.

As 2018 wraps up, our team gathered this year’s most popular wilderness medicine topics from the NOLS Blog. Take a look to refresh your skills and get ready for whatever comes your way in 2019!

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Topics: first aid, wilderness medicine, Live the Dream

NOLS President John Gans Announces Retirement

By NOLS on Nov 30, 2018

NOLS President John Gans announced on November 28 his plans to retire at the end of 2019. He is the fifth president in the school’s 53-year history and longest-serving leader. Gans has been a part of the school for 38 years and at the conclusion of 2019, he will have served as the school's executive director and president for 24 years. He started his NOLS journey as a scholarship student in 1979 on a Semester in Kenya, later serving as director of NOLS Alaska, admissions and marketing director, and operations director before assuming the role of president in October 1995.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, John Gans, stories

New Courses for Winter & Spring 2019

By NOLS on Nov 5, 2018


Photo by Nikole Wohlmacher.

For winter and spring 2019, we’re excited to offer two new women-only courses, backpacking in the Southwest and backcountry skiing and snowboard touring in the Tetons, and a new service expedition.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, expedition, education, all-women, new courses

Quiz: Winter Injury and Illness

By NOLS on Nov 16, 2017
 
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Topics: first aid, wilderness medicine, Wilderness First Aid, winter, quiz, hypothermia, frostbite

Camping Recipe: Potato Pancakes

By NOLS on Sep 8, 2017

Fill up for breakfast or dinner with this delicious camping recipe for potato pancakes. (Don't forget to top with your favorite hot sauce!)

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Topics: Expedition Prep, recipe, camping

Reaffirming Our Commitment to a Sustainable Future

By NOLS on Jun 2, 2017

“We want [our students] to use the education to be leaders in their community with an understanding of ecology and conservation for the wild outdoors far beyond their legislators back home. We expect these people to be a grain of sand on the beach of future leadership.” —Paul Petzoldt

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, Environmental Stewardship, Environmental Stewardship & Sustainability, leadership, climate change