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Thanking the Wilderness for Letting Me In

By Maya Johnston on Jun 7, 2016

Photo by Adam Stoumen.


“T’is not too late to seek a newer world.
Push off, and sitting well in order smite
The sounding furrows; for my purpose holds
To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths
Of all the western stars, until I die.
It may be that the gulfs will wash us down:
It may be we shall touch the Happy Isles,
And see the great Achilles, whom we knew.
Tho' much is taken, much abides; and tho'
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are;
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.”

From the poem “Ulysses” by Alfred, Lord Tennyson

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Topics: Alumni, Semester, NOLS Pacific Northwest, Live the Dream, backcountry

Confessions from the Wilderness [Interview]

By Kim Freitas on Jun 3, 2016

Eli Marienthal’s final big-screen film role was in 2004’s Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen. Since then, Marienthal has left acting behind and gone on to discover a love of the wilderness as an outdoor educator. He founded W.I.L.D., which stands for Wilderness Immersion and Leadership Development, and Back to Earth, where his longtime friend Jesse Sachs is his business partner, collaborator and co-trip leader.

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Topics: adventure, Live the Dream, education, backcountry, leadership

NOLS Courses Are So Much Pun!

By Sarah Buer on May 20, 2016

We believe in the value of education—and in having fun.

Get your daily dose of humor with some of our favorite NOLS-related puns:

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, adventure, education, backcountry, leadership

How to Keep an Epic Expedition Journal

By Katherine Boehrer on Apr 27, 2016

Journaling can be a great way to remember your trip into the wilderness and reflect after a long day outside. Not to mention that writing daily has numerous benefits that are great for any expedition, from improving your communication skills and emotional intelligence to helping you achieve your goals. But keeping a trip journal can be difficult!

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Topics: Expedition Prep, adventure, expedition, education, backcountry

The Ethics of Cheap: Why You Don't Need the Newest Gear

By Allie Maloney on Apr 22, 2016

If you’re new to backpacking and are getting ready for your first trip, to find the right gear you have a couple of options.

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Topics: gear, Expedition Prep, adventure, instructor, backcountry

Educator Expedition: Winter Exploring

By Ethan Wolston on Apr 22, 2016

Three winters ago I cut my old Never Summer snowboard in half and made a splitboard from the pieces. It was a fun project and the beginning of a new adventure exploring the winter backcountry around my home.

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Topics: adventure, Educators Notebook, instructors, education, backcountry, NOLS Teton Valley, backcountry skiing, splitboarding

How to Make Your Own Instant Backpacking Meals

By Katherine Boehrer on Apr 20, 2016

Artwork by Elizabeth Simons

Sometimes we love the convenience of those pre-made, just-add-water, instant backpacking meals. At the end of a long day outside, it can be great to skip the dishes and still enjoy a tasty and filling dinner. Not to mention that just-add-water meals are often lighter-weight than traditional bulk rations, and require less fuel for cooking since you only need to boil water.

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Topics: Alumni, Expedition Prep, recipe, camping, cooking, adventure, expedition, backcountry

Smart Ways to Protect Yourself from the Sun

By Sarah Zimmerman on Apr 15, 2016
Photo by Kirk Rasmussen.

Since spring has arrived, many of us will or already have gotten caught outside unprepared for the sun’s harshness. After last weekend, I came back to the office and several people were either a little bit pink or a couple shades darker. This got me thinking: How much do I really know about sun protection?

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Topics: wilderness medicine, WMI, Backpacking, adventure, backcountry, paddling, Wilderness Medicine

Educator Training: AIARE Avalanche 1 Course

By Miles Turner on Apr 15, 2016

After taking the December NOLS Winter Training Trip, an introduction to backcountry winter travel and camping, I became passionate about learning everything that goes into backcountry skiing and the decision-making surrounding this wonderful sport. For those of us who grew up skiing the slush and ice of East Coast resorts, the feeling of skiing deep untracked powder in the backcountry out west is truly incredible.

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Topics: Educators Notebook, instructor, education, backcountry, NOLS Teton Valley, backcountry skiing, splitboarding

NOLS in Solidarity with the Bomberos of Honduras

By Kevin Wilson on Apr 13, 2016

NOLS instructors partner with Honduran firefighters to expand medical training in areas with limited resources.

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Topics: wilderness medicine, WMI, instructors, education, backcountry, NOLS Wilderness Medicine Institute, Wilderness Medicine

Recording Herding Songs of the Mongolian Steppe

By Dimitri Staszewski on Apr 8, 2016

NOLS graduate Dimitri Staszewski tells the story of his work recording the songs of Mongolian herders in this excerpt from the spring 2016 issue of The Leader.

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Topics: Alumni, Live the Dream, video, education, backcountry, leadership

Scott Briscoe on NOLS: It’s a Game Changer [Interview]

By Kim Freitas on Apr 7, 2016

Scott Briscoe was a member of Expedition Denali in June 2013, the first all African American team to attempt this climb. After returning from the expedition, several expedition members toured around the country, where they told the story of the climb.

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Topics: Alumni, Behind the Scenes, Expedition Denali, NOLS Alaska, education, backcountry

How to Choose Wildness Every Day

By Molly Herber on Apr 2, 2016

If you’ve spent any time in the wilderness, you know that how you feel there is special. Wilderness isn’t just a space, an empty shoreline or a quiet grove of trees—it’s a state of mind, too.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, Backpacking, adventure, wilderness, backcountry

Go Camping—With Your Cat

By Molly Herber on Apr 1, 2016

We know you love your feline friend, your beclawed bestie, your clawsome companion, but you wish they could enjoy going to the wilderness as much as you do.

Now, when you head to the meowntains or coast for an advenpurr, you don’t have to leave them behind.

Introducing the newest NOLS course: Catpacking.

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Topics: climbing, Backpacking, adventure, Live the Dream, backcountry, cat

5 Strategies to Survive Mud Season

By Kim Freitas on Mar 17, 2016
Photo by Leszek Leszczynski .
 

As the snow begins to melt from the mountains, there is another season approaching as we transition into spring: mud season.

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Topics: Expedition Prep, LNT, leave no trace, education, wilderness, backcountry