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Sea Kayaking the Great Bear Rainforest

By Jonathan Brooks on Feb 6, 2018
Jonathan with bonsai island. Photo by Julie Bremner.

“This place is full of life on life on life!”

Julie’s assessment of a toppled sitka spruce couldn't have been more accurate. This giant nurse log spanned the tides, it housed a slug oozing over deer ferns at one end and a crab picking over some barnacles at the other.

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Topics: Sea Kayaking, Skills, Kayaking, British Columbia, Becoming an Instructor, Instructor Development Fund, Instructor Development Fund (IDF), Stories, Instructor Stories

Black Wolf Expedition: First Descent Packrafting in the Canadian North

By Chad Lorenz on Nov 13, 2017

“I am going to say it's not really possible to connect the Broken Skull with other rivers in the area, the mountains are just too impassible…Black Wolf Creek is unknown. Drops at a significant gradient from Grizzly…and passes through some very narrow canyons which would probably be huge whitewater. Not really recommended to go there...It is not possible to connect Broken Skull or Black Wolf (to) Thundercloud Creek without helicopter support.” -Local river guide

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Topics: Canada, Becoming an Instructor, Instructor Development Fund, Instructor Development Fund (IDF), packrafting, Instructor expedition, Stories

Instructor Expedition: A Grand Canyon Trip with Friends

By NOLS Blog on Jan 16, 2017
A classic Grand Canyon view from the Nankoweap Granaries, Mile 53, Photo by Jane Koopman.

Ribeye steaks on day eleven? This was not a NOLS course. This was a descent of the Grand Canyon, made possible by the NOLS instructor development fund—the classic journey, with all the iced sodas you can drink and rapids that might keep an oarswoman awake at night.

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Topics: Skills, Instructor Development Fund, Instructor Development Fund (IDF), whitewater rafting, Stories, Rafting, Instructor Stories

Educator Expedition: Paddling at the South Pacific Sea Kayak Symposium

By Jonny Hepburn on Jul 21, 2016

Southern Chile offers world class sea kayaking. In northern Patagonia, where NOLS is based, the Pacific Coast of South America fragments into a network of islands and fjords that offer some of the most remote, challenging, and beautiful paddling in the world. I had the chance to spend almost five months travelling and working for NOLS in Chile this past winter, and was grateful to receive an IDF grant to attend the South Pacific Sea Kayak Symposium in December.

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Topics: Leadership Skills, NOLS Patagonia, Sea Kayaking, Educators Notebook, Becoming an Instructor, education, IDF, Instructor Development Fund

Educator Expedition: A Day in the Waddington Range

By Katie Oram on Jul 18, 2016

We arrived in Bluff Lake, British Columbia at 1:30AM from various places: Roger and I driving 30 hours from Wyoming, Jeremy flying in from California and Dane just finishing up class in Vancouver. We had been talking about it for a while now, applied for the funding from the Instructor Development Fund, but still it had just been this idea: a ski expedition to the Waddington Range in British Columbia, home to some very remote, high peaks and endless miles of glaciers with real hazards.

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Topics: Leadership Skills, NOLS Yukon, climbing, adventure, Educators Notebook, Becoming an Instructor, Mountaineering, backcountry, IDF, Instructor Development Fund

Educator Expedition: Multi-pitch Climbing in Red Rocks

By NOLS Blog on Mar 18, 2016

 

Climbing the Birdland route. Photo courtesy of Kathryn Martin.
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Topics: climbing, Educators Notebook, Becoming an Instructor, NOLS Southwest, IDF, Instructor Development Fund

Educator Expedition: Skiing Alaska’s Thompson Pass

By Kate Koons on Mar 10, 2016

 

The ladies. Photo by Kate Koons.

For years, I have seen the pictures, heard the stories, and dreamt of skiing in Alaska.

A number of former NOLS instructors have made their way to Alaska to guide, many of them under the guidance of Don Sharaf, who still works as a forecaster and guide for Valdez Heli Ski Guides. If you are guiding in Valdez, you’re pretty much at the top of your game.

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Topics: Leadership Skills, NOLS Alaska, Educators Notebook, Becoming an Instructor, education, backcountry, NOLS Teton Valley, backcountry skiing, Instructor Development Fund

Educator Expedition: A November Trip to Red Rocks

By NOLS Blog on Jan 7, 2016

 

Ready to start climbing. Photo by Hadley Warner.
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Topics: Leadership Skills, climbing, Educators Notebook, Becoming an Instructor, education, Instructor Development Fund