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Snakebites: Myth vs. Reality

By Ben Lerman on 6/4/18 11:40 AM

In the movies, snakes bite constantly, fly through the air to strike, and kill their victims almost instantly with their venomous bites. Those involved respond in all manner of ways, from trying to photograph and identify the snakes’ species in 2006’s Snakes on a Plane to cutting open the bite wound and attempting to suck out the poison in 2010’s True Grit. Needless to say, these sensationalized portrayals can be misleading.

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Topics: WFR, first aid, wilderness medicine, myth, snakebite

7 Jobs You Can Get with a Wilderness Medicine Certification

By Ben Lerman on 12/6/17 8:35 AM

You’re thinking about starting a new career. Your dream job might be working in the mountains. Or as a first responder with Search and Rescue. Or providing medical care in a hospital. Or maybe you want to instruct NOLS courses.

If you're looking to get into one of these fields, getting a wilderness medicine certification such as a Wilderness First Responder, Wilderness First Aid, or Wilderness EMT can help you get started.

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Topics: wfa, WFR, wilderness medicine, WEMT, NOLS Wilderness Medicine

Real Life Scenario: Helicopter Evacuation on the Bailey Range Traverse

By Arthur Herlitzka on 10/24/16 1:03 PM

NOLS grad Arthur Herlitzkais recalls using his WFR-level training in action.

Three days into guiding a nine-day trip—the Bailey Range Traverse on the Olympic Peninsula west of Seattle—my colleagues and I noticed that a 65 year old gentleman was showing more fatigue than we thought normal (even with a heavy pack).

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Topics: wfa, WFR, wilderness medicine, Semester in Patagonia

ASL-Supported Course Fosters Inclusive Diversity and Growth

By Shari Leach on 9/6/16 8:20 AM

This course was by far the most diverse NOLS Wilderness Medicine course I've ever taught.

There was geographic diversity, with students from as far away as Slovakia, Puerto Rico and Florida, as well as those just a few miles down the road.

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Topics: wfa, WFR, diversity and inclusion, Wilderness First Responder, wilderness medicine, Wilderness First Aid, education, NOLS Wilderness Medicine, Wilderness Medicine

Ready for the Challenge: How I Became a Wilderness EMT

By Andy Burdin on 6/17/16 11:48 AM

I found myself patient-side during an intensive and grueling scenario at the Wyss Wilderness Medicine Campus in Lander, Wyoming.

“Keep holding still, you’re doing great,” I told Anna. Our eyes met as I held her hand and she took panicked breaths through the non-rebreather that was pressed against her face, filling her lungs with oxygen. Bright red blood was beginning to seep through the large pressure dressing I was holding against her abdomen to cover the 6-inch laceration there. We needed to move, but the single, tunnel-like entrance to the mine was blocked by other screaming patients on backboards and teams of rescuers, with only their headlamps visible in the thick, chalky smoke.

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Topics: Alumni, Wilderness EMT, wfa, WFR, Wilderness First Responder, wilderness medicine, Wilderness First Aid, education, WEMT, NOLS Wilderness Medicine, Wilderness Medicine

WMI at 62.5° North Latitude

By Marco Johnson on 10/11/11 10:00 PM

As the days grow shorter and colder a group of students buckles down to finish up their Wilderness First Responder course in Torpshammar, Sweden. The course is being taught at Gymnasiet AWPE. Gymnasiet AWPE translates as Senior High School Advanced Wilderness Preparedness Education and the school is similar to a US charter school. The school has 3 classes that are equivalent to the 10th, 11th, and 12th grades in a US high school.

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Topics: NOLS, Behind the Scenes, WFR, wilderness medicine, WMI, Wilderness Medicine Institute of NOLS

Backpacker Magazine Editor Goes on a "Woofer"

By Aparna Rajagopal-Durbin on 5/7/10 2:43 AM

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Topics: NOLS, WFR, Wilderness First Responder, Steve Howe, National Outdoor Leadership School, wilderness medicine, Backpacker

Wilderness Medicine Case Study - Test Your Skills

By William Roth on 2/15/10 4:51 AM

The Setting - There you are, hiking with a companion through the San Juan Mountains in Colorado, when suddenly there appeared a rider on a pale horse galloping across a meadow. Your attempt to access a vague memory about pale horses passes into a focus on the beauty of the horse and rider which becomes a stumbling horse and airborne rider whose graceful flight ends in a tuck and roll as the horsewoman lands on her back, tumbles, stands and runs a few steps before finally collapsing in a heap.

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Topics: medicine, wfa, WFR, test, first aid, wilderness medicine, WMI, case study, first responder, practice, wilderness, backcountry, WEMT

Students Become Wilderness First Responders

By NOLS on 10/16/09 8:12 AM

The third section for the Fall Semester in the Rockies (FSR) groups is happening at Three Peaks Ranch. The students of FSR 5 & 6 are just a couple of days away from finishing up their Wilderness First Responder course. The completion of their WFR comes at a perfect time for these students, as their next section will be a month of hiking in the canyon country of southern Utah.

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Topics: NOLS, leadership, WFR, Semester, wilderness medicine, Wilderness First Aid, outdoor education

Fall Outdoor Educator Semester Students practice their wilderness first aid skills.

By NOLS on 10/8/09 7:58 AM

Wilderness first aid skills are an important part of being an Outdoor Educator. One of the sections on the NOLS Outdoor Educator Semester (OES) is a WMI Wilderness First Responder (WFR) course. During the WFR students learn how to act in situations when injury or illness have occurred. While classroom time gives students a foundation in the different subjects of wilderness medicine, practical scenarios are where the skills are honed.

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Topics: medicine, NOLS, WFR, wilderness medicine, WMI, Wilderness First Aid, outdoor education