Test your personal limits, practice leadership skills and take on new and exciting challenges – all in a variety of thrilling landscapes. Work, live and travel with a crew of motivated peers who inspire one another, push each other and succeed together – as a supportive, cohesive group. In ten short days, experience sweeping views of jagged, mountain peaks, freezing dips in alpine lakes and bright star-flecked night skies. With frequent sunny summer weather and dramatic granite formations, the Sierra Nevada wilderness is a premier backpacking and rock climbing location – and the ideal place for your next big adventure.
This course is closed for the season. 2018 courses coming soon.
No two Outward Bound expeditions are ever quite the same. Every crew is unique; every route is distinct; and every adventure is dynamic. But one thing remains the same. On each course, students rise to meet exhilarating natural challenges in some of the country’s wildest places – and find strength and determination along the way.
This course begins with several days of rock climbing where students will learn the basics of climbing technique, belaying and knot tying, while building trust with team members and confidence in themselves. During this section students are challenged physically on solid rock cliffs and push their mental strength on a free-hanging rappel with stunning views of the surrounding granite domes.
Students will backpack deeper into the heart of the Sierra Nevada range and eventually attempt to climb a technical alpine peak in the backcountry. This will give students the chance to practice their climbing skills in a more remote setting, rewarded with 360-degree views of the surrounding peaks and alpine lakes.
Students may also have the opportunity to rappel off the summit of Dogtooth Peak, one of the highest peaks in the area with gorgeous views. The crew will then continue to backpack on and off trail after this peak attempt, with the possibility of additional rock climbing toward the end of course.
Service to others and the environment is a core value of Outward Bound and is integrated into each course. Participants follow Leave No Trace ethics as service to the environment and do acts of service while leading and supporting fellow participants. Designated service projects are coordinated with land managers like the US Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and National Park Service to collaborate on land restoration projects. Students develop a value of service, seeing the impact of their actions firsthand, and transfer this desire to serve their communities back home.
In order for profound learning to take place, there must be time to reflect on the experience. Within course, the solo is that opportunity. It is a chance to experience solitude in the wilderness without distraction while also taking a break from the physical rigors of course. Students are separated from their group for a period of time that depends on course length and instructor assessment of group capability. Solo sites are chosen to provide solitude. Participants have all necessary equipment, food and water. On this course the maximum time for solo is 48 hours.
Outward Bound courses vary in length from 4 to 85 days. On shorter courses, participants will receive an intro to leadership skills, build strength of character and cultivate a desire to serve. With longer courses, the same outcomes and benefits are achieved with the ability to reach a more profound level of mastery as there are more opportunities develop technical skills, receive and implement feedback and further personal development.
The Sierra Nevada Range hosts the largest continuous expanse of wilderness and some of the highest peaks in the United States. It extends over 400 miles from north to south, is 70 miles wide and is home to three national parks, 20 wilderness areas and two national monuments.
The Sierra Nevada offers fairly stable and beautiful weather. Spring can bring snow and cold temperatures. As summer advances, temperatures tend to become more moderate; summer temperatures are in the 70s to 80s during the day and 30s to 50s in the evening. This course area allows participants to experience some of the most famous, though often underutilized, alpine climbing and backpacking routes.
We woke up really early to hike to Dog’s Tooth, where we planned to rock climb. We hiked all the way to the top and then lightning came, so we couldn’t rock climb. We had to return back to camp and on our way, we stopped at an alpine lake near Courtright Reservoir. The clouds were hiding the sun – so we waited until the sun came out, and then we jumped in! The water was freezing cold! Then this big cloud came over us and it started to hail. We all remember that day – it bonded us. Nature is unpredictable, but that unpredictability brought us together.
- Summer Stewart
If you are ready to enroll on a course click the enroll button next to the course you wish to select or you can enroll over the phone by speaking with one of our Admissions Advisors (toll-free) at 866-467-7651.