“Never once would I have thought that I could emotionally have been able to challenge myself like I have on this course. Truly I appreciate the privilege of this. It has created an impact and prepared me for the real world. It has also helped me find my place with myself and learn how to really live to my full potential.” – JR, Voyageur Outward Bound School Alum
"It was an amazing experience that enabled me to push my mental and physical limits. Through this journey I was able to identify my needs for the future ahead. I also pushed myself to show vulnerability to my peers by opening up to them about my past struggles." – Addie, Voyageur Outward Bound School Alum
"I have learned that both my mood and body can do so much more than I gave them credit for. The mantra of one of my Instructors motivated me to try everything despite fearing failure and I will continue to keep it in mind my whole life: "your body can do anything if your mind lets it." As I fought through fear towards success, my completion of these challenges meant so much more than if they had come easily. Ultimately, this experience has been incredibly uplifting and life-changing. I believe everyone has the potential to succeed on an Outward Bound expedition, and I hope that everyone willing to gets a chance." – Zoe, Voyageur Outward Bound School Alum
More than just a camping trip, this 15 or 22-day canoeing expedition takes you into the heart of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness near Ely, Minnesota – and incorporates a challenging high ropes course and a reflective Solo experience.
On this Outward Bound expedition, do more than learn to paddle. Learn how to explore and live comfortably in one of the most beautiful, remote environments on the planet. Learn to take calculated risks, practice critical thinking skills and develop self-reliance. Discover how serving the community and appreciating the diversity of your group is a transferable skill to be applied upon your return home. Together with your Instructors and crew, learn how to care for one another, work together—and accomplish more than you ever thought possible.
Courses in the Boundary Waters have low student/staff ratios (seven or fewer students with two Instructors), allowing for more individualized attention and focus.
|VMTC-041||6.8.20 - 6.22.20||15||16 - 18||$3,895||APPLY NOW|
|VMYC-041||6.8.20 - 6.22.20||15||14 - 16||$3,895||APPLY NOW|
|VMTC-051||6.16.20 - 7.7.20||22||16 - 18||$4,795||APPLY NOW|
|VMYC-051||6.16.20 - 7.7.20||22||14 - 16||$4,795||APPLY NOW|
|VMTC-052||6.22.20 - 7.13.20||22||16 - 18||$4,795||APPLY NOW|
|VMYC-052||6.22.20 - 7.13.20||22||14 - 16||$4,795||APPLY NOW|
|VMTC-042||6.29.20 - 7.13.20||15||16 - 18||$3,895||APPLY NOW|
|VMYC-042||6.29.20 - 7.13.20||15||14 - 16||$3,895||APPLY NOW|
|VMTC-043||7.27.20 - 8.10.20||15||16 - 18||$3,895||APPLY NOW|
|VMYC-043||7.27.20 - 8.10.20||15||14 - 16||$3,895||APPLY NOW|
|VMTC-053||7.28.20 - 8.18.20||22||16 - 18||$4,795||APPLY NOW|
|VMYC-053||7.28.20 - 8.18.20||22||14 - 16||$4,795||APPLY NOW|
This course starts within the next week. Please call us at 866-467-7651 to assess the possibility of applying for this course!
Are you ready to take a journey that will change your life? You won’t look at day-to-day drama the same way after you’ve conquered a high mountain ridge, made a boat obey your command in windswept waves or slept under the stars watching bats swoop overhead. Joining an Outward Bound expedition changes you. Your crew, your Instructor, your route and your adventures will have a profound and lasting impact on you as you rise to meet exhilarating natural challenges in some of the country’s wildest places.
After you come home, many of the character, leadership and service traits you uncovered on your expedition stay with you, helping you navigate your daily life with more resilience and success.
Completing an extended canoe expedition includes learning the art of paddling a canoe in a variety of conditions, as well as map and compass reading, route finding and Leave No Trace wilderness living principles. Groups navigate a variety of waterways such as lakes, rivers and swamps, and work as a team to carry packs and canoes over portage trails when transitioning from one lake to another or to get safely around challenging rapids. Traveling by canoe allows groups to go far past where motorboats operate and, once there, it is possible to quietly observe bald eagles, moose and peaceful sunsets on mirror-calm lakes.
During climbing days, students learn about general rock climbing equipment, safety and etiquette. Students have many opportunities to climb, belay and rappel while learning and employing safety systems that are compliant with national standards. The rock climbing sites provide a number of different route options including cracks, sheer faces and chimneys. Regardless of a student’s rock climbing background, they are sure to find a route that will expand their comfort zone.
Looking out over the top of the boreal forest and located 30 feet in the air, the high ropes course is incredible. Students swing from Tarzan ropes, walk on tightrope wires and climb a cargo net before jumping on the zip line for an exhilarating ride back to solid ground.
Service is a cornerstone of every Outward Bound experience. From the seemingly small daily acts of service for the environment to the regular tasks of being part of an expeditionary team, students have ample opportunities to experience the value of giving back to the larger community. On the expedition, students are encouraged to practice environmental stewardship in the form of Leave No Trace ethics—leaving campsites and trails in better condition than they found them. Students also practice regular acts of service for their team by preparing and serving meals, securing drinking water, setting up camp and giving their crew plenty of support.
On this course, designated service projects are coordinated with land managers like the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and National Park Service to collaborate on land restoration projects. Some projects are more social services based, where students may spend time at a nursing home or hospital. Students develop a value of service, seeing the impact of their actions firsthand and transfer this desire to serve their communities back home.
The Solo experience provides an important break from the rigors of the expedition and gives students the opportunity to reflect on their Outward Bound experience. Many students use this reflection time to make decisions about their future, journal and enjoy the beauty of their surroundings unencumbered by the constant external stimulation of modern life. The duration of Solo depends on the course length and type, as well as the competency and preparedness of the student group. With all the food, skills and supplies they need, students are given a secluded spot to reflect alone, and are monitored by staff throughout the experience to maintain safety. Students find that Solo provokes profound and powerful learning in a short period of time and often becomes one of the most memorable parts of their Outward Bound course.
High school students will experience a sense of accomplishment as they learn about perseverance (or grit), risk taking, self-identity and self-reliance. Students will learn to trust themselves and push themselves harder as they own their choices and advance toward mastery in their skill development. Group adversity will teach each student critical thinking skills, collaboration and decision-making. They will experience leadership in action as they see their potential become reality while practicing empathy and compassion towards others.
Canoeing and wilderness navigation techniques are great practice for the essential skills and habits that help prepare them for new challenges at work, home and in the community. Outward Bound expeditions encourage students to:
Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, Minnesota
Established in 1978, the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW) is a labyrinth of lakes and rocks that has been specifically protected as a true American wilderness. No roads, power lines, or motorized craft may enter its borders; therefore, the Boundary Waters wilderness has changed little since its unveiling when the glaciers melted 10,000 years ago.
Over one million acres in size, the BWCAW extends nearly 150 miles along the Canadian border. With over 1,200 miles of canoe routes, nearly 2,200 designated campsites and more than 1,000 lakes and streams, the BWCAW is an amazing place to experience the wilderness. The BWCAW contains portage-linked lakes and streams, interspersed with islands, forests and crags. It has no piped water, prepared shelters or signs to point the way. Within these borders students can canoe, portage and camp in the spirit of the French-Canadian Voyageurs of 200 years ago. The Boundary Waters' 1,200 miles of paddling routes offer outstanding opportunities for solitude, remoteness, teamwork, adventure and challenge.
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.