“Some positive highlights of my course were good times around the fire and being taught correct knowledge. I will tell other people that if you want to have a life changing experience (for the good) that will teach you more than school can, do Outward Bound.” – John, Alumnus
“The most challenging part of this course was waking up in the cold. I was not fully expecting that! Some positive highlights were getting to ride on the dog sled and getting to lead the ski team. This was an incredible experience that I think everyone should have.” – Mitchell, Alumnus
“Positive highlights were the dogs, the relationships made and what I am able to take away from this course. I saw a glimpse of myself as a person with compassion striving to help and serve others to reach a common goal. I now know what I can be, and walk my way there with confidence as I depart.” – Jacob, Alumnus
“I was pushed more than I expected. There was a lot of personal gain to be taken away if you put in the work. The Instructors were amazing. The Solo day was more than I could have ever hoped for, in terms of personal gain.” – Jon, Alumnus
Dog sledding is a centuries-old way of life that is more of an exciting art form than a passenger sport. It is both hard and rewarding work that allows you to travel to remote stretches of the wilderness where the only tracks and your group are likely to see are your own. On this eight or 15-day expedition, your Instructors will help you develop the skills to stay warm and comfortable as you build self-confidence, self-reliance and perseverance in this magical winter wonderland. The team of dogs will provide inspiration for you and your group as you work together to travel across the frozen lakes and rivers and snow-covered forests. Work with like-minded adventurers to learn safety techniques as well as winter camping and problem-solving skills as you cook over an open fire and sleep under the stars. No prior winter travel knowledge or experience is necessary.
|VMTD-841||12.27.18 - 1.10.19||15||16 - 18||$3,325||ENROLL|
|VMTD-821||12.28.18 - 1.4.19||8||16 - 18||$2,025||ENROLL|
This course may be full or preparing to leave in the next week. Please call us at 866-467-7651 to discuss your options.
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.
Together with a team of expert Instructors and loveable sled dogs, students experience a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to connect with nature, working animals and each other in thrilling, challenging and utterly stunning wilderness environments. Using map and compass, students learn to navigate a route over frozen lakes, rivers and the overland portage trails between them. Participants develop skills in dog mushing, cross-country skiing, ice reading, winter camping and sled dog care. Group members take turns mushing the dogsleds and skiing or snowshoeing throughout the course but everyone cares for the dogs on a daily basis. Take part in a beautiful winter choreography as skiers serve as advance “scouts” carrying their own supplies for the day in backpacks or towing a small personal sled known as a “pulk”. While skiers navigate, check for safe ice conditions and track out a trail, mushers help guide the loaded dog sleds to follow. The group comes together to maneuver the dogsleds over obstacles and steep terrain and at the end of each day, make and enjoy camp.
Students learn to live comfortably in the depths of a Minnesota winter and what it takes to construct a winter camp. Instructors teach participants techniques for harvesting water from beneath the ice, dressing properly for freezing temperatures, felling trees for firewood, cooking over an open fire and setting up shelters and cozy winter sleeping systems. A hearty dinner and enriching conversation with fellow group members around an outdoor fire or the wood stove in a large, canvas wall tent rounds out each day. Students often enjoy clear evening stargazing before drifting off into a well-deserved sleep. Students learn that not only can they survive, but truly thrive in an extreme and remote winter environment.
Service is a cornerstone of every Outward Bound experience. From the seemingly small daily acts of service to the environment to the regular tasks of being part of an expeditionary team, participants have ample opportunities to experience the value of giving back to the larger community. On the expedition, participants 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. Participants also practice regular acts of service for their team including the hard-working sled dogs by preparing and serving meals, securing drinking water, breaking trail and giving the dogs plenty of affection.
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, participants 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 experience.
Courses are offered in a variety of locations and lengths of time to provide a range of programming options for students to choose the optimal experience for them. Longer courses allow for a full immersion into the Outward Bound experience, more time to practice wilderness skills and the opportunity to experience both success and failure to promote powerful and lasting personal growth. Shorter courses offer students an opportunity to step away from the hectic pace of modern life and experience the simplicity of wilderness travel while gaining new perspectives through a potent and energizing expedition.
Teen and young adult courses focus on building perseverance, self-reliance, self-awareness, collaboration and empathy. Regardless of course type, students can expect to get comfortable living and working together in the wilderness while creating a solid foundation of skills and perspectives they can continue to build on after the course.
Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, Minnesota.
Over 10,000 years ago, continent-sized glaciers scraped their way across much of Ontario and northern Minnesota leaving deep ruts, ravines and holes in their tracks. Eventually, as the glaciers melted, these ravines filled with water, creating a seemingly endless interconnected web of lakes and rivers. In 1964, the US Forest Service designated 1 million square acres of this north woods environment as the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW) making it one of the largest, most pristine wilderness areas in the country. Without roads or motorized traffic, the Boundary Waters is true, remote wilderness where wildlife including black bear, moose, bald eagles and the common loon enjoy life unspoiled by human impact. In the winter, the BWCAW transforms into an even more wondrous and intense wilderness as many plants and animals hibernate or migrate, leaving the hardy, well-adapted species to take the spotlight. Playful otters, howling wolves and sturdy evergreens reign supreme in this snow-covered wonderland. While travel in these extreme conditions can be more difficult, winter enthusiasts enjoy moving over frozen lakes and rivers by dogsled, cross-country skis and snowshoes. Winter in the Boundary Waters is mesmerizing, peaceful and inspring. It is a place of spectacular extremes: fresh snow resting on ancient granite; clean, cold air surrounding glowing hot fires; and powerful silence encased in a brilliant starlit sky with the occasional blast of colorful northern lights.
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.