The Oregon to India Rafting and Mountaineering course is an extraordinary expedition that combines beautiful environments and challenging activities in Oregon and India. This expedition begins on either the Salmon River in Idaho where you explore the renowned “River of No Return”, or the wild and scenic Deschutes River in Oregon. While on the river your time will be spent building critical skills in rafting, teamwork, group dynamics and camp craft. This learning will serve as a foundation and the skills will carry over to the rafting you will do in India. As you transition into the first mountain section of your course, you will trade your wet shoes for hiking boots and explore diverse mountain habitats among the volcanoes of the Central Cascade mountain range. During this section, you will put to use the teamwork and camp craft skills learned on the river while learning basic mountaineering and backpacking skills.
Once you have built your foundation for rafting and backpacking, you will travel to New Delhi, India. While an extention of the technical skills you have built in Oregon, this international expeditional also provides a connection to the local culture and communities. You will trek in the Himalaya mountains and raft the Ganges River. The course will end in New Delhi, India. This gives you the opportunity to stay on in India and travel on your own if you chose to do so.
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This course may be full or preparing to leave in the next week. Please call us at 866-467-7651 to discuss your options.
Do you ever want to unplug, step away from the daily grind to take on new challenges? Are you ready to conquer harder skills and remind your senses (or discover for the first time) what it’s like to crest a mountain peak, hear the echoes at the edge of a vast canyon or feel the rush of white water spray on your face? Take a break from your routine, radically change your surroundings and test your tenacity. Put some “firsts” in front of you and find moments of unexpected discovery along the way. Experience Outward Bound as an adult and prepare for an injection of adventure, awareness and adaptability that sticks with you long after you unpack your backpack.
Return home with newly expanded wilderness abilities, an energized outlook, a rekindled allowance of empathy into situations and relationships and an eye toward the future.
Students will travel on the river, for four to seven days in four to six person paddle rafts, and learn to “captain” (maneuver) their paddle raft team through Class II to Class IV rapids. After lessons in basic river travel and safety, students will progress into learning to read currents, anticipate obstacles, scout rapids and negotiate technical portions of the river. Students will also learn river hydrology, swimming in currents, paddle techniques and expeditionary travel. While on the rafting expedition, there may also be an opportunity for short day hikes.
The mountaineering section of this course moves through high mountain terrain and focuses on preparation for a peak attempt that may require the use of ropes, technical equipment and possibly rock climbing. Each day presents a different focus, with ample time for experiential learning. The Instructor-to-student ratio is never more than 1:5 during this section, allowing for personal coaching on the physical techniques of mountaineering, as well as catering the curriculum to the specific interests and aptitudes of individual course participants. Please note that peak attempts are dependent on variables such as weather and group dynamics.
Solo is an important part of the Outward Bound experience and allows students time to rest, recharge and reflect on their own development towards the end of the course. Solos may vary from a few hours up to three days depending on the length of the course, age and maturity of the students and itinerary of the expedition. During solo, students set up their own independent campsite near their instructors and spend their time resting, writing in their journal, enjoying the quiet of the wilderness and reflecting on their experience. Instructors will check on the students throughout their solo. For many students, solo is both a challenge and a respite and is often a highlight of their course.
Outward Bound courses vary in length from four (4) to 85 days. On shorter courses, participants will receive an introduction to leadership skills, strength of character and a desire to serve while activities fill most of the time and the pace is quick. With longer courses, the same outcomes and benefits are achieved with the opportunity to reach a more profound level of mastery as there are more chances to develop technical skills, receive and implement feedback and further personal development. On the Oregon to India Rafting & Trekking course, students will get to revisit rafting and mountaineering skills learned in Oregon, during their international section of the trip.
Rafting, trekking and wilderness navigation techniques are great practice for the essential skills and habits that help prepare for new challenges at school, work, home and in the community. Outward Bound expeditions encourage students:
Lower Salmon River, Idaho
The Nez Perce Indians called the Salmon River "Natsoh Koos," which means "Chinook Salmon Water," after the fish that once thrived there. Early explorers dubbed it the "River of No Return," due to the difficulties they experienced trying to transport wooden boats upstream through roaring rapids. Whatever it is called, the dynamic Salmon River and the land it nourishes are very special.
Starting in Whitebird, Idaho, the Salmon River has created the second deepest river gorge in North America (deeper than the Grand Canyon) and is also the last free flowing river in the United States. Because there are no dams, sand is carried downstream from high creeks and tributaries and deposited in the form of beautiful white sand beaches providing idyllic camping conditions. The river meanders through the second largest protected wilderness area in the contiguous United States, The Frank Church Wilderness. The entire trip includes 73 miles of river travel and many rapids up to Class IV level water. The river journey ends on the lower end of the Snake River, the deepest canyon in the country. Even shorter trips allow for exploration of the many historical and cultural sites that the Lower Salmon has to offer, from houses lived in by Chinese miners to Native American pictographs.
Deschutes River, Oregon
The Deschutes River is part of the national Wild & Scenic Rivers System. The river flows north from the Oregon Cascades to the Columbia River and then on to the Pacific Ocean. The Lower Deschutes is a popular river for both whitewater rafting and fly fishing. The river is spring-fed, which results in an unusually constant water flow and cold water. Excellent geologic evidence is present all around this area. Courses generally travel anywhere from fifty to one hundred miles along the Lower Deschutes. The rapids on the Deschutes, rated up to Class IV, are mostly Class II-III, and are excellent for learning paddle skills and teamwork. The group camps each night along the banks of the river. The Deschutes region has a colorful human history, and a railroad borders much of the length of the Lower Deschutes.
Central Cascades, Oregon
Volcanoes dot the spine of the Cascade Mountains, rising over 10,000 feet above the forests, lakes and rivers of the surrounding region. These glaciated peaks run north and south and create perfect mountaineering objectives for this section of the course. The Central Cascade range is home to the Three Sisters, Broken Top, Mt. Washington, Three Fingered Jack and Mt. Jefferson. Four 10,000 foot glaciated volcanoes are present in this region, with a total of nine major volcanoes in the area. One can find a unique blend of dry east side and wet west side weather conditions which allow diverse types of vegetation to flourish. The area has a complex geologic history that continues today. Active glaciers methodically carve away the mountains and the dramatic traces of avalanches that altered the landscape can be found throughout.
Shipton Tilman Trail, India
The trek over the Kauri Pass was the route followed by Eric Shipton and Bil Tilman in 1934 on their way to the Rishi Gorge, and by other mountaineers en route to the peaks on the Indo-Tibetan border. Also known as the Curzon Trail, this trail was named after Lord Curzon, who was a keen trekker, and it is said that the path was specially improved so that he could do the trek. The crossing of the Kauri Pass is a fitting conclusion to a trek that takes in three lesser passes and crosses five major rivers - the Pindar, Kaliganga, Nandakini, Briehiganga and the Dhauliganga. This trek takes students over mountain passes, through dense forests of oak, pine, rhododendron, fir and deodar, traversing bugayals - wide open meadows typical of the region which serve as high altitude summer grazing grounds - and numerous streams. Throughout the trek students will experience truly spectacular views of the Himalayas.
Alaknanda River/Ganga River, India
Students will raft the Alaknanda River to its confluence with the Bhagirathi, and from there on to the actual Ganga River. Getting a feel of the grand river and her environs, students camp on sandy beaches, check out small villages and look for elusive bird and wildlife as they negotiate the challenges of some amazing Class III and Class IV whitewater.
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.