This unique Outward Bound expedition will challenge and refresh you through seven days exploring the Lower Salmon River. You will travel down the river as a team, employing communication leadership and compassion. The Lower Salmon River is a "pool and drop" river, with the more difficult rapids in the narrow canyons. Most of the river has class II and III rapids, perfect for working on skills in oar rafts, paddle boats and paddle cats. Some notable rapids include: Demon’s Drop, Half and Half, Snow Hole, and Checkerboard. Numerous white, sandy beaches on both sides of the river offer amazing camping. The human and natural history of the Lower Salmon river is extensive, and you will visit pictographs, petroglyphs, as well as a feng shui Chinese miner rock house. For the final 20-miles of the expedition, the Salmon and Snake rivers come together, characterized by greater water volume and slower moving water. This allows for ample time to reflect on your journey.
This course is closed for the season. 2020 courses coming soon.
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.
Students will travel on the river 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.
Service to others and to the environment is a core value of Outward Bound and is integrated into each course. Groups follow Leave No Trace ethics as part of their service to the environment and engage in acts of service while leading and supporting fellow students. Seeing the impact of their actions firsthand, students develop an ingrained appreciation of service and transfer this desire to serve their communities back home.
In order for profound learning to take place, students need time to reflect on their experience, and Solo is that opportunity. 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. With sufficient food and equipment, students will set up camp at sites of their own, using the wilderness skills learned during the first portions of the course. The amount of time students spend on Solo is based on length of course, weather, student condition, age, and Instructor preference. Solo campsites are chosen to offer as much solitude as possible (yet be within emergency whistle-signaling distance of other group members). Most students spend their Solo time journaling, drawing, reflecting, thinking and resting as they process lessons of the course to focus on their goals for the future. Instructors check on each student at regular intervals, as safety is always the top priority.
This course will introduce students to the ideas of leadership, character development, and service that are integral to Outward Bound. Students will begin to develop these skills in an expedition setting so that they can continue to grow once they return home. Instructors will work to challenge students to try new things and step outside their comfort zones. As a team, each group will work together to complete difficult tasks necessary for backcountry travel.
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 it 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. The river journey ends on the lower end of the Snake River, the deepest canyon in the country. Outward Bound seven day trips allow for exploration of the many historical and cultural sites that the Lower Salmon has to offer, from houses once inhabited by Chinese miners to Native American pictographs.
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.