(7 & 10 days)
For the adventerous youth, here is the best way to see wild Alaska, the Last Frontier! This series of adventurous activities challenges students in one of the wildest places on earth. Backcountry skills and outdoor education combine for an unparalleled wilderness experience.
Your adventure begins in the outdoor mecca of Haines, Alaska – your basecamp for adventure. From there, launch into a series of courses that will defy even your wildest dreams. Imagine paddling pristine waters amidst a pod of orcas, rafting down Class IV rapids in the Yukon, climbing alpine rock to a lofty summit, or hiking the crest of an alpine ridge with the ocean spread out below. All of these – and more – are part of our specialized youth program.
Our educational model nurtures leadership development and creates a fun learning environment for students to grow and excel together in the outdoors. Students develop leadership skills used to face challenges and solve problems in unique wilderness environments. The self-confidence and self-reliance garnered from these experiences last a lifetime.
THE INSTRUCTORS AND GUIDES OF IWLS are widely recognized as some of the very best in their field and have practical leadership experience from around the globe. They are highly trained and have an uncommon enthusiasm for sharing their skills and knowledge, borne out of a passion for outdoor exploration. We specialize in taking young adults into the wilderness and facilitating experiential educations.
THE IWLS CURRICULUM outlines the essential components for effective outdoor leadership. Here are a few points that these youth courses will focus on.
- Leadership: The most valuable lesson to learn in the outdoors is our everyday curriculum! With opportunities to be “Leader of the Day,” practice leadership techniques and group management with professional guides and outdoor educators, and more, we will give you the necessary tools to become an effective leader.
- Environmental Ethics: As adventurers in some of the most pristine environments on the planet, it is our duty to respect the natural world and teach others to, as well. All of our courses teach and practice Leave No Trace® principles.
- Basic Camping Skills: Mastering these essential skills will prove valuable, whether you are pitching a tent in gale force winds or melting snow for drinking water.
- Equipment/Clothing Selection and Use: You’ll learn to choose the right gear for the correct application, whether enjoying a sunny afternoon on a snow slope or trekking through a temperate rainforest.
- Navigation: Learn how to take a bearing, read a topographical map, triangulate your position, or navigate in unfavorable conditions.
SEA KAYAKING: Paddle along the Lynn Canal, the deepest and longest fjord in North America! Our guides will teach you basic paddling techniques to keep you boating safely. We may see humpback whales, orcas, Dall porpoises, sea otters, eagles and brown bears along the way!
RAFTING: After donning the appropriate gear, we will raft down exciting class III – IV rapids on the Blanchard and Tatshenshini Rivers in Canada’s Yukon Territory. Learn basic hydrology, water navigation, and water-based rescue skills.
ALPINE BACKPACKING: Hike above tree line to a panorama of snow-capped mountains, deep blue ocean, and beautiful braided rivers. We will camp in pristine wilderness and learn to navigate in high-alpine rock, sprawling meadows, and alongside glaciers.
ROCK CLIMBING: Fun, safe, and challenging rock climbing on the granite cliffs near historic Skagway, Alaska.
Experience Level: No previous experience is necessary for this course. However, with a desire to learn and an enthusiasm for adventure, you’ll develop the skills necessary for a lifetime of wilderness exploration.