Backcountry Travel & Leadership

If you’re an outdoor enthusiast interested in developing your outdoor leadership skills, this course is for you. During this multi-day, professionally instructed and administered course, participants will embark on an extended backcountry trip where they will learn the skills necessary to successfully lead outdoor activities in backpacking and kayaking.

Course dates: Monday, May 8 - Thursday, May 18, 2017

  • Course encompasses:
    • One day of Leadership/Group Development Theory on Campus
    • Three days of Backpacking in the Blue Mountains
    • Five days of Kayak Touring in Northern Idaho
    • One day Stand Up Paddleboard instruction and orientation to local programming site on Snake River
  • Certifications granted upon completion of course
    • Leave No Trace Trainer
    • ACA Sea Kayak Level 2 Paddler

Application process:

Direct emails to:

Deadline: Sunday, April 9th (priority), rolling admissions/space permitting thereafter

Due to the historic high popularity of this course, and the fact that this course serves a major role in recruitment for UREC Adventure Facilitators, we are encouraging those with outdoor experience, a desire to lead groups in the outdoors, and motivation for professional development to register for this course. If you are interested in working for UREC as an Adventure Facilitator, or wanting the experience for professional/leadership development, please submit a resume, trip log/outline of outdoor experience, and cover letter to the contact provided above. We will then review application material and send the registration link to those who are selected.

* To be hired as an Adventure Facilitator, applicants must have a valid drivers licence without any of the following on their driving record in the past three years.

  • Suspension/revocation of license
  • Negligent or reckless driving conviction
  • conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol or other substance
  • Any vehicle-related felony conviction
  • Criminal determination as "at fault" in an accident

Registration Cost:  

*Candidates for the Adventure Facilitator position who do not currently possess a Wilderness First Aid (WFA) are expected to register for the WFA course hosted by UREC upon registration to Backcountry Travel and Leadership.

WSU Student/UREC Member price: $260

  • Included in the registration link will be a coupon for 80% off of the $200 WFA registration fee.
  • Backcountry Travel and Leadership + WFA = $300

Non-member: $550

  • Included in the registration link will be a coupon for 80% off of the $250 WFA registration fee.
  • Backcountry Travel and Leadership + WFA = $600

Trip cost includes: Backpacking, kayaking, SUP, camping equipment, transportation, and instruction (food/clothing NOT included).

Cancellation Policy:

In order to minimize our environmental impact, maintain facilitator-to-participant ratios, meet permit criteria, and transportation logistics, ORC programs are designed for small groups (typically up to six participants with two facilitators). Late cancellations can seriously impact our ability to accommodate others and recover costs.

  • Cancellations made up until two weeks prior to the registration deadline will receive a full refund.
  • Cancellations made within two weeks prior to the registration deadline receive 50% refund.
  • Sorry, no refunds are given past the registration deadline.