COURSE OVERVIEW

The Exploris School

North Carolina Mountains Backpacking and Rock Climbing / April 18-22, 2022

Click here to see photos from the 2019 Exploris School Outward Bound course. 

Activities

BACKPACKING

During your course, you will be spending the majority of your time backpacking. During this component, you learn safety precautions for backcountry foot travel, how to find campsites, how to navigate terrain as well as how to use a map and compass. Equally important will be time spent learning conflict resolution, communication styles, leadership and team building. After practicing these skills, your instructors will step back and let you and your crew work together to collectively navigate through the wilderness.

Since your crew’s navigation depends on individual and group decision making, your crew could make some navigational errors along the way. You will be carrying a backpack that may weigh 50+ pounds. The weight is manageable, as the packs (when fitted correctly) will rest on your hips not on your back or shoulders. You may end up hiking long hours to reach your destination. You may expedition three miles uphill one day and eight miles over varied terrain the next day. Therefore, we want to remind you that physical preparation is very important!

ROCK CLIMBING/RAPPELLING/HIGH ROPES COURSE

Weather permitting, you may spend a day rock climbing or rappelling or on our high ropes course. With a focus on the practice of safety, your lessons will start with the basics, such as working with ropes and learning to tie knots.

  • Rock Climbing: Begin with bouldering and progress to a top-rope climb. On a top-rope climb, you will be anchored with a safety rope at the top of the climb and climb toward that anchor.
  • Rappelling: A means of controlled descent to lower yourself down a cliff, rock face or some other high location.
  • High Ropes Course: Your crew may have an opportunity to experience a high ropes course. A high ropes course is an obstacle course constructed with ropes and built high off the ground.

SERVICE

Service will be a continuous theme throughout your course. The ethic of service is practiced through Leave No Trace camping techniques, reaching out with compassion to your fellow crewmates and working together as a team to overcome the challenges of Outward Bound.

SOLO

Solo typically occurs more than halfway through your course. Your instructors will assign each participant an individual campsite within a designated area. Your instructors will teach you procedures to follow during solo and monitor you during this experience. You will know the location of your instructors’ campsite should you need to contact them; otherwise it is essential that you remain in your designated area. If your course has an overnight solo you will have your clothing, food and water.  In addition, you will have Outward Bound issued gear: including rain gear, shelter, sleeping bag, compass and whistle. Due to a decreased need for caloric intake, you will have less food available than you would have during your other course activities. Solo is a not a “survival test.” You will not be physically active during solo, as solo is a time for rest, recharge and reflection. Solo is also a good time to write in the journals we provide. If you have questions or concerns, please discuss with your Student Services Representative or your instructors.  

FINAL CHALLENGE EVENT
At the end of your course, you may participate in a final challenge event. This is an opportunity to see how
much your skills have improved since you began your course.