COURSE OVERVIEW

Course Number

NEAK-022

Date

March 21, 2020 - March 26, 2020

Ten Thousand Island Sea Kayaking

This six-day sea kayaking expedition takes students through a maze of lush mangrove tunnels in a land of contrast: between tropic and semi-tropic, land and sea, and salt and fresh water. Participants will work together as they learn to read tide charts and maps, explore fragile and unique ecosystems, cook and set-up camp on white sandy beaches under the stars and paddle to new areas each day within the Ten Thousand Islands in Southern Florida.

Location

TEN THOUSAND ISLANDS, FL

Participants will paddle through lush mangrove tunnels in a land of contrast: between tropic and semi-tropic, land and sea, and salt and fresh water as they learn to work together to read tide charts, explore unique ecosystems, cook and set-up camp on white sandy beaches under the stars and paddle to new areas each day. Participants will also learn about what makes the Ten Thousand Islands famous worldwide, the environmental value the area adds, and how we can better take care of it. <Click to learn more about this course area.>

Activities

SEA KAYAKING

You can expect to spend a good deal of time each day in kayaks. We use both single and tandem kayaks. Each student will have an opportunity to spend time in both vessels. Depending on the wind and weather, the level of difficulty will most likely vary day to day. You and your crewmates will practice:

  • marine expedition risk assessment and management.
  • marine route planning and navigation.
  • paddle strokes and techniques for kayak propulsion and steering.
  • kayak-based assisted rescues and self-rescues.
  • sea kayak expedition equipment use, care and maintenance.

It will be necessary for you and your crewmates to perform a swim assessment; as well as a flip and swim assessment as practice for paddling and self-rescue. This activity is closely monitored by your instructors. It is critical for us to determine your paddling comfort as you and your crew explore the islands. Even if you are a non-swimmer or weak swimmer, you will still participate in this safety assessment. All students will be wearing personal floatation devices (PFDs) during the assessment. Personal floatation devices (PFDs) are required apparel anytime students are on the water.

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.

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 and may last up to 24 hours. 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.  

Physical Criteria for Sea Kayaking

If one or more of the following criteria apply to you, you may not comfortably fit in our sea kayaks. Please contact your Student Services Representative if your:

  • Height is 6 ft+
  • Weight is 275 lbs+
  • Shoe size is 12+.
Background Reading

Here are some books that we encourage you to read as you plan for your course:

  • The Outward Bound Wilderness First-Aid Handbook by Jeff Isaac
  • Leave No Trace: A Practical Guide to the New Wilderness Ethic by Annette McGivney
  • Liquid Land by Ted Levin
  • Ten Thousand Islands by Randy Wayne Wright
  • The Swamp by Michael Grunwald
  • Stolen Water by W. Hodding Carter
Tuition & Payment

For your convenience, you may now pay the balance of tuition using our Online Payment Option. 

Please have the student's name, course number, course start date and balance due when using this payment option.

In most cases, a $500 deposit has been paid when you applied. Please refer to your Registration Email to confirm your balance. If you are unsure of your balance due, please call 1-800-878-5258 or email studentservices@ncobs.org.

If your payment is not received by the due date listed in your Registration Email, you will risk losing your position on the course and your $500 deposit. Please review the Application & Cancelation Policies.

Shelter

While in the Ten Thousand Islands, you may be sleeping on the beach in tents with up to four other participants or on camping platforms in a personal bug tent. You will also be given a ground sheet and a foam sleeping pad to place under your sleeping bag.

Sample Course Itinerary
This is only a SAMPLE itinerary only. Adjustments will be made due to weather, programming area availability and group dynamics.
DAY 1: Course start, review equipment, rescue skills, and boat packing techniques
DAY 2: Begin kayak expedition: learn paddle strokes and boat control techniques
DAY 3: Paddling: Learn navigation skills, reading tidal charts and flow, and using a weather radio
DAY 4: Paddling: Everglades natural history lesson; Beach Campfire
DAY 5: Final Expedition Paddle; Course End Ceremony
DAY 6: Course End; Transportation to the Airport