It’s time to make your own adventure. Outward Bound’s Classic expeditions for middle and high school students are built with you in mind. Make new friends, sleep under the stars, and learn skills like backcountry navigation and how to cook a delicious meal no matter where you are. You’ve got this! Whether you’re in a raft or on a mountainside, you’ll learn what you’re made of – and you’ll see first-hand how far teamwork can take you. Join us for an unforgettable challenge and discover a whole new way to get outside.
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 learn how to hike effectively and efficiently, as well as how to set up and manage trail campsites each night. As the team overcomes numerous expedition challenges, they develop a greater belief in themselves and trust in one another. Successful completion of this course requires more than the mastery of technical skills.
During the backpacking component of this expedition, students take a break from hiking and spend an afternoon rock climbing. This challenging activity pushes students out of their comfort zones and helps develop trust among course members. Students rely on one another for support and encouragement to reach the top of the cliff faces.
A little more than halfway through their expedition, students participate in a reflection period called Solo. Students are assigned individual campsites, within a designated area, and are provided with all necessary gear, food, water and skills to enjoy this time alone. Although secluded, Solo-sites are within hearing distance of other group members and Instructors for safety. Students are made aware of their Instructors’ Solo site should they need to contact them for any reason, and Instructors monitor students closely during this experience. Solo is a great opportunity for students to relax, recharge and reflect on their experience.
Service projects are often integrated into Outward Bound expeditions through coordination with land managers, conservation groups, government agencies or social service agencies. While on expedition, students are encouraged to practice service to the environment and their team by sharing responsibilities and following Recreate Responsibly ethics. Outward Bound expeditions are designed to cultivate a service-ethic and, thereby, inspire students to return home as agents of change in their communities.
Helping students and their families see positive development in character skills is a key component of Outward Bound courses. After completing the course, students will receive a written narrative from their instructor that highlights how the student engaged in the course, what strengths were observed, and any recommendations for further development.
Appalachian Trail (MD / PA)
The Appalachian Trail in Maryland follows a 41-mile route along the backbone of South Mountain, a north-south ridge that extends from Pennsylvania to the Potomac River. The AT varies in elevation across the state from 230’ to 1860’ and extends to the north into Southern Pennsylvania’s Michaux State Forest where Outward Bound students in this area will rock climb at one of three sites: Annapolis Rocks, Shaffer Rocks or Pole Steeple in the nearby Pine Grove Furnace State Park. These regions are the ancestral lands of the Massawomeck and Piscataway nations.
Dolly Sods Wilderness (WV)
The 17,371 acre Dolly Sods Wilderness in the Monongahela National Forest is part of the National Wilderness Preservation System. It is located in Grant, Randolph and Tucker Counties, West Virginia. The Dolly Sods Wilderness contains much of the Red Creek drainage and contains bog and heath eco-types, more commonly typical to southern Canada. Elevations range from 2,500 to over 4,700 feet. These regions are the ancestral lands of the Massawomeck nation.