Spring Training

Spring Training – March 21 -31, 2018

The Spring Training is a signature experience offered by Outdoor Programs each year during Spring Break. All students are encouraged to attend!

The trip takes place in the Red River Gorge of Kentucky’s Daniel Boone National Forest.

On the trip you will learn foundational skills in hiking, backpacking, and rock climbing, including: 

  • Packing and dressing for 3-season backcountry trips
  • Route planning
  • Food planning
  • Water treatment 
  • Campsite selection
  • Backcountry cooking and nutrition
  • Food storage techniques and bear awareness
  • Map and compass navigation
  • Managing river crossings
  • Minimum-impact camping and travel practices (Leave No Trace)
  • Wilderness first aid skills
  • Basic rock climbing technique
  • How to teach knots and belaying for rock climbing
  • Leadership styles
  • Teaching, learning, and lesson planning
  • Group development
  • Predicting weather 
  • Risk management and responding to emergencies

The trip is open to anyone who is interested in gaining experience in the outdoors, and is an ideal introduction for those who may wish to gain skills for planning their own trips. It is a pre-requisite for any student who wishes to lead trips for Outdoor Programs, Kalamazoo Outing Club, and/or LandSea. 

By completing the trip you will receive two nationally-recognized trainings:

How do I register?

Priority registration occurs from weeks 1 – 6. All applicants will be evaluated after that date and will receive communication about whether they received a spot. LandSea trip leader applicants: you will automatically be registered for the trip as part of applying for the position and do not need to fill out any additional materials. 

Step 1: Complete the Spring Training Application which is used to take into account any prior outdoor experiences you may have and your goals for attending the training. No prior outdoor experience is necessary. The trip is geared toward a wide range of experience levels; whether it’s your first time camping outside or you’ve been backpacking for years. Completed applications should be sent to OutdoorPrograms@kzoo.edu by Friday of 6th week, Winter term. 

Step 2: Pay the $50 trip cost in person at the Outdoor Programs office in Harmon Hall (cash, check, or credit card). The trip cost will be returned to you if you do not receive a spot. You will receive a refund of the $50 trip cost if you lead 2 or more trip days for the Kalamazoo Outing Club during the Spring term immediately after Spring Training [2 trip days are equal to leading 2 separate day trips or 1 overnight trip]. 

Step 3: If you receive a spot you will be contacted with additional information about attending the pre-trip meeting and completing the required paperwork.

Required Paperwork

Medical History Form – Follow the link to your student account and click “Outdoor Programs Participant update” and make sure that all fields are correct and current.

Online Forms

Outdoor Programs Waiver

Muir Valley Waiver

Red River Gorge Climbers’ Coalition