KEYNOTE: Stupidity Explored – Why Do Some People Get Hurt in the Outdoors? (Lester Zook) We have all seen the YouTube videos of some hero jumping his bike off the roof and face-planting in the garden below, or the box truck that piles up against the highway overpass. And we frequently see examples of stupid decision-making in the outdoor realm as well. “Idiots,” we think. But what really is stupidity? We know it was stupid AFTER we see how it turns out. But what was going through this person’s mind BEFORE they did something stupid? And if we knew this, could we maybe predict and prevent stupid? This presentation will attempt to unpack several ways of understanding what stupidity means, and how we might be able to detect stupidity before it all hits the fan. Ultimately, the goal is to foster safer and happier outdoor experiences for leaders, clients, teachers, students, and friends. Climbing Anchors and Evaluation Principles (Sally Ontiveros): Learn how to construct pre-equalized and self-equalizing anchors on bolts and negotiate the cliff edge from an AMGA Certified SPI. Participants will see a variety of riggings with slings and cord as well have the opportunity to practice for themselves. Beyond learning the systems, anchor evaluation will also be covered. (Attendance limited to 8; an overflow session will be offered if there is interest)
You and Basic Woodworking Tools Can Add Elegant Finishing Touches to Any Outdoor Program Site (Daniel Nellis): This workshop will present a lifelong adventure practitioner’s ideas for building elegance into all parts of a program area while spending as little money as possible. If you are creative and have or can learn woodworking skills, you can do this. We will address recycling, volunteer labor, design, and many ideas that have worked for Dan.
The Secondary Survey: Getting to the Root of the Problem (Sam Albert, Stephanie Shickel, and Katelyn Sargeant): This workshop will sharpen the skills of people with WFA and WFR. The session will also expose non-certified instructors to the world of wilderness medicine.
Ambushed by Myself: Growing Beyond Several Unexpected Leadership Pitfalls (Lester Zook): The human element as a causative agent in adventure incidents is well documented. Here, we turn the spotlight on the interior of the leader. Factors such as routine, competence, and social anxiety can nudge leaders toward mindlessness and eventually disaster. This workshop will use case storytelling and personal sharing to help us identify dangerous internal attitudes and predispositions, and locate administrative and programmatic vulnerabilities to leadership error. The goal is to foster humility and honesty as professional traits that allow us to learn from our past, and ultimately enable us to provide safe experience for friends and clients in the backcountry.
I’ll be Brief (Adrienne Phelps): This session will address different debriefing approaches and challenges. Participants should come prepared to share their approaches as together, we deepen each other’s tool boxes for processing.
Boo Boos and Bug Bites -- Managing Child Patients in the Backcountry (Ethan Zook): Wilderness medical courses such as WFA and WFR do a great job of preparing outdoor trip leaders to manage a wide variety of medical and traumatic complaints. However, these courses typically deal with adult patients, and many trip leaders find themselves leading trips with child participants. Children are not "just small adults," and have psychological and physical differences that must be taken into consideration when providing medical care. Additionally, maintaining health and safety amongst a group of children in the backcountry is different than in a group of adults. Child-specific health and safety factors must influence trip factors, such as route selection, first aid kit contents, and pre-trip communication with parents.
A Quest for Fire (Michael White): Primitive fire making can be very intimidating skill, but it doesn't have to be. Learn how you can bust a fire with a bow drill and even simplify the process so that it can be used as an exciting team building exercise or powerful activity for promoting self-efficacy and personal growth.
Woman in the Wild: An Account of a SOLO Experience with John Muir (Rena Koesler): this is a presentation about a wilderness solo experience Rena had along the John Muir Trail in California. She will talk about the value of solo experiences, specifically for women, and how these kinds of experiences can be the fuel that feeds your skills, judgement/decision-making, and leadership development.
How to Land Your Outdoor Dream Job! (Mark Wagstaff): Are you fully aware of the commitment and strategies needed to land that ideal outdoor job? This workshop combines current outdoor career research and proven strategies to land that position. Come to this session prepared to discuss ePortfolios, trip resumes, career expectations, and professional resumes. The goal of this workshop is to help you be more effective in building your career path. Epinephrine: What, Why, When, Where, Who, and How? (Lance Elzie): Epinephrine auto injectors have received a lot of attention in the past few months. It is time to get acquainted, or reacquainted with epinephrine. This presentation is a broad overview of epinephrine in the context of adventure education.
Planning Committee: Lucia Anderson (VCU), Charlie Biesecker (Roanoke Parks and Rec.), Dan Caston (Ferrum College), Barry Lenoir (Camp Bethel), Katherine Macklin (Sweetbriar College), Lester Zook (Horizons Consulting)