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Discover why car camping with two young children was harder than Alyssa Walker’s NOLS course, read about self-discovery on a semester in Baja, and learn how to make gado-gado spaghetti in the backcountry. 

Why Car Camping with Kids Was Harder Than My NOLS Course

two children in camp with tarp strung up between trees

Photo by Alyssa Walker

“I packed, carried, unpacked, repacked, organized, reorganized, divided and subdivided evenly and equitably, and otherwise humped every piece of gear, every roasted marshmallow, every word of dissent, every decision my husband and I made on that trip for the duration of nine days repeatedly, all because I wanted my children to love camping. And because we worked as hard as we did, they do.”—Alyssa Walker, NOLS Alaska ’05

Go to Read Alyssa's Story

How I Found My Grit on a Semester in Baja

two NOLS participants in a double kayak paddling on calm water in Baja California

Photo courtesy of Tucker Cunningham

NOLS grad Tucker Cunningham reflects on his semester in Baja: “I can honestly say that my NOLS course changed my life and turned me into the person who I am today. I was never a backpacker, sailor, or sea kayaker, but I turned into all of those things...NOLS not only created a memorable experience for me, but also a chance for me to look at the big picture.”

Go to Read Tucker's Story

Watch: Gado-Gado Spaghetti in the Backcountry

gado gado spaghetti in the backcountry recipe video with noodles in the background

This classic noodle dish with peanut sauce is a treat at the end of a long day of adventuring! Watch how to make this tasty backcountry meal and check out the recipe on our blog.

Go to Watch

Spring Semester in the Rockies

NOLS student whitewater canoes rapids on the Yampa RiverPhoto by David Morgan

From backcountry skiing in Wyoming to whitewater paddling in Utah, you’ll learn new outdoor skills and grow as a leader on this extended backcountry expedition.

Go to Explore the Rockies This Spring

Get Academic Credit for Your NOLS Course

NOLS students on a winter course test snow and analyze snowpack to determine avalanche risk on a slopePhoto by Jared Steinman

You can earn high school or college credit for most NOLS courses, including wilderness medicine certifications, expeditions, and risk management trainings.

Go to How to Get Academic Credit


Go Backcountry Skiing This Winter

NOLS student backcountry skis uphill toward snow-laden trees in the Idaho mountainsPhoto by Brad Christensen

Learn the art of winter camping and enjoy the rare treat of skiing fresh powder in the backcountry this winter.

Go to Learn to Backcountry Ski

Rock Climbing in the Southwest

NOLS student multi-pitch rock climbing at Arizona's Cochise Stronghold
Photo by Kyle Duba

No matter your level of experience, you’ll push yourself to new heights while climbing in the beautiful desert environment of Arizona’s Cochise Stronghold.

Go to Go Rock Climbing in the Southwest