NOLS Alumni Trip
Llama Packing and Fly Fishing in the
Wind River Mountains
July 27-August 1, 2014
Features of This Trip
• 6-days and 5-nights in the field
• Backcountry camping in the Winds
• Opportunities for exceptional photography
• Options for fishing, non-technical peak
ascents and day hiking
• Hiking at elevations of 7,000-10,500 ft
• Llama support
• Approximately 18-mile route
• Group size: up to 12 participants and 3
Minimum Age: 10 (accompanied by adult)
This six-day trip provides NOLS grads, families and guests an opportunity to re-connect with
NOLS in the high country of Wyoming’s stunning Wind River Mountains. The route offers a
moderate level of hiking with average hiking days around 3-miles. For those that want more
hiking, there will be options to do additional day-hiking with an instructor. The route offers flyfishing, non-technical peak ascents, photography and opportunities for learning about area
ecology. Llamas will lighten the group’s packs by carrying most team gear and food. As usual on a
NOLS course, participants carry personal clothing layers. Cooking will be done as instructor-led
teams in a group kitchen.
The Wind River Mountains offer a variety of terrain—wooded trails, mountain lakes, flowery
meadows and expansive granite slabs. Moose, elk, mule deer and coyotes live in the area and are
often seen by quiet watchers at dawn and dusk. Black bears frequent the range. The majority of
our hiking will be done on established trails with limited signage. In addition, weather this time of
year can be variable including hot sunny days or several days of wet, overcast weather.
Mosquitoes can be tenacious, especially early and late in the day. The route, team and topography
lends itself to many optional activities—spend time day hiking, fly-fishing, reading, taking
photographs, baking, or learning plant identification. Sharing NOLS backcountry activities with
friends and family creates fantastic lifetime memories. We will have layover days to focus on
This trip’s curriculum focuses on traditional NOLS skills and practical llama handling. The trip
format provides a chance for everyone to learn new skills and share in the education. Instructors
will present information and techniques for the group to comfortably travel and camp in the
wilderness. Additional topics like backcountry baking, fly-fishing, flower identification and
leadership can also be presented to those interested.
Alumni trips are more relaxed than typical NOLS courses; however, it is not a vacation or a guided
trip. Trips are self-reliant expeditions through remote wilderness areas where evacuation to
modern medical facilities can take several days. Throughout the trip, you live outdoors, prepare
your own meals, and care for yourself and the team. The expedition format emphasizes hands-on
learning and application of new skills in a variety of situations.
2014-afw-trip-description Planned Itinerary
There will be an orientation meeting in the Noble Hotel lobby at 6:00
p.m. We recommend you eat an early dinner before the meeting. The
instructors will brief the group on the expedition logistics, and then you
will check your gear, issue any additional gear needs, and pack your bags.
Lodging is provided at NOLS’ Noble Hotel (3rd & Lincoln Street).
Start the day with an early breakfast at the Noble Hotel and then take your
gear to the Rocky Mountain Branch (5th & Lincoln Street) where you can
complete last minute tasks and store your gear. We depart for the
mountains about 9 a.m.
Hike, fish, explore and enjoy each other’s company in the backcountry.
Pickup at the trailhead at 11:00 am. Return to Lander, clean and de-issue
gear, optional no-host dinner to celebrate the week.
Participants travel homeward.
There will be an orientation meeting at 6:00 p.m. on July 26 in the Noble Hotel lobby to meet
everyone, discuss the details of the trip, review individual and group gear, and get packed up. The
next morning starts with a hardy breakfast at the Noble and then you will move your luggage to
the Rocky Mountain Branch to take care of any last minute needs, and then store your gear. We
will depart for the field between 8:30 and 9:00 a.m. Please review your gear before you arrive and
make sure that it meets the requirements of the equipment list. If you have any questions regarding
gear, please contact us at 800.332.4280.
The hiking portion of the trip ends in the early afternoon on August 1. We will use the rest of the
afternoon to de-issue our gear, shower and formally end our trip. If the team is interested, we can
rendezvous for a no-host dinner in Lander that evening.
Getting to Lander:
Great Lakes Aviation provides service from
Denver, CO to Riverton Regional Airport,
which is 30 minutes from Lander. Shuttles are
available from Riverton to Lander.
Lander is a 4.5 hour drive from Salt Lake or
2.5 hours from Jackson Hole. Look up Lander
on Google maps for detailed directions.
Wind River Transit Authority (W.R.T.A.) provides shuttle service in southwestern Wyoming and
surrounding areas. Please make a reservation well in advance by calling 800.439.7118, or check their
website for more details: http://www.wrtabuslines.com/default.aspx. For after hours travel
problems, call 307.850.6051.
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Riverton, Jackson Hole, and Casper, Wyoming, as well as Salt Lake City, Utah are all viable
airports. Since the closest airport to Lander is 30-miles, you’ll need to utilize a rental car or regional
shuttle (Wind River Transit Authority: 800.439.7118). Check your maps for driving times and
Bunk-style lodging is available (included in the trip tuition) in NOLS’ Nobel Hotel at 3rd & Main
Street in Lander on July 26 and August 1. There are other lodging options in town as well which
include: free camping at the City Park and camping for a fee in Sinks Canyon State Park among
other hotels and bed and breakfast inns. For additional information regarding local
accommodations contact the Lander Chamber of Commerce at 800.433.0662 or visit their website at
www.landerchamber.org. The following hotels are a couple of additional options if you prefer.
150 E. Main Street
Inn at Lander, Best Western
260 Grand View Drive
(800) 528-1234 or (307) 332-284
Storage of Personal Belongings
Personal belongings and vehicles may be stored at the NOLS facility for the duration of your
course. Although we assume no responsibility, due care will be taken to prevent theft or damage of
your stored items. Valuables may be checked into our safe. Vehicles will be parked in an unfenced
parking lot with little or no security.
Fishing is often outstanding in the Wind Rivers. Your instructors will advise you on the
practicality of purchasing a license. If you want to fish, you can purchase a State of Wyoming
fishing license on the first day of your course. Non-resident fishing license fees range from $15 for
a non-resident annual youth (14-17 yrs.) license to $14/day for a non-resident adult (up to 6 days)
or $92 for an annual license.
If you are delayed
If you have any problems on arrival day, please leave a message at 307.335.2265, the front desk at
the NOLS Noble Hotel.
Registration and Payment
To reserve a space on this trip, please submit a non-refundable $200 deposit to the NOLS Alumni
Department. We take Mastercard or Visa via phone at 800.332.4280 or a check can be mailed to:
NOLS Alumni Department, 284 Lincoln Street, Lander, WY 82520. The remainder of the tuition and
all application forms are due 45-days before to the trip start date.
The price of the trip includes all meals starting with breakfast on July 27, through lunch on
August 1, all group equipment, instruction and shuttles to and from the trailhead.
Accommodations other than at the Noble Hotel the night before the trip and the last night of
the trip, meals not indicated, any personal equipment that is rented or purchased and any costs
incurred due to evacuations are the responsibility of trip participants.
If you have any questions about this trip, please contact the NOLS alumni office at 800.332.4280, or
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