Leave your hiking boots and water bottles at home; trail shoes and hydration bladders are all the rage these days. We are proud to offer this cutting-edge course in the deserts of the Southwest.
Southwest Lightweight Backpacking is a chance to explore the backcountry with less gear and lighter packs.
Photo: Rainbow Weinstock
Your adventure starts in the equipment room as NOLS instructors inspect and weigh your lightweight gear and pull together a specialized ration for your expedition, helping you shave ounces for the lightest possible load without compromising functionality.
Then, for the next two weeks, you'll explore the Gila Wilderness, one of the Southwest’s most remote ranges, in a way you may never have thought possible: with only 25 pounds on your back. The only thing we won’t go light with on this course is our core curriculum.
You’ll still master the leadership and outdoor living skills that NOLS is built upon while learning the specific skills of lightweight backpacking. Expect to leave this course with the skills and background necessary to plan and execute your own future lightweight adventures.