Rocky Mountain Lightweight Backpacking - Prime


  • Average pack weight: 25-30 lbs. (includes food, water, fuel, group and personal gear)
  • Travel 80 to 100 miles at elevations between 8,000 to 12,000 feet
  • Hike surrounded by towering peaks, glistening alpine lakes, wildflowers, and perennial snow
  • Learn to stay warm and dry with minimal equipment
  • Master one-pot cooking over an alcohol-fueled stove
Let us help you lighten your load. The first lightweight backpacking course in the world of outdoor education started at NOLS in 2005. Utilizing cutting-edge equipment, we will help you shave ounces for this lightweight backcountry adventure.

Outfitted with 25- to 30-pound packs (10-15 pounds without food and fuel), you and your coursemates will be off to one of Wyoming's most remote and wild ranges--such as the Wind Rivers, the Big Horns, the Absarokas, or the Beartooths--to enjoy the wilderness as you never thought imaginable, without the burden of a heavy load. Plan to learn innovative lightweight techniques like cooking one-pot meals and staying warm and dry with minimal gear while honing traditional backpacking skills like navigation and Leave No Trace.

After two weeks, you'll have the knowledge and skills to plan and execute your own lightweight adventures. How light can you go?


Location NOLS Rocky Mountain
Tuition $3,750 Learn about Financial Aid
Equipment Deposit $150
Minimum Age 23
Duration 14 Days
Type Prime - Adult Courses
Start/End Lander, Wyoming
Fly in/out Casper, Wyoming
College Credit
  • 2 Credit Hours
  • 2 Hours Environmental Studies
Learn about College Credit

“This course provided communication and physical challenges. Meeting these challenges was extremely empowering particularly as they related to influencing the group.”

-Jill B.