Brian “Duck” Murphy
Position at NOLS: Assistant Manager, NOLS Rocky Mountain River Base in Vernal, Utah
NOLS Instructor since: 2000
Favorite NOLS Cookery recipe: Calzones p. 113
Brian “Duck” Murphy says that one of his most vivid memories from a NOLS course was the time that he encountered a 150-pound skunk at Rock Creek Ranch in Desolation Canyon on the Green River. “Whew! That was a close one,” he says.
A NOLS Instructor since 2000, Duck graduated from Radford University with a bachelor's degree in leisure services with a focus on outdoor recreation/education. Duck has worked as a whitewater rafting and kayak instructor in Colorado for five years, taught outdoor education and was the director of the Boulder Valley School District's Youth Empowerment and Self-Esteem program in Boulder, Colorado. He also worked as an Outdoor Recreation Specialist for the Department of the Army in Ft. Carson, Colorado for four years.
Duck says that his favorite classes to teach on NOLS courses are the ones on group dynamics and communication. “I feel that it is easy for students to see how they can apply these skills to their everyday life after NOLS,” he says. And he believes that the greatest lesson that a NOLS student comes away with is that “they can achieve great things if they set their heart and mind on a goal.” Duck, whose favorite thing to cook in the backcountry from the NOLS Cookery are the calzones, enjoys exercising, reading and traveling when he isn’t working NOLS courses.
Duck says that he works at NOLS because he loves the amount of camaraderie that he feels and the support that he receives as an instructor at the school. “The view from the office is pretty sweet too,” he says.