Thank you for considering hanging OUT with OUT There Adventures! We know that there are many questions and concerns that can arise in regards to wilderness travel and this document is designed to answer some of these basic questions. You are also encouraged to contact OTA directly with any additional questions or concerns by any of the means found on the Contact page.
Q: I have never been kayaking/hiking before. Is that a problem?
A: Safety is OTA's top priority on any trip. All program instructors possess industry standard certifications for each activity. Prior to any trip departure, all participants will be trained in the basic gear utilization and navigation necessary for their trip. During the water-based programs, participants will never be allowed on the water without an instructor and will never travel more than a half of a mile away from shore (except during crossings). In all programs participants will never be out of earshot of an instructor.
Q: Do I have to sleep on the ground?
A: Yes and no. Standard sleeping arrangements for an OTA trip include sleeping in tents or under a tarp on sleeping pads (which are actually quite comfy!). If a participant has a trip appropriate hammock setup they may choose to bring it and utilize it for sleeping. Hammock setups must be approved by an instructor prior to trip departure.
Q: Do I have to cook and clean?
A: Yes. Cooking well is an essential part of the success of any wilderness trip. While you are not expected to come to a trip with the skills of a five star chef, you are expected to take initiative in learning how to safely and intelligently cook in the wilderness. Program instructors will offer guidance and participants will rotate through jobs that include overseeing the meal preparation and clean up.
Q: Will it be cold and will it rain?
A: Maybe, but that's ok! OTA will ensure that all program participants have the necessary gear to keep them as comfortable as possible while out on trip. If you do get cold or remain wet for a long period of time, please communicate this with your instructors. Participants should expect a standard temperature and precipitation amount for the region and season within which they are traveling.
Q: What happens if I want to leave early?
A: Like we stated earlier, safety is the top priority on any trip and this includes emotional and social safety. All OTA instructors possess necessary youth work skills and will work with the participant towards an outcome that is best for the participant and the trip. If a participant must leave the trip early, OTA will follow its Emergency Action Plan. This includes contacting the participant's emergency contact and arranging for a pick up of the participant (and if necessary one instructor) and transport them to the best location to meet the emergency contact.
Q: What happens if there is an emergency?
A: All OTA instructors are Wilderness First Responders and trained to handle various medical emergencies. OTA instructors will again follow their Emergency Action Plan, and this includes calling either the U.S. Coast Guard or National Parks Service.