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Outing Leadership Training Workshop - Norden, CA

May 31-June 2, 2013

Versailles State Park, Versailles, Indiana

Trip Number: 13991a
Price: $50
Capacity: 50
Staff: Mel Mac Innis, Sascha Paris



  • Friday, May 31. Check-in begins as early as 3 p.m and dinner is at 6 p.m. Opening program is at 7:30 p.m.


  • Sunday, June 2, with lunch (around 12:00 p.m.)


  • $50 -- Includes meals (Fri. dinner - Sun. lunch) and bunk-style cabin lodging for Fri-Sat. An optional Basic First Aid class (for 10) will be run on Sunday afternoon for an additional $15.
  • To learn how to register review the Registration Information below.

Workshop Goals

This workshop is designed to welcome new (and seasoned) Sierra Club leaders who want to connect people to the outdoors. This workshop will have a focus on recruiting and training new leaders for our Local, Inner City and National Outings programs:

  • Leading all types and lengths of outings: simple day-hikes, paddles or camping trips all the way to multi-day backpacking or paddling expeditions, lodge-based trekking, international travel and more.
  • Leading different groups of people: military and/or veteran community members, family and friends, youth and young adults, local community members, newcomers to the outdoors or even participants from around the world.
  • Leading within a specific program such as Local Outings (trips in an around your local community), Inner City Outings (outreach program to connect urban youth and adults to the outdoors) and National/International Outings (the multi-day trips as seen in Sierra magazine).

By the end of this workshop, you should be able to:

  • Plan safe and successful multi-day outings.
  • Enhance your competence and confidence in leading groups.
  • Enhance your competence and confidence in achieving good group behavior.
  • Inspire your participants to continue exploring and protecting the wild places that they visit.

This workshop is designed to focus more on the interpersonal skills associated with outdoor leadership. These "softer" skills are vital to being a successful leader. These skills include learning how to manage your group, how to create a positive group dynamic, and how to practice a safety-based planning and delivery of your outing. Every participant should come back "Safe, Happy, and Inspired."

  • Most of the sessions pertain to the interpersonal or "soft" skills of being a leader. These include Interpersonal Leadership Skills and Group Management.
  • Other topics include Mission Outdoors (our role within the Sierra Club to connect America with the outdoors), Trip Planning, Outings Nuts and Bolts, Leave No Trace and an Emergency Response Scenario.
  • You will be given a participant binder that contains detailed information relating to each session that is taught.
  • The agenda for the workshop is very full. We will have breaks between sessions and a longer break Saturday afternoon before dinner.
  • A few sessions will be conducted in a large group while most others will be conducted in more intimate, interactive small-groups.
  • This workshop will fulfill the Sierra Club's OLT 101 and OLT 201 requirements.
  • You will be asked to fill out an evaluation at the end of the training event.

Tentative Agenda

3:00-5:00 pm: Check In Begins
6:00 pm: Dinner & Ongoing Check In
7:30 pm: Welcome & Group Activity
9:00 pm: Social Time (optional)
7:30 am:  Breakfast
8:30 am:    Mission Outdoors - Connecting America with the Outdoors
  Trip Planning & Pre-Trip Screening
  Interpersonal Leadership Skills
12:30 pm:  Lunch
  Interpersonal Leadership Skills & Group Management
4:00 pm: Break
6:00 pm:  Dinner
7:30 pm:  Mission Outdoors (continued)
7:30 am: Breakfast
8:30 am: Pack & begin clean-up
9:00 am: Emergencies & Evacuations
10:30 am: Leave No Trace
11:15 am:   Outings Nuts and Bolts
12:00 pm: Workshop Close
1:00-5:00 pm: Optional Basic First Aid (4 hours).

Basic First Aid: We will be offering an optional four hour Basic First Aid course on Sunday afternoon. The first aid course fee is $15 and covers materials and certification card. The $15 registration fee will need to be paid at the Sunday first aid training. This four hour class will be taught by an American Safety and Health Institute instructor and at the end of the course students will receive an ASHI Basic First Aid card. This course will not renew a Wilderness First Aid or Wilderness First Responder certification.

This course fulfills the Sierra Club minimum first aid requirement. Make sure to check with your Outings Chair of your local group, chapter or National Outings subcommittee to make sure that they don't have a higher first aid requirement such as Wilderness First Aid.

Registration Information

Registration through the OATP is required. No drop-ins are allowed.

  • ONLINE with Credit Card- SIGN ME UP NOW! (credit card required)
    Online registration uses the National Outings reservation system (these outings require membership to attend). If you do not want to join the Sierra Club yet, simply follow these steps (or call 415-977-5522) to register:
    On step two, click "Membership Number Unknown" and enter your contact information. You will then be prompted to "Add Comments;" simply write "Attending training event."
    On step seven, please disregard the pending participant approval and the National Outings cancellation policy - you are confirmed for the training!
  • PHONE with Credit Card - Call 415-977-5522 (8:30-5, PST, M-F).
  • FAX with Credit Card - Fax Number: 415-977-5795.
  • MAIL with check, money order, or completed credit card information to:
    Sierra Club Outings - Training
    85 Second Street, Second Floor
    San Francisco, CA 94105

Cancellation Policy: In the event that you cannot attend, we can only give a refund if you cancel more than one week prior to the event (for trainings less then $100).

After You've Registered:

  • You will be sent a confirmation letter and workshop overview packet immediately after registering.
  • You will be asked to fill out an on-line questionnaire.
  • If you haven't already taken (or renewed) OLT 101, you should complete this prior to this training event. Your weekend training experience will benefit greatly from it, especially if you are a new leader. You can complete OLT 101 in several different ways:
    • Reading the Outings Leader Handbook (one will be sent to you upon workshop registration!)
    • Completing the OLT 101 web-based training. (If you don't already have a login/password, you can simply request one.)
  • Approximately ten days prior to the workshop you will be sent final details including driving directions, a ride share list, and a packing list.


Clair Tappaan is located at 19940 Donner Pass Rd, 7000 feet in California's Sierra Nevada. It's 45 minutes west of Reno and one and a half hours drive east of Sacramento just off of Interstate 80. From eastbound I-80, take the exit for Soda Springs/Norden and go 2.4 miles east on Donner Pass road. Look for our sign slightly up the hill on your left and the wide footpath leading up to the Lodge. Parking is available on either side of the road.

What To Bring

Be prepared for evening temperatures in the low 30s and days in the mid to high 50s, as well as probable snow and/or sun glare. Bunks are equipped with a mattress. The lodge can be drafty, so dress in layers for classroom sessions.

For staying at the lodge:

  • Appropriate clothing for the weather; please check current weather prior to the workshop. Raingear - one workshop session will be held outside regardless of weather.
  • Personal toiletries, towel, shower shoes and earplugs (if a light sleeper)
  • Watch or alarm clock for waking up and keeping to the schedule
  • Bedding (sleeping bag or comparable linens) and bathing suit if they wish to use the hot tub
  • Flashlight or headlamp.
  • Camp chair or lawn chair -- You'll be much more comfortable if you provide your own seating for the sessions. Otherwise expect to sit on standard "camp" chairs.
  • Cup or insulated mug for hot drinks and a water bottle

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