2017/18 PROGRAM DATE: December 15-31, 2017


Program Description: During this backcountry living skills adventure, you will learn about outdoor leadership, outdoor living skills, sustainable development, and the incredible ecosystems and culture of the AysÚn region of Patagonian Chile. You will be challenged to develop and refine your leadership vision and skills as you plan and carry out a kayaking expedition through glacier fed lakes, and a backcountry expedition through both private and national reserves. You will learn proven methods for expedition planning and leadership and discover how personal and group decision-making strategies can contribute to social, environmental, and economic sustainability.

After you complete your expedition preparation, you will carry out your expeditions, in partnership with guides from Geo Sur Expeditions. Kayaking, fly fishing, and trekking will be the primary activities of this course. This trip will allow you to celebrate Christmas in a unique way, and also to bring in the New Year on the other side of the world! You’ll experience local culture and customs and learn about how people of the region are maintaining their heritage and preserving the beauty and pristine nature of their places – in a region they call “AysÚn – Reserve of Life”.

This course requires strenuous physical activity. The trip will involve backcountry hiking for approximately 30 miles with a backpack weighing somewhere between 25 and 40 pounds. The terrain is considered to be wilderness, with rough trails. Approximately 2/3 of the time, we will be sleeping on the ground in tents. The climate in Chile is temperate rainforest. We will experience a mixture of sun, rain, and maybe even snow, with the changes in temperature and weather conditions throughout our time in country. In order to participate, you must be willing to assume responsibility for the risks involved in the trip and be in physical shape to endure the conditions and activities included. You must obtain a doctor’s endorsement that you are prepared for the physical requirements of the course.


Program Tuition: TBA

  • Undergraduate/graduate academic credits awarded through West Virginia University
  • Lodging and all meals during scheduled in-country portion of the program
  • All adventure-based activities, including use of available equipment, such as backpacks and sleeping bags, through the Adventure West Virginia Program
  • All scheduled educational, adventure, and cultural activities and transportation in country
  • Travel insurance
  • Special course materials, including books, multi-media, on-line tools, and experiential fees.
  • Guide gratuity

Additional Costs:

  • International Airfare (Students are responsible for securing transportation to and from Balmaceda, Chile. Adventure WV will provide advising for travel arrangements).
  • You will need to plan for travel related expenses such as obtaining a passport and travel visa, personal gear, medical exams, immunizations, and food while traveling etc. You may need to purchase a fishing license depending on program itinerary.

Please contact Assistant Director Marion Holmes for more information:

Phone: 304.293.8503 email:

Patagonia 2015 Photos

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