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NRRT 351 - Wilderness Instructors

  • 3 credits

Ever considered being an instructor or guide in the outdoor recreation industry? Learn the technical and interpersonal skills necessary to instruct students in the backcountry and various outdoor recreation activities.

This hands-on course will give you the tools to instruct in mountain environments. Topics include avalanche safety, backcountry ski/snow travel, river rescue techniques, river rescue techniques,and how to teach in the outdoors.

Important Information

Field trip dates are:

  • Backcountry Skiing/Avalanche Awareness: February 24-25
  • Whitewater Rescue: April 27-28


Ethan Billingsley
Ethan Billingsley

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Ethan Billingsley is an alumnus of Warner College – earning his B.S. in Natural Resource Recreation and Tourism and his M.S. in Human Dimensions of Natural Resources. He served as director of undergraduate programs in the college from 2008-2018. Additionally, he is an instructor for the Adventure Tourism graduate certificate program in HDNR.
Prior to joining CSU, Ethan worked as both an educator and guide in various capacities. He has led single and multi-day whitewater rafting trips for the last 20 years and is currently a certified raft guide in the state of Colorado. He has climbed all 58 of the Colorado’s 14,000ft mountains and led many CSU groups to those summits as well. He also spent 7 summers working in summer camps where he gained considerable experience in group dynamics and leadership. Additional experience has included work as a rock-climbing instructor, backpacking guide, and sea-kayaking naturalist. Ethan loves learning about the ecology of an area as much as he likes adventuring in it. In his free time, Ethan loves spending as much time as he can with his wife and two sons in the outdoors.

Andrew Sampson
Andrew Sampson

Andrew Sampson is an alumnus of the Warner College, earning degrees in both Ecosystem Science and Sustainability as well as Geography. In addition, he is currently a student of Colorado Mountain College studying Avalanche Science to help further his outdoor education.

Professionally, Andrew has served as an outdoor instructor for the CSU Outdoor program and as a teaching assistant for multiple outdoor leadership classes at CSU. He has also worked for multiple seasons in the skiing industry as a ski technician at Ski Cooper outside of Leadville.

Andrew's personal outdoor pursuits include summits of all of Colorado's publicly accessed 14ers, a thru hike of the Colorado Trail, a successful self-lead summit of Mt Rainier, summits of Cayambe and Chimborazo in Ecuador, and 3 self-lead trips to Denali including a successful summit. He loves spending his time outside backcountry skiing, rock climbing, ice climbing, backpacking, trail running, alpine scrambling, and mountain biking.