Outward Bound Canada Discovery courses are designed to help you discover something new about yourself. Everyone takes away something inspiring and personal – whether it’s noticing a new talent or skill, finding a great friend, realizing your own strengths, or making peace with something you have been struggling with. In addition, our Discovery courses will give you leadership training and the confidence to achieve even more in your life at home. You will learn how to effectively work with a group, how to feel empowered in your interactions with others, how to be a fair and powerful leader, and how to approach uncertain or intense situations responsibly – whether the circumstances are physically, mentally, or emotionally difficult. In one word, we will teach you “resilience”, and you will return ready to take on whatever awaits you in your life – no matter how daunting it may have seemed before your course!
Your journey begins in the beautiful Comox Valley where you will meet your group and prepare for the expedition ahead. From there, you'll take to the water in the perfect vessel for exploring and discovering the coves, natural harbours, and islands in and around Clayoquot Sound - a sea kayak. Clayoquot Sound, declared by UNESCO a biosphere reserve, is a maze of small old-growth cedar covered islands and protected inlets, rocky reefs, sandy beaches, deep fjords and natural hot springs. You’ll travel in double or single sea kayaks learning and mastering many ocean travel skills: paddling techniques, ocean navigation using nautical charts and tide tables, and safety and rescue skills. In addition, you will take part in a private two-day surf camp on a remote beach, instructed by Catherine Bruhwiler, sponsored surfer and member of the world famous Tofino surfing family, the Bruhwilers. As part of the surf camp, you will be given individualized instruction with your own board, wetsuit and booties, brought in by water taxi.
No prior camping or kayaking experience is needed. You will become competent sea kayaker and camper on the course, learning many valuable wilderness skills including minimal impact camping, map and compass navigation, knots, emergency procedures for ocean travel and how to cook over a campfire. Course work for your high school credit will be done through these activities, group discussions and analysis, and daily journal reflections. This journey also includes a 48-hour solo experience where you will prove your skills while being supervised (from a distance!) by our experienced instructional team. Often described as the most transformative part of the experience, your solo will give you the chance to reflect on earlier conversations from the expedition, absorb important realizations about yourself, and leave behind anything that will no longer serve you going forward.
To learn how fit you need to be for an Outward Bound Canada course, click here. To learn more about our high school credit click here. This course qualifies as a Duke of Edinburgh's Award Bronze or Silver Adventurous Journey (including preliminary training, practice and qualifying journey) as well as the Gold Adventurous Journey, or Gold Residential Project. For more info visit the Duke of Ed website here.
THIS COURSE IS SUBJECT TO AN $95 APPLICATION FEE.
Outward Bound Canada is a not-for-profit, charitable, educational organization. Our goal is to increase Canadians’ ability to access Outward Bound Canada’s life-changing programs. In order to support this goal, Outward Bound Canada offers a bursary program designed for families in need of financial assistance. If you require funding support, please visit our Fund Your Adventure page, or click the button below to learn more.
Alternately, if you would like to fundraise for your course on your own, our Fundraising Kit provides helpful resources and tips to help you get started and achieve success.
DID YOU KNOW? The tuition you pay when registering for an Outward Bound Canada course helps support our charitable programs. While every little bit helps, these programs rely on the generous support of individual donors, corporations and foundations. If you would be interested in making an additional donation to support Outward Bound Canada, please click here.