Wilderness Medicine Intensive Skills CME

7 Days from From $1595

The Wilderness Medicine Intensive Skills Course is an exciting and unique CME course in the Mt. Shasta / Marble Mountains Wilderness area of Northern California.

This course is designed for health care providers who want to learn wilderness emergency medicine skills, outdoor survival in an outdoor setting.

Whitewater Rafting – Mt. Shasta – Marble Mountains – Klamath River

The Wilderness Medicine Intensive Skills Course in Northern California mixes spectacular scenery, thrilling whitewater and an ascent of one of the U.S.’s most iconic mountain peaks with expert medical and survival skills training.

This CME course is designed for physicians, nurses and other health care providers who want to learn practical wilderness emergency medicine skills, outdoor survival, and wilderness travel skills in an outdoor setting but spouses, partners and friends are welcome to join us on this enlightening outdoor adventure!

During four days paddling on Northern California’s Klamath, Salmon and Scott Rivers – and an optional ascent of Mt. Shasta – participants will learn practical wilderness medical skills, including:

  • Hypothermia, frostbite and altitude illness
  • Improvised immobilization and splinting techniques
  • Backcountry evacuation/improvised carries and litters
  • Patient assessment in wilderness setting
  • Basic wilderness rescue
  • Field management of wounds, fractures, dislocations, sprains, and other common problems.

The course will also teach hands-on wilderness travel skills including:

  • Wilderness survival (half-day course)
  • Orienteering (including map/compass, GPS)
  • Whitewater raft skills
  • Swift-water crossing techniques
  • Basic climbing skills including use of crampons, ice axe (including self-arrest)
  • Route-finding
  • Avalanche safety and basic rescue.


Howard Donner, MD (Faculty Leader) – Telluride, Colorado; NASA Consultant; expedition physician – Kangchenjunga (28,000 feet.); Himalayan Rescue Assn. Physician; Operation Everest II; featured on several NOVA TV documentaries; coauthor of A Field Guide to Wilderness Medicine.Dr. Howard Donner is renowned as one of the world’s most experienced expedition physicians. He is a also a highly acclaimed speaker on Wilderness Medicine. Dr. Donner’s extensive experience in wilderness and expedition medicine includes:

  • Three climbing seasons he spent as a rescue doctor on Mt. McKinley in Alaska for the National Park Service at the 14,000 foot medical / rescue station.
  • Numerous medical projects in the Himalayas including two seasons as a staff physician for the Himalayan Rescue Association.
  • Expedition physician for the first American ascent of Kangchenjunga, the world’s third highest peak (28,000 feet).
  • Olympic physician for the United States White Water Team in Atlanta in 1996.
  • Dr. Donner’s extraordinary background in expedition medicine was the basis for 5 years of service as a medical operations consultant for NASA, where he was involved in the design of the Shuttle and International Space Station medical systems.
  • Co-author of The Field Guide to Wilderness Medicine (3rd edition was published in August of 2008).

Other Wilderness Medicine Faculty include:

Sheryl Olson, RN – Colorado Springs; Flight Nurse; Outdoor Survival and Navigation Instructor. Avid backcountry skier and backpacker.

Gene Allred, MD – Ashland, Oregon; Emergency Physician; whitewater guide for over 20 years; swift water rescue instructor; avid backpacker, canyoneering, backcountry skier, scuba diver, sea kayaker. Trekked on six continents.

Lars Alvarez – Member of several US and World Championship Whitewater Raft teams; co-owner of Bio Bio Expeditions Worldwide – which conducts trips on some of the most challenging and exotic rivers on the planet.

Ryan Allred – (“Big Ry”) Captain of US National Championship Raft team (2000). World-class kayaker and kayak instructor. Fishing guide. Co-Owner Adventure Whitewater (raft guide service).

Kyle Allred – (nickname “Rowdy”) Professional International Guide (Africa, Europe, South America). Participant in finals of US National Whitewater Raft Championships (2003). Co – owner Adventure Whitewater (raft guide service).

Day 1
Raft Klamath: Ferry Point – Paradise Point

Lectures: Hypothermia (Donner); Whitewater Medicine (Allred); Useful ropes and knots (Olson)

Day 2
Raft Clear Creek (if adequate flow)…or Klamath (Indian Cr. – Wingate)

Lectures: Snakebite (Allred); Altitude Illness (Donner); Navigation workshop (part I)

Day 3
Raft Salmon River (Butler to Oak Bottom)

Lectures: Wilderness Infectious Diseases (Donner); Planning a Wilderness Medical Kit (Donner); Splinting of common ortho injuries (Olson); soft tissue injuries (Donner)

Day 4
Survival “Olympics” – Short Hike to Clear Creek Swimming “Hole”

Lectures (am): Navigation (part II) (Olsen); Survival kit / skills (Olson / Allred); Frostbite (Donner)

Day 5
Raft Scott River / move camp to Whitewater Ranch

Lectures / skills – shallow water crossing and zip line (Allred); Wilderness Eye / ENT problems (Donner);Lightning injuries (Olson)

Day 6
Practical Skill Workshops at WW Ranch
GPS and compass navigation; practical medical skills – including “team” scenarios

Workshops in am: Wilderness Improvisation (Donner); GPS Navigation (Olson)

Day 7
All-day basic mountaineering skills course by SWS Mountain Guides.

Group leaves in early morning for Mt. Shasta.
Meet at 10:00 am at SWS Mountain Guides Office in Mt. Shasta at: 201 East Lake St., Mount Shasta, CA 96067 Telephone: 530-925-0825 or 888-797-6867

Day 8-9
Guided by SWS Mountain Guides

Departure Dates:

2019 Dates
June 8th – 14th
Optional Mt. Shasta climb: June 15th-16th

Trip Length: 7 Days
Trip Price:

$1,595 for initial registrant

Guests welcome: Over 18 – $1,375, Ages 13-18 – $995

Post-trip activities outfitted by Sierra Wilderness Seminars:
Optional one-day “snow school” on Friday*: $115
Optional Mount Shasta Climb: $610

*participation is required for the climb and included in the climb pricing

CME credits (additional cost): $695

Includes all meals and beverages, deluxe outdoor camping site and facilities, professionally outfitted whitewater rafting and professional mountaineering instruction by SWS Mountain Guides; optional Friday activity: Ice Ax and snow Clinic at Mt. Shasta

Deposit: $600.00

6 reviews for Wilderness Medicine Intensive Skills CME

  1. Best CME ever! This will be a trip we will remember forever! Awesome itinerary! Wonderful faculty-tops in knowledge! I learned many new things from all of the faculty.

  2. Awesome, action-packed days full of all the stuff I was hoping to do and learn! I wouldn’t change a thing…World class faculty and it shows…obviously experienced with everything they are teaching…practical, ‘real-world’ approach…fun and excellent communicators. Each lecture / teaching session was great. Competent, safe, knowledgeable guides that are a lot of fun!

  3. A wilderness adventure with top-notch staff providing excellent food, fun and facts. Beautiful scenery and outstanding faculty make this a must do for every outdoor enthusiast and medical types alike.

  4. The most informative, hands-on, interesting CME I have ever attended….Instructors well-versed and entertaining…guides very safety oriented and helpful…food was amazing! This was the best CME I have attended in my 13 years of practice and I look forward to attending again…

  5. This is a Great course…I don’t know of any other course that combines so much quality wilderness medicine education with so much fun…I’d like to come back every year to be on the faculty…

  6. Cannot say enough good about this course! Excellent in every way! Fabulous course content. Perfect location! Will highly recommend this course to others!

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