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Wilderness First Aid for Paddlers Course

03/04/2023 - 03/05/2023

This two-day course immerses participants in basic wilderness medicine procedures, preparing individuals to take immediate action when an outdoor activity doesn’t go as planned and 911 responders are hours away. Time is split between interactive classroom sessions and hands-on field scenarios to prepare participants and help them quickly develop basic backcountry medical care skills. The course focus is on patient assessment, stabilization and emergency treatment of issues such as hypothermia and snakebites, as well as understanding when and how to attempt evacuation. This course includes additional focus for paddlesports, including wound cleaning and closure, as well as the reduction of simple shoulder dislocations. Participants will emerge capable of calmly responding to a wide variety of emergency situations.

All mandatory program supplies and a course field guide are provided by Ozark Safety and Rescue Educators (OSRE) as part of the program cost.

Successful completion of the entire program will result in a three-year nationally recognized Wilderness First Aid Certification through Sierra Rescue International.

We will start promptly at 8am and will be finishing by 5:30pm both days. Please arrive a few minutes early to complete the waivers and paperwork.
Please be sure to dress in clothing that can get very dirty/stained as we will be outdoors repeatedly, and it will likely be muddy and wet! We do use stage makeup, which does not always wash out of clothing well. Basically, prepare to be messy! We will be going outside regardless of weather conditions for practice, so be sure to be prepared! We strongly suggest bringing a folding camp chair (we have found that some folks prefer them, and we may do some classroom sessions outside if it is not raining).  We encourage you to bring an old tee-shirt or two to cut up as part of our impromptu supplies practice.
Location Information: Paddle Stop 1100 Miller Street, New Haven, MO.

We strongly suggest bringing a sack lunch OR order food on site both days, as we will only have 45 minutes total for lunch.

The Paddle Stop can sell breakfast (7:30 am), lunch & Saturday dinner. You’re welcome to bring a cooler with your own food / drink, which you consume in the classroom (vs the restaurant). Their Paddle Stop Brewery will likely have live music Sat. night, so feel free to have folks meet you.

There is free, first-come-first serve, rustic camping across the street (with fire rings & picnic tables) or under a pavilion on concrete, with an adjacent bath/shower building.  Nearby there are hotels (e.g. Central Hotel and Zia’s) & Airbnb.

Please read the letter sent to registrants and reach out if you have any questions, to Tom about the course;  to Sally Haywood for other logistics, haywood.sally@gmailcom, 314-374-9206.

Taught by Tom Burroughs, SwiftwaterRescue@gmail.com, 479-595-1655

ACA Safety and Rescue Committee Chair

ACA L-5 Advanced Swiftwater Rescue Instructor Trainer Educator

ACA L-4 Whitewater Kayak Instructor Trainer Educator
ACA L-4 Whitewater Rafting Instructor Trainer

2015 ACA “Excellence in Instruction” National Award Recipient

ITRA Level 3V Swiftwater Rescue Instructor

NREMT/EMT-W/MPIC – Wilderness Medicine Instructor

Team Leader- Washington CO AR Search and Rescue team
Director, Ozark Safety and Rescue Educators / Clear Creek Paddlesports

Member- Wilderness Medical Society

Cost: $175. Minimum registrants 8 (for course to happen); Maximum 20.

See MWA Training Reimbursement Policy.  MWA reimburses for certain trainings with an MWA volunteer commitment expectation. You do need to fill out a web-based reimbursement request after you volunteer.
Military service members or veterans, Team River Runner (TRR) has a grant that will enable them to reimburse you after the successful completion of this course.  If interested, please contact Tom Cooke, the StL TRR Chapter Coordinator, at stltrr@teamriverrunner.org or 314-707-0150.  Ideally you would use your new skills as a future volunteer with TRR.


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Event Category:


Sierra Club


Paddle Stop
1100 Miller Street
New Haven, MO 63068 United States
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