Whether spending time in the backcountry is your passion or your profession, you should never have to ask, “What do I do now?” Prepare for the unexpected with this hands-on introduction to wilderness medicine. If you work at a camp, participate in or lead wilderness trips, enjoy weekend family outdoor activities or recreate outdoors, this course is for you.

Check-in is 7:45 a.m. on the first day. Course days run from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Attendance is required at all classes.

Classroom lectures are integrated with practical scenarios, case studies, and skills practice sessions. Scenarios and practice sessions will take place both inside and outside. Bring outdoor clothing appropriate for lying on the potentially wet or cold ground playing the roles of both rescuer and patient. Frequently stage (moulage) blood and make-up are used to enhance the realism of a scenario.


  • Notebook and pencil or pen
  • Watch with second hand or digital second
  • Sunglasses and hat
  • Water bottle
  • Light day pack
  • Waterproof outerwear top and bottom
  • Light hiking boots or sturdy shoes
  • Clothing layers that allow you to be comfortable in a variety of weather conditions
  • Slippers or comfortable shoes for classroom time (optional)
  • Camp chair for classroom time (optional)

Click here to view and download the full course outline.

Non-refundable tuition payment in full is required to reserve your spot in the course. The tuition fee includes instruction, textbooks, equipment use, and certification.

You may pay your tuition online, by calling the BLT office with your credit card information, or by check made out to Barnstable Land Trust, PO Box 224, Cotuit MA 02635.

Click here to download the Student Agreement. Read it carefully as it affects your legal rights. Without the signed document, you cannot participate in the course. Bring the two-page signed document to the first day of the course. If you are a minor (age 16-17), a parent or guardian must sign the document.

NOLS Wilderness Medicine participants, including minors, will have unsupervised free time throughout the course. Any activities during the free time are not part of the NOLS Wilderness Medicine program and are at the sole risk of the participant.

Pets – 
Pets are not allowed at the course site. This includes leashing them outside. Any student bringing a pet to class will be asked to leave until the pet is safely situated in a kennel or other facility. No exceptions.

Alcohol and Tobacco – No alcohol or tobacco is allowed on site.

Pre-Course Access to College Credit – 
The WFA course is pre-approved for 0.5 semester hour credits through Western State Colorado University (WSCU) for an additional cost of $60. Thirty days prior to the NOLS Wilderness Medicine course, interested students must initiate registration and payment for credit by requesting an enrollment form for WSCU from NOLS Wilderness Medicine.

On-Course Access to College Credit – The WFA course is pre-approved for one semester hour credit through the University of Utah for an additional cost of $95. If you are interested in receiving college credit, please inquire with your instructors on the first day of class for the necessary information.

NOLS Wilderness Medicine certification holders may take a Wilderness First Aid (WFA) course to recertify a WAFA, WFR or WEMT certification. Certification holders from other wilderness medicine training organizations cannot recertify through a Wilderness First Aid course.

NOLS Wilderness Medicine certifications will be afforded a one-year period after expiration within which to recertify. You should bring your certification card to the course so the instructor can verify the expiration date. Click here for more information about the NOLS Wilderness Medicine recertification policy.

The Wilderness First Aid (WFA) course is an introductory course for individuals with no prior knowledge and generally does not include CPR.

The preferred way to recertify your certification is to enroll in a Wilderness First Responder Recertification course, or through our Hybrid WFR Recertification course, which adds an online component in addition to traditional scenarios and skills.

These courses are specifically designed for students needing recertification. You can find more information at the links below.

Wilderness First Responder Recertification (WFR-R)

Hybrid WFR-R:

You will be required to pass both a written and a practical test. Click here for information and resources on how to best prepare for your course.