$500 per person (OBCA staff can enroll at a reduced rate)
Course is now FULL and has a wait list. We are no longer accepting applications.
What To Expect
On this expedition you will travel through the striking desert and canyons of Joshua Tree National Park. You will hike into the backcountry the first night and not return until the last day. You will carry what you need for as much as a week in your pack and you will travel or climb nearly every day. You do not need to have previous backpacking or climbing experience. We will teach you everything you need to know to travel comfortably, including how to set up a wilderness campsite, rock climb, and navigate using a map and compass. Arriving physically fit will enhance your experience and ability to do well on the course and ultimately allow you to take full advantage of the expedition.
Weather in the park this time of year is generally dry and cold. Rainfall is sparse, though unpredictable, and sometimes persistent thunderstorms do occur. Temperatures vary, with lows around 40 and highs around 75 degrees. Extremes are possible on either end, so be prepared for both heat and freezing temperatures.
Joshua Tree Backpacking and Rock Climbing
The high desert, where rugged mountains and desert plateaus have been sculpted by wind and rain, meet in Joshua Tree National Park. This desert backpacking and rock climbing course includes both on-trail and off-trail terrain. Routes can be challenging as they travel through boulder filled canyons and across vast desert washes. Joshua Tree is a high desert, with areas of the park over 5,000 feet, providing an opportunity for a pre-dawn start to a peak attempt. Though the landscape is demanding, there are few places in the world that compare to the beauty and uniqueness of an expedition in Joshua Tree.
The rock climbing section provides an opportunity to develop personal climbing skills while building trust among crew members as you belay one another and set goals as a group. You will climb some of the highest quality granite in one of the most popular world destinations for rock climbers.
Participants can acquire or continue to build on skills associated with technical rock climbing, including introductory rock climbing basics, knots, anchors, movement over rock, top-rope belaying, and equipment use. This section will include a variety of styles: crack-climbing, face climbing and bouldering.
- Start Time and Location: 11:30am, Palm Springs Airport
- End Time and Location: 1:00pm, Palm Springs Airport
- Dates: Saturday, January 11 – Thursday, January 16, 2019
- Cost: $500 / $400 OBCA Staff
- Enroll by submitting your information through the "Register Now" button above. Student Services will then send your enrollment materials and deposit invoice via email within 2 business days. Timely completion of materials is required to hold your spot on the course. Please wait to make any travel plans until your Course Advisor tells you that you have both been cleared to attend, and the course has been confirmed!
- Priority will be given to applicants in the following order: current OBCA employees, current OB employees, past OBCA and OB employees.
A $250 deposit is due at the time of enrollment. A remaining $250 for external applicants and $150 for OBCA employees will be due closer to course start.
Can I stay at base?
We won't have space available to provide you with accommodations or meals prior to course start, but you are welcome to pitch a tent at our Joshua Tree basecamp at Twentynine Palms! Transportation to course start can be provided. Ask your Course Advisor for details if you plan to stay at base.
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