Magazine
Outdoor Education

June 10, 1996

A special issue celebrates the thousands of educators who are working to teach people about the West. But it also raises some questions: Who are they reaching and where should the lessons be learned?

Feature

Spreading the gospel
The number and variety of outdoor education programs has increased dramatically in the last 25 years.
Getting outside all around the West
A state-by-state directory describes some of the many outdoor education programs in the West.
Tough love proves too tough
Controversial "wilderness therapy programs" such as Utah's North Star, intended for troubled kids, come under critical scrutiny - and lawsuits - after several teenagers die while in their care.

Sidebar

New life springs from tainted soil at a Denver school
A program called Volunteer-led Investigations of Neighborhood Ecology (VINE) introduces urban children to nature, as demonstrated by Denver's Garden Place Academy.
The best guide knows how to let go
River guide, author and activist Roderick Nash describes a method of outdoor education he calls "unguiding" - letting the river teach its own lessons.
An unsung army of students maintains our national parks
The Student Conservation Association has been sending thousands of young volunteers to help maintain national parks since 1957.
Acting for the environment
A Northwest conservation and outdoor recreation group, The Mountaineers, educates children by sending actors such as Loren Foss into schools, who teach by assuming character roles such as "Old John."
The big dogs: Outward Bound and NOLS hit their thirties
The National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) and Outward Bound are the biggest outdoor education schools in the West.
The rise and fall of Steve Cartisano
Utah native Steve Cartisano, the controversial "godfather" of wilderness therapy, has left a trail of lawsuits behind him, including one for negligent homicide in the death of a Florida teenage girl.

Essays

Learning from an inner-city garden
The writer describes a tough and educational time spent working in the inner city with the San Francisco League of Urban Gardeners.
What outdoor education didn't teach me
A former professional outdoor educator traces his slow disillusionment with wilderness programs that live off the urban high-tech society and teach nothing about truly living simply on the land.
My coyote education
Writer and Wyoming native C.L. Rawlins considers the good and bad inherent in trying to provide an outdoor education.
Hearing stories, finding family, returning home
Writer and naturalist Terry Tempest Williams lauds the lessons she learned from the Teton Science School.

Heard Around the West

Heard around the West
Strange bedfellows in the West: Wal-Mart and Main Street, sheep and range restoration, javelinas in Washington state, cartoonist John Callahan runs for Oregon state Legislature, Cheetos in space, cowboys and California.

Dear Friends

Dear Friends
Special issue, board meeting in Grand Junction, drop-ins, odds and ends.

News

Military in a dogfight for crowded skies
The Colorado Air National Guard's plan to increase fighter-jet training over southeastern Colorado raises opposition from environmentalists, ranchers and residents - and from Colorado Springs' booming airport.
Silence could be shattered by military jets
The Colorado Air National Guard's plan to increase training flights over the Sangre de Cristo and Wet Mountains and the San Luis Valley upsets locals, including contemplative monks in Crestone.
GOP moves to rein in its rebels
A GOP memo to this year's Republican candidates urges them to start looking green.
Sagebrush rebels in the apple orchards
Two Chelan County commissioners defy Washington state's Growth Management Act, claiming freedom from state and federal controls.
Planning regulations bite a planning proponent
Former U.S. Senator Dan Evans, who once supported Washington state's Growth Management Act, now seeks to change the law after finding it will prevent him from building a house where he wants.
A small fish takes a big hit
An irrigation district's water diversion from the Rio Grande in New Mexico wipes out an estimated 70 percent of the endangered silvery minnow population.
Lawmakers say Colorado prisons are king
The Colorado Legislature passes a bill allowing the state Corrections Department to ignore local zoning when it wants to build or expand prisons.
Salvage logging rider barrels into a shy seabird's world
Under the salvage logging rider, thousands of acres of habitat of the endangered marbled murrelet may be cut in coastal Washington and Oregon.
Operation bullsling
To improve trampled vegetation and watershed in California's Ishi Wilderness, Forest Service officials remove 13 tranquilized bulls by helicopter.
Salmon find a friend
Republican Gov. Tony Knowles of Alaska joins an environmental lawsuit fighting Columbia and Snake River dams in the Northwest to save endangered salmon.

Letters

High Country News Classifieds
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  • SOCIAL MEDIA AND DIGITAL ADVERTISING SPECIALIST
    The Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA), Utah's largest conservation organization, has an immediate opening for a full-time Social Media and Digital Advertising Specialist. This position...
  • SPRING-FED PARCELS ON THE UPPER SAC RIVER
    Adjacent parcels above the Upper Sacramento river, near Dunsmuir. The smaller is just under 3 acres, with the larger at just under 15 acres. Multiple...
  • DEVELOPMENT COORDINATOR
    Greater Yellowstone Coalition seeks a development professional to coordinate the organization's individual giving program. The position description is available at http://greateryellowstone.org/careers Please email a letter...
  • IDAHO STATE DIRECTOR
    The Wilderness Society is seeking a full time Idaho State Director who will preferably be based in Boise, Idaho. At least 8-10 years of experience...
  • COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER AND BEARS EARS EDUCATION CENTER MANAGER
    Conservation nonprofit Friends of Cedar Mesa in Bluff, Utah is hiring for two positions. We seek a Communications Manager to execute inspiring and impactful communications...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    Wilderness Volunteers Wilderness Volunteers (WV), a 24-year leader in preserving our nation's wildlands, is seeking a motivated person with deep outdoor interests to guide our...
  • HECHO POLICY AND ADVOCACY MANAGER
    Hispanics Enjoying Camping, Hunting, and the Outdoors (HECHO) was created in 2013 to help fulfill our duty to conserve and protect our public lands for...
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    Under the direct supervision of the Director of Shoshone-Paiute Tribe's Fish, Wildlife & Parks, in coordination with the Tribal Programs Administrator and the Tribal Chairman,...
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    Founded in 1936, the National Wildlife Federation has grown into America's largest and most trusted grassroots conservation organization with 53 state/territorial affiliates and more than...
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    STEWARDSHIP MANAGER Job Vacancy and Description Posted June 2, 2021: Open until filled The New Mexico Land Conservancy (NMLC) is a non-profit, regional land trust...
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    KSJD is seeking a host/reporter. Please see for www.ksjd.org for more information. EEO compliant.
  • ON THE EDGE OF CEDAR MESA/BEARS EARS
    Quiet, comfy house for rent in Bluff, Utah. Walk to San Juan River. Bike or hike to many nearby ruins and rock art sites. Beautiful...
  • CARPENTER AND LABORER WANTED.
    Come to Ketchikan and check out the Rain forest on the coast, Hike the shorelines, hug the big trees, watch deer in the muskeg meadows,...
  • PROJECT MANAGER
    Title: Project Manager Reports To: Program Director Salary Range: Negotiable; starting at $60,000 Location: Bend, OR The Deschutes River Conservancy seeks a Project Manager to...
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    The Deschutes River Conservancy seeks a Program Director to join our dynamic team in restoring streamflow and improving water quality in the Deschutes Basin. WHO...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR - TWISPWORKS
    Established healthy nonprofit in the Methow Valley of Washington state, TwispWorks is hiring the next Executive Director. Terrific opportunity to strive for our mission to...
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    Help us achieve our mission of promoting excellence in the professional practice of wilderness stewardship, science and education to ensure the life-sustaining benefits of wilderness....
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    Twin Willows Ranch in Ocate, NM is seeking to immediately fill a Temporary Full-Time employment position as Ranch Operations Assistant for Facilities, Equipment, Land, and...
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