Wilderness First Aid

This two-day wilderness first aid course teaches participants the assessment of, and treatment given to an ill or injured person in a remote or sometimes austere environment. In this type of setting, access to definitive care such as a hospital or clinic, as well as emergency transport may delayed for hours or even days. Course participants will learn how to assess, treat, and when possible, prevent medical and traumatic emergencies within the scope of their training.

Time is the essential element distinguishing wilderness first aid from standard first aid. When calling 911 is not an immediate option, or when help could be an hour or even days away, the task of managing the injured and the ill will challenge you beyond basic first-aid knowledge, and require the skills you will learn in this course.

Long hikes, extended lengths of rivers, large expanses of ocean, and miles of asphalt may separate the patient from a medical facility. You may have to endure heat or cold, rain, wind, or darkness.

The equipment needed for treatment and evacuation may have to be improvised from what is available, and communication with the “outside world” may be limited or nonexistent. Remote locations and harsh environments may require creative treatments. All these things may be a part of the world of wilderness first aid.

This course is an intensive course which offers a lot of hands-on practice through scenarios, case studies and simulations. Students will constantly be both indoors and outdoors for simulations and practice, regardless of the weather, barring severe inclement weather. Come to class prepared for the weather, as we spend a lot of time outdoors training.




Topics Covered

IntroductionPatient Care Documentation
What is Wilderness First AidOrthopedic Injuries
Wilderness First Aid KitsTreatment Principals & Techniques
OTC MedicationsChest Injuries
Patient Assessment SystemAllergies & Anaphylaxis
Vital SignsEpinephrine Auto-Injectors
Practice ScenariosBackcountry & Sudden Illnesses
Shock & ASRHeat-Related Illnesses
CPR in Remote SettingsCold-Related Injuries
Traumatic Brain InjuriesLightning Safety
Suspected Spinal InjuriesAltitude Illnesses
Anatomy of the SpineBites & Stings
Case StudiesSnakebites
Soft Tissue InjuriesTick Safety
Burns & BlistersSubmersion Emergencies



Scouting Requirements

The Boy Scouts require that at least one or two Scouts or adult leaders (per crew) participating in the BSA High Adventure Programs (Philmont Scout Ranch, Northern Tier, Bechtel Summit, Sea Base, Lenhok'Sin, etc.) be trained in Wilderness First Aid (& in most cases, also CPR/AED) and is also strongly recommended for Girl Scout leaders.

BSA Logo Icon View *CURRENT* BSA High Adventure WFA Requirements. BSA Logo Icon

This wilderness first aid course meets current wilderness first aid training requirements for a variety of organizations, including the Boy Scouts of America, Girl Scouts of America, American Camp Association and American Canoe Association and results in an American Red Cross certification which is accepted by the Boy Scouts of America, Girl Scouts of the USA, & JCC; and is valid for two (2) years.



General Course Information

Course Length:
16 hours of instruction
Actual course is longer, incorporating hands-on scenarios, skills practice & activities.
Course Format:
Typically taught over two consecutive (weekend) days; 8:00 am - 6:30 pm both days.
This course may also be taught over three consecutive days and weekdays upon request.
Course Tuition:
$185 – $220
Actual course tuition may vary depending on course location, logistics and options.
Wilderness & Remote First Aid  (American Red Cross; valid 2 years)
A digital Red Cross certificate is available upon successful completion of course.
  Be at least 14 years of age.**
**The minimum age requirement to take Wilderness First Aid is 14 by the last day of the course, however younger participants may be allowed to take the course on a case-by-case basis.
  Hold current certification in Adult CPR/AED.**
**Adult CPR/AED certification must be from one of the following nationally-recognized ECC accredited organizations: American Red Cross, American Heart Association, ASHI, or ECSI. No online-only certifications are accepted.

View Schedule of upcoming Wilderness First Aid courses
         Host a Wilderness First Aid course

Host this Course:

If your organization, Troop, or crew is interested in learning more about sponsoring a Wilderness First Aid course at your location, contact our admissions office at toll free (855) 505-1700.

In order to host this course at your location, a minimum of 8-12 participants is required. The maximum may depend on location, typically ranging from 18-30.    LEARN MORE (+)



One comment
  1. Brian Regan March 31, 2016 at 11:32 PM

    This was the BEST wilderness first aid class I’ve ever taken. I took one with NOLS which was pretty good, then took one with some outfit in Alexandria (wfa dot net?); they were absolutely horrible… Then I took it with you all. I’ll be sticking with you guys for my next class. The instructor was passionate, funny, really knew his stuff, and obviously had experience in the field. Great program – would recommend to all Scout leaders and outdoorsy folks! Thanks again!