16 Weeks in Costa Rica: Expedition Leader Training Course

Program Details

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I thoroughly enjoyed all aspects of the course, it was definitely, at times, one of the most challenging things I have ever done - but at the same time hugely rewarding. The course itself was very varied and very practical. I feel I have learnt a wide range of leadership, bush craft and communication skills that will be of huge benefit to me in the future, whether I decide to peruse a career in the expedition leader field or not.
Hanna Leigh
Hanna Leigh
Leaper Alumni, 2015

Your Itinerary

What you'll do and where you'll go, from the day you arrive until you hop on a plane back home.
  • Day 1 Wales
    The course kick starts with kit checks, discussions on the ‘legal and best practice’ framework for being an expedition leader and conflict resolution. You‘ll also complete the first part of your first aid training here - an active, scenario based course delivered by pro’s, before practising for your mountain leader course.
  • Day 7 Mountain Leader Training
    An intense 6 day course - the first step towards the Summer Mountain Leader qualification. You’ll develop skills in hill walking, navigation, rope work, challenging terrain and will camp overnight.
  • Day 14 Costa Rica
    You’ll all head out to our base in the Costa Rican Jungle: it’s relatively comfy with hammocks, the luxury of toilets, showers, delicious food and even the internet! This will be your base for the next 14 weeks and from here you tackle the following:
  • + Basic Jungle Training
    Including navigation, fire lighting, basha set up, river crossings and flora and fauna identification. The week ends with a night on your own in the jungle.
  • + Expedition Planning
    You’ll learn to prepare and plan group jungle training. You’ll be assessed on your ability to produce transport, casualty evacuation and communication plans, risk assessments and will run an expedition for 48 hours.
  • + Advanced River Crossing
    Learn how to manage a group across a river. This training includes roped and un-roped crossing techniques, in both moderate and fast water situations.
  • + The Treks
    You’ll complete 2 treks totaling 10 days. The treks have different types of challenges, testing you physically and mentally whilst providing the opportunity to practice group management.
  • + Medical Training
    An intensive ‘wilderness focused’ medical course written specifically for the ELT. It includes jungle specifics such as tropical diseases, potential trauma cases etc.
  • + Advanced Survival Training
    Stretching your jungle skills further to learn about what can you eat, build with, what to avoid, what can be used to treat ailments. Ending with 3 days alone in the jungle with only your machetes and a basic safety kit.
  • + Landrover and Canoe Training
    4x4 off-road training and canoe paddle techniques and rescue.
  • + Navigation Training
    An intensive 4 days focusing on pacing in the jungle, walking on a bearing for long distances, making and following trails.
  • + Project Work
    You’ll learn how to plan, manage and monitor team projects, developing an awareness of safety, team management, individual motivation and problem solving.
  • + Rescue Training
    You’ll learn jungle rescue skills in cave and river situations. We use the same instructors who teach the official Costa Rican rescue team.
  • + National Water Safety Management Program
    Level 1 of the RLSS (Royal Life Saving Society) program, introducing you to risk assessments and dry rescue techniques. Level 2 includes site-specific hazards and Level 3 culminates with in-water rescue procedures.
  • Day 95 Caribbean Coast
    A 2 day break on the beautiful Caribbean coast to relax on the beach, party and snorkel before you fly home. After 16 weeks – we think you’ve earned it.

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