Ryan Jordan

Expedition Planning

Expedition Planning Course Packages

  • Self-Directed (Non-Mentored) – 6 Weeks. $250.
  • Directed (Mentored) – 6 Weeks. $600. Includes email mentoring with Ryan (enrollment is limited).
  • Directed (Mentored) + Expedition Trek – $1,750. 9 Weeks + 5 Day Trek – includes email mentoring with Ryan, live conferencing, and participation in an expedition with Ryan and one or more other instructors (enrollment is very limited).

What You Learn

Expedition Planning is a six-week course where you learn:

  • Fundamental Principles and Philosophy of Expedition Systems
  • Expedition Dynamics, Leadership, and Team Assessment
  • Processes for Expedition Planning Logistics
  • Selecting and Using Ultralight Personal and Group Expedition Gear
  • Planning and Preparing Expedition Supplies and Food
  • Expedition Route and Itinerary Planning

View a detailed curriculum below.

WEEK 1: Fundamentals

  • Expedition Systems Overview (Video)
  • Expedition Objective (Screencast)
  • Expedition Outcomes & Measures of Success (Worksheet)

WEEK 2: Team Assessment

  • Expedition Skills Assessment (Workbook)
  • Expedition Group Dynamics (Screencast)
  • Expedition Leadership (Video)
  • Expedition Roles (Workbook)

WEEK 3: Logistics

  • Expedition Task Plan (Workbook)
  • Expedition Itinerary (Workbook)
  • Expedition Climate Modeling (Screencast)

WEEK 4: Gear I: Personal and Group Gear

  • Clothing and Sleep Systems for Inclement Weather (Workbook)
  • Shelter Systems for Solo and Group Trekking (Video)
  • Personal Expedition Gear (Screencast)
  • Group Expedition Gear (Screencast)

WEEK 5: Gear II: Supplies and Food

  • Consumable Expedition Supplies (Workbook)
  • Expedition Cooking Systems & Meal Techniques for Group Trekking (Video)

WEEK 6: Route Planning

  • Tempo, Pace, and Terrain (Screencast)
  • Expedition Route Planning Resources (Screencast)
  • Topographical Edges (Screencast)
  • Expedition Route Modeling & Itinerary Planning (Screencast)
  • Comparison and Evaluation of Route Options (Workbook)
  • Transportation Considerations (Workbook)

Bonus WEEKS 7,8,9: Live Preparation

Bonus Module When the Expedition Trip Option is Purchased with the Online Course

  • Expedition Team (Live Audio Conference / Screencast)
  • Expedition Gear (Interactive Online Spreadsheets)
  • Expedition Food (Interactive Online Spreadsheets)
  • Expedition Itinerary (Live Audio Conference / Screencast)


Upcoming Courses

Next Course: Fall 2012 Expedition Planning – Enrollment Opens Summer 2012

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Dates and Details

Next Session: Fall 2012
Enrollment Opens: Mid-August
Enrollment Closes: August 31
Session Starts: First Week of September
Course Duration: 6 weeks (9 weeks if you purchased the trip with it)
Course Trek*: Late October
Trek Location*: Beartooth Plateau, Montana (in partnership with the Backpacking Light Wilderness Trekking School under a commercial use permit granted by the Custer National Forest)

* The course trek is an option that can be purchased in addition to the online course, and is not included as part of the base online course package.



Ryan Jordan is a craftsman when it comes to training those of us who want to take on more challenging wilderness expeditions. Ryan is able to bring together course participants from all over the country, train them in expedition planning fundamentals in an online and interactive course, and empower them to successfully plan and execute a long distance backpacking expedition on their own.”
– Patrick Starich