Volunteer Trip Leader

Venture Outdoors has established a robust Volunteer Trip Leader program that focuses on developing individual’s leadership skills through outdoor recreation.

We offer plenty of training opportunities and an apprentice program to get new leaders up to speed. Becoming a trip leader offers fun, camaraderie, personal growth, and the opportunity to contribute to the Venture Outdoors mission of getting more people outside. Trip leaders are invited to special leaders-only activities, can attend many Venture Outdoors trips free of charge, and enjoy great support from Venture Outdoors staff and other leaders.

Volunteer leaders are absolutely essential to Venture Outdoors’s success, and we highly value the contribution our leaders make. If you love to hike, bike, paddle, backpack–or do anything outside–and want to share your love of these activities with others, please consider becoming a Venture Outdoors trip leader today. Click the link to fill out our volunteer request form.

Trip Leader Expectations

    • Be a current member of Venture Outdoors
    • Have current certifications in CPR (Adult/Child/Infant) and Basic First Aid. Certifications must be from a nationally recognized certifying institution such as Wilderness Medicine Institute, the American Red Cross, or the American Heart Association. (Volunteer trip leaders who hold current Wilderness First Aid certification will be considered to have met the Basic First Aid expectation.)
    • Hold current Child Abuse and Criminal Background Check Clearances
    • Have attended Venture Outdoors Volunteer Orientation
    • Have completed Outdoor Leadership Training—Weekend or Modules (Training scholarship are available by filling out the form)
    • Be in good physical condition to lead the particular activity involved
    • Have some proficiency and experience in the particular activity involved.
    •  Have knowledge of and access to appropriate clothing, footwear, and gear for the particular activity involved
    • Desire to share knowledge with others
    • Commitment to uphold Leave No Trace ethics
    • Act in a professional and courteous manner at all times
    • Ability to work with diverse groups of people in a friendly manner
    • Properly complete program paperwork and return to office staff in a timely manner

OUTDOOR News

  • Why Venture Outdoors?

    August 15, 2017

    By: Jacob Tumminello

    For many of us, the most time we spend outdoors comes from transitioning between cars and buildings, if that even counts.  As we continue to develop new technological advancements to make our lives easier, we have slowly begun to remove ourselves from the outdoor environment to shift towards safer and less demanding settings. 

    We as a species are less challenged to obtain food which is now carried by large machines to our destinations, and we spend most of our time sitting or sedentary.  Millions of people are damaging their eyes and backs sitting in front of computer screens for hours each day,

     » Read more about: Why Venture Outdoors?  »

  • My First Backpacking Trip with Venture Outdoors

    August 8, 2017

    By: Joshua Tenenbaum

    My backpacking trip to Raccoon State Park was a remarkable experience that I won’t soon forget. Going to the outfitter to select backpacking and camping gear and having the opportunity to use it on the trail was very gratifying. I had a ton of fun packing my bag, trying to distribute weight evenly in my pack, and organizing all my gear and food in the pack (although, it took me multiple tries to get everything to fit).

    Early in the morning, we dusted off our gear and headed out to experience the beauty of Raccoon Creek State Park.

     » Read more about: My First Backpacking Trip with Venture Outdoors  »

  • Where is She Now

    August 1, 2017

    By: Grace Eggleston, Former Communications/ Photography Intern

    This past April, my fantastic internship with Venture Outdoors came to an end. After finishing up my junior year at Pitt, I packed the car and drove down to Washington DC to start my next adventure… as a Communications Intern at the World Wildlife Fund US Headquarters!

    I’m now halfway through my internship, and absolutely loving it! As a Communications Intern on the Science Team at WWF, I have a handful of different jobs. I help out with social media, create flyers for events, and contact WWF grantees for information on their conservation projects.

     » Read more about: Where is She Now  »

  • The Beauty of Hiking

    July 25, 2017

    By: Chloe Seletz, Communications Intern 

    When I am asked what my dream vacation would be, it is always a no brainer. Anywhere I can go hiking. I spent a portion of my childhood living in San Francisco which is where I discovered the beauty of hiking. Every Sunday, my family and I took advantage of the amazing trails California has to offer. Even at a young age, I remember the feeling of getting to the top of a mountain and seeing such mesmerizing views.

    Over the years, I have had the opportunity to travel and hike in many different places.

     » Read more about: The Beauty of Hiking  »

  • Art in the Outdoors

    July 18, 2017

    By: Joshua Tenebaum

    This past week I spent a bit of time developing and furthering my blog post project and compiling photographs and field recordings to showcase to the Venture Outdoors community. Liz Fager and Jessica Wiegand both approached me about writing a blog post to be featured on the Venture Outdoors website. I began reading the other posts to determine an appropriate topic and voice for my writing; I decided to write about art and the outdoors. A rather broad topic, I specifically chose to speak about why I make art, my process, and my impressions of nature whenever I venture outdoors.

     » Read more about: Art in the Outdoors  »

Featured Outing

Beginner Paddle – North Shore
Multiple Dates
6:00 – 8:30 PM

We’ll start with instruction and practice, and then head onto the Allegheny River to see just how easy it is to paddle. Bedazzled by the gorgeous Pittsburgh skyline, you won’t even realize that you’re suddenly paddling like a pro! Equipment, guides and instruction are provided. Solo kayaks are highly recommended for this outing.


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