Outing Resources

Sign in Waiver

All participants on Sierra Club outings are required to sign a standard liability waiver. If you would like to read the liability waiver before you choose to participate in an outing, download a copy at Sign In Waiver with photo release.

What should I bring on my Outing?

Be sure to check the outing announcement for any special needs or requirements. While every outing is different, many exerts and experienced hikers recommend some version of the “10 Essentials” be included in your pack. Click below to download “The Ten Essentials” by the Mountaineers.

10 Essentials by the MountaineersMountaineers Ten Essentials

Tips for Day Hiking – Here’s some good information and a handy reference of Tips for Day Hiking

Information and Resources for Outings Leaders

How can I get started training?

There is an extensive password-protected website called Clubhouse (Outings Extranet) that has a wealth of leader resource information for the new and veteran Sierra Club leaders who lead Local Outings, Inner City Outings (ICO) or National/International Outings. If you don’t already have a login/password, you can simply request one when clicking upon any of the below links.

Some commonly requested resources include:



Sierra Club Forms

PDF Outing Plan Form
PDF Trailhead Talk Card
PDF Emergency Response Card
PDF Incident Report Form
PDF Safety Management/Emergency Response Plan
PDF Patient Report Form


5 Commandments of Wilderness First Aid Kits
(Courtesy of the Wilderness Medicine Institute)

  1. It is impossible to assemble the perfect first aid kit, but you should still try. Keep track of things you wish you had, and things you wish you had more of, and reassemble your kit periodically.
  2. Re-pack or re-check your kit for each outing. Check for expiration dates on medications, sterile items torn open, damaged or dampened, specific needs that special trips might require. Replace items damaged by heat or cold. Remove unnecessary items (ex. insect repellent on a winter trip).
  3. Do not pack anything you do not know how to use. Before the trip, go through each item in your kit and familiarize yourself with what is there and how to use it.
  4. Encourage, if not require, participants to pack and carry a personal first aid kit.
  5. Remember that ultimately life and limb are not saved by a kit, but by knowledge and skill, so be sure to get properly trained.

Revised First Aid Kit Contents

In April 2013, the First Aid and Safety Officers of the National Outings Subcommittees has reviewed and finalized their lists for an individual, basic and remote first aid kit contents.

  • Individual Kit (Ouch Pouch) that should be carried by each participant.
  • Basic Kit contents are the minimum that should be in a basic first aid kit.  This presumes you are within two hours of definitive medical care.  If you are more than two hours from definitive medical care, you should be using the Remote kit contents.  Quantities are suggestions only.  Items may be added at the subcommittee’s discretion and/or leader preference.  Note that this kit is optional.
  • Remote Kit contents listed are the minimum that should be in the remote first aid kit.  This presumes you are more than two hours from definitive medical care.  Quantities are suggestions only.  Items may be added at the subcommittee’s discretion and/or leader preference.

Volunteer Opportunities

Becoming a Volunteer

Connecting people to the outdoors is what we love to do! There are many ways that you can volunteer your time to connect America to beautiful spaces near and far. Whether you are an expert on your local trail system or you want to support your local outdoors group as a webmaster, volunteer coordinator, or fundraiser, the Sierra Club wants you! Read on to find out about the various volunteer opportunities and how to apply.

Want to lead outdoor trips?

Minimum Requirements for outdoor trip leaders for all Sierra Club programs:

  • Sierra Club Membership and be at least 18 years old
  • Complete a basic (or higher) first aid class
  • Complete the Sierra Club Outing Leader Training 101 — and OLT 201 if you are interested in overnight outings away from cars
  • Possess skills appropriate for the activities of the trip
  • Complete additional training as required by your Outings Chair
  • Be an assistant leader on a trip
  • Receive approval to lead outings from the Outing Chair or delegated authority of the entity sponsoring the outing

Next Steps:

Leading Youth Groups

Additional Requirements to lead trips specifically for groups of youth:

  • Sign the Youth-Oriented Volunteer Application, Code of Ethics, and Volunteer Agreement
  • Complete the Sierra Club Child Abuse Recognition and Prevention Training annually
  • Pass a criminal background check every four years
  • If driving youth participants, leaders must pass a motor vehicles check every four years

Next Steps:

Leading National & International Outings

Additional requirements to lead national and international  outings (these are the outings you see in Sierra magazine and take about 9-12 months to organize):

  • Go on a national outing and get a recommendation from an existing leader (highly recommended, but not required)
  • Complete a wilderness first aid class (or higher)
  • Be an assistant leader on a national outing
  • Provisionally lead a national outing under the guidance of an experienced mentor leader and be certified to lead by your Outings Chair

Next Steps:

Other ways to get involved with outings

Share your passion for the outdoors on or off trail. All of our groups are volunteer administered and can use your help. The Sierra Club has outings chapters and groups across the country. Your can find opportunities such as the following waiting for you:

  • Skills trainer
  • Volunteer coordinator
  • Photographer
  • Webmaster
  • Treasurer
  • Chairperson

Interested in getting involved in any of these volunteer opportunities?  If so, Apply Now!

Upon receipt of your application, you will be put in touch with a volunteer coordinator to help you with your next steps.



Anatomony of BackpackerSource: American Hiking Society

Backpacking Skills – First Night Out

Ready to ditch the campground crowds and sleep in the backcountry? Whether you’re a total rookie or a seasoned car camper, our comprehensive primer will get you out of the KOA and into the wild. We’ve gathered top skills for new backpackers. What they say is true: You’ll never forget your first time.
The Ten Essentials
Packing and Planning
On the Trail
In Camp
Treat Water
Top 10 Rookie Mistakes

Above from Backpacker Magazine

The Official Guide for North Carolina State Parks

Search for “Pocket Ranger®” in either the App Store or Google Play.

Pocket Ranger 2


Park goers can access rich GPS features, such as:

  • Advanced GPS Maps, which allow users to access trail data, record tracks from hikes, runs, or bike rides, and view elapsed time and distance traveled.
  • Easy-to-cache GPS Terrain Map tiles, which ensure that navigation remains possible in the event of lost mobile reception.
  • Photo waypoint feature allowing users to snap a photo and mark and record the coordinates of plant life, animal species or landscape views. Post or share these remarkable finds with family and friends with the click of a button.
  • Friend Finder feature that allows users to keep track of friends and family around the parks.
  • Built-in compass to help direct users through the parks.
  • Potentially life-saving Alert feature that supplies users’ GPS coordinates to designated contacts in case of an emergency.

Pocket Ranger® technology also provides plenty of other standard features that make exploring the great outdoors a breeze, including:

  • Thorough information on all State Parks including general policy, contact information, activities, trails, park maps and much more.
  • Detailed, cacheable maps of park facilities, trails and campgrounds.
  • Up-to-date news and information on park advisories and weather information.
  • Sharing features that allow users to share current positions, waypoints and recorded tracks via Facebook, Twitter, or email.
  • A Calendar of Events, updated in real time, listing all State Park events with the ability to filter by desired park. Users can also create their own schedule that can include any event from any park.
  • Access to online reservations that make it easy to secure overnight visits.
  • Plus so much more!

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