Policies, Participant Responsibilities, Cancellations

Essential Eligibility Criteria (EEC)

The health and well-being of participants on CFI programs are a priority. Canyonlands Field Institute is committed to minimizing and mitigating the risks associated with backcountry and wilderness adventure trips and programs. Our programs may involve physical exertion and exposure to the elements, including cold water, hot and cold temperatures, sun, wind, rain, and snow. Due to inherent risks associated with activities on our programs, as well as environmental considerations, CFI programs are open to individuals who meet the following Essential Eligibility Criteria (EEC), and who acknowledge their ability to meet these criteria. Factors such as physical and emotional ability, fitness, heart and/or medical considerations, and others are considerations.

Take some time to read our EEC before paying your trip's deposit, as trip deposits are non-refundable.

06.2020 CFI Essential Eligibility Criteria

Programming during the COVID-19 Pandemic

We have instituted specific policies and procedures in addressing the current health crisis. Note that these new protocols are specific to the Covid-19 pandemic response, and serve in addition to all of our normal operating standards and best practices.

Because these policies are always in flux, please reach out to info@cfimoab.org for the latest steps we are taking to mitigate the risk of Covid-19.

Cancellation Policies Applicable to All CFI Programs

We base our operations on your reservations and pay for services accordingly, and therefore take your reservations seriously. Because we reserve services for your programs ahead of time, reservation deposits are non-refundable. CFI secures services and schedules our staff, equipment, and food purchasing far in advance. Please make every effort to show up for this trip once you have registered.

You may notify us of cancellation by calling us at the CFI Office, or emailing info@cfimoab.org.

CFI reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to alter the itinerary or location or even cancel a trip, for reasons including but not limited to weather, water fluctuations, insufficient reservations, and other factors. If CFI cancels a program, your money will be refunded. However, CFI is only responsible for the actual amount paid by you directly to us and is not responsible for any other costs incurred by you, in relation to a program that is altered or canceled. For this reason, CFI highly recommends that participants purchase travel and flight insurance to protect your trip costs.

Booking Policies for Specific Programs

Private Group Trips or Adult Adventure Seminars

  • Program deposit is $300 per person to reserve your spot.
  • Reservation deposit is non-refundable.
  • The final payment is due 28 days before the program start date.
  • Payment is not refundable within 28 days of program start date.

School Programs and Summer Camps

  • School Program deposit is 5 program fees to reserve your spot.
  • Summer Camp deposit is $50 to reserve your spot.
  • Reservation deposit is non-refundable.
  • Final payment is due 14 days prior to the program start date.
  • Payment is not refundable within 14 days of program start date.

Dismissal, Non-Arrival, or Early Departure

No refunds will be granted if a participant fails to show up for a program or departs for any reason including dismissal by a CFI staff or medical evacuation. Participants and/or their parents are responsible for paying all costs of an early departure, whether for medical reasons, personal emergencies, expulsion or for any other reason. These costs include, but may not be limited to; helicopter or other evacuation costs, medical treatment, transportation costs and meals, lodging, and expenses for staff who may accompany participant.

Dietary Issues

While we are not able to promise fully customized meal plans for individuals in a group, we will try to accommodate special dietary needs and restrictions where practical. In some cases, individuals may be required to bring some of their own supplementary food. Give us a call if you have any concerns related to specific dietary issues.

CFI will review dietary restrictions and food allergies prior to the trip. Due to the remote location of field camp and outfitting conditions, CFI reserves the right to restrict enrollment to any participant.


Our regional elevation on the Colorado Plateau is about 4-5,000 feet. We have a high desert climate with seasonal variation. For spring and fall, expect day temperatures in the 60’s to 80’s with rain or snow possible. Summer brings hot, dry temperatures, usually 90-100+ degrees. Night temperatures are usually 20-40 degrees cooler. Surprise storms can come up anytime of year! Participants should bring items on the suggested gear list no matter what season.

“Do I have to bring the long underwear and rain gear for my river trip in June?” YES!

Smoking, Drinking, Dogs, Drugs, and Devices

  • CFI operates facilities and trips as smoke-free environments in all buildings, boats, vehicles, and common areas in campsites.
  • No alcohol is allowed on school or college trips.
  • On Adult Adventure Seminars and Private Group Trips, alcohol is allowed in moderation. On river trips, we prefer cans over glass bottles. Alcohol may not be brought on the Rainbow Bridge or Navajo Mountain trips because it is not allowed to be brought into the Navajo Nation.
  • No pets are allowed on our programs. There are some pet boarding options in Moab.
  • All drugs defined as illegal by the federal government, including marijuana in any form, are not allowed on any CFI trip.

On CFI camping trips, we provide the chance to be “unplugged” from society, to experience the wilderness on its own terms and to encourage enjoyment of natural sounds and quiet.

  • Cell phones are not allowed to be used by students on school programs.
  • Cell phones are allowed on Adult trips, but we encourage you to disconnect.


For more information on policies related to our school programs, please refer to the following planning packets.

For Teachers:

Teacher Planning Packet, river trips

Teacher Planning Packet, Professor Valley Field Camp

For Parents:

Parent Planning Packet, river trips

Parent Planning Packet, Professor Valley Field Camp