River Trips – Expedition Style Learning

Learn, explore, and connect on a River Trip

There are few experiences that create community, provide immersive education, and inspire wonder as much a Canyonlands Field Institute river expedition. On river trips, students are as much a part of the expedition as the guides. In addition to the lessons and explorations, we encourage students to play an active role in their adventure by learning technical skills that support the overall trip.

River trips offer the perfect blend of Social and Emotional Learning opportunities with immersive chances for academic exploration. No camping or river experience is necessary! Our guides facilitate student success through hands-on technical skills education.

Expedition Style Learning = Student Centered Education


Unique curriculum

Fully immersing oneself in the moment is a tough thing to do these days. CFI trips replace classroom walls with canyon walls so that you can focus on your own group’s objectives. Our guides will lead educational and fun activities that teach geology, ecology, teamwork, leadership, human history, art, writing, and observation.  

We will work with you to tailor the trip's educational goals so that they can best align with and support our classroom objectives.


Social Emotional Learning

SEL promotes increases in skills like self management, group awareness, and responsible decision making. Throughout the trip, guides intentionally develop teambuilding and leadership skills among your students while deepening connections to and respect for their peers.

At the end of your trip, you can expect increased outcomes in student respect for themselves, each other, and nature.

Oak Grove River

Students become their own success

Our students play a significant role in the success of the expedition. Students work with guides to unload gear and set up camp, and are divided in to rotating crews that assist guides with cooking, dish washing, rigging, and other tasks. We also encourage students to learn technical skills like rowing, and map reading.

Students are taught to manage their own gear, set up their own tents, maintain a clean and organized camp, and contribute to a common goal.