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What to Bring Print checklist (PDF)

  • Weather-appropriate canoeing clothing (preferably synthetic*)
  • Waterproof jacket and pants
  • Activity appropriate, closed-toed shoes
  • Sunglasses with lanyard (polarized recommended)
  • Hat with visor
  • One-quart water bottle or hydration system
  • Lunch
  • Pencil and paper
  • Personal prescriptions such as EpiPen or inhaler

Optional

  • Water shoes or closed-toed shoes you don't mind getting wet
  • Wetsuit or drysuit
  • Towel
  • Lip balm with sunscreen

What We Provide

  • Use of all necessary paddling equipment:  canoes, paddles, PFDs, etc.
  • Handouts and course materials**
  • Wetsuit
  • We have a limited number of dry suits available to loan. Please call 1-888-270-2326 to reserve.
  • Closed-toe water shoes
  • First-aid kit
  • Water
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect repellant
L.L.Bean Outdoor Discovery Schools

Maine Outdoor Leadership/Recreation Guide Preparation Course

Free $10 gift card with purchase of $50 or more.
Reserve Your Spot Now

Our comprehensive six-day course will teach you everything you need to be an outdoor guide, including information about the business of guiding, outdoor safety and risk management.

  • Prerequisite:  None
  • Activity level:  Easy to moderate
  • Minimum age:  18
  • Questions? Please call 1-888-270-2326

Course Description

In our six-day guide preparatory course, you'll learn a range of technical guiding skills to prepare you for leading day and overnight trips for backcountry camping, backpacking, snowshoeing, kayaking, stand-up paddling, canoeing and more.

Our course is taught by Registered Maine Guides who'll share their wisdom and guiding experiences. You'll learn the foundational concepts of guiding and all the necessary outdoor skills you'll need for safely leading clients in the Maine woods. They'll review the various laws governing the outdoors and how to prepare for canoeing, hiking and winter camping trips. You'll practice lost-person scenarios and be trained in search-and-rescue techniques – essential for responsible guides. You'll also learn map skills and how to effectively use a compass and GPS.

You'll round out your knowledge with instruction on reading the weather, plus tips on trip planning, camp cooking and Leave No Trace® principles. And even if you're not planning to be a guide, our course is simply the best way to enhance your outdoor skills and knowledge.

This six-day course is offered Friday night and all-day Saturday and Sunday over two weekends. Lunch is included on the day of the cooking segment. Note: Participation does not guarantee passing the State Guide Exam. Itinerary subject to change at instructors' discretion. Exam is not part of this course.

In our six-day guide preparatory course, you'll learn a range of technical guiding skills to prepare you for leading day and overnight trips for backcountry camping, backpacking, snowshoeing, kayaking, stand-up paddling, canoeing and more.

Our course is taught by Registered Maine Guides who'll share their wisdom and guiding experiences. You'll learn the foundational concepts of guiding and all the necessary outdoor skills you'll need for safely leading clients in the Maine woods. They'll review the various laws governing the outdoors and how to prepare for canoeing, hiking and winter camping trips. You'll practice lost-person scenarios and be trained in search-and-rescue techniques – essential for responsible guides. You'll also learn map skills and how to effectively use a compass and GPS.

You'll round out your knowledge with instruction on reading the weather, plus tips on trip planning, camp cooking and Leave No Trace® principles. And even if you're not planning to be a guide, our course is simply the best way to enhance your outdoor skills and knowledge.

This six-day course is offered Friday night and all-day Saturday and Sunday over two weekends. Lunch is included on the day of the cooking segment. Note: Participation does not guarantee passing the State Guide Exam. Itinerary subject to change at instructors' discretion. Exam is not part of this course.

Cancellation and Rescheduling Policy

*Synthetic clothing dries quickly and is the best choice for outdoor pursuits. Please do not wear cotton clothing. When wet, cotton rapidly robs the heat from your body and takes a long time to dry. We also recommend you dress in multiple layers, allowing you more flexibility to comfortably respond to the weather conditions and your level of exertion.

**Course materials will be emailed to you after registration.