Frequently Asked Questions

What about COVID-19?

Inherent risk has been a critical piece of No Barriers field programs since day one.  We use strategy, best practices, and the right equipment to manage the risk associated with the outdoor adventure piece of our program, and will do the same regarding COVID-19.  You can review our COVID-19 Practices, and decide if an in person program is right for you.

 

Who can apply for a Warriors program?

To be eligible to apply for a Warriors program, you must be a Veteran with a VA disability rating.  You must be able to provide valid proof of military service, and your VA disability rating letter.  We accept Veterans from all branches of service, from any era.

In addition, due to the physically demanding nature of our programs, Veterans must be able to meet our Essential Eligibility Criteria.

If a Veteran needs assistance with their application, who can they contact?

For assistance filling out an application, or to request a paper copy, please contact the Warriors Program Manager via phone at 970-484-3633 x311, or email [email protected].

 

What is the No Barriers Warriors team looking for in an applicant?

Warriors programs are designed to help Veterans who are facing adversity in their lives.  When reviewing applications, we are searching for those who show a need and desire for change.  We are also looking for good team players, who will support their teammates and take challenges head on.  We want applicants who understand that this is a much deeper experience than just a fun trip in the woods.

 

What happens after a Veteran submits an application?

When a Veteran submits an application, they will receive an immediate email confirmation letting them know that their application has been accepted, and is now in our applicant pool.  Beginning April 1st, our team will begin to review applications, and select Veterans to be interviewed.  If you are selected for an interview, a staff member will reach out to you.  On June 18th, we will send an email to all applicants who were not selected for an interview, and ask them to reapply next year.

 

What happens after a Veteran is interviewed?

If a Veteran is selected for, and completes a phone interview, they will be placed in our advanced selection pool.  From here, we will start to form teams based on availability and application/interview responses, and a staff member will reach out with an offer to join a team.

 

Can I apply for more than one expedition?

Yes! Please select any expedition that interests you. Please pay attention to the difficulty of the expedition and make sure you are willing to take the time to prepare physically if you are selected.

 

If I have already attended an expedition, can I attend another No Barriers Warriors expedition as an alumni?

Our alumni are important to us; they are the foundation of our No Barriers Warriors community. Each expedition season, our goal is to serve new applicants so that we can increase our alumni community.  While being an alumni does not disqualify you from attending additional programs, we will give priority to new applicants.  

 

Do I need any prior experience, skills, or training to attend a No Barriers Warriors program

Nope! No prior experience is required for our programs. We ask that you come with an open mind, a ready-to-learn attitude, and a willingness to take direction from our Expedition Leaders and be open to new experiences with fellow veterans. We encourage each of our applicants to read through our Essential Eligibility Criteria. and make sure they are up to the physical demands of the expedition.

 

What is the difference between a Basecamp Expedition and Backcountry Expedition?

The designation of Basecamp and Backcountry is meant to separate expeditions by difficulty level. In general, backcountry expeditions are more physically demanding than basecamp expeditions.  

Basecamp expeditions are multi-sport expeditions that incorporate white water rafting, rock climbing, and hiking, based out of the No Barriers Mountain Campus in the Northern Rockies.  The accommodations are a bit more comfortable, and the activities are more adaptable. 

Backcountry Expeditions are more physically challenging and require participants to carry everything they will need with them on their backs for multiple days over challenging terrain. On these expeditions, teams are often covering 5-10 miles per day of hiking over rugged terrain, while carrying a backpack that can weigh up to 60lbs.  They take place all over the country, typically at elevations above 7,000ft, and are very committing, demanding experiences.

Please read through the Essential Eligibility Criteria specific to each expedition to gain a better understanding of each expedition.

 

How much do these expeditions cost for Veterans?

FREE.

That’s right, free.  We will provide you with a flight, and all meals, lodging, and necessary equipment from the time you land at your destination, to the moment you take off.  We ask that Veterans take it upon themselves to travel to and from their chosen airport.

 

Can family members, spouses, partners, or caregivers come along?

No Barriers Warriors programs are designed to help Veterans work on themselves as individuals, so bringing a guest of any kind is not permitted.  Please refer back to our website’s home page for other No Barriers opportunities that you can do with your friends and family members.

 

Can I bring my service dog?

If your dog falls under the ADA definition of service animal – Service animals are defined as dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities. – then you may bring them.  Please talk with a Warriors staff member before deciding to bring your service dog.  There are some programs that can be hazardous to your dog, and we want to be sure it’s a safe experience for all.

 

If I am selected for an expedition, what happens next?

If you are offered a spot on a team, your first step will be filling out our registration form, which gathers important medical information and other logistical details.  Our doctor will review your medical information, and may request to speak with you.  Once you are medically cleared, the Warriors staff will work with you to take care of travel arrangements, and get you all the information you need to feel confident arriving to your expedition.  

 

What can I do to make sure I’m physically prepared to attend an expedition?

Once selected, participants should always discuss their expedition with their personal doctor to make sure it’s a good personal decision to attend.. We do have suggested training tips that can be discussed with the Warriors staff after being selected for an expedition, but we cannot provide a fitness plan. We encourage our participants to talk openly with staff as they prepare for the expedition about any concerns or questions they have, but all participants are responsible for their own physical fitness training.

Mental preparation is just as important as physical preparation. Our expeditions are designed to challenge and push participants outside their comfort zones both physically as well as mentally. Some moments may present more challenges than others and there will be variability in each day. We ask our participants to embrace the journey as it comes and be open to new experiences with fellow veterans.

 

If I get selected for an expedition, will No Barriers Warriors provide a fitness plan for me to follow?

Selected applicants are responsible for their own fitness and being prepared to conquer the physical difficulty of the expedition. If participants are bringing their service animal, they are responsible for the physical fitness of their service animal as well. Our Expedition Leader team reserves the right to change the itinerary of any expedition based on the fitness capabilities of a selected team.

 

Who leads the expeditions?

Our expeditions are led by a team of experienced outdoor leaders, who come from many different backgrounds.  We strive to keep a healthy mix of Veteran and civilian guides, men and women, and different personalities.  Our leaders are passionate about what we do, and are the backbone of the Warriors experience.

 

How many Veterans are on a team?

The number of participants on each team can vary, but in general, we have 10-12 Veterans, 3-4 Expedition Leaders, and the occasional photographer.

 

I am coming from sea level — how will the altitude affect me?

Many of our participants come from sea level and our leaders are well trained in the effects of altitude. You will have an evening at a lower altitude in the front range of the mountains before moving higher into a higher elevation. It is important to drink water and stay hydrated during these transitions. From the moment you arrive, your leaders will encourage you to drink water and will be monitoring everyone for signs of altitude symptoms.

 

What is the weather like in Colorado in the summer?

Weather in the mountains of Colorado has a reputation for being variable and can change within the same day. Temperatures can range from 30° F to 80° F, or higher, depending on the time of day and elevation. The outdoor elements can be part of the challenge we meet in the backcountry. We prepare for both sun and rain with proper rain gear, warm layers, and plenty of sunscreen.

 

Where will participants be sleeping?

Typically, participants will sleep in hotel rooms on the first, and/or last nights of an expedition.  During the expedition, Veterans will double up in a spacious 3 person tent, and are issued a warm sleeping bag and foam sleeping pad.

 

What will I eat?

MRE’s for breakfast, lunch and dinner!  Just kidding – we take pride in our wilderness cuisine, and try to cook as much fresh, healthy food as possible.  We’ll have plentiful snacks, and can work with nearly any dietary restriction/allergy.  Don’t expect steak and lobster, but our leaders make some pretty tasty backcountry fajitas.  

 

What equipment and specialty clothing ?

No Barriers provides the majority of camping equipment and clothing. Gear lists are provided to each individual with specific gear for each expedition. When participants complete their registration form, size information is gathered for boots, rain gear, and trekking clothes. Typical camping equipment provided includes, but is not limited to: tents, sleeping bags, pads, trekking poles, backpacks, cutlery, water purification pens, gravity bags, and more.

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