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Adventure Log

WAFA Course at Wildcat Mountain

Arianna Qira recent WAFA certified with AVH Global Wilderness Medicine WMAI

This past weekend Alice headed to New Jersey to teach a WAFA course for Project USE. Thanks very much to Alex Lyttle, Director of Wildcat Mountain Wilderness Center for the opportunity to reach a new group of enthusiastic outdoor adventurers! One of the very cool things about adventurers is that they all have interesting and exciting outlooks on life.

Just one great example is Arianna Qira. System engineering pays the bills, but it’s outdoor activities like mountain biking and rock climbing that keep her happy. When you check out her Instagram feed it’s hard to believe that she’s only been climbing for 8 years.

Arianna says, “A friend of mine mentioned she rock climbed and it was a revelation to me that rock climbing wasn’t limited to the people you see featured in National Geographic! I started learning the basics from my friends that were experienced guides and I also took the SPI (Single Pitch Instructor) course to get even more training. At that point I wasn’t really thinking of being an instructor, however that course is a great way to get the best training! And now, I hope to take the SPI assessment in the near future.

Arianna Qira at Wilderness Advanced First Aid course given by Alice Henshaw  Wilderness Medical Associates International

The WAFA course I took with Alice was so fun but of course it was the hottest weekend of the year and there was a lot of sweating. My favorite skill learned was improvised splints. The neatest trick was using a layer with a cinched bottom to trap in your arm and keep it secure. Don't be afraid to make it nice and tight! You can use a ponytail or rubber band to get the arm sleeve and top super tight.

In a few months I'm gonna do a bridge course to get my WFER (Wilderness First Responder) certification. I take a lot of people who aren't "experienced" into the wilderness so I feel it's my responsibility to be over prepared. These courses give you the tools to problem solve when help isn't just a phone call away”.

Arianna’s advice—”For anyone interested in trying climbing, take a course with an AMGA certified instructor. It is easier to learn the correct way than to try to unlearn bad habits”.

Interested in taking the Wilderness Advanced First Aid course or any of the other great WMAI wilderness medicine courses? Just send a message to Alice at And you can check out Arianna's great photos on Instagram at @ariannaaqira!

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