Outdoor Adventure Programs

“First Descents provided me with the foundation to break down the physical and emotional walls that cancer has been building in me. This experience was a catalyst, and just the kind of life changing force I needed.” -First Descents Participant

First Descents provides life-changing outdoor adventures and community support for young adults (ages 18-39) impacted by cancer and other serious health conditions, as well as frontline healthcare workers and caregivers. Our goal is to get you Out Living It on a program that works for you as soon as possible. From rock climbing in the Adirondacks to whitewater kayaking the Rogue River in Oregon, there is an adventure for everyone. Our adventure programs are fully adaptive and completely free of cost. There’s no better way to start Out Living It with your new First Descents community!

Ready to join us on an adventure? Check out our upcoming programs below and then Apply Today!

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Participant Adventures

Hiking | Tampa Meetup – April 1st

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Join FD Alumni Mandy aka “Twiggy” for the day on Saturday, April 1st or overnight through Sunday, April 2nd at Cedarkirk Camp and Conference Center just outside of Tampa, FL to enjoy a day at Summer Camp! Day Option: Saturday, April 1st 9am-5pm (lunch included) Spend a day at summer…

Eligibility: Open to new participants.
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Oncology

Surfing | Outer Banks, NC – Oncology

April 30, 2023 - May 12, 2023

The Outer Banks of North Carolina are known as one of the best surfing spots on the East Coast. During this program, participants will spend four days honing their surfing skills with our longtime outfitter, Farmdog Surf School. After epic days spent catching the waves, you’ll kick back at our…

Eligibility: Oncology Participants, ages 18 - 45 , Diagnosed ages 15 - 39
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Participant Adventures

Kayaking | Midwest Whitewater Clinic -July 29/30

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Join FD alumni Nicole aka "Maze" July 29th and 30th for a 2-day beginner/intermediate kayaking workshop with Northwoods Outdoor Center. Come out for either one or two-days of whitewater kayaking fun and instruction with ACA certified instructor Sandra Newbury and our team! To learn more about the outfitter check out…

Eligibility: Open to new participants.
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Multiple Sclerosis

Surfing | Outer Banks, NC – Multiple Sclerosis

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The Outer Banks of North Carolina is known for its warm waters, golden beaches, and consistent surf break. You'll spend four days honing your surfing skills with our longtime outfitter, Farmdog Surf School. After epic days spent catching waves, you’ll kick back at our gorgeous ocean-front house to relax, enjoy…

Eligibility: Healthcare Worker Participants, ages 18 - 45
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Oncology

Kayaking | Smoky Mountains, NC – Oncology

May 28, 2023 - June 9, 2023

Nestled in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains, Bryson City offers some of the best whitewater kayaking in the American Southeast. With a rich history in the kayaking world and one of the greatest kayak learning centers in the country, this is an unbeatable place for your First Descents…

Eligibility: Oncology Participants, 18-45 years old
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Healthcare Workers

Kayaking | Smoky Mountains, NC – Healthcare Workers

May 14, 2023 - May 19, 2023

Nestled in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains, Bryson City offers some of the best whitewater kayaking in the American Southeast. With a rich history in the kayaking world and one of the greatest kayak learning centers in the country, this is an unbeatable place for your First Descents…

Eligibility: Healthcare Worker Participants, ages 18 - 45
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