The Thrill of the Skill


Apr 1, 2004
Outside Magazine
adventure sports camps Triathlon, Adventure Racing

Become the leader of the pack: Adventure racing in Costa Rica    Photo: Abrahm Lustgarten

Total Immersion
New Paltz, New York
For those who have always wanted to try triathlon, Total Immersion's six-day Tri Camp in Killington, Vermont, specializes in teaching proper technique (rather than beating you into the pavement) whether you're a newbie or a repeat Ironman. Typical days start with stretching and core-strength exercises and progress to strategy sessions, where you'll learn to draft in the open water, ride with the pack, and run faster using less energy.
End Game: Improving your mental toughness—and your time—in the Lake Dunmore Triathlon the day after camp ends.
Info: $1,095 (all-inclusive), August; 800-609-7946,
Or Try:, in Encinitas, California, and train with eight-time Ironman world champ Paula Newby-Fraser; three to five days, $599–$999; 760-635-1795,

Odyssey Adventure Racing Academy
New River Gorge, West Virginia
Odyssey gets beginners race-ready in less than a week in its six-day adventure racing training camp, starting with Trailblazing 101—orienteering by way of map, compass, and stars in West Virginia's rugged New River Gorge. The following days bring crash courses in river safety, kayaking, canoeing, and whitewater swimming on the Class II New River; climbing at the Endless Wall; and mountain-biking area trails. Evening classes at Camp Washington Carver cover basics from team dynamics to snacking.
End Game: Pounding through the Endorphin FIX, a 125-mile, 40-hour race with your course mates in the New River Gorge.
Info: $1,725 (all-inclusive), May; 757-645-3397,
Or Try: Gravity Play's Adventure Racing Retreat, a 12-hour intensive in Moab, Utah; $75; 970-259-7771,