A Little About UOU
The core of UOU Outdoors is bringing people who love the outdoors together to share that passion with others. Countless studies show the benefits of getting outside. UOU’s here to help you experience the wilderness in the best way possible. From guided excursions to wilderness medicine courses, our goal is to be a resource to enjoy the outdoors safely. With the skills and resources you learn from UOU, you’ll be able to in turn pass it forward to others so they can experience nature in the safest and most FUN way.
What We Offer
UOU Outdoors started as an outlet for Stoney’s photography. He wanted a place to share his photos while venturing out in the wilderness. This slowly evolved to people asking him if he took others out on his adventures. Stoney began diving into wilderness medicine courses, and things quickly progressed from there. With his team, UOU provides a variety of outdoor experiences and educational tools to enjoy nature in a safe and fun manner.
Wilderness Medicine Courses
Whether you are an outdoor enthusiast, work as an adventure guide, or are enrolled in an outdoor educational program, UOU offers Wilderness Medicine courses to keep you prepared while outdoors. Although many backcountry accidents are preventable, providing the proper care can be critical in having a good outcome from an outdoor misfortune.
The SOLO Wilderness First Aid (WFA) course is a great starting point if you are an avid outdoor lover who wants a basic level of first aid knowledge. This course is perfect if you enjoy taking friends, families or other groups on short trips into the wild.
Known as the industry standard for trip leaders and guides, SOLO’s Wilderness First Responder (WFR) course is designed for people who are looking for extended wilderness knowledge and preparedness. It is the ideal course for those planning long-term backcountry trips. UOU is introducing a new modular WFR course taught at the host school for four consecutive weekends, so trip leaders will no longer have to stay at school or come back to school for eight days of their breaks. This is also available for Virginia’s EMS first responders looking to complete the WFR course. UOU will come to the station to teach the course to responders, making completing the WRF course more convenient and accessible.
She Nurtures Nature
For some, getting connected with nature may be a completely new concept. That’s where Shay Wilson comes in. Her guided trips, dubbed She Nurtures Nature, focus on incorporating mindfulness in nature. Shay explains that her outings are meant “to assist people in getting in touch with the tremendous benefits natures has to offer then you take a moment to pause.”
Shay has a professional background in wilderness therapy and an educational background in art. Her skill set ranges from backpacking in the backcountry, leading hikes, creating friction fires to drawing and painting on mountain tops. As the current artist-in-residence of the James River Park System she is passionate about sharing her enthusiasm for the benefits of spending time in nature and creative expression.
Pre- and Post-Adventure Resources
Every outdoor adventure needs planning. With UOU, you can get insider information on the best local gear shops to get everything you need for your outing. We provide free resources to trail maps for climbing, bicycle stores, mountain biking and more!
As we all know, the adventure doesn’t just stop after you’ve completed the trail loop or summited that mountain. UOU also provides a map with all of the best local brews and bites to keep the adventures going.
In the beginning, UOU was an outlet to share outdoor photography with people in the Richmond and surrounding area. That’s why we will be offering photography for sale on our website, and we currently have photos on display at Vasen Brewing and Northside Grille
In addition to Stoney’s photography, we welcome outdoor photographer and writer Lindsay Kagalis. She uses photography and writing as a way to share breathtaking images of places to see in the surrounding areas, while also bringing important issues like sustainability and conservation to light.
At UOU, we are proud to work with many like-minded organizations and businesses whose love for the outdoors drives their mission. Through collaboration and support, we are able to share our passion for the wild and adventure with those around us. In addition to our partners Vasen Brewing Company, Walkabout Outfitters and Roofnest, we are pleased to welcome our newest business partner, Peak Placement. From optimizing websites for all search engines, to streamlining customer experience to create better online interactions, they work to ensure businesses can be found when customers are searching for them. Coming from a background of consulting to Fortune 500 companies, the partners at Peak Placement bring their expertise to small and medium sized businesses looking to dominate their competition.
Founders Travis and Houston both love the outdoors — even though they spend a lot of time on their laptops helping clients! When they met the UOU team, they immediately "got" their mission and wanted to help get the ball rolling! They are looking forward to getting their certifications in Wilderness Medicine this year too!
Along with our amazing business partners, UOU is honored to work closely with our non-profit partners to share the outdoors with everyone and bring awareness to our environmental impact.
Keep Virginia Cozy
Keep Virginia Cozy is an environmental non-profit working to reduce the visibility of people on our public lands and forests. From litter cleanups on backcountry trails to assistance projects in Shenandoah National Park and beyond, Keep Virginia Cozy reminds people to be safe, kind, and welcoming from the mountains to the sea. They are partnered with UOU because Keep Virginia Cozy and UOU both believe in taking care of the outdoors, so everyone can enjoy them for generations to come.
Beyond Boundaries is a Richmond based non-profit organization that offers outdoor adventures to people with disabilities. Their mission is to open up the beauty of outdoor adventure to people who typically wouldn't have the opportunity. Beyond Boundaries also provides an atmosphere for the community to see someone for their ability, rather than their disability. Executive Director Shep Roeper shares why they partner with UOU:
We both share the love of nature and allowing people to experience nature in a safe and fun way. We both also believe that everyone can find some beauty in the outdoor world if given the opportunity.
We have big plans for this year — we are already off to a great start! The Wilderness Medicine courses are in the final stages of scheduling, and already filling fast. UOU is also working hard to create a completely new format for Wilderness Medicine courses that allows students involved in outdoor adventure programs to have more flexibility in their schedule so they don’t miss work or school. This is especially true for Virginia’s EMS first responders. UOU’s goal is to be a resource for first responders to get the wilderness training they need in a way that does not interrupt their day-to-day activity. In addition to Wilderness Medicine courses, UOU is looking forward to offering courses in Leave No Trace this year.
Another goal for UOU in 2019 is the launch of Shay Wilson’s She Nurtures Nature. Shay will be holding her first event on Saturday, March 9th at Pocahontas State Park. This event will focus on reconnecting with nature while also learning practical skills to empower you in hiking, camping and exploring the outdoors. If you want to learn more and sign up, click here.
A final goal for this year is for UOU to continue to provide outstanding resources for people looking to do things outdoors. Whether you are planning an outdoor adventure, looking for nearby outdoor-related events, or are interested in a Wilderness Medicine course, UOU is the best place to get the details on all things outdoors.