Wilderness Medicine Field Course
Where Medicine and Adventure Meet

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Hello from Dr. Ellen Smith MD, FACEP

Dr. Smith is the  developer  and lead instructor of the Wilderness Medicine Field Course and an emergency and trauma physician with over 20 years experience practicing emergency medicine.  She is also an avid outdoor enthusiast.   Combining her passion for emergency medicine and her love of adventure sports led to the development of the Wilderness Medicine Field Course.  Originally designed to teach medical students how to apply and adapt emergency patient assessment, diagnosis, treatment and procedures to the outdoor environment, the course has evolved to include adventure racers, tri-athletes, rock climbers, paddlers, hikers, mountain bikers, backpackers, nurses, physician assistants, athletic trainers, police officers, paramedics, EMT’s, outdoor enthusiasts, interested high school students and retirees interested in outdoor medicine and safety.  Whether you desire to become a race/expedition doctor or medical staff, acquire CME credit in a unique fun way, become  certified to work as an outdoor guide such as  expedition guide, go on a multi-day trekking journey, or just ensure safety for your trip, the WMFC will be an important part of your outdoor/medical education. 

Dr Smith has been elected the “favorite teacher, favorite lecturer” of multiple conferences and has given multiple presentations to audiences at all level of medical training. She received the pillar of excellence award at Montgomery General Hospital and her Sports Challenge strategy was featured on the front page of the local newspaper as well as the local section of the Washington post.  Over 120 participants have joined her hospital sports challenge and more than 300 students have taken the WMFC.  She is known for her enthusiastic presentations, always achieving a high level of audience participation and is a well requested speaker at multiple organizations. 

This course has a unique perspective in that it teaches the student in depth the medical care needed for the outdoor victim from the emergency physician viewpoint and both pre and at the hospital.  The student will be introduced to a variety of outdoor adventure sports including kayaking, swift water, mountain biking, trail running, speed hiking, orienteering, adventure racing, and rock climbing.  While performing these activities supervised and in a safe manner, the medical care will be taught, demonstrated and then in turn performed by the student. 

Courses are given multiple times throughout the year and will vary in level depending on the audience and season for content both medical and physical.  You can join a preexisting course, or set up a private course for your group





Pre-approval by WMFC's Managing Director is required before registration. Pricing is competitive.

*** 2017 Class Schedule ***

WMFC 3 DayCourses

July 7th, 8th, 9th

8am - 8pm

Gaithersburg, MD

Register Now

Other class schedules are pending


Dr. Smith is appointed the founding Director of Sports Medicine Center at MedStar's Montgomergy General Hospital


Dr. Smith, Director of MedStar Sports Medicine