Start & End at Home!

Wilderness Risk Management for everyone.

Designed and taught by Luc Mehl, award-winning author and educator. 

This course runs annually. Our next session will be in February 2025.

Start & End at Home!

Wilderness Risk Management for everyone.

Unlimited access to course material and discussion. Designed and taught by Luc Mehl, an innovator in creative planning and adventure.

February 2024


Quickly build a tried-and-true risk management and trip planning toolbox.

Informed, or just lucky?

We don't always know when we've made the right decisions or just got lucky.

Start & End at Home is a skills accelerator: professional training and twenty years of hard-earned experience.


Wilderness Risk Management

Make tough decisions easier. Adopting a risk management framework will remove a huge weight from your shoulders. We'll borrow insights from multiple industries to find the right framework for you.

Environmental Hazards

We can't control environmental hazards like weather, rock fall, or rapids. But these hazards can be anticipated and planned for using a suite of online resources. Preparation builds resilience.

Route Planning & Digital Mapping

Create a digital map of your intended route and bailout plans.

  • Google Earth
  • Esri
  • CalTopo
  • Gaia/On X/FatMap

Near-real-time Satellite Imagery

Anticipate the current conditions based on recent satellite imagery.

  • Sentinel
  • Landsat

Weather History & Forecast

What happened last week and what can you expect during your outing?

  • Windy
  • Visual Crossing
  • Environmental sensors


Use your smartphone to navigate by satellite imagery and GIS layers.

  • CalTopo
  • Gaia GPS
  • On X
  • FatMap

The Human Factor

It turns out that anticipating environmental hazards is the easy part ... what goes wrong is almost always the human stuff like making decisions, managing expectations, and communication. We'll build a toolset to manage these hazards too.

Join the February cohort or work at your own pace

Tuesday/Thursday evening Zoom sessions are available for learners who benefit from face time and accountability. Or, work at your own pace through pre-recorded videos.

Either way, you will have unlimited access to all course materials.

What makes Start & End at Home unique:

  • Wilderness Risk Management:¬†Luc's formal training as a swiftwater, ice, and avalanche rescue instructor, combined with hard-earned experience, will help you¬†find a risk management plan¬†that meets your objectives.
  • Ground-truthing: The¬†strategies in this course have all been tested. Luc has traveled over 10,000 miles in Alaska's backcountry¬†by foot, ski, pedal, paddle, and ice skate.
  • Top-tier instruction.¬†Luc is an award-winning author and educator.¬†"Luc is, by far, the most thoughtful and conscientious instructor I've ever had the pleasure of working with. He is able to explain things in a way that makes sense, and he cares as much about the experience of his students as he does about their safety." -Eric C.
  • Community: Join like-minded folks for weekly discussions and an online forum.
  • Stewardship and ethics:¬†Growing up in a half-native¬†community in rural Alaska, Luc learned the value of wild lands and the importance of respectfully visiting them. Respectful visitation is woven into all aspects of this course.

Sam Alexander

Mountain Guide and Former US Special Forces Detachment Commander

I have planned and executed high-level Special Operations combat missions as well as complex backcountry guided tours and I will outright say that taking a course from Luc has made me a better operational planner. And as an Alaskan Native, I appreciate the thought and care he puts in his approach to stewardship of the land and his sincere desire to be a good neighbor.

If you want to take your backcountry planning to the next level, spend some time with Luc.

Online course: Start and End at Home

$395 USD

  • We start February 1st, 2025.
  • Tuesday/Thursday¬†office hours.
  • Unlimited access to the library of instructional videos.
  • Unlimited access to an online community of like-minded folks.
  • Complete at your own pace/schedule,¬†or join the cohort.
  • Office hours, peer review, and group discussions.
  • Guest expert conversations
  • Includes free trial subscriptions to Gaia GPS and CalTopo.
  • A 3x payment plan¬†is available.


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