Survival Skills

Ancient and modern skills of learning to adapt to the landscape in order to meet your basic needs. Perception changing, challenging, and fun. Classes for all skill levels.

Teen Wilderness Exploration and Leadership

Join Roots this summer as we explore the Vermont wilderness while learning land based survival skills and leadership. Get pumped for drinking from clear mountain streams, jumping in lakes, walking for miles through the deep summer woods, and finding beauty in nature at every turn. Learn these skills in a community of students and instructors there to guide and support all in our wanderings through the forest.

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Land Navigation

Losing your way in the wilderness can be an inconvenience or a life threatening problem. However, with some simple tools, knowledge, and skills, not only can you avoid getting lost but you can plan and execute off trail travel into amazing back country landscapes or navigate to a specific location when it really counts.

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Summer Plant Identification and Foraging

We will be spending the afternoon learning, exploring, and nibbling on what early summer foraging has to offer.  All experience levels are welcome!  


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Advanced Fire Kits

We will be taking a look at  bow drill, a fire by friction technique, and bring it to an elevated level both in material and technique.  To create a kit that is long term as well as beautiful we will craft a high performing flex bow out of osage orange and peck a stone handhold that will never have to be replaced.  We will also take a look at techniques and various ways to troubleshoot and modify your kit so that you can be versitile as you coax fire from wood.

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Wilderness Skills for Teens

This camp is cancelled for the summer of 2020 due to Covid-19.


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Bird Language and Behavior

Understanding birds, their behavior and their language is a key to understanding the natural world at large. The eyes and ears of the forest, birds can be constantly keying us in to deeper levels of knowing what is happening around us, the health of the ecosystems, and linking layers of the ecosystem together in exciting ways.

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Animal Processing

Join us for day of learning the entire process of bringing an animal from whole to breaking it down into its many useful parts. Learn to get over the confusion and fear of what to do, and learn to take part in the creation of your food from the most basic level.

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Late Fall Foraging and Processing

Late fall offers us a bounty of food. From roots at the peak of their energy storage, to fall nut harvests, to the last greens surviving the frost, the late Autumn landscape still provides foods to explore and harvest. This course will go into the seasonably available foods, as well as preparation and processing of across, one of the most abundant and nutritious or fall edibles. 

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Summer Edible Foraging

Come out to Roots for the day to learn a bit of botany as you discover delicious wild edible plants you can harvest off the landscape! We will focus on how to identify plants, taste plants, and talk about preparations about how to include wild plants in your diet. Expect to hike a bit, rain or shine.

Some kids and teens love plants!  I have decided to open this class up to those younger that 18.   Please note that this class will be run as an adult class to which it is open to younger folks who are excited to learn and can focus along with a parent or guardian.

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Spring Foraging; Roots and Shoots

Spring!  The time to eat your greens!  This is also a fantastic time to learn the basal rosettes of so many biennial plants that have edible roots.   We will spend the day identifying various plants, nibbling, and putting together a salad of wild greens and sauteing of foraged roots.  This is a great way to get into a foraging practice for the rest of the growing season.


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Wilderness Survival Basics: Four Day - Spring

Join us for four packed days of survival basics! We will be running a Spring and Fall Version of this class with different skills emphasized and offered specific to the season. 



Shelter Basics- Tarps and Knots

Bow Drill Fire

Wild Edible Identification and Foraging - Roots, Shoots, and Leaves

Bark Containers

Water Purification

Stone Tools River Cobble Knapping

Wildlife Tracking- Clear Print ID

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Winter Fire Making

Come out to Roots for the day and bring your fire skills to a new level! We will cover basics of building and maintinatn a good hot fire in the snowy winter conditions and learn which trees to select for our fuel. We will then carve our own bow drill kits and put them to use to create fire from friction! 

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Family Wilderness Skills Overnight

Join Roots with your child or your whole family for an overnight camp out and wilderness skills. All experience levels welcome.

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Wilderness Self Reliance

Wilderness Survival Basics for beginners, hunters, hikers, naturalist, and travelers, both modern and primitive. Hands on and packed with knowledge. A two day class.

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Core Skills

Primitive Survival Skills, in depth, hands on, intensive. Shelter, water, fire, food, navigation, tracking, edible and medicinal plants, primitive hunting and trapping, cordage, stone tools, and more. Great full week for beginners. A six day class.

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Wilderness Survival Basic - One Day

This a hands on and informative day to get your feet wet and check out Roots while coming away with practical real world skills & knowledge that saves lives.

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Wilderness Survival Basic -One Day- Boston Area

This is a fun and informative day to get your feet wet and check out the Roots while coming away with practical real world knowledge that saves lives. Boston Area

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Wilderness Survival Immersion Project- 9 Month Program

4 day introductory course, followed by one weekend a month for nine months, ending with a four day survival trip. In depth primitive survival skills built and refined over nine months. All levels welcome.

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Winter Survival

A basic primer to protecting and caring for yourself during the difficult conditions the northern winters can manifest. A two day class.

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Basic Stone Tools- Flint Knapping

Shaping rocks into beautiful and functional tools is a fun and challenging skill that has been practiced for over 3 million years! This course is a basic stone tool class for beginner and intermediate flint knappers.

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Autumn Wild Edible Plant Foraging

Learn to see through the wall of green to a bounty of healthy, delicious, and nutritious local foods! Join Roots for a day of getting to know how to identify, harvest, and process wild edibles. A one Day Class.

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Hide Tanning

Turn a raw deer hide into beautiful and functional buckskin for clothing and projects. Also looks into making and using rawhide, sinew, hide glue, bone, and more. Space is limited. A three day class.

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Pelt Tanning

Furs and pelts are an amazing way to get your hands on the tanning process. This introduces you to much of the principals, terminology, and processes of hide tanning while being less intensive and more approachable then tanning a whole deer hide into buckskin. You will get to learn how to take raw pelts and turn them into beautiful furs to use in projects such as making hats, gloves, vests, hood liners, and pouches. In this course students will tan and take home a finished pelt. We will cover the steps of skinning, fleshing, membraining, softening, and smoking.

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Cooking by Fire

Learn to cook in and open hearth fire setting. Using traditional techniques you can bake, broil, fry, steam, roast, and more just using a fire. This class is literally delicious. A one day class.

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All Ages Fire Making Class

Join us with your family for a day of learning fire building and bow drill, our favorite method of friction fire! A one day class.

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Open House and Skills Share

A free event in which prospective students came come out and get a feel for the school and old students can come and see whats new and work on skills in an open setting. A one day event.

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