Twin Eagles Wilderness School
Greetings from Twin Eagles Wilderness School, and welcome to our December eNewsletter! Here at the cusp of the new year, we're feeling grateful for 2012 and hopeful for 2013. 2012 was a year of new beginnings for us, starting with a deep revisioning process that led to our new website, and the launch of both the Art of Mentoring and our transformational, nine month Wilderness Immersion Program. Looking ahead to 2013, we anticipate continued significant growth for the vision - including all of our deep nature connection programs as well as our community at large. Whether you are a longtime community member or new to Twin Eagles, thank you for your support!
eNewsletter - December 2012
Feature Article: Wilderness Survival Guide
I created this wilderness survival guide out of a deep passion for wilderness survival, and from a deep love for the Earth.
I admit it, I LOVE wilderness survival. I first began learning wilderness survival out of a deep, primal need to feel in my bones that I could provide for my most basic human needs directly from nature. It seemed crazy to me that my life was totally dependent on a complex system of grocery stores, polluted highways, telecommunication systems, electric grids, modern structures, water treatment plants, and more. I mean, shouldn't we all be able to be in direct relationship with our most primary needs? Perhaps idealistic, but that is what inspired me to begin my journey into wilderness survival over a decade ago.
Can you guess the #1 priority for survival in the wilderness?
As a wilderness survival guide, I have mentored many people in the art and science of wilderness survival. I love the answers beginners give to this question. "Water!" Nope. "Food!" No way. "Fire?" Nada. "Shelter!" Wrong again. "A good knife?" Definitely not.
You'll find the answer by... continue reading here
Twin Eagles Wilderness Immersion Program - Update
December at Twin Eagles Wilderness Immersion Program was an unprecedented month. It continues to amaze me how much growth can happen in a relatively short period of time when people are passionate and unified. This month our list included (amongst a few secret teachings that I can't reveal to you) hand drill, sign tracking, caretaking, knife & sheath making, primitive trapping, stone tools, flint knapping, and our end of autumn inner tracking rite of passage intensive facilitated by our good friend Barry Moses of the Spokane Tribe.
Here is a story to help shed some light on the experience. It was a couple weeks ago and I was leading our already tightly knit group in the process of knife making. We were working on handles. They had all selected their handle blank from a very dense local hardwood used traditionally for tool handles by the Kalispell (the local indigenous peoples of our place, Lake Pend Oreille). They had spent several hours carefully designing, carving, sanding, polishing and finishing their handles. They were beautiful. It was time for the nerve-wracking step of hollowing out the inside of the handle to receive the tang of the knife blade. Everyone was carefully proceeding, when I heard it.
"OH NO!" she said. I walked over to investigate. In the process of hollowing out the handle, she had accidentally partially broke through, leaving a very obvious hole right in the middle of the handle. I could tell she was devastated. Having guided folks through these moments before, I first just gave her some time, letting her sit with the uncomfortable feeling of her "mistake". Then I sat with her for a bit, and offered another perspective.
I told her the story of when I was making one of my first coal burned spoons, and how I wound up selecting my cedar blank last. I wound up with a piece of wood no one else wanted, as it had a big knot on one end of it. I worked with the piece though, coming from the perspective of working with the wood, asking it what it wanted to become. I ended up clearing out the knot, leaving a beautiful hole on one end that I worked into my design. It was beautiful, and many folks commented on how they wished they had chosen that piece and created something so unique and beautiful.
After telling this story, I asked her, "How can you incorporate this 'mistake' into your design?". She was still upset, but I could see the gears were turning.
The next day she came back, showing me one of the most beautiful knives I have ever seen. In the spot where the "mistake" had been, she had hollowed out the handle more and inlaid a gorgeous shell that brought a certain power and grace to the knife that was unmistakable. I looked up at her, and she was so proud. I would have been too.
The teachings don't stop there. Now come the deeper questions. "How is this like your life?", I said. "What if you could incorporate the "mistakes" you make into beautiful aspects of your life, sanctifying your very existence?" That is where the inner tracking begins.
Sound interesting? Check out the Twin Eagles Wilderness Immersion Program. It is a transformational nine month journey into the arts of wilderness survival, wildlife tracking, edible & medicinal plants, permaculture, nature based mentoring, naturalist training, bird language, and inner tracking. It is all about taking a conscious step forward into deep connection with the natural world around you, a tight group of peers/mentors/community, and yourself.
Weekly Homeschool Youth Nature Program
Twin Eagles Community School
For kids ages 6 - 13 · Sandpoint, Idaho
One day per week, Fridays 9 am - 3 pm
Autumn, Winter, & Spring Seasonal Blocks (~8 sessions each)
Come join our original weekly program for homeschool youth that explores deep nature connection and the wilderness arts through nature based mentoring. Students truly steep in a timeless experience of the natural world with teachings of the naturalist, the tracker, the wanderer, the herbalist, the ecologist, the survivalist and the scout. Now in its eighth year, Twin Eagles Community School is a tremendous opportunity for youth to experience knowledge of place and nature awareness all in a powerful atmosphere of cultural mentoring. Click here to learn more about Twin Eagles Community School!
Weekend Teen Wilderness Programs
Twin Eagles Seasonal Teen Rendezvous
For teens ages 13 - 18 · Locations throughout the Inland Northwest
Weekends run Friday evening through Sunday Afternoon
Autumn, Winter, & Spring Sessions
Twin Eagles Seasonal Teen Rendezvous offers awesome experiences to teens throughout the Inland Northwest and beyond to sink deep roots to the earth through wilderness skills while soaring high through full-on group adventures. Teens learn leadership by working together as well as applying their sensitivities through ancient earth based skills and crafts. This is a powerful opportunity for teens to encounter the wild around them. As well, teens have a chance to touch their own inner wildness by giving unique voice to their inner selves amongst a community of peers and mentors. Click here to learn more about Twin Eagles Seasonal Teen Rendezvous!
Blessings on the New Year ahead,
co-Director & co-Founder
Twin Eagles Wilderness School
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Header photo courtesy Joseph Rocchio Photography
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