living outdoors

When folks think of living a self-reliant outdoor lifestyle, usually what’s envisioned is picturesque tent sites and all the things that go along with camping. However, that’s not the whole picture. A large part of living a sustainable lifestyle in the modern world is maintaining systems that provide renewable resources without damaging the land we live on. So [...]

I’ve been taking time out of each day this winter to snowshoe on some of the local trails. It’s good exercise and keeps the cabin fever at bay. It’s also where I’ve been doing most of my thinking about course curriculums for the upcoming year. Being out in the woods by yourself on a crisp [...]

First Person Ecology In The Winter Months

Well, everyone, it seems like winter’s finally here. The last three days I’ve woken up, made a quick thermos of coffee and thrown on my snowshoes for a morning hike. During those hikes, I was reminded of the stark differences in the ecosystem from season to season. We’ve talked before on the podcast about how [...]

Learning Bushcraft Skills As A Family

While I wrote up the course description for School Of The Forest’s Family Bushcraft Week, I couldn’t help but think of the families in the neighborhood I grew up in, and our yearly “backyard campout”. Once every summer, all the fathers, and their kids would pitch tents in the small common ground behind our homes [...]

Underlying every course we run at Jack Mountain and School Of The Forest are the principles of sustainable living, and building a lifestyle that is closer to the land. We talk about it in passing during courses, but when programs are running at the field school, students are living those principles every day. From composting, [...]

The Webs We Weave

  Nature studies are a vital part of our “first person ecology” curriculum at Jack Mountain and School Of The Forest, and after a conversation about methodology of study with my colleague Ben Spencer I wanted to write a bit about why its such a vital part of the curriculum. It’s easy to read a lot of facts [...]

Hello again from School Of The Forest! We mentioned earlier in the summer that we’d be bringing back our Family Bushcraft week in 2018, and as of this morning registration is open. If you and your family want to have a truly alternative vacation next summer, hop over to the webpage and see what we’ve [...]

Youth Vs. Adult Learning Styles

Hello again from the Fall ’17 JMBS semester. This week was supposed to be spent on the trail, but due to inclement weather, we’ve pushed it back. So I figured I’d share an observation I’ve had over the “course” of the -heh- course. I spent the spring and most of the summer running youth programs, and [...]

School Of The Forest At The Libby Museum

  Summer’s in full swing, and so is School Of The Forest. We’ve just finished up a weeklong “Outdoor Skills” course at Squam Lake Natural Science center, and next on our list is another outdoor living class at the Libby Museum in Wolfeboro, NH. It’ll be a fun week, with teens in the course learning basic [...]

May 27th, 2016 Last week I covered our canoe trip up to the last stretch. Now I’m going to write about our last day. Buckle in. On our seventh day, we woke up to relatively warm weather, and packed up camp as fast as possible. Everyone, including myself, was in a rush to get paddling [...]

May 20th ,2016 After a month of training, we went off on our first expedition. Fifty-two miles is nothing to someone who drives everywhere they go. An hour or so at most. I kept thinking about Shackleton and other’s trips in the days before we pushed off to start the trip, and feeling that fifty-two [...]

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