I laced up my skates for the first time in five years today and hit the ice with my youngest’s first grade class. It felt great to be at the rink and brought back a lot of powerful memories. Even if I never stepped into a hockey rink again, it will always be a big part of me because I spent so many years at them. When you do things every day for a long period of time, it gets into your DNA. It changes you and becomes a part of you.
This is the biggest benefit of our immersion programs; you live the simple routine of the woods life day after day until it becomes part of you. Yes there are skills, yes there is instruction, but being out and living it every day is a completely different animal, and results in vastly different outcomes, than focusing on skills part-time. The experience of living it is ultimately much greater than the sum of the individual skills.
I often hear people talk about bushcraft and survival skills, those bits of knowledge or technique that, as the mythology goes, when combined allow you to live in the forest. When you live it every day it’s not skills, it’s culture. For us it’s about the woods life, not the woods skills. When you live it, it gets into your DNA, changes you and becomes a part of you.