Essential Survival Skills Overnight

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Popular shows like Survivorman and Man Vs. Wild are captivating audiences nationwide, but do you have what it takes to survive? Survival stories of missing people make headlines on a weekly basis and we are faced with the sobering reality that anyone can be caught in a real survival situation. Essential Survival Skills is an action-packed course designed to teach participants how to stay alive during a real survival situation.
During this 2-day course we will hike to a base camp where we will most of the first day practicing nature awareness skills, minimum impact camping techniques, learning survival priorities, building natural shelters, and starting environmentally responsible fires using primitive and modern methods. We will then break into smaller groups and participate in a 24-hour survival scenario to put our skills to the test in a controlled environment. During our last day we will debrief our scenario, talk about long-term survival considerations, and complete an environmental service project to walk our talk and give back to the land.
To register for this course, please go to and click the Register For A Course Today! link or call us at 303.447.1076.
COURSE ITINERARY: Introduction, Essential Camping Skills, Introduction to Wilderness Survival - We will meet at a central location in Boulder, CO for quick introductions, to check our gear and equipment, and to head to the mountains near Nederland, Colorado. We hike in a short 1-2 mile hike to our base camp where we will set up camp, practice nature awareness skills, and learn minimum impact camping skills. We have an introduction to wilderness survival skills, learn from real survival stories, and cover survival priorities, basics of natural shelters, primitive and modern fire methods, and survival kits. Shelter and Fire - We will dive in deep in the afternoon spending our time building natural shelters, such as the pine needle bed, a lean-to survival shelter, and the classic debris shelter. We will also work on primitive and modern fire methods such as 1-match fires, magnesium striker/petroleum cotton ball fires, and friction fire methods including the bow-drill, hand-drill, and fire plow methods. We will also demonstrate and give suggestions on how to set up a survival camp. Survival Scenario - We will split into smaller groups and put our skill and knowledge to the test. Each group will shed their modern gear and participate in a real 24-hour survival scenario. Participants will need to come up with an action plan, address their survival priorities, set up a survival camp, create a natural shelter, start an maintain a fire, collect water, and identify rescue/signaling options. Debrief Survival Scenario, Long-Term Survival, Environmental Service Project, Final Celebration - In the morning we will debrief our survival scenario, take a tour of our survival shelters, discuss long-term survival considerations, break down our camp and complete a mini environmental service project to give back to the land.
Age: 18 or older unless accompanied by an adult. Host Organization: TBA
Location: Near Nederland, Colorado
Date: June 6-7, 2009
Course Code: SO-1
Price: $295. Please Note: This price does not include airfare to and from Colorado, airport shuttles, hotel lodging, or transportation. We will meet at a central location and carpool to the Gates Camp.
Difficulty: You do not need any prior camping experience or survival training, so beginners are welcome! Be prepared to hike up to 2 miles at altitude and work hard practicing survival skills and completing environmental service projects that may involve removing invasive plants, sawing and hauling wood, and clearing debris. Again, at the Cottonwood Institute, we encourage folks to work at their own pace to make the course as mild or as wild as they would like, even if it is slow and steady!
Average Temperatures: High 80ºF / Low 50ºF. Be prepared for any kind of weather in the mountains of Colorado.
Course Book: 98.6 Degrees: The Art of Keeping Your Ass Alive!, by Cody Lundin.
AFTER THIS COURSE, YOU WILL: Practice essential camping and wilderness survival skills that could save your life. Complete a 24-hour survival scenario. Complete an important environmental service project to positively impact the natural world. Learn more about the Cottonwood Institute, its mission, educational programs, and philosophy.

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