Bushcraft open up possibilities in all aspects of life, from simple foraging for food from the wild, to learning how to build your own shelter, lighting fires with various natural materials, such as friction firelighting, through to wild camping and expeditions in the wilderness.
Farafoot courses contains much more than just the practical aspects of survival in the wilderness. Within bushcraft there are the more emotional, spiritual and transformative benefits of the natural environment that have been recognised in the traditional cultural practices of humans throughout history. In technological societies such as ours the opportunity to maintain a relationship with the natural world is minimal, and so we lose out on the stabilising and health-giving influences of this relationship. Bushcraft participation allows us to explore our relationship with the natural world.
Bushcraft courses are about being in the natural environment and about being sufficiently confident in your knowledge and skills to use the natural resources available, so involves
We cover what tools you will need for bushcraft, how to use them effectively and safety and how to maintain them. The most common and most useful tool you will come across in bushcraft, is the bushcraft knife, and you will find that you will use one many times over the course of a bushcraft camp. Almost as important is the small woodman's axe - although we at Farafoot, prefer the bilhook because of its versatility and traditional use in the Midlands area. The others tools we use are the bow saw, both modern and traditional and the saw balco folding saw, that is very useful for carrying in you backpack.
All tools are supplied by Farafoot, however, if you already have a knife that you like to use for personal use, then you are very welcome to bring it, subject to a quick inspection by use, just to make sure it is appropriate.
How to build a shelter using the materials to hand within the woodland on Brown Clee Hill. Because of the remoteness of the location and altitude, we will also provide a pre-erected shelter to act as a base - which will be particularly important when the weather is less than clement. However, we actively encourage everyone to have a go and sleep in the shelters they have built themselves, which tends to ensure that you focus the mind and build something that withstands the night - and so far everyone has enjoyed the experience. You will be asked to bring your own four season sleeping bag and bivy bag on all overnight bushcraft camps, along with a sleeping mat or roll. If you don't have any of these, you may hire a set from us for a small extra charge.
Firelighting is a critical aspect of bushcraft since warmth and the ability to cook food, is essential for a comfortable bushcraft camp. Therefore we will show you and allow you to experiment with the wide range of methods you can use to light a fire. Most popular amongst these is the friction firelighting method, which is considered almost a rite of passage for any Bushcraft apprentice, however, we will demonstrate other techniques that are more effective in our temperate and damp climate. Finally, we'll show you how to prepare different kinds of fires and how to maintain a fire once lit. For cooking purposes we commonly use small enclosed metal Farafoot ‘fire boxes’, designed, manufactured by Farafoot and which will be available to purchase afterwards, if you wish.
During our Bushcraft courses, we cover the entire range of foraging from green edibles, through digging for roots and tubers, identification of mushrooms and fungi, through to the methods to hunt and trap animals for meat.
Farafoot Bushcraft courses will also guide you in how to prepare your foraged food, be it plant or animal and also ways of preserving your food bounty, so that it lasts for another day. through processes such as drying, pickling, fermenting or smoking.
Our bushcraft courses will also show you some great recipe ideas for your wild food, that'll make your mouth water. There will be the opportunity to forage for edibles, however the seasons will dictate what we find and how much.
Finally, do not worry, on bushcraft courses we won't be trapping any animals and any animals used to show how to prepare meat, will be brought by us on to the course pre- prepared and you will have the option to opt-out of this part of the course if you wish.
Bushcraft courses will also guide you in the sourcing and purifying of water through the digging of 'gypsy wells' and other means of making the water suitable to drink. However Farafoot bushcraft courses are also keen to show that keeping clean in camp is an essential part of maintaining your health and morale. Therefore, we will show you how to source natural cleaning materials, and if you get really filthy, we'll take you down to the stream and wash you ourselves.
Farafoot courses are primarily of a day’s duration or longer, in which small groups (6-15 people) will be taken into the chosen environment and participate in bushcraft activities.