NOTE: This page has descriptions and details about each camp, for dates and schedule please see Schedule page - thank you!
Scout - Any person who can adapt to a changing environment, survive and thrive, who derives confidence from an artful level of skill in wilderness, humility from seeing a larger perspective, and who can navigate unseen through harsh terrain by acknowledging a spiritual connection to the world around them.
During the year LOTSWild engages youth and adults in beyond-the-ordinary martial arts and wilderness training in regular classes and special clinics, but nothing beats the intensive 5 day programs known as Highland Scout Camp.
Director Spencer Bolejack has been leading groups in wilderness excursions since 1992 and knows the western North Carolina mountains like few others.
Our Scout Camp program in its current form celebrates 10 successful years this year, and we continue to make improvements in delivery of information, locations for learning, and making the whole experience a fun one!
Although Scout Camp has various themes such as 'Blacksmith', 'Sail', or 'Scout', or 'Ninja', they all approach a similar goal - creating students of unusual talent through games, drills, classes, and exercises led by master teachers.
This year we have a day camp for younger students (4+) who are interested in our topics of study but aren't quite ready for overnights! Since our regular sessions are all overnights, we recommend students be at least 8 years old. Basic programs accept students up to age 17. Advanced classes (SCII) are available upon request to anyone with an appropriate background and experience with a target age of 12-17. Generally students with a minimum of three Scout Camp basics under their belt are ready to take on SCII. We also have adult programs available this summer, Adult Survival and Sparta.
Camps fill FAST with a limit of 10 people per week, so reserve your spot as soon as possible in 2013. Required equipment and forms are available here; http://yamabushi.us/scoutcamp.htm
All Scout Camp dates are listed on our SCHEDULE page, scroll down to find the camp you are interested in.
or email firstname.lastname@example.org
with any questions
For pictures and video of past year's sessions visit the PICS page, or check out our channel on youtube, WINDRIDER707.
Details on the various camps are available below;
Scout Camp I (basic) - students spend morning hours completing teamwork tasks, drilling and training in various martial arts disciplines appropriate for their age and ability level. We use our exceptional training center to build confidence, precise technique, discipline, focus, and character while developing solid skills in proven systems such as Tang Soo Do, Ninjutsu, Jiu Jutsu, Escrima, and others. After lunch we work on living Appalachian history, Cherokee crafts and lore, survival information, and projects designed to build self-sufficiency, safety awareness, cultural appreciation and a relationship with the natural world. All scout camps cover fundamental skill sets for outdoors proficiency. On Thursday students head away from base camp and construct their own shelter applying knowledge, cooking, and leaving no trace behind as they break camp and return home. While students should expect physical challenge and some emotional strain there is plenty of relaxation, hammock swinging, trampoline bouncing, swimming, and rest as well.
Students from all skill levels can learn in these programs since our teachers have aptitude in advanced levels of even the simplest skills. See Activities page for more examples. We have graduated many Eagle Scouts, US service professionals, and educators from our school.
Blacksmith Camp - students often want to blacksmith in our other camps but run out of time before they complete a serious project. This camp builds in daily time at the forge so students have time to learn the fundamentals of smithing and learn to make hooks, straighten metal, maintain a fire, learn about metal types and behavior, and work toward the ultimate goal of making a useful knife.
Ninja Camp - this program is very similar to scout camp in that it covers fundamental skills such as first aid, knife sharpening, shelters, fire, knots and navigation, but it looks at martial arts and stealth from a Japanese perspective. Licensed teachers pass on the traditional ninja methods that develop sensitivity, quiet movement, climbing skills, and alertness. As usual, students spend Thursday away from base camp. More emphasis is placed on night time comfort and travel, and more time is spent working with tools such as shuriken, blowguns, and swords (training versions).
Drum Camp - director Bolejack makes use of his passion for drumming by hosting an annual camp that replaces some of the martial arts time with drumming practice. Students learn technique, snare, full kit, studio skills and live performance knowledge, reading, rudiments, tuning, and exercises at our studio using multiple drum kits and ethnic percussion.
Sail Camp - While maintaining a similar theme from the above programs, Sail Camp gets folks on the water. We learn safety, swimming, knots and rope care, rigging, sail physics, general boating, fishing (for those interested), water navigation and of course no-trace camping as we trek around WNC's most beautiful wilderness waterways. This is considered an advanced camp (SCII) and is recommended only for teen students.
Advanced Scout Camp - a few years after holding successful SCI programs we realized the need to challenge experienced students more. SCII is a mostly wilderness adventure where students get to experience many of the things that confront a long-ranger from exhaustion to hunger, cold and wet to hot and dry, as well as some of the most remote and beautiful landscapes available to the backwoods traveler. These intimate camps with high staff to student ratio affirm a students skill in cooking, travel, first aid, traps and snares, edible and medicinal plants, stealth and quiet movement in the day and at night, wayfinding with maps and primitive means, and general observation. Any potential students should be capable of self-care in remote locations.
Adult - relaxed and fun with lots of learning and some training, similar in curriculum to scout basics, above.
Camp Sparta - an adult only short session (4 days) with daily training, multiple teachers, mountain time and serious students. Strict schedule, demanding, uncomfortable. Come motivated. Prior conditioning recommended.
International - SCIII-x, or Scout Camp III extreme, is our international program that connects students of all ages with master teachers in other countries. We visited Jamaica this year spending time in a primitive location, applying all our cultural and skills knowledge to survive and assist with living in a third world island nation. We expect to go again soon and would love to have some new folks join us. Passports needed. (update: next trip in April 2013)