As it does for many people, tracking gives me back the closeness I had with the out-of-doors as a young person and gives me balance for the high stakes profession I’ve chosen. It gives me a way to contribute to wider efforts to do something about the degradation of the planet. But it also puts me in an environment that breeds ferocious learning -Mallory Clarke
Wilderness Awareness School offers some of the finest wildlife tracking training courses anywhere in North America. With programs designed for everyone from beginning to advanced students, we are dedicated to continuing the development and growth of the art and science of tracking. See our upcoming Wildlife Tracking Courses
Wilderness Awareness School’s teachings are all built on the foundation of understanding nature with the depth of knowledge of a naturalist, and with the connection and sense of place of a native inhabitant. We view animal tracking as an integrative discipline which requires knowledge and skills in variety of naturalist pursuits and outdoors skills. We train trackers that speak a language which is based not only on a thorough knowledge of tracks, trails and sign, but also on a rich grounding in the natural history, anatomy and behavior characteristics of animals, and ecological processes.
Whether it’s out for one morning at our Tracking Club, or for ten months of in-depth study around the Pacific Northwest with our Wildlife Tracking Intensive course, we offer something for everyone interested in learning more about the art of wildlife tracking.
All of our tracking programs are lead by instructors that bring a diversity of teaching experience as well as practical experience applying tracking skills in field. Our tracking instructors are both skilled trackers and experienced educators.
We see tracking as a growing and evolving field and encourage our instructors and students to continue to refine and expand their skills. Because of this you will find our classes are dynamic, engaging, and constantly evolving. We teach best practices in the field and include the latest research and understanding of wildlife ecology and tracking techniques in all of our classes.
Guest instructors, well known practitioners in the field, also join us for our intensive programs and to give public speaking appearances from time to time.
Some articles of interest from our NatureSkills.com site:
- Tracking Our Natural Roots - by Dave Moskowitz
- Animal Tracking Guide – What to Take with You - by Clint Hollingsworth
- Animal Tracking Basics: Slow Harmonic Gait - by Jon Young
Fun-filled mornings of community learning as we see into the lives of wild animals through the tracks they leave behind. Participants are led by skillful naturalist instructors into the world of mystery and intrigue that we call tracking.
Adult $5 per day Free for club members, September-June One Saturday morning per month
Many of the region’s finest naturalists share their wisdom at REI in downtown Seattle. Wildlife Tracking and related topics appear often in this series.
Ages Adult FREE, Wilderness Awareness School is featured periodically
The Wildlife Tracking Intensive, our most in-depth tracking course, meets one weekend per month from Sept. – June, and provides in-depth training for both beginner and advanced students. Visiting a diversity of habitats from the coastal dunes of Oregon to the high deserts of eastern Washington, participants have the opportunity to study and track a great variety of wildlife species. From snow tracking elusive lynx, bobcat, and cougar in the Cascade Mountains to trailing mink, otter, and bear along riparian sandbars in the Puget Sound, this wildlife tracking course is packed with adventure, challenge, and quality instruction.
Ages Adult $2850, 9 weekends September 2011 to June 2012
Our core intensive course is nine months of thorough grounding in every aspect of our curriculum, spent as part of a supportive community of fellow learners. At the Residential Program, you will develop the eyes, the ears, and the awareness with which to help our culture move forward into the future in a healthy and sustainable way.
Adult $10,350 Scholarships available, 33 weeks Sept-June, Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday with extended trips
The Kamana Naturalist Training Program, developed and refined for over twenty years, is a comprehensive independent study course that covers the naturalist background needed to engage in the wilderness arts – including wildlife tracking, bird language, survival and primitive living skills, traditional herbalism, and naturalist mentoring. Begin with Kamana One: Exploring Natural Mystery. During this short course you will experience two weeks of awareness exercises and six areas of ecological study using a field guide and audio series narrated by Jon Young. Begin to see the world through “native eyes.”
Ages Adult Kamana One starts at $85, Learn at your own pace
Volunteer Wildlife Tracking Opportunities
In this environmental stewardship project, teams of volunteers carry out snow tracking surveys throughout the Winter to search for and document the presence of wildlife in key areas along Interstate 90, including rare and sensitive forest carnivores such Marten, Lynx, and Wolverines. Information gained from these surveys may be invaluable in helping protect wildlands from imminent development and direct the future construction of wildlife crossings of the interstate.
Ages Adult Volunteer, Training in November