Arrow Making

by Jeff Martin Primitive cultures and their means of making bows and arrows have always been an interest of mine. As a young boy, I remember visiting museums throughout the West with my Grandmother, where I had a deep fascination towards the Native American way of life. I always asked my Grandmother where the arrowheads […]

Read full story Comments { 2 }

Camping with Younger Kids

Making it Fun & Educational by Joe Fischer Taking your kids camping is the perfect way to bond as a family and provides your children with ample opportunity to learn about nature. The only issue here is that many activities that adults find captivating are less than entertaining for the little ones, and boredom can […]

Read full story Comments { 1 }

Real and Sham Survival/Bushcraft

I suppose it is the real demand for bushcraft and survival information that leads to its counterfeit, otherwise the counterfeit would stand a poor show. The growing demand for survival/bushcraft within the past few years has called forth a very large crop of TV Shows, YouTubers, Bloggers, & Books; good, bad, and indifferent — shows […]

Read full story Comments { 10 }

Camping in the Old Style; Oct. 10, 2015

Classic Camping celebrates the Golden Age of Camping in America (1880s – 1920s). This was a time when camping meant sleeping under canvas and cooking over an open fire. It was a time when the most innovative urges of the Industrial Revolution were featured front and center against the backdrop of a vanishing frontier… a […]

Read full story Comments { 1 }


Mentor 1. noun – an experienced and trusted adviser.      synonym – adviser, guide, guru, counselor, consultant 2. verb – advise or train (someone, especially a younger colleague). It was recently brought to my attention that portions of the Master Woodsman training/challenge, originally in David Wescott’s book, Camping in the Oldstyle, and subsequently this website, would at the […]

Read full story Comments { 0 }

An open letter to President Obama from Cody Lundin

I normally don’t share the latest social media on Master Woodsman; we are kind of like the NPR of outdoor skills… generally boring and no commercialism. However, I simply can’t resist this open letter to President Obama from Cody Lundin; a message that I have repeatedly been promoting here as it relates to the importance of […]

Read full story Comments { 2 }

Rules of Survival

This article contains my current thoughts and perspective on survival rules and more. As this is a life or death topic, I take it very seriously. That being said, what follows may or may not be the right approach for you, i.e., I am not trying to be evangelical in what I have written, I am […]

Read full story Comments { 8 }

Why a ‘Mora Knife’?

When it comes to the design of a woodcraft knife, the classic Scandinavian style knife in my experience sets the standard and I will share my reasons as to why in this article. But before we get started, let’s be clear on what is meant by a Mora Knife — a term that has become […]

Read full story Comments { 16 }
Cumberland Island Beach

Vote Cumberland Island!

I am a member of the Georgia Conservancy. Through Woodsmoke Camping Company (WCC), of which I co-own with Chuck Winchester, we support paddle trips and do volunteer work. As a Master Woodsman reader, I am asking you to support a great cause of which we are yet volunteering again. And all you have to do is […]

Read full story Comments { 0 }
Tata (13)

Aeta Jungle Survival Trek with Colonel Thomas “Tomahawk” Moore

I was lying on my bamboo bed in the cool of the early morning jungle dawn. I was using a damp cotton bed sheet as a blanket, and my reeking pack as a pillow. It was very uncomfortable. The humidity and my wet clothing were conspiring to make comfortable sleep impossible. It had been raining […]

Read full story Comments { 0 }

Rabbitstick 29; Sept 13 – 19

Rabbitstick is the Granddaddy of them all when it comes to primitive skills gatherings, so make your plans now to attend. I hope to be there for a few days myself after a visit to the far north, so let me know if you are coming. Not familiar with the event? Let me fill you in […]

Read full story Comments { 0 }

Tim Smith interview at Bull Moose Patrol

Our good friend Scott Oeth just published a great article over at Bull Moose Patrol on our other good friend, Tim Smith of Jack Mountain Bushcraft School. Strongly suggest you check it out…   A few years ago, I attended the “Riverman Course” on expedition canoeing and guiding at Tim Smith’s Jack Mountain Bushcraft school […]

Read full story Comments { 0 }

Do Preppers Really Need to Know Wilderness Survival Skills?

Several weeks ago I taught another tree and plant identification class. As is usually the case, the majority of students were very interested in edible wild plants, most considering it a priority. After discussing ALL the different aspects one could learn about trees, and more importantly, why, edibility dropped lower on everyone’s list, especially for […]

Read full story Comments { 4 }

How to Clean a Snapping Turtle

I was down on the creek fishing a few weeks ago and what did my wondering eyes see? Yep, a snapping turtle trying to hurry and get to deeper water because he knew he had been spotted. I didn’t bother jumping down the bank and grabbing him this time but I usually do that once […]

Read full story Comments { 6 }

Where Have All the Axes Gone?

Thank you Tony Nester for sharing this (surprising) article from The Atlantic… Where Have All the Axes Gone? The treasured woodchopper’s talisman is a guide to an almost-lost way of life, an Object Lesson. Last year was, by some accounts, the year of the lumbersexual—big beard, big plaid, big boots. Although not measured by time […]

Read full story Comments { 0 }


The Summer 2015 issue of Harris Publications’ American Frontiersman magazine went on sale June 17th at newsstands across the United States and Canada. In this latest issue, Chris Noble and Joe Flowers learned from the one and only, Mors Kochanski. You will have to get the magazine to read what they discovered about this savant of […]

Read full story Comments { 4 }
Steve to Flame

Camp-Fire Club of America Hallowed Ground

Steve Watts and I were the fortunate guests of Shawn Orbanic and Camp-Fire Club of America (CFC) for their June Outing these last four days. On this hallowed ground where the likes of Ernest Thompson Seton, Daniel Carter Beard, Warren Miller, Gifford Pinchot and many other Master Woodsmen of yesterday walked, we enjoyed the best […]

Read full story Comments { 3 }

Become a Master Naturalist

I recently discovered many states and Canadian provinces offer naturalist training and volunteer opportunities. Normally run by a university’s School of Forestry and State Cooperative Extension Service, these entities provide training that can be as short as 24 hours to 90 hours or more to become a Master Naturalist. While these initial classes are a great start; you […]

Read full story Comments { 1 }

Let Kids Run Wild In The Woods…

If you haven’t read the Master Woodsman article Leave No Trace Killed Woodcraft… almost, I strongly suggest you not only check the article out, but also the comments section, as the discussion after may be even more informative. With the passionate conversations here and on FaceBook (still getting used to that), I ended up doing further research. In […]

Read full story Comments { 1 }

Between The Rivers Gathering, May 26th – 30th

A note from our good friend Patrick Farneman… I can’t believe that gathering time is only 2 weeks away! My, how time flies. The site is being prepped, and the gate will be well-marked and ready to gather in all of our Between the Rivers family for this third year. We are excited to share […]

Read full story Comments { 0 }

Woodsmoke, Camping in the Old Style, and other important updates…

This is a good news / bad news post I am afraid. First, the bad news… Woodsmoke 2015 is cancelled. Per David Wescott: “Sorry – But due to numerous conflicts on the part of the hosts, we have been forced to cancel Woodsmoke 2015 – AGAIN. We are trying not to look like a bunch […]

Read full story Comments { 0 }

Extreme Barbecue with Steve Watts

From the book, Extreme Barbecue: Smokin’ Rigs and 100 Real Good Recipes by Dan Huntley and Lisa Grace Lednicer. Steve Watts is an outdoor kitchen magician. Parachute him in the wilderness and he’ll be cooking by the end of the day, without a pot, pan, or matches. While most all modern cooking contraptions are made […]

Read full story Comments { 3 }
Horace Kephart

Horace Kephart Days – May 15th and 16th (and a special book update!)

This is a DO NOT MISS Horace Kephart Days at the Schiele Museum of Natural History May 15th and 16th (details below). A great opportunity to spend time with not only the Kephart Family and Steve Watts, but David Wescott will be in attendance signing the new edition of Camping in the Old Style; now available for […]

Read full story Comments { 3 }

The Bushcraft Journal

From The Bushcraft Journal website: What is The Bushcraft Journal? The Bushcraft Journal is an online magazine working closely with many of the world’s leading outdoor guides and survival experts bringing you a  variety of first-hand knowledge based skills, step by step guides, how-to’s, hints and tips, and wonderful stories of travel and adventure from […]

Read full story Comments { 1 }

Mors Kochanski’s Grand Syllabus Instructor Trainee Program – A Review

Survival, Wilderness Living Skills, Bushcraft Mors Kochanski’s enthusiasm for wilderness recreation, his extensive knowledge of the field, and his desire to learn everything there is to know about the wilderness has made him one of the foremost authorities on wilderness skills in the world. And it’s no wonder, he has been an outdoor educator and survival […]

Read full story Comments { 7 }