Family Nature Gathering 2017

Into the Wild:  Bush Skills and Survival Know-How 

Family Nature Weekend 2013, hike with the kids

Hike with the kids, Fam. Nat. Weekend 2013

Dates for the 2017 workshop:
Option 1 – July 7-9 2017
Option 2 – July 9-11 2017
Option 3 – July 7-11
To Register, please fill in the Family Nature Gathering Registration Form

This years Family Nature Gathering will be about developing relaxed and responsible wilderness camping and travel skills. Part of the thrill of nature appreciation and survival are the challenges of food, shelter and the will to thrive! Learn how to build a shelter, start a fire, secure food and most importantly how to cultivate the survival attitude. Come join us as we learn ways for dealing with bears, cougars, wolves, snakes, spiders, ticks, poisonous plants and mushrooms.

We are excited to have two incredible facilitators this year that will inspire and teach from their love of nature.


Jessica Bamford is a passionate teacher-facilitator and indigenous medicines practitioner. Through the mediums of shamanic journeying, sacred art and her traditional medicine practice, Jessica brings to life the very essence of magic present in our world. She graciously teaches us to integrate the sacred into our daily lives through pragmatic application and creative bliss, helping us to honour and celebrate each individual`s role in this intricate and beautiful web of life.  Jessica is the co-founder of the Four Nations Coalition of Indigenous Medicines, is a sacred pipe (chanupa) carrier trained through the Lakota lineage of Wallace Black Elk and her teacher Kathryn McCooeye.  She enthusiastically facilitates vibrant earth honouring children’s programs, is a trained Birth Doula and has a thriving medicine practice in the Slocan Valley, BC.  (



Gitta Ridder learned how to weave from a Micronesian woman in the early 80s when she lived in the Hawaiian Islands. When she returned to BC, her passion for weaving took her to the Museums in Victoria and Vancouver to look at and attempt to copy all the cedar baskets she could find.  In the late 90s, a good 14 years into learning and teaching cedar weaving, she went to Haida Gwaii, where she spent a week, meeting the most inspiring cedar weavers who were very generous in sharing their knowledge with her.  She had an exhibition in Art Walk in Nelson in 1997, and sold baskets, wall hangings, and hats at the market for three years.
From cedar tree to product involves several stages: stripping the bark from the tree, processing the bark to dry safely, then several techniques for preparing the bark for actual weaving.  For example, a fine woven hat takes up to 50 hours of labor. She enjoys keeping this indigenous craft from British Columbia alive and evolving by sharing it with others.
This is a fully catered event that includes hearty vegetarian meals and snacks, boat transportation, tipi accommodation.
Fam Nat Gathering 2014, exploring the Kootenay lake Peninsula Mushrooms

Fam Nat Gathering 2014

Check out our Facebook page and see more pictures of previous family nature weekends.

Gathered conks during Nature Hike, Family Nature Weekend 2013

Gathered conks, Family Nature Weekend 2013

Prices for the 2016 Family Nature Gathering at the Tipi Camp:

4 nights/5 days
$400 for adults
$200 for 6 – 12 years
$100  for under 6 years

2 nights/ 3 days
$220  for adults
$120  for 6 – 12 years
$50 for under 6 years

To Register, please fill in the Family Nature Gathering Registration Form

Family Nature Weekend 2012

Family Nature Weekend 2012

Cedar bark weaving 2014-1

Cedar bark weaving 2014-1

Cedar bark weaving 2014-2

Cedar bark weaving 2014-2

Peter jumping High cliff 2014

Peter cliff jumping 2014

Hard to find a better view from a bathroom

Hard to find a better view from a toilet