Sign up for Wilderness Skills Institute training course

Jan 30, 2014
Photo by: Bill Hodge Learn how to crosscut at the Wilderness Skills Institute. Pictured below is a trail maintenance class.

The Appalachian Trail Conservancy, the Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards (or SAWS, a project of The Wilderness Society) and the United States Forest Service are accepting applications for the Wilderness Skills Institute (WSI), a training program for wilderness stewardship and management, from May 19-20 at the Cradle of Forestry in Brevard.

The Institute is designed to provide practical information about designated wilderness and the skills necessary to work effectively in wilderness, including certifications such as Wilderness First Aid, Leave No Trace and crosscut saw. WSI is a proven resource for trail volunteers, agency employees and nonprofit staff.

The program each week features three levels of training for a variety of participants and levels of experience. Course work includes tool care, building trail structures, rigging to stabilize and move heavy objects and a trail maintenance course that emphasizes hands-on instruction on the theory and skills to maintain and repair wilderness trails. A course will also be offered for wilderness rangers focusing on history, policy, law, field safety, Leave No Trace and recreation use monitoring, among other topics. All tracks come together for discussions of wilderness theory and legislation with some of the nation’s most experienced stewards.

An application is required, and registration is free once accepted into the program. To apply, or for more information, visit

For more information about this training course, contact Leanna Joyner at 254.3708 or email

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