On Discovering Self

"Walk in Peace... Learn from Nature... Find Yourself...

Friday, September 14, 2012

Finally A Meetup: BCUSA Minnesota Members

   I was quite excited on Labor Day Weekend, 2012 to finally meet up with some Minnesota members of BushcraftUSA. One of the members, "Steene" and myself have been playing email or personal message tag (PMing) on the BushcraftUSA forum site for some time, trying to arrange a meeting. But to no avail, we just could not make it happen. Then this Labor Day weekend came along and he said he could make it. I quickly contacted two other members, Gager and Little Jon and they agreed to meet us as well. We were on for what would be, at least for me, a first time "Meet Up" of Minnesota members.
   I let the guys know that I would be bringing what we would need to practice some skills and that I thought it would be great to work at friction fire and bow drill sets. I also brought some compasses to run a 7 point determinate compass course and if time allowed, we would hike out to find parts for a bow drill set to build from scratch and maybe work on some natural cordage skills.
   Well the friction fire practice was a lot of fun and here is a video of two of the guys and their very first attempts at getting a friction fire with a bow drill set.

   As you can see, both Steene and Gager were successful in their attempts and I must say it was well worth coaching them thru it, to see the smile on their faces. It was fun to be kids again.
   Next we went on to run a determinate compass course, which really was a set of 7 compass bearings they had to follow, each bearing they walked until they hit a barrier, such as a tree or a rock or landmark. The whole course did not take long and led them all to a source of water. It was a fun time, and if I had not been so involved walking thru it with them, I would have had more video. Maybe next time.
   Around noon, Little Jon and Gager had to leave, and Steene and his son and myself went on for a hike to gather for him some parts for a bow drill fire set. We settled on some boxelder and basswood and he tested it with a little burn in. He will be good to go for some practice. We also stopped long enough to harvest some wood nettle and make some cordage. Steene was very interested in that, as he is very adept at making nets. I am hoping to talk him into teaching how to make netting one of these next times we meet up. That will be fun.
   After we returned to the parking lot, we said our farewells and both agreed this will have to happen again. It was just to good of a time to let it happen but once. All in all, we made good friends and I know that this kind of adventure will continue and grow. Now I just need to get some more members to visit us here for our Saturday 9am meetups in the Minneopa State Park. Come and join us if you can. Every Saturday, 9am in the Group Camp parking lot to start.
   Happy Exploring my friends.

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