Join Shane Brown, tracker, craftsman, educator and caretaker of Big Oak Canyon property to expand your knowledge of ancestral arts.

In this series, we will practice living a little closer to the Earth, as our ancestors did, and learn how this wisdom can enrich our lives today. Each session focuses on a particular craft or element and explores the plants, animals, stories, and aspects of life that are connected to it.

We will harvest materials directly from nature while practicing awareness, gratitude, and celebration. Thoughtfully tending the living things we use allows them to exist for generations to come.

September 8 – Animal Tracking and Bird Language
Follow animal tracks and signs, play tracking games and develop an awareness of bird language and animal communication.

September 22 – Food Preservation
Gather, forage and cook native plants on site. Tend and harvest and cook organic vegetables from the garden. Practice age-old food preservation techniques.

October 6 – Shelter
Practice techniques for building a simple but comfortable shelter with materials from the land, including harvesting and working with poles, earth, and native plants.

October 20 – Nuts and Seeds
Learn how to harvest, process, and prepare delicious nuts and seeds, both wild and from the garden, including acorns, holly-leaf cherry, black sage, and amaranth.

November 23-24 (overnight) – Animal Processing
Learn how to process a small animal with respect and gratitude, using the whole animal. In addition to using the animal for food, we will be practicing and discussing how to preserve and use different parts of an animal, including skin, tendons, hooves, fat, and bones for various crafts. This class includes one night of camping with time for feasting and relaxing in the evening. 9am Saturday to 3pm Sunday.

December 8 – Plant and Animal Fibers
Fiber processing, spinning, making cordage, weaving and plant identification.

December 22 – Weaving
Learn how to build a simple loom and start weaving your own fabric! Let your creativity come loose and weave yourself into your fabric.

January 5 – Fire
Learn techniques to make a friction fire, cook over the fire and gather materials to make your own fire kit.

Location: Big Oak Canyon (directions to the property are emailed to attendees once payment is received).

When: Sundays –
Sep 8 | Sep 22 | Oct 6 | Oct 20 | Nov 23-24 | Dec 8 | Dec 22 | Jan 5

Time: 9am – 3pm (with the option to camp Saturday night)

Age: 8 and up, children 8-15 are welcome with a guardian

Cost: $80 drop-in ($75 drop-in per additional family member)
$600 per 8 class series ($560/additional family member)

Limited space, 10 participants max

Camping Options: DIY camping onsite is available for an additional $10 per person Saturday night. If you would like to camp the night before, please rsvp in advance – [email protected]

*Descriptions listed for classes are potential activities. Classes are catered to the interest of the group and are subject to change.

Please email one Medical and Release Form per person to [email protected] Submit payment via Paypal to [email protected]

To register via Mail: send one Enrollment Form per family (see link in right column) and one Medical & Release Form per person (see link in right column). Send check or money order to – P.O. Box 504, Trabuco Canyon, CA 92678.