This expedition begins at Sahara Creek Horse Camp near Mt. Rainier, then travels over the North Cascade Mountains and into the territory of the Teanaway Wolf Pack.
Learn the skills of a detective as you follow clues and solve mysteries that would otherwise go unnoticed. Animals reveal themselves to those who can read their stories in the earth. As you will see, tracks can tell us about the size, health, emotions, history and intentions of animals. You will leave with an understanding of the relationships between predator and prey. Few people can understand the language of the birds and follow tracks that animals leave behind; after this week, you will have joined that elite group. In order to truly understand the animals we hope to observe, we must adopt their behaviors and embrace their customs.
Current Enrollment: Open/Available to adults with prerequisite of any prior expedition, or two workshops (principally: tracking and birding themes). No prerequisite for parents of youth attending simultaneous overnight youth camp.
Course Goal & Skills Covered:
The goal of the this course is to help you learn our regional ecology and in particular, its zoology through the skills of tracking. We will simultaneously be learning to identify birds and other animals there while understanding their dependence on the region’s plants and plants that specialize in its habitats.
Skills covered during this camp session include, but are not limited to:
- Wildlife Tracking & Birding
- Sensory Awareness & Stealthy Movement
- Understanding Birds & Mammals of the Pacific Coast
- Understanding Insects, Beetles, Arachnids, Anthropods, Reptiles & Amphibians
- Understanding specific ways that animals depend on certain plant communities for their survival
- Mimicking at least 10 birds, including their language of songs, alarm calls, companion calls, and aggression calls
- Articulating the needs of animals, both in writing and public speaking, especially regarding the endangered species of your region
- Managing a survey of animals to learn how many are in an area
- Camouflaging yourself and your documenting gear in any environment
- Finding lost people and the art of human tracking.
- Communicating clearly and working well with tracking/research teams
- Drawing & Naturalist Journaling of Wildlife
- Camping & Hiking
- Orienteering with Map/Compass, and Natural Navigation
Schedule & Activities:
Activities covered during this camp session include, but are not limited to the following list, and are somewhat dependent on weather, instructor discretion, camper desire, and serendipity:
Sunday at the base of Mt Rainier: Intros; Sensory Awareness; Navigation Challenge;
Monday along the Nisqually River: Animal Forms; Mammal Families; Five Arts of Tracking; Bird Language; Photography Tricks;
Tuesday along on Mt Rainier: Optional Dawn Chorus; Travel into the Territory of a Roosevelt Elk Herd to Trail large Mammals; Learn “plaster casting” and Practice;
Wednesday to Alpine Meadows: Check Wildlife Cameras; Learn the Most Important Insects Beetles, Arachnids, Anthropods; Learn about Reptiles and Amphibians during our trip up into Alpine Meadows; Arrive in the Territory of the Teanaway Wolf Pack;
Thursday in the territory of the Teanaway Wolf Pack: Finish Learning Animal Families – Focus on Pine Forests & Sagebrush Canyonlands; Hike, Run, Walk Fast to Cover as Much Ground as Possible in our Search for Wolves;
Friday in the Teanaway: Continue Tracking Wolves; Learn Basic Search & Rescue.
Location, Pick-up, Drop-off and Airport/Bus/Train Options Options:
Click for Arrival Details: 5:00-5:30 PM Sunday meet at Sahara Creek Horse Camp, 262nd Ave E., Ashford WA 98304 on the road to Mt Rainier – Paradise. Or use our transportation – 2:00 SeaTac Airport $60; 3:00 Tacoma Amtrak/Bus Station $35; or 2:00-2:30 Puyallup Wolf Campus $35.
Click for Weekend Departure Details: There are three complimentary departure / pick-up points, including 1) Twentynine Pines Campground in wolf country for pack-up and stories between 2:00-2:45 and final departure by 3:00, 2) Cle Elum Safeway, 804 W 1st Street in Cle Elum on Friday at 3:45 p.m., and 3) North Bend Safeway in the McDonald’s parking lot on Friday at 4:30 p.m.; or use further transportation to Bellevue Collete 5pm Friday $25, or Seattle Amtrak 5:15 Friday $35; or Puyallup Wolf Campus 6-9 pm Friday $45; or stay over and depart Saturday Morning Puyallup $95; Saturday SeaTac Airport $115; Saturday Evening Puyallup $125; Sunday Morning Puyallup $165; Sunday SeaTac Airport $180; Full Weekend Stayover $195. To add transportation and weekend stayover options, just increase your registration deposit amount below by the amount listed above with a note of explanation. Thanks!
$590 if you register by April 30th, $595 by June 5th, and $600 thereafter if space remains available. To reserve your spot and lock in the earliest registration discount, make a $175 minimum deposit below and your balance will be due upon arrival.
Standard Discounts: You will receive cumulative discounts of $5 per additional week you attend this summer, $5 per additional family member attending this summer, $5 for successfully referring other families who register campers this summer, and $5 per online review you do for us on a searchable site like google once you’ve attended a program.
The only additional expenses you may incur for this course are for specific pieces of gear and health insurance. We have plenty of extra gear in case you cannot acquire something and recommendations for inexpensive temporary insurance if necessary. Also, please see above for optional transportation and weekend stayover choices.
Check/Mail/Email Registration Option: Print out and complete our Microsoft Word Registration Form for each participant and send with a check deposit payable to the Wolf College, 1026 14th St. SW, Puyallup WA 98371. You can also email us a completed registration form and pay using your preferred method.
Credit/Debit Card Registration Option: Just call us at 253-604-4681 or 425-248-0253 and we will take your registration securely over the phone.
Our refund policy is that deposits are not refundable unless your registration is not accepted. If you cancel after making additional payment, you may receive a credit for a future program, minus a 25% administration fee of total payments made, in case of emergency. You will receive a full refund if your program is canceled and not rescheduled at a time that you can attend. No refund (and not necessarily any credit) is given if a participant is inappropriate at the program and asked to leave.
Course Preparation: Agreements & Packing List
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