Take Survival Training this Spring

4 Single Supershelter ready for use Survival Lean-to under construction on Course

The Spring Mountain Survival Course (SMSC) is a world-class professionally taught Modern Wilderness Survival Course, designed to give you the knowledge you need if stranded in the Mountains of Canada. If you are a Hiker, Backpacker, Traveller or GSAR Volunteer in British Columbia or Alberta, then this is the professional Wilderness Survival Training you need to take. It will provide you the skills and ability to survive comfortably when stranded in the Montane or Temperate Rain forests of your province or elsewhere in the any Canadian Mountain environment.

We will begin the course at our base camp, in the Columbia Mountains near Boswell, B.C., at an elevation of around 600m. We will spend three days and nights learning mountain survival skills. This “Temperate Rainforest” in spring is a wet, moisture-filled environment. This forest provides a great training environment filled with cedars, fir, larch, birch, willow and pine. We will spend some of our time exploring and collecting firewood, saplings and other useful plants in this forest.

We will concentrate during these three-days on teaching the fundamental survival skills you need to learn including, safe tool use, fire lighting, cooking over a fire, shelter building and water purification. During this time, you will live in a rustic camp. Each participant will build and live in a number of single-person and double-person shelters with a shared fire. Fire management and cooperation with the individual on the other side of the fire are essential skills you will be learning and practicing.

"…talks about the task, then does the task, then gives you the time to complete the task…" — Former Student

We will then leave our base camp on day four and move as a group by vehicle to a higher elevation area to build a new camp and spend the night in higher terrain, normally near snowline. In this new area, we will quickly see the differences due to elevation and slope. Here we will ensure you can survive and thrive if stranded. We will have a chance to see and understand northerly and southerly facing slopes, higher terrain changes and a walkabout in the “Sub-alpine Forest” of the Columbian Mountains. We will finish the course off with a wrap-up and debrief back at the base camp.

This survival course gives you the skills and confidence you need for survival in the Canadian mountains or another montane environment. To register in this 5-day course, you need to first complete the Online Survival Core Seminar and read Canadian Wilderness Survival before the course starts.

Field Training Skills Covered


  • Safely using a Survival Knife
  • Basic Knife Handling
  • Sharpening Board & Knife Sharpening
  • Wood Splitting with a Survival Knife

Building & Using Survival Tools

  • Build & Use a Baton
  • Build & Use Wooden Tools
  • Notches & Try Sticks
  • Useful Knots
  • Using a Bow Saw
  • Safe Falling of Deadfall Trees
  • Improvised Bindcrafting
  • Making Cedar Cordage

Water Purification

  • Safe Water Collecting
  • Purifying Water

Fire Lighting

  • Proper use of Lighter and Matches
  • Using Artificial and Natural Tinder
  • Finding Natural Fire Lighting Aids
  • Extensive Fire Lighting with a Striker
  • Standard and Survival Twig Bundles
  • Getting a Fire Started
  • No-Evergreen Fire Lighting

Fire Management

  • Keeping a Fire Burning
  • Selection of Proper Fire Wood
  • Overnight Fire Management Skills
  • Coal Management
  • Restarting a Fire

Shelter Building

  • Single & Double Super Shelters
  • Various Lean-to Shelters
  • Various Improvised Shelters
  • Building a 4-Finger Bough Bed
  • Building Wall & Roofs using Natural Material
  • Build various Survival Shelters

Signalling for Help

  • Signal Fire Twig Bundles
  • Building & Lighting a Signal Fire
  • Building Ground-to-Air Signals
  • Using a Signal Mirror
  • Using a Whistle for Signalling
  • Safe use of Flares
  • Using Modern Signalling Devices in the wilderness correctly

Hiking & Camping Skills

  • Packing for Hiking & Survival
  • Survival Camp Locations in the Mountains
  • Safe Spring and Summer Mountains Travel
  • Safe Water Crossing
  • Build a Walking Staff
  • Setting up a Guyline
  • Building Cooking Cranes
  • Cooking over a Fire
  • Cooking with a Stick Burner

Montane & Temperate Rain Forest

  • Trees of the Montane Forest
  • Trees of the Temperate Rain Forest Forest
  • Useful plants of the Montane Forest
  • Safe Camp Locations in the Mountains
  • Use and Identification of Aspect/Slope
Improvised Shelter for Spring Rains Inland Temperate Canadian Rainforest

Spring Mountain Survival Course Fine Print