While searching out and reporting on novel once-in-a-lifetime adventures is both my passion and my profession, there are honestly some experiences I’m all too happy to leave to someone else.
Like my friend and fellow travel writer Bob Howells, for example, who decided it might be fun to spend a week learning traditional survival skills from a native guide in the depths of the Amazon jungle. The results were equal parts amazing and amusing as the hero of our story, equipped with little more than a machete and a smile, slowly came to understand what the brochure actually meant when it promised “rustic accommodations and lots of tasty grubs” (see for yourself at SnagFilms.com).
While you and I may never find ourselves eating wriggling larvae in a Peruvian rainforest, I’m convinced anyone who likes to venture very far off the beaten path would be wise to learn a few basic wilderness survival skills. If you’re up for the challenge of learning to live off the land, the Boulder Outdoor Survival School (BOSS) can take you into that uncharted territory both literally and figuratively.
The school’s motto is “Know more, carry less,” and that’s just what you’ll do as you and your instructors head off into the southern Utah outback packing nothing more than a blanket, poncho, water bottle and knife. You can choose from hard-core BOSS Field Courses that last from one to four weeks, somewhat less physically-demanding Explorer Courses, or a wide range of Skills Courses designed to teach you everything from fire-starting sans matches to traditional hunter/gather techniques.
Though your adventure will be anything but cushy—BOSS says participants frequently lose up to 30 pounds during their month-long Field Course—that may be a small price to pay for a truly extraordinary experience that leaves you feeling you’re ready to handle anything Mother Nature throws your way.