As some of you know, I’m a “International Wilderness Guide” student in Kuru (Finland) since a month and for the whole year 2017-2018.
It’s been a long time since I wrote anything on the blog, so I would like to give you a little feedback of the last month and above all, to show you what it feels like to be a IWG student.
First of all, for the ‘non-french’ folks who are starting to read this blog (because I just started to write in english):
What is International Wilderness Guide ?
Well, that’s course who train you on some essential wilderness topics. Among other things, wilderness skills, nature and tourism, entrepreneurship and marketing skills, customer service and knowledge of human nature, knowledge of culture, real expeditions, survival, bushcraft, fishing, cooking in wilderness…
(Read more about it here).
For those who speak french:
You can also read one of my old post here.
#1 The team / The school
So, we are a group of 16 students (50% native Finnish / 50% foreigners), 2 teachers and some contributors.
So far, there is a good and warm atmosphere in the group!
We are the 22th (2017-2018) who will be trained at this school.
It means that there are less than 350 students who been there before us, so few!
If I had to summarize a day it will be:
– 30% in a classroom, learning a lot about: orienteering, first aid, plants, gear, food plan, expedition plan etc.
– 30% outside learning and collecting plants or learning bushcraft skills.
– 30% of homework, we have really lot of stuff to assimilate.
– 10% of freedom haha (I will talk about that later in this post).
#2 Expeditions – Forest trip
During the year, we have 5 expeditions to do.
The first one was not really an expedition, but that was great anyway: A week in the forest
We learned a lot about orienteering, tarp-tents for sleeping (I definitely prefer tents but that’s nice to try something new), make fire and firewood, cooking for 16 people, nature knowledge…
It actually look like holidays, but we learned a lot!
#3 Life around Kuru & Tampere
Kuru is a small village: 2 supermarkets, 1 pub, 1 pharmacy, 2-3 shops, 1 library… that’s it!
On the first look, it seems there is nothing to do here… especially if you have lived in a big city like I did.
But in reality there are plenty of great stuff to do, if you love wilderness!
The village is surrounded by 3 lakes and forest is everywhere:
We can go kayaking, fishing, enjoy saunas, take a walk in the forest and listen the silence, take a nap in the wild (forest slacking), we see lot of birds and some mammals around here, enjoy sunset on a lake every day, look at the stars with zero light pollution… and the pub is making good burgers XD
I mean, it’s really nice spot to study wilderness: It is an immersive place!
But ok yeah, sometimes we need to go to the city (party, alcool, shopping etc)…
Tampere is about 55km away:
Not that far if you have a friend with a car and friends who lived there… as we do 😀
So far I don’t have any regrets at all!
That’s exactly what I wanted to do! Perfect place, perfect team, perfect teachers, what else?
I’m looking forward to what is coming next: A hiking trip to Russia in early october!
I can’t wait to be there!
I will probably make another post (and video) when we will go back!