They are models that facilitate the gathering of people interested in the teaching and learning of primitive living skills. They are now copied nation wide.
They are temporary communities that request people, from varied backgrounds, to come together and comply with guidelines that may require them to temper their behaviors and excesses for a short period so everyone might enjoy the event and learn from one another. These are family events
They are a homecoming/reunion of teachers, practitioners and students of primitive technology. Many people have been attending since the beginning and come each year to spend a short time celebrating with the "Family."
They are noisy, active events. This means we encourage an atmosphere of (controlled) late night celebration. intense instruction an discussion and all around good times. Get used to the action or camp well away from the main fire.
They are a time for teachers and practitioners to test teaching models, unselfishly share their knowledge, rub elbows with peers, market wares and programs and generally give back to the field. Forums, symposiums and open discussions occur regularly throughout events.
They are a time for teachers,practitioners and participants to spend time together and be part of a truly unique event. The idea is for all of us to share, not only hard skills, but insights, talents, friendships and lifestyles.
They are a chance for the novice to jump-start the learning of primitive skills; for the journeyman to polish old skills and discover new ones; for the master to enhance his/her teaching ability and challenge assumptions about what they know about primitive living skills.
They are not a naked drunken orgy of bush hippies, freaks, rednecks, derelicts, wanna-bes and ner-do-wells gathering in the woods for a free for all. Intrusive behavior that threatens the peace and solidarity of the event is not tolerated, nor do we expect parents to relinquish their responsibility for their children.
They are not a source for hermit training. We encourage all participants to live in this community and practice the skills of caring and decency that were required for bands and tribes to survive. temper excesses and outbursts. If you don't like being around crowds of people, this is not the place for you.
They are not dress-up and pretend events. The main focus is hands-on participation and learning. Even though handmade buckskins, clothing, shoes and accessories are a common sight, they are not necessarily the daily dress for most of attendees.
They are not a "police state" that forces you to behave decently by imposing penalties for your weaknesses. Grow up and learn to control you own appetites and behaviors. For those who like to complain, learn to deal with problems yourself. If a problem is not a direct threat that needs to be handled by Backtracks staff, handle it yourself.
They are not a livelihood, but we do our best to facilitate the efforts of staff to make a living. It has been our experience that through charging a reasonable amount for materials supplied for classes, the sale of wares, recruiting for classes and programs etc. staff recoup enough to cover their costs or even gain a profit from being with us. We encourage participants to support staff enterprises.