WL hosts youth survival, fishing camps
Almost anyone living in the smartphone age knows the feeling.
You leave your phone on the nightstand at home, or worse, it slips out of your pocket and is whisked off to your Uber driver's next stop. In that moment you're left feeling oddly vulnerable — disconnected from everything and everyone.
It's bad enough when you're just sitting at your work desk — now imagine if it happened when you were stuck out in the wilderness.
With his Coyle Outside "Wild Survival" camp, which will be held along with a "Let's Go Fishing" camp during spring break in West Linn March 23 and 26, Daniel Coyle tries to prepare kids for that exact type of situation while also teaching other skills like teamwork and problem solving.
"The whole mission is largely to get kids to operate in the world with their inherent abilities and skills, and with the natural world as well," Coyle said. "(It's) just connecting with the natural world on its terms and also solving problems with each other on their own terms, in a world where there's just so much more technology each day, each week, each year.
"When you've got Google at your fingertips, you don't have to problem-solve at the level you did 50 years ago or 5,000 years ago."
At the Wild Survival camp, kids will learn how to make shelters and fires, use a compass and find medicinal or edible plants.
They'll also find out how some of the earliest societies lived off the land, and will be presented with a "survival scenario" that's intended to teach both practical and interpersonal skills.
"We have all experienced that adult lecture experience — someone telling you that you should be a certain way," Coyle said. "The good thing about survival scenarios is a lot of those virtues end up being things that work. So at the end of the day, you can decide if it's good or bad to be respectful, but this group over here that was arguing ended up not surviving, and those who were respectful did.
"It removes 'should' and 'shouldn't,' right and wrong, and gives kids a chance to see what works well in a functional scenario."
The "Let's Go Fishing" camp is a bit more laid back.
"The fishing class is meant to be on a school day off: a way to give parents an option for an all-day experience," Coyle said. "One of my staff will take (kids) fishing at a local pond or lake stocked by ODFW (Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife). They'll learn how to cast and how to clean the fish, and they might talk about other methods of fishing — more primitive skills."
Coyle Outside provides the rods and reels, and kids can expect to come home with a fresh-caught dinner.