Q: Which payment methods do you accept?
I accept Paypal payments if made at least 6 weeks prior to course commencement, or you can send me a cheque or money order. Bank deposit is available if required.
I now accept payment on the day also (at the workshop/course start). PLEASE tell me if you change your mind or can't make it so I am not left waiting. You don't have to give reasons. Deposits are no longer required.
Please do not send credit card details via email. You can pay with your credit card via Paypal if you wish, even if you don't have a Paypal account www.paypal.com.au
Q: Where are your courses and tours held?
My survival courses are held near the Western Victorian town of Casterton. Hiking tours are conducted in the Far West of Victoria, mostly around the Nelson/Portland/Casterton areas. I am considering some courses at the Grampians.
Q: When do I get final details of a course/tour?
Once I have received and confirmed your booking for a course or tour I will send out full instructions and directions to the course/tour site etc. However due to a variety of factors, such as weather and travel issues - which may also be beyond my control - final course information may take longer to be released, often a week before. If you are worried about your plans please contact me for assistance.
Q: How do I cancel my place?
If you want to cancel your place, please email or phone me.
Q. I am a vegetarian. Do I have to supply my own food on your courses or tours?
I am happy to supply a vegetarian option. If you have a more limited diet or have food allergies I would be grateful if you could supply your own food.
You can bring minimal food for the survival courses but you will be taught how to find and cook native food plants.
Q: Can I take photos and publish them?
I ask that all such photos showing people and other information are passed by me first so that I can authorise this. Please respect the privacy of other workshop attendees by asking first. You are free to take photos of the camp/bush, non identifying photos etc without passing them by me or the person who might appear in them. Under NO circumstance are you to keep or use any photo showing a participant without their express permission.
Q: What are your qualifications?
I have no formal qualifications but I have lived full time in the bush for over 20 years, surviving off the land and learning many different skills. I teach what I have lived.
Q: Are the survival courses tough?
My bushcraft and survival courses should be viewed as being a wilderness education experience and not as an ordinary holiday. They are educational courses, but just as importantly, they are a ‘hands on’ experience and at times can be quite challenging. Due to the nature of the location and the course content, you will be expected to take hikes over uneven terrain, therefore an average or above level of fitness is required – on occasion you will be wet, hungry, tired, hot, cold, frustrated and exhilarated! My courses and tours are designed for beginners and are not usually very physically demanding though.
Please note that you will be making shelters from available materials - there may be no sleeping bags or tents.
Harder survival mountain courses may be planned in the future.
Will I be hunting and trapping for food on the survival courses?
On my standard wilderness survival courses you might be hunting and trapping (fishing or finding insects or non-native animals) depending on local regulations and laws, as feeding yourself from the wild is an integral part of the subject. You will be taught the basics but you do not actually have to kill animals. It is illegal to kill or trap most native animals, so my training is mostly theoretical with some practical exercises.
Q: Do I need prior experience?
Not at all. If you enjoy being outdoors and are keen to learn – I will welcome your company. Although previous camping experience can be an advantage on the overnight courses, it is not essential.
Q: Is there somewhere safe to park my car? And will my stuff be safe??
Whilst I cannot guarantee the safety of your vehicle, there have never been any incidents of theft from vehicles left near my home in Casterton, or from the campsites. I would recommend that you keep any valuable personal belongings in your day sack, or in a hotel safe for survival courses where you cannot bring your own stuff. From your cars or the Casterton tourist information centre, you will be driven to a base-camp location. Please note, that once at base-camp you will not return to your vehicle until the end of the course.
If there are a minimum of participants (usually 6 people), I can offer transport to the campsites, but sometimes you will be required to drive your vehicle to that site. Other arrangements will be made for those who are not coming by car.
Children over 17 years without adult supervision are welcome on my hikes with parental permission. Children are only allowed on my survival courses depending on the course, and on a case by case basis - please ask. Younger children on short hiking trips with parental supervision can be catered for on a case by case basis.