About The Outdoor Field Guide

As a UK Scout leader and outdoors practitioner I found the availability of teaching resources a real struggle.  I needed tough, waterproof, easy to follow work sheets I could hand out during my workshops; nothing was available, so, with my professional background as a graphic designer and an accumulation of years of knowledge and experience as an outdoor enthusiast and scout leader, I started compiling my own.  The guide covers all the basics, advice, guidance, hints and tips to improve your skills and help teach others, including:

  • On the Hill; Equipment (tents, clothing, knife axe and saw);
  • Natural Shelter Building and Tarps;
  • Navigation;
  • Weather;
  • Water collection and filtration;
  • Cooking and Recipes;
  • Knots;
  • How to Build and Make Fires;
  • Tree Identification;
  • Mammal, Raptor and Snake Identification;
  • First Aid;
  • Safety Advice

As the learning environments are typically damp and muddy, I decided to laminate the sheets so they were wipe clean. I’ve since sourced waterproof, tear proof material, which, whilst expensive.  I was constantly being asked “Can I have a copy?”, so I set about expanding the number of handouts, to include the most important subjects that are pertinent to teaching about the outdoors.

The works sheets are intended as a general overview, to encourage the reader to discover and learn more about the outdoors, whilst teaching the basic and most important principles required whilst enjoying the outdoors.

Whilst I cover a little on survival techniques, the initial subjects and sections aren’t intended as a survival guide (should you get stuck in the arctic or desert), there are plenty of fantastic books available on this subject.  There are however, some bushcraft projects that young people enjoy and develop from, such as friction fire lighting, building a natural shelter or making a simple water filter.
The guide is designed so new sheets and sections can be added to your guide they come available.  The proceeds of the project, I hope, will fund an activity centre where people can learn by practice and develop their knowledge, love and respect for the outdoors and nature.

Coast to Coast 1984
With friends at the end of The Coast to Coast walk, aged 14 (1984)

A little about myself

I consider myself very fortunate to have been brought up by wonderful parents, taking us camping and hill walking from a very early age, instilling my love for the outdoors.  They also encouraged me to join and stay in the Scout Association, who I must thank and apologise to the leaders that gave up their free time to teach us and take us on some awesome camps!  Scouts also gave me the opportunity to meet some fabulous like-minded friends, which were daft enough to do long distance walks and bivouacking in the wilds together; we continue to go hill walking together, some 35 years on.

After leaving the Scout Association in 1987, I continued exploring and expanding my love of the outdoors with climbing, wild camping, mountaineering and bushcraft.  When my two marvellous boys came along I exposed them to the joys and challenges of the outdoors from an early age, taking them climbing as soon as they could walk.  As soon as they were old enough, I enrolled them into the Scout Association, volunteering as a leader myself in 1999 to pass on my knowledge and experience.