David T. Delafield:
David has been involved with outdoor education since last century. Sounds like a very long time, but in reality he has only been working in the field for 20 years. His experience includes Camp Administration, operating outdoor education programs for K-12, lead instructor for Mammut Bushcraft, and for the past 20 years as Assistant Professor of Outward Pursuits at Burman University.
In addition to formal education that added some letters after his name, David maintains active qualifications in wilderness medicine, is a Canoe & Kayak instructor through Paddle Canada, serves on the Board of the Wilderness Guides Association, and facilitates programs for Outdoor Council Canada. But the certificate that he appreciates the most was recognition by Mors Kochanski as a Survival & Wilderness Living Skills Instructor.
His philosophy of teaching is grounded in the assumption that the wilderness is our true home, but one that we must make ourselves familiar with. This goal can be accomplished by recognizing that the foundation of outdoor knowledge is the local plants. From plants, the education can extend through foods, medicines, technologies, animals that depend on the plants, and finally the entire ecosystem of resources and challenges that may exist.
Joining David on his adventure through life is the most patient, and remarkable musician, Naomi Burns Delafield and their three miniature humans. One of their adventures involved 84 days, 3,038km, 60+ portages, and carried them from the Canadian Rockies to the Hudson Bay in their trusty canoe. Together they tilt their hands towards organic agriculture, humanitarian efforts, and spending every possible moment exploring nature and paddling a growing stable of thoroughbred canoes.
Brian is a Bushcraft Instructor, Fire Inspector for Strathcona County Emergency Services and retired member of the Canadian Armed Forces, with 25 years of service. He grew up surrounded by the Canadian Shield, and the hardwood forests, and lakes of Southeastern Ontario, where the seed was planted for his love of the Great Outdoors.
While growing up, his family was active in the outdoors in fishing and hunting. This is where he took his first survival training at 12, to learn how to hunt safely. While growing up he spent time in the woods with his family, learning everything from shelters to fires. His years in the Infantry allowed him to travel widely and train in a diverse range of ecosystems around the world, from the Mojave Desert, to the High Arctic.
His instructional career began with the military while in Reconnaissance Platoon. Later, while posted with the Royal Canadian Navy on Vancouver Island, he spent time in our temperate coastal rainforests and learned about “bushcraft”. In preparation for his retirement, he began to seek out people that could teach him formal lessons on Bushcraft and found Karamat Wilderness Ways, and became immersed in their mix of Bushcraft and Modern Wilderness Survival. He was lucky enough to find great mentors to show him the ways of the boreal forest, and to meet, and teach for the late Master Woodsman himself, Mors Kochanski. While instructing he’s been fortunate enough to teach with the likes of Master Bushcrafter Kelly Harlton, David Delafield, Dragan Uzelac, to name just a few.
In 2014, following an invitation to provide programming at the Fort Saskatchewan Museum, he opened his own school Three Ravens Bushcraft. While survival is better known, he prefers Bushcraft, because Survival is well….. Surviving. His motto “teaching you how to live in the woods, not just survive” is really what he’s about. He focuses his training on showing all the useful “tools” of the forest and how you can use them once you learn to see them.
At the Winter Camping Symposium in Minnesota, Brian found lightweight hot tenting, and was impressed right away. He found the comfort and ease of enjoying the winter backwoods inspiring. His focus on the ”winter camping” subject matter had shifted to utilize the material found in Minnesota and bring that to Alberta. He’s been seeking out like minded people to share Frostbite with ever since.