Leaders Pathway

Tanning · Storytelling · Inside Sit Spot · Shelter

Practitioners of the Leaders Pathway focus on the Guilds of Tanning, Shelter, Inside Sit Spot and Storytelling. On dark winter nights, huddled around a campfire or woodstove in a yurt or lean-to, while hand softening deer hides that will be customized into clothing that lasts a lifetime, Leaders weave the stories that build the cultural values that define us. The Science of this Pathway is grounded in the Extinct, Extirpated and Protected species. Leaders remind us of the original First Nation caretakers of each place so that we can strive to build a happy and healthy community for all our relations for generations to come.

Upcoming Sessions

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Our ancestors were clothed in skins, every garment meticulously tanned and customized. Their clothing was silent when they moved, windproof and breathable, soft like a shammy, and naturally camouflaged to their environment. Processing animals is hard and sometimes risky work but the rewards are incredibly gratifying. Preserving animal hides that would rot on the road or otherwise be discarded is a great way to honor the animal’s life. The hides you tan, if properly cared for, can last generations.


If Music is the tie that keeps communities together then Storytelling must be the fabric of which it is made. Storytellers bring the Hero’s journey to life, teaching lessons of place, connection and morality along the way. Culture always has been driven by the Storytellers and it likely always will. Join us in the Storytelling Guild it will empower you and your community more than you can imagine. You can practice Storytelling throughout your days at White Pine, but to earn a patch you must tell a story accurately in circle. A powerful spiritual practice is the skill of Tree Preaching that Stalking Wolf taught to Tom. You can Tree Preach in your car, in your room or at your Sit Spot. It helps if you feel some solitude so you can tell your stories out loud. Practice them with passion. A nice scout trick, if you are worried about people thinking you are crazy, is to hold a phone up while you Tree Preach. You can also utilize Tree Preaching as a powerful Inner Tracking practice, the Trees will listen deeply to your problems and concerns.

Inside Sit Spot

What do Jim Corbett, Ernie Shull, Tom Brown Jr and Ishi all have in common? Well a lot of things, but particularly they all were staunch Practitioners of The Inside Sit Spot. Jon Young says the Inside Study is the most universal practice of great naturalists. This Guild will guide you through the Core Routines of becoming a great Naturalist and a great Leader.


First on the Sacred Order of Survival is Shelter. In the Shelter Guild you’ll learn to make wickiups, debris huts, hogans, scout pits as well as modern camping strategies with tarps and groundsheets. Core to all shelter is the foundational concepts of site selection, then comes the art of harvesting materials, debris layering, and survival cement which will allow you to innovate and feel at home in any wilderness area. No other Guild will connect you to the Earth like the Shelter Guild. In fact, I can say with confidence that you would not be reading this right now if I had not decided to build a Hogan on Orcas Island to spend a year alone in the rainforests. My love of nature came directly from the love that nature had for me.

Leaders Council

Matt Shull