(406) 260-8620 brett@ravenwoodolc.org


A gentle and inclusive introductory wilderness skills course for preteens and teens that grows confidence, life skills, and self-reflection.

Ages 12-18

Spring 2023

4/15, 4/22, 4/29, 5/6, 5/13, and 5/20-21

$575 discounted cost at the highest income tier*


All applications will be reviewed and contacted by the instructors before finalizing registration to ensure that each participant is a good fit. Please make sure you fill out both the application and registration forms linked below.

What is Ripples?

Many outdoor and wilderness skill teaching methods lack a  nurturing approach. Rough and tough “survival” experiences tend to dominate, often at the expense of those that take a gentler, more caring approach to learning about and experiencing the natural world. Youth who approach nature gently often feel left out or intimidated to participate in outdoor activities if they don’t fit the traditional “outdoorsy” persona. Ripples is a gentle and inclusive wilderness skills course for preteens and teens (ages 12-18) designed to  grow their confidence, life skills, and level of self-reflection within a welcoming and inclusive environment. 

Preteens and teens are in a critical time of self-discovery and identity during their transition to adulthood, and often want more or different support than they are getting. As parents and as a community, we often  struggle to foster meaningful relationships with nature , and the overwhelmingly positive impact this connection can have on self development for our kids. In his book, Biophilia, E.O. Wilson said, “To explore and affiliate with life is a deep and complicated process in mental development..our spirit is woven from it…hope rises on its currents”. During Ripples, we will cultivate this connection and exploration by teaching wilderness skills, building trust, modeling vulnerability, and developing a deep respect for nature and ourselves.

Ripples is a space for us to share our skills and learn from each other while learning we can have a positive impact in our own lives and the lives of others. This program will be a gudie into spending time in the outdoors and camping. In order to facilitate this, the group will be limited to ten participants selected from an applicant pool  by our mentors to make sure everyone is a good fit for the program. If you’re not sure whether this is a  right fit for your teen/preteen or yourself, please reach out to us at programs@ravenwoodolc.org, we’d be happy to help!


Who is Ripples for? 

This program is for anyone ages 12-18 who wants to wholeheartedly apply their love of and appreciation for nature to learning and developing outdoor skills within a welcoming community. By developing these skills and building community, participants will be able to embrace their own sense of self during this age of major transition.


*What does it cost to attend Ripples?

The highest tier cost is $580, and all Ripples attendees are eligible for our standard income-based scholarship system. Ripples is designed for a small group and an extra-high staff-to-participant ratio to facilitate meaningful mentoring opportunities. Because of that, our true cost to run this program is much higher than any other Ravenwood program. But because this program is intended to lower barriers to learning about nature, we are not charging the true cost of this program even to the highest earners in our community. 



Ripples meets over the course of 6 weeks in spring with 5 Saturday meetings and a final Wilderness Overnight.

Weekly Meetings: 4/15, 4/22, 4/29, 5/6, and 5/13

Wilderness Overnight: 5/20 – 5/21



Thank you to our sponsors – Cabela’s and Bass Pro Shops Outdoor Fund and Soroptimist International of Whitefish for generously contributing to make this program possible!


What will we be doing?

Ripples is a transformative journey that includes wilderness skills, nature connection skills, and community-building skills.


During the course we will:

  • Learn and share outdoor/wilderness skills at an introductory to intermediate level;
  • Cultivate a group learning experience that emphasizes listening to each other and curiosity;
  • Learn about how to be  comfortable and confident in nature;
  • Develop a supportive community that is welcoming and inclusive;
  • Get the chance to learn about ourselves by learning about nature.


Ages 12-18

Saturday Trainings: Apr 15th, Apr 22nd, Apr 29th, May 6th, and May 13th

Overnight: May 20th – May 21st

All dates 2023

All applications will be reviewed and contacted by the instructors before finalizing registration to ensure that each participant is a good fit.