Adult Field Course: Appalachian Woodcraft
August 5, 2023 @10:00 am - 4:00 pm
The hardy settlers who made these mountains home were resourceful and made what they needed from what was at hand, and what was at hand was wood. We will examine the types of things Appalachian people have made for themselves from the forests around them, and well as the tools they used to make them. Chairs, bowls, spoons, tool handles, etc. After taking a walk through the forest which was the pioneer’s lumber yard, where we will identify trees and some of their uses, we will focus on a hands on project. After some basic safety training and practice, each participant will make an example of that ubiquitous piece of pioneer woodcraft, the hook. Made from a small forked tree branch, often of rhododendron, these hooks were found in homes, barns and outbuildings to hang cloths, tools, horse harness and more on the wall in an organized fashion.
Jason Lonon is a craftsman and teacher living and working in the same valley his ancestors have called home since the 1840s. Concurrent to serving an apprenticeship in traditional woodworking, Jason began blacksmithing as a teenager in the late 1990’s. Today, Jason and a team of highly skilled craftsmen produce a line of specialty carving tools for traditional woodworkers. Over the years, Jason has taught welding, blacksmithing, woodcarving and other skills in a wide variety of settings from the community college system to wilderness camps.
10:00 am: Meet at the Wilson Center for Nature Discovery for introductions, look at examples of woodwork, tools and techniques
11:30 am: Tree identification hike and lunch
1:00 pm: Hands on project
4:00 pm: Conclusion
Your program cost includes admission into the park, field instruction, and transportation during your program (you may drive your own vehicle to visit sites on the mountain if you would prefer). It does not include meals or lodging. Bringing a bagged lunch is recommended for most field courses, although Mildred’s Grill will be open to attendees.
This Adult Field Course costs $60 for general admission and $51 for members of Grandfather Mountain’s Bridge Club, plus tax. Attendance is limited to 8 participants. Registration opens on this page on June 5 at 9 a.m.
Your program cost includes admission into the park, field instruction, and transportation during your program (you may drive your own vehicle to visit sites on the mountain if you would prefer). It does not include meals or lodging. Bringing a bagged lunch is recommended for most field courses, although Mildred’s Grill will be open to attendees. Tips are not accepted for field courses. However, donations to the Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation are accepted if you would like to recognize a program.
General Clothing List
Much of your time will be spent outdoors and all programs are held rain, snow or shine. You should be prepared for a variety of mountain weather conditions and temperatures. Appropriate clothing, equipment, and footwear are very important.
- Daypack with enough room to carry extra clothing, water, lunch, camera, etc.
- Water Bottle
- Hiking boots
Equipment Specific to this Course
- Sketch Pad – work as large or small as you like, but keep in mind that we will be moving around a bit. I’ll be working on an 11”x14” Strathmore Drawing Pad. I would recommend that you work in a small enough size that you can support in your lap without the aid of an easel, and no loose sheets. Sketch Pads or Sketch Books work best, as they’re sturdy and provide support as you work.
- Graphite or Colored Pencils – please no messy media and no paint
- Spray Fixative – optional. This will help your finished work from smearing in transit home
Adult Field Courses generally sell out and have a waiting list associated with the event. If you cannot attend the field course that you are registered for, a full refund will be granted within a 5-day notice of the day of the field course. This allows time for individuals on the waiting list to make accommodations to attend the event. We ask that individuals who are sick with any illness to stay home to ensure the health and safety of other participants, our staff, and the field course instructors – refunds will be granted to these individuals.
More about Field Courses
We at Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation are excited to share the unique wonders of the mountain with you. Since 2008, GMSF has aimed at creating educational programming that deepens understanding through in-depth study and field research. Our goal is to provide you with a rich experience in a particular field of study, and to also provide a safe and memorable trip to Grandfather Mountain. Read more about Field Courses.