Page 15 - August 28, 2017
P. 15


Bull of the Woods celebrates JFR achievements

by Dana McArthur

The Junior Forest Rangers celebrated their
annual Bull of the Woods event on August 22
and 23 with sunny skies and warm weather.
The Bull of the Woods is a camp and
competition for youth from all over the province
to come together at the Cold Creek Fire Base
Camp near Nojack to showcase their summer
success and take part in celebrating youth in
The event, which has been celebrated for more
than 50 years, marks the end of the season for the
Rangers program.
Joan Simonton, area information coordinator
for Edson Forest Area Forestry Division, said,
"The program’s vision is to foster an
appreciation, awareness and respect for our
natural resources through stewardship, education,
career opportunities and leadership." The
program is for youth aged 16 to 18 years old
attending high school.
Founded in 1965 under the supervision of Peter
Murphy, it is an immersive six to seven week
experience of camping and learning the many
different aspects of natural resource management
and forestry. Members stay with their crew 24
hours a day, seven days a week, with some free
time and recreation available. Dallas Arcand preformed some traditional First Nations hoop dances during the JFR Annual
JFR Program Coordinator Trevor Nichols said, Bull of the Woods on August 22. photo Dana McArthur
"The first week of July members go through six
days of training including bushcraft skills and opportunity begin a career related to natural singing, drumming, dancing, and traditional
wildfire orientation. From there they travel out to resource management and forestry. "Ideally a games. Competitions on the second day included
their area with six to seven crew members and JFR would go through a year or two of the the Swede saw, wajax relay (backpack water
their leaders." program and we could hire them as a crew pumps), knot tying, and fire lighting among other
"Once at their designated camp they would be leader. Then they could progress on to a career in competitions. The JFRs worked on
doing projects planned by their leaders. Days Forestry or Wildfire, or working in the private strengthening their skills as friends and family
would consist of eating breakfast in camp, sector —our goal is to help them with their watched and cheered them on.
packing a lunch and heading out to their future, regardless," said Nichols. "The BOTW would not be successful without
projects," said Nichols. "They could be doing "We have one Jr. Ranger from Edson this year, the support of a few individuals that work in the
anything from junior ATV training, collecting Alexander Steil and one from Thomas Kadatz Edson Forest Area: Jan Schilf and Bryn
seeds, planting, trail building or repairs, to from Hinton. But we would like to see more kids Kowalchuk from our Cold Creek fire base and
wildlife habitat restoration. There is a large come from local areas like Edson, Hinton, or the Gary Smith at our warehouse in Edson," said
education component to it as well ...touring a County —but we don't always see that. So far it's Simonton.
mill, hunter education courses, and fire mostly the urban centers," said Simonton. If you are looking for the opportunity to learn
investigation techniques." The first day of the Bull of the Woods featured more about Junior Forest Ranger program call
The program is designed to give youth the many Aboriginal themed activities including 780-422-9276 or visit

Firefighting and other competitions took place on the second day Jr. Rangers Shauyne Lambert and Hailey Seeseequon making a dream-
of the Annual Bull of the Woods on August 23. catcher during the Annual Bull of the Woods on August 22. photo Dana
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