Fresh-water marshes are full of life.

Marshes, also known as wetlands, are frequently flooded with surface water and ground water. The herbaceous plants found in marshes such as tuile reeds and cattails, are specially adapted to saturated soil conditions. They have an important ecological function- acting like a filtration system, using up nutrients that could otherwise pollute the water and kill fish- phosphorus and nitrogen. They also help moderate the risk of flooding by storing and slowing the flow of water- especially in watersheds where water is funneled to a single point.

In Marshland Discovery, we will consider the challenges and rewards of living close to this interesting environment. To do so, we must leave behind our dependance on herbaceous trees for our shelter and learn to camp on raised platforms to keep our gear and bodies dry. We can use the knowledge of our marsh-dewelling ancestors and many indiginous peoples- to find comfort here where surviving depends upon your ability to adapt to the changing environmental conditions.

The course will cover the following topics:

  • Camping On A Raised Platform
  • Woven Willow Structures
  • Reed Thatching
  • The Secret Life of Birds
  • Properties of Quarzite
  • Fire-Lighting Using Rocks
  • Wind Blinds and Bird Blinds
  • Making Fire Thongs and Using Hot Rocks
  • Platform Fires
  • Birch-Bark Containers
  • Sealing Birch-Bark Using Pine Pitch
  • Finding Food and Medicine in A Marsh Ecology
  • Introduction to the Principles of Fish Trapping
  • Preparing a Fish For The Open Fire
  • Cooking a Wild Duck On The Open Fire

Prerequisite: Backcountry Awaking (or by challenging the Backcountry Awaking course)

Age Requirements:

  • You must be over 18 years of age to attend this course unaccompanied.
  • Anyone under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Each place booked is for one person only, so each course attendee must have their own booking.
  • This course is not suitable for young people under the age of twelve.


The storing, preparing and cooking of food “in situ” is part of the experience and content of the adventure. Therefore, food is included as part of the course fee. Whenever possible the seasonal specialty items related to the adventure theme will figure on the menu.

At the beginning of the course, the Quartermaster will issue each participant a food hamper. You will be asked to store the food at your campsite in accordance with the Timeless Journey® Backcountry Food Storage Guidelines. You will be preparing and cooking for your own consumption, under the supervision and guidance of the course leader.

We will provide you with a detailed menu in your booking confirmation. Please let us know in your booking package or feel free to contact the office if you have any special dietary requirements or allergies and we will try our best to accommodate your requests.

At the base camp, we provide fresh fruit, cookies, drinking water, tea and coffee.

On the Marshland Discovery course, there is a professional night watch provided by Timeless Journey® staff.


You are welcome to make, or buy, your own gear. Although we would like to encourage you to be as self-reliant as possible, all gear used by students in the course must meet the safety standards of the Quartermaster. In some cases, it may be wise to contact the Quartermaster if you have any questions or doubts about gear crafting projects you would like to undertake in preparation or if you would like to make substitutions to the items listed on the Marshland Discovery Kit list/ Gear rental form.

Course Schedules and Specifications:

The Marshland Discovery course is offered several times a year, in different conditions, seasons and locations in Canada. Check the list below and read the specifications carefully to make sure that you are signing up for the right course.

Dates and Details copy

AMLD 05/03/20 • Marshland Discovery (6 Days, 5 Nights) • West Kootenay Campus • $850.00

Course Dates: Sunday, May 3, 2020 to Friday, May 8, 2020

  • Start Time: 8:30 am on Sunday, May 3, 2020
  • End Time: 8:30 pm on Friday, May 8, 2020

Registration Deadline: Sunday, April 19, 2019, at 6:00 pm

Location: West Kootenay Campus 


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