black ash pack basket construction workshop

august 9-11

with Lindy lind of wilderness handworker
$300 course tuition (includes lodging) + $50 materials fee

Black Ash pack baskets are renowned for their beauty, functionality and durability. They have been the pack of choice for many woodsmen and trappers for centuries. 

Participants will harvest basket materials straight from an ash log. They will use a free-form weaving technique to weave the basket, and then carve and install basket runners, rim, and handles. The pack baskets will be finished with quality harness leather straps that students will cut themselves and fasten with hand peened copper rivets. 

(Harvesting Black Ash weaving material is physically demanding work which requires repeatedly beating an ash log with a 3 pound hammer.)


black ash workshop 1.JPG

Earthwatch huckleberry study

Join SVC and the USGS in a citizen science project studying the impacts of climate change on huckleberries (and the grizzlies and other wildlife that depend on this important food source)!



Read more about the project from USGS HERE

Custom experiences

Swan Valley Connections customizes and leads family groups, business groups, students and individuals on wildlife watching and natural history adventures. Some examples of trips we have led include mountain lion ecology, wildflower photography, river snorkeling, advanced outdoor skills, and animal tracking.



Past 2019 programs

Winter Field Ecology

mar 22-24, 2019

Learn about the adaptations wildlife species in the Swan Valley use to survive the cold winter months of NW Montana! Through a mix of informal lecture and plenty of time in the field, we will explore the conditions faced by plants, birds, and animals in the Swan and investigate the various strategies for survival used by species who call this area home.


Jan 26, Mar 9, april 13 2019

Enhance your ability to observe and correctly interpret the subtle signs that our elusive wildlife species leave behind. Participants will learn how to recognize animals by track, scat, feeding behavior, gait pattern, habitat selection, marking behavior, and other sign in the winter landscape.

Photo by Faith Bernstein

Photo by Faith Bernstein