Four Shields

                               Welcome to the Four Shields Program for 2018-19! Our year will include four (4), exploration/skills outings, two (2) opportunities to serve with our younger Explorers Club groups at our Connelly Creek Service Site and Woodstock Farm and a final campout in June. 

In addition to the above mentioned outings, Four Shielders are encouraged and welcomed to be an Explorers Mentoring Apprentice (EMA) when you feel the call. We encourage you to be a mentor for one group for the entire season. If that's not possible, then you can join various groups. Any day you join as an EMA would be great! Check out the EMA webpage and email your mentor to choose an outing. Again, this is a great way to help the younger explorers out and a fantastic excuse to play all the games you are "too mature to play now." We can help you log volunteer hours for any school requirements. Just let us know!

The Four Shields skill focus for the year will be to continue to hone our naturalist and bushcraft skills while exploring what it means to honor ourselves and our truth as we make the transition from children into young adults. Shielders will have opportunities throughout their year to choose how we spend our time together in addition to choosing the location for one outing and our campout. 

Being Prepared is also a vital skill. Click here for the 3-day pack list. Click here for the 4-day pack list. Please note these are also the lists for summer backpack trips! You do not need to bring all of the items on this list to every outing; use what you know to make sure you have all of the vital gear for our explorations together.

**UPDATE: We are looking forward to offering a teen program next year! This will look very similar to the Four Shields program, but with some differences. Look for details to be shared with the Wild Whatcom community by the beginning of June!


Lead Mentor Contact Info


Four Shields 2018-19 Schedule

OUTING #1: Saturday, September 29, 9:00AM-4:00PM 
TRAVERSE: Chuckanut Ridge to N. Chuckanut Trailhead

On our opening outing, we will start up at the Chuckanut Ridge Trail and finish down in the lush valley of Chuckanut Creek. There are many ways to get from point A to point B and on this outing the Four Shielders will have an opportunity to find their own way using their collective knowledge and maps while learning some simple, compass-free navigation techniques. We will find eastern and western facing vistas as we take in the natural wonder of a place where the mountains meet the sea and note the transition that happens in the forest as we drop 1688' over 4.8 miles. Bring plenty of food, water and an appetite for hiking! 

Drop-Off Driving Directions: From I-5, take exit #250 and turn west onto Old Fairhaven Parkway. Go to second stoplight. Turn left on SR 11/Chuckanut Dr for 1.3 miles. Turn left onto 12th st. for .1 of a mile. 12th st. becomes Chuckanut Dr. follow for 3.6 miles. Turn left onto Hiline Rd then follow the gravel road 3.5 miles as it turns into Cleator Rd at .6 of a mile. Map.

Pick-Up Driving Directions: From Fairhaven head south on Chuckanut Dr. just past the intersection with Old Samish Way there will be a parking lot on your left with a sign saying “North Chuckanut Mountain trailhead.” Map.

OUTING #2: Saturdays and Sundays, October 6 - October 21
EMA OPPORTUNITIES: Connelly Creek Service Site and Woodstock Farm

Your lead mentor will help you coordinate a time to get out with a younger group as an EMA on their service outing. You will have an opportunity to Teach Who You Are as you share your experience and wisdom with the next generation of Explorers while serving alongside them.

Directions: From I-5 drive west on Old Fairhaven Parkway for 0.1 of a mile. Turn right onto 30th St. and drive for 0.3 of a mile. Turn right on Donovan Ave. and drive for .1 of a mile. Turn right onto 32nd Ave. and drive for .2 of a mile. Turn left into Bellingham Park & Ride (WSDOT) westside. Map.

OUTING #3: Saturday, November 3rd, 9:00AM-4:00PM
WORKSHOP & CHALLENGE: Art of Surviving - Shelter and Fire Practice - Lookout Mountain Forest Preserve

Shelter. Water. Fire. We will cover these and more as we discuss, practice and synthesize our survival techniques on this outing at Lookout Mountain. Regardless what kind of weather we encounter, we will have an opportunity to put into practice many of the skills that we have learned together. Make sure you get plenty of sleep the night before and eat a hearty breakfast so that your most important survival tool, your brain, is ready to go for our day together.

Driving Directions: From Bellingham, take Lakeway Drive East for 3 miles. Continue for another .5 miles as it turns into Terrace Ave and then Cable Street. Take a right on Austin Street, Austin becomes Lake Louise Rd follow for 3.3 miles. Destination will be on the right.  Click here for the Google Map Destination.

Rescheduled OUTING #4: Sunday, March 17th, 8:00AM-5:00PM
EXPLORATION: Art of Snow Cave Building - Mount Baker Ski Area 

Boarding our Wild Whatcom bus, we'll head east on Highway 542 into the heart of the North Cascades. Under the shadow of Mt. Herman and Table Mountain, Explorers will learn the Art of Shelter Building using one of the greatest materials the winter provides, snow! The mentors will guide the group through the art and skill of creating the best snow cave ever. In previous explorations around the area, mentors have encountered Gray jays and ravens, while following the tracks of lynx and Snowshoe hare. We look forward to embracing whatever weather the landscape provides. 

Drop-off and Pick-up Directions: From I-5 take exit 250. Turn west onto Old Fairhaven Parkway for .5 of a mile. Turn right onto 24th St for .3 of a mile. Turn right onto McKenzie Ave. for .2 of a mile to Cascades Montessori Middle school. Map.

OUTING #5: Saturdays and Sundays, March 3-March 23
EMA OPPORTUNITIES: Connelly Creek Service Site and Woodstock Farm

Your lead mentor will help you coordinate a time to get out with a younger group as an EMA on their service outing. You will have an opportunity to Teach Who You Are as you share your experience and wisdom with the next generation of Explorers while serving alongside them.

Directions: From I-5, take exit 250. Turn west onto Old Fairhaven Parkway for 0.1 of a mile. Turn right onto 30th St. and drive for 0.3 of a mile. Turn right on Donovan Ave. and drive for .1 of a mile. Turn right onto 32nd Ave. and drive for .2 of a mile. Turn left into Bellingham Park & Ride (WSDOT) westside. Map.


OUTING #6 Saturday, April 27, 9:00AM-4:00PM

TRAVERSE: Larrabee State Park Boat Launch to Clayton Beach Trailhead


Thanks to the Four Shielders collaborating and compromising on our last outing up at the Mt Baker Ski Area, we have a fun journey planned from Larrabee State Park Boat Launch to Clayton Beach. We will navigate our way around a 5.6 foot hight tide at 10:57am as we make our way to Clayton Beach Trailhead. There are beach and forest options. Please bring some extra footwear (or wear it if you feel like doing so) that you don't mind getting wet in case we decide to wade into the water at some point during our day (brrr!). We are looking forward to this extended outing and getting to spend time together outside. We will likely have opportunities to work on our Earth Skills goals during this day, so please remember to bring your knife and any other materials that you may need for this. Maybe we will even play one of our old Explorers Club favorites: Spider's Web!

Drop-off Directions: From Fairhaven, drive south on Chuckanut Dr. for 4.7 miles. Turn right on Cove Rd. and drive for 0.3 miles. Turn left on Pleasant Bay Rd., follow signs to the boat launch. Map.

Pick-up Directions: Drive south on Chuckanut Dr. from Fairhaven, for 5.5 miles. The parking lot for Clayton Beach (the sign on Chuckanut Drive says Lost Lake parking) is a short distance past the main Larrabee State Park entrance, on the left hand side. Map.


OUTING #7 Saturday, June 8th at 9:00AM to Sunday, June 9th at 5:00PM 
FINAL CAMPOUT: Location is Four Shields Choice

As this will be their final experience together as the Four Shields, we feel that it is important that they choose where they want to go for their campout. We have lots of options: Baker River trailhead, Welcome Pass trailhead, Douglas Fir campground, Racehorse Falls, Boyd Creek, etc.. We will work to hone our outdoor living techniques as we work together to make our last campout a memorable experience. 

Directions: Directions will follow as the Four Shielders decide on where they want to go.


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