Winter Workshop Series

When it gets too cold outside to play, come inside to learn or improve your outdoor skills, so you’re prepared to play when the weather warms again. Outdoor Chattanooga’s Winter Workshops are a series of classroom-based, outdoor education and skill-building workshops that cover a variety of outdoor recreation topics. They are 100% free and open to the public. No reservations or experience required to attend.  Join us for one, some or all to improve your outdoor skills! All workshops are held on Wednesdays, 6:30-8:00 PM, January 8 through February 19, 2020, at Outdoor Chattanooga.

Winter Workshops

Learn Outdoor Skills Indoors!

Winter Workshops

Learn Outdoor Skills Indoors!

Winter Workshops

Learn Outdoor Skills Indoors!

Winter Workshops

Learn Outdoor Skills Indoors!

Winter Workshops

Learn Outdoor Skills Indoors!

Winter Workshops

Learn outdoor skills indoors.

Winter Workshops

Learn outdoor skills indoors.

Winter Workshops

Learn outdoor skills indoors.

Winter Workshops

Learn outdoor skills indoors.

Winter Workshops

Learn outdoor skills indoors.

2020 Winter Workshop Series

January 8: Wayfinding with Map & Compass
Not all who wander are lost but those who are lost should know how to be found. We’ve become pretty dependent on smartphones for wayfinding, but what happens if the signal fails or the battery dies while you’re out on the trail? Knowing how to read a map and use a compass is an essential skill for anyone wandering in the woods. Learn the basics of how to navigate using the “old school” method of map and compass.

January 15: Speleoart – The Art of Caving
Cave etiquette and speleoart is the art of leaving no trace in a cave and leaving with art in your sketchbook! Learn how to create caving memories and cave art without leaving a trace! This free workshop will have a Powerpoint presentation on cave etiquette and speleoart-the art of leaving no trace in a cave while leaving with art in your sketchbook. The workshop will also include demonstrations of ancient cave art along with modern speleoart techniques in various artist materials. 

January 22: Intro to Paddle Sports
Is paddling on your “bucket list” of things to try, but not sure where to start or how to put this adventure into motion? Learn all about the wonderful world of paddling from an experienced instructor, including what types of paddle crafts are on the market, their intended use, and what style of paddling is best suited for you during this free workshop. You’ll walk away with a beginner-friendly paddling guide so you’ll have the confidence to check this adventure off your bucket list!

January 29: How to Protect Your Waterways
Water experts from WaterWays will educate community members on how individuals and small groups can take action to protect and restore local creeks and streams. This workshop will teach attendees how to build and restore eco-friendly yards and outdoor spaces at home and the office, and what steps to take to achieve a Tennessee Clean Water home, how to evaluate storm-water runoff issues as well as techniques for restoring riparian zones with streambank stabilization, native plants, and volunteer power.

February 5: Wilderness Survival Skills
Join Outdoor Chattanooga for a wilderness survival workshop focusing on 3-season skills that could save your life. Learn practical tips and strategies that every outdoor traveler should know, including emergency priorities, how to make an emergency shelter, how to locate and access drinking water, and how to make your own emergency kit with all the essentials. You will also participate in interactive scenarios to practice and hone your skills. This class is designed for anyone who spends time outdoors.

February 12: Bike Maintenance 101
Demystify your bike and learn the essentials of bicycle repair and maintenance in this hands-on workshop. Outdoor Chattanooga’s bicycle guru, James Eubank will dive into the most common repair and maintenance issue for everyday cyclists: how to prevent and fix a flat tire. Bring your own bike to learn on or use one of ours. Tools will be available for use. Hands and clothing may get dirty/greasy.

February 19: Camp Cooking 101
Cooking in the outdoors need not be limited to hot dogs and s’mores. With the right ingredients, tools, and know-how, you can prepare gourmet feasts without a gourmet kitchen. The keys are planning and prep. Make plans to attend this free workshop at Outdoor Chattanooga to learn about the various outdoor cooking methods, supplies, and tricks for easy and tasty cuisine utilizing backpacking and car camping equipment. Learn how to create a healthy, delicious meal with the same ingredients cooked on different types of stoves and fuel, and various types of camping cookware.  What to bring, how to pack, food safety, clean up and critter considerations are a few more topics that will be covered.

New to 2020 – Put it to Practice the following Saturday. What better way to spend a wintry Saturday than by putting those newly acquired skills to practice in the field with our experienced instructors. Participants who attend the classroom-based workshops on Wednesdays will have first priority for the field excursions planned the following Saturday. Get hands-on experience with wayfinding using a map and compass, bike maintenance, wilderness survival skills, camp cooking, water quality sampling, and paddle sports. Go on a guided art caving experience or a guided kayak tour to view wildlife. See our Calendar of Events for detailed descriptions and how to register. Most field excursions are free, but some have a nominal fee. Online registration is required in advance as space is limited. Call 423-643-6888 to learn more.

January 8: Wayfinding with Map & Compass
Participants can put those new map and compass skills into practice finding checkpoints at Coolidge Park. Maps and compasses are available to use during the field excursion. Registration is required in advance and space is limited with priority given to those that attend this workshop. Online registration will open to the public on Thursday morning following the workshop.

January 15: Speleoart – The Art of Caving
Go on a guided speleoart caving trip with the Chattanooga Grotto and Carolina Shrewsbury. Learn about ancient cave formations and how they are made while making your own art masterpiece from inside a local cave. Participation is limited to 10 people with first priority given to those that attend the Wednesday Winter Workshop. The field trip is appropriate for ages 12 and up with a participating adult. Online registration will open to the public on Thursday morning following the workshop and is first come first serve. A waiting list will be initiated once registration has met capacity.

January 25: Intro to Paddle Sports
Go on a guided and equipped kayak tour at the Hiwassee Wildlife Refuge to view the migrating Sandhill Cranes. The tour cost is $45 per person which includes all the kayak equipment, basic paddling instruction, the guided tour and transportation from Chattanooga. Appropriate for ages 14 and up with a participating adult. Registration is limited to 10 participants due to limited equipment and ACA guidelines. Priority registration is given to those who attend the Wednesday Winter Workshop. Online registration will open to the public on Thursday morning following the workshop and is first come first serve. A waiting list will be initiated once registration has met capacity.

February 1: How to Protect Your Waterways
Go on a field expedition to North Chattanooga’s Mountain Creek stream restoration site to learn how to identify a healthy stream, conduct water quality samples, and see stream quality repair in action with the experts from Waterways. Participation is limited with first priority given to those that attend the Wednesday Winter Workshop. The field trip is appropriate for ages 10 and up with a participating adult. Online registration is required and will open to the public on Thursday morning following the workshop and is first come first serve. A waiting list will be initiated once registration has met capacity.

 February 8: Wilderness Survival Skills
Participants will have the opportunity to practice scenarios, fire building, shelter building and other techniques in the fresh air of the forest.  This class is designed for anyone who spends time outdoors. Participation is limited with first priority given to those that attend the Wednesday Winter Workshop. The field experience is appropriate for ages 10 and up with a participating adult. Online registration is required and will open to the public on Thursday morning following the workshop and is first come first serve. A waiting list will be initiated once registration has met capacity.

February 15: Bike Maintenance 101
Take your bike maintenance skills even further by learning how to tune a rear derailleur. Tools will be provided and questions are encouraged. Hands and clothing might get dirty/greasy. Bring your own bike to practice on or use one of ours. After mastering how to fix and flat and tune a rear derailleur for smooth shifting, we will shift gears and gear up for a winter bike ride on local roadways (weather permitting) to learn the rules of the road and riding techniques to be a confident and predictable road cyclist. During the short group ride we will practice lane positioning, lane changes, signaling, scanning and learn about TN State laws that pertain to bicycles using roadways. We’re confident you’ll ride away ‘wheelie’ confident with a well-tuned bike! 

Bicycles are available for use at no additional charge for riders 5 ft and taller or bring your own. The ride is appropriate for ages 16 and up with a participating adult. Registration is limited with priority registration given to those who attend the Wednesday Winter Workshop. Online registration will open to the public on Thursday morning following the workshop and is first come first serve. A waiting list will be initiated once registration has met capacity.

February 22: Camp Cooking 101
Equipment and ingredients will be provided for the group to cook a meal in the great outdoors. Space is limited for the field excursion with priority given to those that attend the Wednesday Winter Workshop. Online registration will open to the public on Thursday morning following the workshop. A waiting list will be initiated once registration has reached capacity. Appropriate for ages 14 and up with a participating adult. Cost $10 per person.

FAQs

When and where are the winter workshops offered?

When: Wednesdays from 6:30-8:00 p.m., January 8 through February 19, 2020
Where: Outdoor Chattanooga, 200 River St. in Coolidge Park

 Put it to Practice the following Saturday: Locations vary depending on skill and activity. See Calendar of Events for a full list and how to register.

Do I have to make a reservation?

Reservations are NOT required to attend the Wednesday evening winter workshops. Reservations ARE required to participate in the Saturday Field experiences with priority given to those that attend the Wednesday workshop. Reservations will open to all others the Thursday morning following the workshop and a waitling list will be initiated if registration has reached capacity. 

Do I need to have my own equipment
No, Outdoor Chattanooga provides any equipment and instruction needed to learn skills during the workshop.
How much does it cost?

All Wednesday Workshops are FREE. Most Put it to Practice field experiences are also free with the exception of the Guided Kayak Tour to the Hiwassee Wildlife Refuge ($45/pp) and the Camp Cooking 101 ($10/pp). 

Do I have to have experience to participate?
No experience required to attend and participate in any of the winter workshops. No minimum age requirement.

Events

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Events for January 2020

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Calendar of Events

Calendar of Events
Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
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Winter Workshop: Wayfinding Using a Map & Compass

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ICL Comp #4 of 6 at High Point Downtown

Winter Workshop: Wayfinding Using a Map & Compass

Cumberland Trail Guided Hike

Learn to Ride a Bicycle Class

Learn to Ride a Bicycle Class

Rapid Learning Intro to Kayak Skills and Roll Practice

Winter Workshop: Speleoart, the Art of Caving

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Winter Workshop: Speleoart, the Art of Caving

Chatt. Skatepark Project hosting 7th annual skate graphics exhibition

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Winter Workshop: Intro to Paddle Sports

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Winter Workshop: Paddle the Hiwassee Wildlife Refuge

ICL Comp #5 of 6 at TBA

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Winter Workshop: How to Protect Your Waterways

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ICL comp #6 of 6 at High Point Riverside

Winter Workshop: How to Protect Your Waterways

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Did You Know?

This will be Outdoor Chattanooga’s 11th consecutive year offering free winter workshops to the public. Workshop topics have ranged from critter encounters, creepy crawlies, wilderness first aid, family camping, camp cooking 101, knot tying 101, fishing 101, intro to turkey hunting, intro to paddle sports, Leave No Trace Ethics, map & compass, how to poop in the woods, bike maintenance, bike touring, bike packing, hiking and backpacking basics, backcountry cooking, and so much more. Let us know what outdoor skills you’d like to learn more about and it may be offered in the next Winter Workshop Series in 2021!

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