What’s it about?
The axe is one of the most important and useful tools used in bushcraft and mastering its use is a high priority. Axes have been used for thousands of years to fell trees and shape, split and cut wood and whilst you can get by with a knife and saw, the axe really makes life easier. It’s been argued that the axe is a more useful tool than a knife as you can do everything with an axe that you can with a knife, but not the other way around!
This 2 day bushcraft axe course has been put together for anyone who wants to become competent in the use of an axe, whether that be honing existing skills or learning new ones.
What will I do on this axe course?
During this 2 day axe course you will:
- Be shown axe safety and maintenance,
- Learn how to recognise different types of axes, their design features and what to use them for,
- Start gently with your axe and make some splitting wedges,
- Use your axe to make a woodland mallet,
- Learn a number of safe techniques to split wood for firewood, down to fine kindling,
- Understand the hazards involved with felling trees and the implications to wildlife,
- Fell a tree, including safety distances, direction of fall, roping off, planning escape routes,
- Safely deal with a hung tree,
- Sned, cross cut and cleft logs,
- Use some of the greenwood harvested to make a spatula and charcoal burner’s stool,
- Make feather sticks with your axe,
- Sharpen your axe.
If you’ve been on any of our other courses you’ll know we place a big emphasis on natural history, and this axe course is no different. We’ll go for a walk to identify some of the 20+ native species of tree we have in our ancient woodland camp; we’ll also look at the properties of those trees in terms of what we can use them for.
Note: You will need to bring your own axe to this course; we recommend the Gransfors Brucks Small Forest Axe. We also have a few other axes that you can try out whilst you’re here.
You can see our complete course schedule here.
Location: Westwell, Kent
Duration: 2 days
Start: 6pm Friday
End: 4pm Sunday
Course size: Maximum of 8
Catering: We’ll provide tea & coffee, breakfast and dinner but you’ll need to bring a packed lunch
Note: There is a short walk from the meeting point to the camp. We’ll transport your bags in our 4×4.
You might also find these Frequently Asked Questions useful.
What our customers say
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Arriving into the camp created by the Jack Raven team, you can see the care and attention that goes into everything they do! This was more than an Axe workshop, it is a place that makes you comfortable to learn and explore and not forgetting the incredible dinners put together, which include locally foraged foods!!
I spent some time with great people, picked up a stack of new skills, ate great good and then had some good down time in the evenings. I personally attended during Covid-19, and can reassure people that Gary has put in systems that are logical, it's a shame that Boris doesn't fancy a bush craft course because he could learn a thing or two.
Thanks Guys! See you again in December.
Thanks very much to the instructors and team for the axe course. Really great to have all the resources, axes and wood, to learn, practice and develop my axe skills. Great setup in camp too & special thanks for the brilliant food.
Brilliant weekend spent on axe workshop, professional and friendly team.
Cracking site, amazing food, can hardly wait to go on another course.
Definitely alround 5 star weekend.
Professional instruction based on experience delivered in a friendly inclusive environment. No pressure to be the biggest/strongest or best just encouragement to take part and learn. So much fun as well. You won't believe what you can do until you try. Definitely 5 star.
Just returned from an amazing axe workshop weekend. Fantastic experience, I now feel more than confident on how to use my axe to do more than just chop wood. Food was amazing ( big thank you Nicola) . Thank you to Gary, Bob and Peter for you expertise and tuition. Would like to thank Peter for his above and beyond support this weekend you definitely went that extra mile helping me out. Thank you. Would hugely recommend . Thanks again guys.