Hello again from the Ministry of Natural Resources’ Stewardship Youth Ranger teams in Fort Frances!
We started our second week with training to ensure we stay safe while working out in the field.
We learned best practices to follow when encountering a black bear and adverse weather conditions.
We reviewed the items in our first aid kits and gear we will take on our overnight canoe trip later this summer.
We also learned about the principles of diversity and inclusion in our workplace, as well as client service standards of excellence.
We spent Wednesday at the nearby United Native Friendship Centre for Elders Guidance Day.
Elders Calvin and Margaret Ottertail and Irene Morrisseau spoke to us about Anishinabe culture, including the cultural significance of, and ceremonial protocol for, pow-wows and tobacco offerings.
We learned how to introduce ourselves in Ojibwa and make two traditional types of bannock: fried bread and oven bannock (which were both delicious!)
To prepare for our portage, we completed the Ontario Recreational Canoeing and Kayaking Association’s Basic Level 2 training on Thursday.
We learned about the different parts of canoes and paddles, and how to properly portage with them.
Once we learned the basics, it was time to get out on the water and test our skills!
We practised the ‘C,’ ‘J,’ pry, and draw strokes, and safely tipped our canoes to practise proper rescuing techniques.
We ended the week learning the Global Positioning System (GPS) and orienteering skills, which will benefit us when out in the field.
We practised how to navigate and save waypoints while geo-caching (hunting for hidden objects by reading GPS co-ordinates).
It was a very successful and enjoyable week of training and work!
Be sure to check in with us again next week as we continue our journey.