When you think of the exploration of the United States and Canada in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, you have to think about trappers in their quest for beaver and other fur bearing animals. Names like Kit Carson and Jeremiah Johnson come to mind along with companies like the Hudson's Bay Company. Likewise when you think of the adventure literature of an earlier time such as the works of James Fenimore Cooper or Jack London, the heroic figures they portrayed were often trappers. If you go back to earlier issues of Outdoor Life or Field & Stream, you will see short stories about trappers in Alaska or the Yukon and their battles against both the elements and grizzly bears.
While there are still trappers and you can still get a trapping license from every state (I think), I'd wager that there are few, if any, of us who have actually trapped or know anything more about it than what we've read. That is why this post in today's Outdoor Wire about a trapper education class being held in Indiana caught my eye.
Salamonie Lake will host a free trapper education course, Oct. 5 and 6, at the Salamonie Interpretive Center.If I lived closer to Indiana, I might just attend this course. I doubt I'd ever trap on a regular basis but would want to know some of the skills. It sure wouldn't hurt to have these skills from a prepping standpoint in a TEOTWAWKI situation.
The program is open to all ages, though youths are especially encouraged to attend. Registration is open now, and those interested are encouraged to register well in advance. The registration deadline is Sept. 30.
The program will start at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 5, with education on trapping issues, ethics and regulations. The program is sponsored by Salamonie Lake, the Indiana State Trappers Association and Indiana Conservation Officers.
Saturday afternoon, participants will set traps under supervision. Traps will be checked Sunday morning. Furbearers caught will be used in skinning and fleshing demonstrations by ISTA instructors.
Free camping is available for all course attendees on Friday and Saturday nights at the Lost Bridge West Youth Campground, within walking distance of the interpretive center.
Lunch will be provided both days. The program will end by 4:30 pm each day. Participants do not need a trapping license. Property entrance fees will be waived for participants.
To register or to get more information, call Upper Wabash Interpretive Services at (260) 468-2127.
Trappers must attend both days to receive the DNR Trapper Education Certification.
Salamonie Lake (stateparks.IN.gov/2952.htm) is at 9214 West-Lost Bridge West, Andrews, 46702.