A boy's natural habitat

The Outdoorsman Program is utterly unique to Blue Ridge School and one of the ways our school is truly built for boys. Here, the boys learn the skills it takes to survive in the wild—building fires, marksmanship, knot tying, hiking, fishing, and other heritage skills prized throughout history.

The program begins in the fall by learning basic orienteering and map reading along with deer behavior and tracking skills. The boys also work out to build up strength and fitness. Then they master archery, followed by weekly training and practice on the rifle range. Both archery and shooting require similar skills—patience, discipline, and the ability to focus. The boys also learn to focus on their stance, their breathing, and how to hold either their rifle or bow, both of which can be physically strenuous. Our new clay target and marksman range offers the opportunity to practice skills in a safe environment before applying them in the wilderness.

This program is a hands-on and immersive way for boys to understand their place in nature and develop respect and reverence for its vast resources. It also pushes boys out of their comfort zones, exposing the vast strength and resourcefulness hidden deep within.

student shows off the fish he caught
“When your school’s daily activities include fly fishing, hunting, animal tracking and marksmanship, you find yourself in a sportsman’s paradise.”

—Jack Cline ’18