Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission's
Ocala Outdoor 

  Life Is Better In The Outdoors   


Pathfinders - Hunter Safety Ages 9 -14

Pathfinders is our most popular and innovative program teaching campers how to be safe, knowledgeable and responsible hunters. Successful completion of this program exceeds the requirements of the Florida's Hunter Safety certification. This program is led by certified FWC Hunter Safety Instructors and focuses on game, hunting and basic outdoor skills. Campers increase their understanding about game populations, habitats and their role as conservationist.  "Pathfinders" gain knowledge by developing hunting and firearm safety skills that are used for a lifetime. This program includes range time in shotgun, rifle, muzzle loading and archery. Campers also participate in fishing, canoeing and other traditional camp activities.

Outfitters - Bowhunting Skills Ages 12 - 14

This program expands on archery and bowhunting where Pathfinders leaves off. After completing the Hunter Safety certification, campers can participate in this exciting archery and bowhunting skills adventure. Campers will enjoy several nationally recognized and innovative programs. The "Explore Bowhunting" curriculum introduces participants to the many challenges and rewards of archery and bowhunting. These skills are taught in a fun atmosphere through interacting in various gamed and exercises designed to teach problem solving and decision making. Additionally, campers have the opportunity to acquire certification in the National Bowhunters Education Foundation's bowhunting course. This certification is required by some states in order to bowhunt there. Campers also participate in fishing, canoeing, swimming and other traditional camp activities.

Safari - Wilderness Outdoor Skills Ages 13 - 14

This program is sponsored by the African Safari Club of Florida, Inc.  The curriculum takes you from the classroom to the field and teaches the participants outdoor skills and environmental awareness about our changing ecosystem. The Safari group examine wildlife habitat through hands-on experiences, teaches outdoor and hunter ethics, participates in shooting sports activities, hiking on the Florida Trail, and swimming to name a few activities. Campers take a canoe challenge down the Ocklawaha River and through a cypress swamp system, and they will camp overnight in the Ocala National Forest. This program exposes our future leaders to a variety of outdoor experiences for which they can make informed decisions on future environmentally sensitive issues. The Safari program is for the ardent camper and challenges the participants with rewarding results; a desire for the out-of-doors is recommended. Participants must have already completed their Hunter Safety certification to register for this program.

NEW: Pathfinders-Waterfowl Edition Ages 13-14 only

 Program focuses on waterfowl ecology and management! This intensive program is best suited for youth ages 13-14 who are eager to learn and have a passion for nature, the outdoors, and/or hunting. Campers will study and learn the importance of aquatic ecosystems, waterfowl biology, natural resources management, land and water stewardship, and conservation. Wingshooting will be practiced extensively, tying into discussions on hunting skills, safety, and ethics.  A strong emphasis is placed on developing and improving leadership skills, public speaking, communication and team building. After a week at camp, participants will leave not only with the knowledge and experience needed in order to get started hunting waterfowl, but also with a clear understanding of the importance of being a conservation advocate.

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