Philosophy

The AWOC Credo

WE believe in the intersection of life, literature, and wilderness; that wilderness trekking creates an enduring experience, one in which the natural world intersects with human nature.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe believe that athletics is more than weight rooms and playing fields, that physical accomplishments in the Alaskan bush may be more profound than defeating a cross-town rival, and that, to borrow from Flannery O’Connor, ‘sometimes a man need to escape to the country to see the world a whole’.

We believe that boys acquire practical leadership skills through the challenges of actual experiences rather than from ‘how-to’ manuals or lectures.

We believe that travel, story, and ritual are fundamental to understanding the human condition and that great literature and conversation are part of a great education.

AWOC Alaska-3750

Slow Food:     We eat well and we eat local whenever possible. Life in the wilderness asks us to return to basics. This includes getting in touch with the reality of food, that is, learning explicitly that it is the natural world that nourishes, supplies, and sustains us. Preparing and enjoying real food, slow-cooked over a wood fire is truly one of the joys of the wilderness experience. When in camp, we attempt to make use of local and wild foods from Alaska. We take our own fish, crab and shrimp from the Wrangell Narrows and nearby streams. Clams, oysters, caribou, elk, venison, and wild boar from local suppliers are also used when possible (unfortunately, at some locations fresh meat and seafood is rather difficult to obtain). When on the trail, we make use of home-made dehydrated foods that have been personally prepared by AWOC guides (we avoid processed backpacking meals that are often high in salt content and chemicals).

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