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Forestry Field Skills


The 120-hour (three-week) field-based Forestry Field Skills program (FoFS) trains individuals in three key forestry areas of demand and employment: Safety and the Environment, Silviculture, and Wildfire Management and Control.  Course participants learn standards and procedures relating to field safety, wilderness safety, forestry, wildlife trees, surveying & mapping, Silviculture and stand tending, chainsaw and other power tool operation and maintenance, wildfire safety including S-100/S-185 Basic Fire Suppression and Safety certification.

Each NRTG course includes free, lifetime admission. Enrol once – come back anytime.

 NRTG is now offering a blended Forestry Field Skills Certificate training program. The classroom sessions are now offered and scheduled as a ‘live’ ONLINE Webinar with subsequent ‘face-to-face’ physical distancing field practicum sessions. For more information, please contact us!

Also, please take every precaution when deciding to attend this training. Please do not attend this training course, if:

  1. You have or had symptoms of COVID-19 in the past 14 days (cough, sneeze, sore throat, fever, difficulty breathing).
  2. Have been exposed to someone with COVID-19.
  3. Share a home with someone who has been exposed to COVID-19

In addition to a ‘Forestry Field Skills’ certificate, course graduates will also receive individual certificates in:

  • S-100 Basic Fire Suppression and Safety
  • ICS 100 Incident Command
  • S-212 Communications
  • Helicopter Safety
  • Qualified Persons certification
  • S-232 Portable water pump operation & maintenance

I really enjoyed the technical writing class that you delivered to our team this July. It had been over 10 years since I was in an English class, and your course provided a great refresher in the basics of grammar, sentence structure, and paragraph flow. In addition to dusting off these skills, it inspired me to view my every day writing as an opportunity to communicate more effectively. I now see my daily emails, reports, and memos as practice for crafting something that is enjoyable to read. The course was hands-on and involved, I liked how we wrote and edited throughout. I found the timing and pace of the course to be appropriate and efficient. I recommend taking this course if you are interested in enhancing your writing skills in a technical workplace.

Emma Posluns – Biologist, Halifax NS
Oct 18, 2019

What I liked about this course was Sean’s ability to bring technical writing back to the basics – to remind us of the intent or purpose of writing, and to remind us on a basic level how to construct a sentence, a paragraph, and a narrative. Beyond the basics, he provided us with strategies for improving our writing through every stage of the writing process. My biggest takeaway from the course is a reminder that even technical, scientific writing can (and should!) be compelling, interesting, creative and persuasive.

Melanie MacDonald, Biologist Halifax NS
Oct 18, 2019

Great course! Really liked the expertise of instructors and course practicality.

Kristin Singer, DFO Biologist, Nanaimo, BC


Upon successful completion, FoFS participants will be qualified and able to: 

  • Identify key wilderness awareness strategies and procedures
  • Conduct basic Forestry measurements, assessments and field procedures
  • Conduct Forestry surveying and field mapping
  • Identify and apply standard silviculture, stand tending and fuel management field procedures
  • Conduct field work as a recognized “Qualified Persons” field technician
  • Operate and maintain a chainsaw, brush saw, water pump and winch
  • Work safely and responsibly in the forestry workplace
  • Identify the key phases and management of Wildfires
  • Conduct Fire Suppression & Safety procedures as a qualified S-100 Wildland Firefighter
  • Understand the roles and responsibilities with the Incident Command System
  • Conduct standard field communication protocols and procedures
  • Conduct helicopter safety procedures
  • Operate portable water pumps

Course format

The 120-hour (three-week) Forestry Field Skills Program is delivered weekdays over three consecutive weeks. The FoFS delivery ‘season’ will vary by region, as the program requires suitable field conditions (unfrozen soils, no snow cover, ‘ideally’ with intact vegetation, etc.). 

Potential Students 

Course participants typically include; current forestry field technicians and workers, Aboriginal stakeholders, and technicians working in other sectors. 



Personal Equipment Requirements

Course participants are required to provide their own personal protective equipment:  suitable field clothing (including rain gear), hard hat with muffs and face screen, field vest, shovel, compass and GPS unit. 

Course Fees

Course fees will vary by course delivery location.  For further information, please contact us.

How do I Attend?

The FoFS is delivered on contract to community groups, companies or organizations.  Individuals interested in attending a FoFS delivery are advised to contact us, where we’ll provide potential FoFS delivery dates and locations to attend. 

If you would like to have the Forestry Field Skills Certificate program delivered to your group or community, please consider the following:

  • Contact us well in advance of your preferred course start date
  • If applicable, secure program funding
  • Recruit course participants (most NRTG courses have minimum enrollments of 8-10 participants)
  • Coordinate course participant equipment, classroom facility, and contractual agreement with NRTG.

If you would like to have the FoFS delivered to your group or community, please contact us.

Instructor Profile

Morgan is a high-regarded forestry professional, having 30+ years experience managing forestry, silviculture, terrain stability, biophysical inventories and wildlife management projects on behalf of industry consultants, forest licensees,  BC Parks, other government, and First Nations groups throughout B.C.

Doug Ellis is a highly regarded, experienced Natural Resource educator and practitioner in B.C. A Registered Forest Technician (RFT) and a ISA Certified Arborist, Doug has more than 30 years experience teaching and working in the education, safety, wildland fire, forestry, arboriculture, and recreation sectors.  Doug travels throughout BC and Canada conducting field work and teaching Safety, Forestry, Wildlife Danger Tree, SledSafe, ATV/UTV, Chainsaw, Firefighting and other training programs.

Frequently Asked Questions

We offer this course throughout the year, and most commonly beginning in February in coastal regions and March in interior regions throughout North America. Please refer to our Schedule page for course timing and locations.

First aid training may be obtained before or after this training program.

Ensure first aid training is recognized and endorsed by Worksafe agencies in North America. This one-day training program may be referred to by different titles, such as “Occupational First Aid” or “Standard First Aid”. Consult with your provincial or state Worksafe authorities for more information.

Course participants are required to provide their own personal protective equipment (PPE): appropriate field wear, bag lunch each day, own transportation, as well as the following equipment: clinometer, compass, waterproof field notebook, Eslon or other 30m measuring tape, D-tape and prism.

You can purchase forestry supplies from a Forestry supplies retailer, such as Cabela’s, or industry suppliers such as Dynamic Aqua Supply (Surrey, BC), IRL Supplies (Prince George, BC), Winners Edge (Lillooet, BC), Surplus Herby’s (Williams Lake, Kamloops, Vernon BC), Forestry equipment suppliers across Canada, and other outdoor equipment outfitters.

No, there is no requirement to recertify for this program. If there is a significant pause in your environmental monitoring fieldwork (e.g., four years or more), we would recommend that you recertify with NRTG. Note: all NRTG courses include free, lifetime certification. Enrol once – come back anytime.

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