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 For the Knapps, teaching people about the many offerings that surround us, and how to responsibly use them and be in relationship with them, is at the heart of their work. “The reason I’m home here is because all of these different beings, human and non-human, are taking care of my needs, and I’m taking care of their needs,” Chris shared.
Students at the school learn all manner of practical skills, from building fires using friction, to creating natural shelters, to gathering wild edibles. The campus of the school centers around the Knapp’s homestead, nestled in hilly forestland in Temple, near Farming- ton. A beautiful timber-framed classroom building houses a workshop and kitchen, and provides a large space for classes or gatherings. Most of the learning takes place outdoors though, where students learn to identify and use the many gifts that come from the distinct ecosystems of the surrounding land: cedar and black spruce bogs, a pond with northern ecology, a healthy hardwood forest with brown ash trees for making baskets, and more.
The school provides classes for both school and home- school groups, which can take place onsite or off. They also offer Family Sustainability Stays for 3 or 5 days, and weekend-long Community Classes. Visitors enjoy rustic lodging, staying in either a spacious tent with
canvas walls and wooden floors, or a lodge inspired by the Cree people (a First Nations tribe spread across much of Canada), which is tipi-shaped and insulated with a sod covering. Check out current offerings at
Mt. Abram Bike Park
For decades, Mt. Abram has been a beloved family- friendly ski mountain, where generations have learned to ski or ride. Over the last couple of years, they’ve taken their hospitable and welcoming ethos into the warmer months to develop a mountain bike park, which is quickly gaining popularity. Currently visitors can choose from about 10 trails (they’re expanding rapidly, with the number likely to grow this year) of varying difficulty level, accessed from a lift ride or an uphill trail. Beginner trails are mellow with easy turns (signed so you know what’s coming up), and lots of flat spots. Although none of the trails are extremely steep, the intermediate and expert trails are more technical, and incorporate more challenging features. There
is always a bail-out option if you don’t want to hit a certain jump, or want to avoid a certain feature that is more challenging than you’d prefer.
Just as countless skiers learn on this approachable mountain, many visitors are learning to be skilled mountain bikers here, too. With dedicated learning
A rider bombs through a berm on the way down one of Mt.Abram Bike Park’s carefully designed and maintained trails.
 Chip Proulx, courtesy Mt. Abram Bike Park

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