The Wilderness Herbal First Responder is 92 hours of Wilderness First Aid combined with remote and post-disaster herbalism. The WHFR also includes a 40-hour WFA certification card through the Emergency Care and Safety Institute (ECSI), CPR certification, and a Wilderness First Responder certification through The Human Path.

This is the merging of the worlds of remote or post-disaster medicine (“ditch medicine”) with the world of herbalism and includes most of the herbal information and all (plus some) of the hands-on experience of the Herbal Medic Basic course. PLUS, this course includes all of the wilderness first responder curriculum that allows the student to be a competent first aid provider right from the get-go in the case of illness, injury or even chronic health issue.


This course is geared toward a number of different types of students:
• The outdoor enthusiast, camp counselor, outdoor recreational employee who wants in-depth training on injury and illness management in the field.

• The camper, hiker or rock-climber who wants more much more intensive learning, geared toward outdoor environments, than a standard first aid course.

• The prepper (disaster preparedness) who wants to be self-sufficient medically and not even necessarily reliant on orthodox pharmaceuticals.

• The herbalist who wants higher intensity training across the board from wilderness first aid to herbal medicine in a remote environment.

• The emergency medicine professional who wants to expand his/her horizons into indefinite medical care that includes botanical medicines (field herbalism).


The full course includes all of the following skills:

  • Legal definitions and introduction to Wilderness Medicine
  • Working in a chronic vs. acute disaster situation
  • 1, 2, 3 person carries and stretcher carries, improvisation with limited equipment
  • Common backcountry Injuries – The ankle, OTTAWA Rules, establishing CSM
  • Bandaging/Taping Techniques #1: Ankle wrap (lecture and hands-on)
  • Shock, Types, Herbs for Shock.
  • Bio-regional Plant walk
  • Introduction to knots and lashings
  • Bandaging/Taping Techniques #2: Head Injuries (lecture and hands-on)
  • Primary Survey
  • Secondary Survey (lecture and hands-on practice)
  • Bio-regional Herb Lesson: Decoctions in the field
  • Herbs for Head, Ears, Eyes, Nose, Throat Ailments in the Field
  • Patient Carries: Cocoon wrap (demo and practice)
  • Herb Lesson: Percolation tincturing in the field (demo and hands-on practice)
  • Bandaging/Taping Techniques #3:  Shoulder to Ribs
  • Slings
  • Bandaging/Taping Techniques #4: Occlusive Dressings and their uses
  • Bandaging/Taping Techniques #5: Compression Bandages (demo and practice)
  • Bandaging/Taping Techniques #6: Field Expedient Tourniquets (lecture, demo and practice)
  • Pelvic Injuries
  • Bandaging/Taping Techniques #7: Buddy Splinting (demo and hands-on practice)
  • Bio-Regional Plant Walk
  • Bandaging/Taping Techniques #8: Traction Splints
  • Open vs. Closed Fractures (lecture)
  • Mini Scenarios (hands on practice of skills)
  • Wound and Infection Management Lecture
  • 4 Stages of Wound Healing
  • Bio-regional herbs for Wound Management
  • Precordial Thump
  • Heimleich Maneuver: Self-administered, for an upright patient, for a supine patient
  • Clearing the Airway
  • CPR in the Field
  • CPR Basics
  • CPR and AED testing
  • Secondary Survey Practical Exercise
  • The Austere Team: Provider roles in the field. Food allergies. (team exercise)
  • Environmental Hazards: Heat, Cold, Lightning strikes
  • Snakes and venomous bites
  • Spiders and Insects
  • Poisonous plants in the field
  • Interactive Team Stations: Wound Closure using Steri-strips and irrigating the wound
  • EPI pens in the field and anaphylaxis
  • Sawyer Extractors for venomous bites and stings
  • Pin-hole glasses for snow blindness
  • The Austere Team: Provider assessment of team provisions (team exercise #2)
  • Bandaging/Splinting Techniques #8: Knee testing and wrapping (demo and hands-on practice)
  • Mini Scenarios: triage exercise
  • Clearing the C-Spine (Lecture and practice)
  • Tourniquet Conversion in the field
  • Knots: The water knot for rescue harnesses
  • Interactive Team Stations: Creating a rescue harness
  • Tourniquet conversion
  • Clearing the C-Spine
  • Compression bandaging
  • The Austere Team: Provider assessment and plan for quantities of provisions and necessary gear
  • Bio-Regional Herb Lesson:  wildcrafting and field medicine preparations
  • Making activated charcoal, part 1 (hands-on)
  • Final Exam
  • Lecture: Emergencies in the field – from drownings to hypoglycemia
  • Building a first aid kit
  • Review of final exam
  • Making activated charcoal, part 2 (hands-on0
  • Bio-Regional Herb Lesson: completion of field medicine making preparation
  • Radio and Commo in an austere environment (lecture)
  • The Austere Team: Provider lecture wrap up of provision amounts, gear and transport (team exercise)
  • Base Camp Set Up Exercise: interactive team hands-on training
  • (Working in a post-disaster environment, creating an area of operations for mobile medic teams, the dispatch and holding area, gear inventory, working with emergency radios and establishing clinic, dispatch and mobile rescue teams)
  • Group Scenarios: post disaster response
  • 10th Day Triage
  • Establishing of an Incident Command Center
  • Team Exercise: Triage exercise for emergency with multiple injuries
  • Completion and Course Graduation

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