3 Northern Virginia survival schools, plus binge-worthy TV shows to inspire

Looking for a unique way to spend some time this summer? Learn how to survive in any situation at these three schools and get inspired by some of the best survivalist TV shows out there.

Northern Virginia Survival Schools
Photo courtesy of Falcon Eyes/Shutterstock.com.

By Sophia Rutti

Now that summertime is in full force, all the kids and their parents are taking off on vacations, starting summer camps and finding different ways to spend these sweltering summer months. Northern Virginia is a place with many options when it comes to what to do locally, but after a while even a trip to the Outer Banks or a NoVA winery can get stale. If you’re looking for something quirky and unique to do in the area, head out to one of the local survival schools.

No, a survival school does not always have to mean you’re trying to become a doomsday prepper, but it can. You can learn things that range from wilderness survival, trapping, disaster preparedness and urban survival skills. Whether you’re looking for a fun way to learn a new skill or want to get serious in case of a disaster, these classes are the perfect way to do it. Don’t worry if you’re a beginner who has never even considered a survivalist class—put yourself out there, try something new, and you’ll come home knowing how to use wild medicines or weave baskets. If you’re in need of a little inspiration to tap into your inner survival mode check out some of the most popular survival schools


The Earth Connection School
This school of primitive living skills is centered around the idea of reconnecting with nature. At this school you can get in touch with nature in a beginner-friendly and laid-back environment. Classes are only offered to applicants 18 years of age and above or teens who are attending with a parent or guardian.

Click here to see the classes offered.

Location: Only provided after registration in a class

TV Inspiration: Alaska: The Last Frontier” & “Dual Survival


Mountain Shepherd: Wilderness Survival School
This school is all about survival, whether that be in a wilderness setting or an urban one. Mountain Shepherd Wilderness Survival School offers classes for all survival environments and all types of survivalists. One notable class is the women’s empowerment class that will give women the skills to feel confident by themselves in any situation.

Click here to see the classes offered.

Location: Catawba, VA

TV Inspiration: The Walking Dead,” “Falling Skies” & “The 100


Advanced Survival Training
Don’t be intimidated by the title; this school has classes for every level of survival enthusiast. Founder and instructor Tim MacWelch believes that it is important for every person to regain their birthright of understanding nature, and one of the best ways to do it is to feel self-sufficient in the natural environment. In a bad situation, he believes you don’t need to hope for good luck, but instead you should rely on good training.

Click here to see the classes offered.

Location: Somerville, VA

TV Inspiration:Man vs. Wild” & Les Stroud’s “Survivorman”





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