The U.S. Forest Service and Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards are hosting the 2nd annual Great Rivers Wilderness Skills Institute Nov. 4 – 8, at the Lake Dardanelle State Park in Russellville, Ark.

The free training offers a Crosscut Saw A/B certification, fundamentals of re-handling traditional tools, and learning Wilderness Stewardship history and fundamentals. Registration for the institute began Aug. 9 and ends Sept. 13.

“We’re very excited to work shoulder to shoulder with our great partners at the Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards to provide students in the Mid-South important knowledge and skills essential to protecting America’s federally designated wilderness,” said Chris Ham, Ouachita National Forest recreation, planning, heritage & wilderness staff officer.

The Great Rivers WSI gets its name from the region of America through which many rivers flow, including the Mississippi, Buffalo, Arkansas, and Eleven-Point.

To register for the institute, visit its website at to complete a short application process.

For more information, contact the following points-of contact: Robert Duggan on the Ozark-St. Francis National Forests at (479) 964-7238, email:; Chris Ham on the Ouachita National Forest at (501) 321-5320, email:; Kelly Pearson on the Shawnee National Forest at (618) 833-8576, email:; or Ed Sherman on the Mark Twain National Forest at (573) 996-2153, email:

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