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Trackers Chef Apprenticeship

9-month Youth Cooking Course

Become a storyteller whose prose is local and sustainable foods, both grown in gardens and wild harvested. Elevate foraging and horticulture to a new level: from earth to table. Get hands-on experience while training with our Guild Chef through a worldly spectrum of cooking techniques, principles and theories.

The Apprenticeship

The Trackers Chef Apprenticeship immerses you in many cooking traditions while charting a new path for a wilder culinary culture:

Wild Foraging: Plants & More
Chef Apprentices learn about true subsistence foraging and preservation, harvesting from Fall to Spring. They explore the flavors of local wild edible plants along with seafood, meats and fungi. We journey into a world where wild plants run through our gardens and our gardens grow through the wild forest. 

For 2018-19 all recipes likely include wheat, sugar, dairy, eggs, and/or possibly meat

Cooking Technique & Safety
We explore a diverse, colorful and flavorful world of cooking techniques throughout history and the world. Every Chef Apprentice gets their Food Handlers Card, but we go beyond that as apprentices study the ergonomics of the cooking environment. Chef Apprentices learn to keep the village well fed in an ongoing celebration of local foods, health and nutrition.

Mise en place - The Ecology of Kitchen Survival
The French concept of a highly organized kitchen is more than a process for cooking, it is way of awareness and life. The ecology of kitchen survival requires a sharp and thoughtful mind. In a Wilder kitchen you have a huge diversity of ingredients available to you where truly wild tastes push the edges of flavor and root us deeply in nourishing traditions.

How it Works

Mentoring Weekends One weekend a month for nine months. Apprentices train with expert instructors at our epic outdoor locations. We provide transportation. Apprentices Grade 5-12 do four overnight expeditions, two in the fall, another two the following spring, along with four additional field days. See below for class schedule.

Skills Evenings & Open Archery Range There are also learning opportunities every week. Apprentices and their immediate family get free admission to our Skills Evenings (every Thursday) with a chance to share in related activities such as acorn processing or weaving gathering baskets. They can even choose to expand into other new skills or participate in our Open Archery Range (every Thursday, Friday, Saturday).


Single Field Days One Saturday almost each month usually 9am -4:30pm each day
4 Weekend Overnights Friday Evening to Sunday
See below for class schedule


Tuition is divided into ten monthly payments after a $50 deposit.

Monthly Payment Plan

Grade 5-12 $50 deposit, then ten monthly payments of $144 (total $1495)

Reserve your place with a $50 deposit. Tuition is divided into 10-monthly payments. First payment is due September 10. Contact Us to set up.

Family Discount- A 10% discount is available for siblings registering together.
Returning Apprentices get a tuition discount based on year of attendance.

Please Note: Discounts cannot be combined. Contact Us to learn more.


We offer limited scholarship awards for those families who may need financial assistance in attending the apprenticeship program. For more information Contact Us.


Drop-off is at our SE Portland location - 4617 SE Milwaukie Avenue, Portland, Oregon. We provide transportation to epic sites. Our private locations allow us to fully practice the skills of Trackers Craft. We cook by the campfire, care for animals, and harvest from the wild; all while caretaking for the land and forest.

Program comes with...

  • Skill building weekends once a month - monthly weekend overnights or single training days
  • Mentoring with expert instructors at Trackers
  • Trackers apron with your name on it
  • Cohort cookbook: Comprised of recipes of Wilder Foods for the Village
  • Graduation banquet you cook for the entire community
  • Skills Evenings free every Thursday
  • Open Archery Range free every Thursday, Friday or Saturday

Class Schedule

When signing up for Trackers Chef Apprenticeship be sure your child can make most of the weekends. Apprenticeships average one weekend a month.

Grade 5-12 Schedule A - Weekend Dates

September 8-10, 2017
Weekend Overnight
October 6-8, 2017
Weekend Overnight
November 4, 2017
Field Day
December 9, 2017
Optional Holiday Party
January 13, 2018
Field Day
February 3, 2018
Field Day
March 3, 2018
Field Day
April 6-8, 2018
Weekend Overnight
May 4-6, 2018 Weekend Overnight
June 2, 2018
Graduation Celebration

Grade 5-12 Schedule B Weekend Dates

September 15-17, 2017
Weekend Overnight
October 20-22, 2017
Weekend Overnight
November 11, 2017
Field Day
December 9, 2017
Optional Holiday Party
January 20, 2018
Field Day
February 10, 2018
Field Day
March 10, 2018
Field Day
April 20-22, 2018
Weekend Overnight
May 18-20, 2018 Weekend Overnight
June 2, 2018
Graduation Celebration