Apprentice Trails Guide 7 Week Course
The 7-week Apprentice Trails Guide qualification is designed for you, the guide, who is exceptionally tuned into nature with above-average alertness in the bush. Being a Trails Guide who conducts walking safaris must not be taken lightly. It is important that you understand the level of maturity and responsibility that comes with the job title. Dealing with upset and dangerous African animals, while being responsible for an inexperienced group of people is not for the faint-hearted.
FGASA requires a minimum of 50 mentored hours and 10 encounters. The mentored hours we cover here at Ulovane will be at least four times more than what this specified minimum is, meaning you will have sufficient encounters and hours to enter the Trails Guide mentorship program.
Here at Ulovane, our approach to Trails Guide training is not to go and look for encounters with dangerous game. A wholesome and holistic approach to being a Trails Guide encompasses far more than just this. Safe and ethical bush experiences, with a skillset to interpret many areas of the bush, including wildflowers, tracks and signs, birds, and the many other small intricacies that exist out in nature.
Our focus to Trails Guiding here at Ulovane is to provide ethical bush walks, with safe encounters for both the animals and the guests. The aim of our training is to show you the Trails Guide student, the correct procedure of approaching dangerous animals, without changing their natural behavior and being able to observe and spend time with them in a safe and ethical manner. The idea is NOT to get as close as possible, putting the animal and people in danger, but to appreciate being in the same space as these animals and to avoid these dangerous animals at all costs. We feel that to experience these wonders of Africa is a privilege not to be taken for granted.
The first two weeks of this course are focused on Trails Guiding as a career, PFTC, and Advanced Rifle Handling (A.R.H). The three PFTC, unit standards that must be achieved, enable the learner to competently use a rifle for business purposes in the eco-tourism industry. The Advanced Rifle Handling week focuses on the FGASA Trails Guide Rifle Handling qualification and general rifle proficiency.
The next 4 weeks of the course focus on the practical element of Trails guiding, including gaining experience and encounters on foot, in areas where dangerous animals occur, and real experience walking with a firearm. All approaches will be logged in the learner’s Trails Guide logbook to serve as experience gained for evidence towards the full Professional Trails Guide qualification.
Tracking as a skill is a significant and essential component of Trails guiding. The ancient art of tracking animals and following the signs they leave behind in the wild is covered in-depth in a variety of bush environments and biomes, over the duration of these 4 weeks.
The final week of the course will encompass the FGASA Apprentice Trails Guide theoretical examination which includes the following sections: Dangerous Animals, Advanced Rifle Handling, and Approaching Animals on Foot, as well as the final FGASA walking assessment.
** There are weekly exams which take place every Sunday morning, in which each week’s modules will be covered. These exams ensure that you are on track to write the national FGASA exam at the end of week 7.
The candidate must have a minimum of an Apprentice Field Guide Skills Program to qualify for the course.
- Apprentice Trails Guide Skills Program
- Relevant PFTC Unit Standards
- Advanced Rifle Handling: Lead Rifle
- Tracking Skills Specialization (Cybertracker Evaluation)
- Apprentice Trails Guide Exam
- Apprentice Trails Guide Walking Assessment (provided you successfully complete your A.R.H assessment).
- 4 Weeks Walking Experience
- Accommodation for the duration of the course
- Conservation Fees
- All meals for the duration of the course
- Uniform provided
- All FGASA Fees (assessment, exam, subscription, registration, moderation, manuals, workbooks, logbooks, prescribed literature, and certification) for the duration of the course
- Formal and Practical Tuition for all the subjects
- Conducting necessary FGASA liaison on your behalf, for the duration of your courses
- 28 March – 15 May 2021
- 27 June – 14 August 2021
- 26 September – 13 November 2021
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