Nature’s Healers: Wild Medicinal Herbs
Instructor: Heather Nack-Culbreth
August 23 at 7 a.m.
Plants have been an important source of tools, food and medicine for humans throughout history. Thriving in Glacier’s riparian, meadow, and old growth habitats are many important medicinal herbs. This course will focus on the identification, medicinal value, native and historic uses of several plants in the West Glacier area. Glacier’s policies do not allow for picking plants in the park; instead, you will be learning how to identify the plants and their medicinal properties. You are encouraged to bring a camera and/or notebook to help you with future identification.
*If you are also interested in learning how to harvest and prepare medicinal herbs, be sure to sign up for “Making Wild Herbal Medicines,” on August 24. We will be discussing and preparing herbal teas, tinctures and salves.
Meeting Place: Glacier Institute Field Camp.
Itinerary: (subject to change due to trail closures and weather) Class will begin at Field Camp at 7 a.m., with a brief introduction to the course and to one another. We will discuss plant identification, wild crafting ethics, the laws governing wild crafting, and talk about some of the best herbal reference books. After a brief break, we will spend the day exploring the West Glacier – Apgar area, identifying and discussing plants in these ecosystems. The course will end by 4 p.m. and will not be cancelled due to weather.
Food: Please bring a trail lunch, plenty of water and snacks for the day.
Park Entrance Fees: Participants are responsible for purchasing their park entry passes prior to the course. These can be purchased online at: https://www.recreation.gov/sitepass/74280.
Equipment: You will receive a Field Camp gear list once you register. Most importantly are comfortable hiking shoes, at least 1-2 liter water bottle, backpack, rain gear, hat, and sunscreen. Weather can be varied so please be prepared with appropriate clothing, with warm layers. You may want to bring a notepad and pencil as well as a camera for photographing plants. If you have a favorite field guide or herbals, please bring them to share during the course.
Physical Requirements: Moderate/leisurely hikes, up to 3 miles or so and/or 500 ft. elevation gain with lots of discussion and learning breaks.
Academic Credit: Please see our ‘2021 Academic Credit’ link on our website to learn about OPI credits for our courses.