Minnesota Master Naturalist

Course Registration

NWGL - Long Lake CC Week of Winter Wonders! Palisade MN

Long Lake CC Week of Winter Wonders! Palisade MN website

28952 438th Lane
Palisade, MN 56469


As Minnesotans, about sixty percent of our lives is spent in the cold dark days of winter, and we yearn for the spring and warm months to explore and get our nature fix. Yet, winter is full of opportunities to explore and learn new things in nature, too. As many of us stay in throughout the cold months we miss out on all of these wonderful occurrences in nature and learning opportunities we have never taken advantage of before. The winter season is full of life and learning. In a unique week-long North Woods, Great Lakes course, we will explore the wonders of nature in winter by birding, tracking wildlife, learning how the first Minnesotans survived the winter, practicing our own winter resourcefulness, trekking through the forest, identifying trees by their twigs and bark, snowshoeing, skiing, and discovering new things about nature only observed in the winter.

The week of wonderful winter learning happens at Long Lake Conservation Center, a Residential Environmental Learning Center in Palisade, MN. Only 2.5 hours away from the metro, less than 2 hours away from St. Cloud, and 1 hour away from Duluth; Long Lake is an easy trip to the Northwoods. The course will begin on Monday and is followed by a 40 hour week of winter learning and exploration. The 40 hours includes multiple field trips, guest speakers, and class in Long Lake’s modern facilities or out on 760 beautiful acres. Local residents will be able to attend daily from 8:00 am to 5:30pm every day of the week. Additionally, those who travel to the Northwoods for a week long getaway will be able to stay at Long Lake in modern lodges (and can arrive Sunday at no additional cost). Cost does vary depending on what the participant prefers. Contact Long Lake and with Facility Rental questions: 218-768-4653

• Basic 40 hour course (no lodging or meals): $295
• 40 hours course with homemade, hot lunches only. Monday-Friday: $375
• 40 hours course with lodging and breakfast, lunch, and dinner: $550

All course costs include manuals and supplies.

What to expect!
Outdoor learning! Yes, even in the winter. Long Lake is lucky enough to have acres of classroom that we intend to utilize. Learning about the outdoors happens outdoors at Long Lake! Participants should plan to be outside in a Minnesota winter! Dress and pack for the snow!

Learning at Long Lake is not only outdoors but it is hands on! We spend most of our time moving, doing, discovering. There will be some slide presentations, but 80% of the course is active! (Activities provide options for abilities, but most activities happen outdoors)

In addition to 40 hours of training, MN Master Naturalist requires the completion of a group capstone project. Capstone options will be presented on Monday, and participants will choose a capstone that they can achieve before graduation on Friday!

For those considering a week-long stay: Long Lake CC is geared for youth. Our main business is school field trips. We invite thousands of youth learners to explore, conserve, learn about, and appreciate nature. Our lodging is large lodge buildings with dorm rooms designed for eight kids (4 bunk beds, a bathroom, a shower, and vanity). Long Lake will place one participant per room unless noted for a couple (spouses, friends). A packing list will be sent, but do not worry about packing light! Pack for comfort!

Registration closes - January 6, 2023 at noon.

The course cost is $295 and includes course manuals and supplies.

If the course cost is a hardship, please fill out the scholarship application. After the scholarship is fully processed, you will receive a code to be entered in the on-line registration process. Please wait until you receive that code to complete registration.

Course Dates:

Meeting from 8:00 A.M. to 5:30 P.M. on:

Instructor Information

Jim Platt

By education, I am a physical geographer in the "classical" sense, so think geology, land-forms, water, climate and bio-geography.

By vocation, I am now a retired Geographic Information Systems manager, most recently with The Nature Conservancy, working primarily on large scale landscape conservation projects.

By avocation, I am a naturalist, native plant gardener and full-time student of nature.

Sponsor Information

Long Lake Conservation Center

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