The White Rock Primitive Skills and Crafts Gathering is a 5 day event where you can learn, “hands on”, some of the old and nearly forgotten skills and crafts that our ancestors used daily to live and survive. Our aim is to preserve and spread the use of these crafts and skills. A typical gathering May include the following:
Arrow and Bow making, Basketry & Weaving, Blacksmithing, Hide Tanning, Campcraft, Fiber & Cordage, Fire Making, Felting, Flint knapping, Leather Work, Hunting, Tracking & Trapping, Pottery, Shelters, Tin Smithing, Wild Edibles, Botany & Medicinals.
These skills will be taught by experienced instructors who have spent years and sometimes decades honing their craft. They all have amazing knowledge and abilities and want to share them with you.
The Gathering will be held at Summer Lake in the high desert of Southern Oregon. It’s called the “White Rock Gathering” because there is a singular unusual peak of white rock in the midst of Winter Rim, an escarpment that runs down the valley and overlooks Summer Lake.
There is a rich history of primitive people living in this area, indeed, the oldest discovered mitochondrial DNA in America was found in a cave in Summer Lake. Even today there is still a great deal of evidence to show that they were here. From the remains of flint knapped obsidian arrow heads and spear points, to the remains of rock, camp circles and the many petroglyphs carved into rocks.
There are also acres of Cattails and Willows that surely must have been a great resource for these ancient people.
White Rock aims to connect people with their ancient past by teaching the many skills these people must have had. To survive here, these skills were the “high tech” of their time. There is still a great connection to the past here in Summer Lake and the aim of the White Rock Gathering is to keep it alive.
Summer Lake Amenities
The Summer Lake valley located on the edge of the Fremont National Forest, was once a vast lake stretching 50 miles down the valley. Today most of it is a dried up lake bed, but a part of it still has water.
Ana Reservoir, at the north end of Summer Lake, is less than a mile from the Gathering and is a great place to swim, paddle board, canoe, boat and fish. It is stocked with trophy fish and holds the Oregon record for Hybrid Bass. The Ana River has Trout and is a great little River to float.
Ana Reservoir RV Park is just 1/2 a mile down the road from the Gathering with full RV hook ups and camping. They also have laundry, showers and a dump station.
There is also The Summer Lake Hot Springs RV Park 20 miles south (see below).
Further down the valley towards Paisley are the Summer Lake Hot Springs which has camping, RV hook ups and cabins to rent. To use the hot springs requires staying there, but we hope to arrange an evening, where we can rent the pools.
While Summer Lake is “out in the boonies” we do have a small store, gas station and post office – all in the same building😀. The nearest town with shops and services is La Pine, 75 miles to the north and Lake View, 60 miles south…. So come prepared!