Forest Discovery Week

Discover the forest and rewild yourself!

Connect to the natural world by immersing yourself in the wild Scottish Highlands. Join expert naturalist and wildlife tracker Dan Puplett to learn skills such as plant and animal identification, wildlife tracking, bird language, foraging, wildlife watching and mindfulness in nature. Learning these nature awareness skills can enrich our lives and help us see the world in a new way. During the course of this fun and eye-opening week, take the time to really immerse yourself in nature and share the company of other nature enthusiasts!

What you can expect

The Dundreggan Forest Discovery Week provides a unique chance for people to understand and connect to the natural world in a meaningful way. It’s an opportunity for anyone interested in nature to immerse themselves in the Scottish Highlands and learn skills such as tracking, foraging and identification. You don’t need to be an expert or a naturalist; you just need curiosity to learn, discover and connect to the natural world. There will also be free time so you can relax, wander, explore and cultivate your connection to nature at your own pace.

Accommodation is in Dundreggan Lodge, situated on the southern boundary of Dundreggan, overlooking the River Moriston. This comfortable and cosy building has three bunkrooms, a well-appointed kitchen, a large lounge/dining area, two en-suite shower rooms and two other shower/toilets. There is plenty of hot water for the end of a hard day’s work and drying areas for wet clothes.

The common room has a large wood burner for cosy evenings in – and on clear evenings we can light the fire outside. You will also have access to our growing library and equipment such as camera traps, microscope, bat detectors, moth traps as well as our hide, where pine martens are regularly seen.

Dan Puplett is a naturalist, conservationist and environmental educator providing training in a range of nature-based skills, as well as opportunities to get closer to the fantastic fauna and flora of our planet. He offers a high quality service for those who want to protect, understand and connect to the natural world. Dan provides public and bespoke courses, guided walks, environmental education and more.


Tracking is an ancient skill that helps us to gain a deeper insight into the lives of wildlife. You will learn a range of tracking skills including how to identify and interpret tracks, feeding signs, bones, feathers and more. Tracking brings out the Sherlock Holmes in you and is great fun!

Dundreggan is a biodiversity hotspot and we will cover ways to identify a variety of plants and animals from recognising bird song to identifying trees – sometimes with your eyes closed! These are skills that you can use wherever you happen to live. Identification skills include tree, bird and plant ID.

There is a wide range of wildlife in the area including red squirrels, pine martens, ospreys and more. While sightings obviously can’t be guaranteed there will be a chance to visit the pine marten hide and to look for other wildlife. You will also learn wildlife spotting tips and techniques.

Reading bird calls and behaviour is an aid to spotting predators and other wildlife, and can teach us much else besides! Bird language is another age-old skill that is closely related to tracking. By interpreting the different types of bird call and behaviour we can build a picture of what’s going on around us. It is even possible to locate owls and other predators purely by listening to other birds!

Humans have relied on plants for countless millennia. Discover how to recognise wild foods and to gather them in a safe and sustainable way.

We will also look at other plants and fungi that have been used to make fire, string and more.

Engaging our senses is an essential part of being a naturalist. We will explore ways to do this that help us to relax and become fully alert and present in our surroundings. There are many proven benefits that come with connecting to nature both to physical and mental wellbeing. You will get to try out some tried and tested ways of feeling more at home in the natural world and rewild yourself!

Important information