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Thread: The difference between Woodcraft and Bushcraft. (problem solved)

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    Default The difference between Woodcraft and Bushcraft. (problem solved)

    I know people have debated on this subject before. But I wasn't satisfy with the answers given. Some argue Americans should use the term Woodcraft and foreigner should use Bushcraft. While other say they are the same and use what you like. I don't fall in either school of thoughts. So I decided to tackle this problem on my own to established a clear distinction between these two terms. Here is my solution:

    **************Except that we have kids that frequent the forum so we try to keep it pg-13************
    Last edited by Rick; 08-08-2017 at 06:39 AM. Reason: Keeping it clean.


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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Well....You can put me down in the:

    1 vote...."I couldn't care less."...column.
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    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    I agree with Hunter. I don't give a crap.

    It does not matter because the word used for the same human activity is going to be different in each language. Since we are an international forum the term would be translated by the computer into a different word when one pushes the translate button

    Powel and Beard used the term woodcraft in the early Boy Scout Handbooks and Nesmuck predated them with the term Woodcraft. The early Americans referred to people on the frontier as "back woodsmen" but I have never heard any term used for the skills those people developed other than for them being skilled woodsmen and I have spent decades reading the historic works.

    It was all woodcraft in until the 1980 when an Australian coined the term bushcraft for the Australian outdoorsmen. They have always referred to their open areas as "the bush" so it was only natural.

    His books were very popular in the UK so Ray Meers used that term when he began his work and he has become the "universal outdoorsman" for the Brits, and with use of the internet the term spread.

    Americans always went to the woods, so we called it woodcraft.

    If we spoke French we would probably still refer to ourselves as Courriers du bouis and if we had remained a Dutch nation we would call ourselves "boshlopers". The Spanish translation is madera.

    I was once married to a woman that called it "out there acting like a fool"

    I am sure that when Anthony is speaking in his native Africanis he has a different word for the same activity.

    Someone should e-mail survival Lilly and ask for the Austrian and Swiss words.

    Now if we just want to argue about something, back in the day Nesmuck wrote a book called Woodcraft and Camping, a bit latter a guy named Kephart wrote a book called Camping and Woodcraft. Now which is the correct order to list these things? Who was right and who was wrong?
    Last edited by kyratshooter; 08-08-2017 at 12:23 PM.
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    Resident Wildman Wildthang's Avatar
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    There is no difference!
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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Whats the difference between spider webs and cobwebs?

    BTW the term "Bushcraft" is copyrighted as a few forums were ask to not use that term ...so be careful.
    Last edited by hunter63; 08-08-2017 at 12:45 PM.
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    Resident Wildman Wildthang's Avatar
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    I think it's just learning to do things in the woods, nothing more, nothing less.
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    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hunter63 View Post
    Whats the difference between spider webs and cobwebs?

    BTW the term "Bushcraft" is copyrighted as a few forums were ask to not use that term ...so be careful.
    I know! I know!

    Spider webs are outside and cob webs are inside!

    And yes, that "OTHER FORUM" has trademarked the word bushcraft even though it has been in use both conversationally and in merchandising for a hundred years. However that is only in the context of using it as the full label BCUSA and not as the single word.

    That is sort of like someone trying to patient the lightening rod just because Ben Franklin refused to, or copyrighting the word FLYING and refusing to allow anyone to use it.
    Last edited by kyratshooter; 08-08-2017 at 02:51 PM.
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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyratshooter View Post
    I know! I know!

    Spider webs are outside and cob webs are inside!

    And yes, that "OTHER FORUM" has trademarked the word bushcraft even though it has been in use both conversationally and in merchandising for a hundred years. However that is only in the context of using it as the full label BCUSA and not as the single word.

    That is sort of like someone trying to patient the lightening rod just because Ben Franklin refused to, or copyrighting the word FLYING and refusing to allow anyone to use it.
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    Last edited by hunter63; 08-08-2017 at 03:05 PM.
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    The OP was trying to be a bit funny, but his solution wasn't appropriate for the kids that look at the form. Probably should have been in the joke of the day thread, but it wouldn't have survived there either.
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    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    Well, it gave us some time for reflection and a bit of looking back at the past.

    The Frontier era was declared over almost exactly 120 years ago, and as soon as that declaration was made folks started trying to return to the "tamed" wilderness for recreation.

    They had to have a label for what they were doing so woodcraft was coined. Or in other countries other terms and other skill sets.
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    Senior Member WalkingTree's Avatar
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    How 'bout..."bush" is generally taken to mean the wild. When talking about survival, you can be in the bush even in the desert or a frozen treeless landscape. But "wood" would be just that - wood.

    ...um...no?
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    Crafty crafters know what works best for their projects. Depending on the craft, wood or bush. Wood is rigid. Bush is flexible. A combination of the two for some crafts is acceptable. That'd be bushwood crafters.

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    This is clearly a subject the merits much discussion. What say we order up bacon sammichs, coffee, a tad bit of apple pie (ahem) and discuss same until we run out of whatever we run out of. We can repeat as necessary.

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    Senior Member Antonyraison's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyratshooter View Post
    I agree with Hunter. I don't give a crap.

    It does not matter because the word used for the same human activity is going to be different in each language. Since we are an international forum the term would be translated by the computer into a different word when one pushes the translate button

    Powel and Beard used the term woodcraft in the early Boy Scout Handbooks and Nesmuck predated them with the term Woodcraft. The early Americans referred to people on the frontier as "back woodsmen" but I have never heard any term used for the skills those people developed other than for them being skilled woodsmen and I have spent decades reading the historic works.

    It was all woodcraft in until the 1980 when an Australian coined the term bushcraft for the Australian outdoorsmen. They have always referred to their open areas as "the bush" so it was only natural.

    His books were very popular in the UK so Ray Meers used that term when he began his work and he has become the "universal outdoorsman" for the Brits, and with use of the internet the term spread.

    Americans always went to the woods, so we called it woodcraft.

    If we spoke French we would probably still refer to ourselves as Courriers du bouis and if we had remained a Dutch nation we would call ourselves "boshlopers". The Spanish translation is madera.

    I was once married to a woman that called it "out there acting like a fool"

    I am sure that when Anthony is speaking in his native Africanis he has a different word for the same activity.

    Someone should e-mail survival Lilly and ask for the Austrian and Swiss words.

    Now if we just want to argue about something, back in the day Nesmuck wrote a book called Woodcraft and Camping, a bit latter a guy named Kephart wrote a book called Camping and Woodcraft. Now which is the correct order to list these things? Who was right and who was wrong?
    Houtwerk. I I guess. aka Wood Work.
    but yeah Generally we have no term for outdoors-men. Maybe you can through around the Term BOER. (farmer loosely translated, but not the same in concept...as The boers I am referring to are the Nation of ppl the English faced and got hammered by in the 1st ango-boer war, which is where the scout movement was born, from realizing that Soldiers had to operate much better in the BUSH, and have Skills from survival, knowledge of the bush, herbal remedies, horse riding, and many many many other various skills the boers Had from a result of being so in touch with the actual land, including guerrilla warfare, camouflage, Marksman ship... yess the boers where much much much better shots also...etc etc)
    Last edited by Antonyraison; 08-09-2017 at 03:30 AM.

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    Senior Member Antonyraison's Avatar
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    But yeah quiet honestly Our community of Survival and bushcraft is small...
    But we have a lot of skilled outdoorsmen none the less
    and a lot of skilled Wood working guys.
    I dont think we really had a term for specific bushcraft really... any Form of wood working is indistinguishable from another...
    Suppose the Differentiation I guess depends on Tools? I dont know.

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    Senior Member Antonyraison's Avatar
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    Most Outdoorsmen here usually come from the BOER linage as historically that's 90% of where the scout movement was Copied from.
    I am French Decent however. And English 1st language. Afrikaans 2nd Langauge.. and speak passable zulu as a 3rd
    A lot of our more traditional Rural People, are incredibly skilled in Wood work, like carving, shelter building, and many many other skills.
    Tourists love buying the curios...
    So yeah... I doubt you beat those guys on the skill
    I mean we still have isolated Koi-san bushmen, and some other very rural tribal people around. but scattered and few and far between.
    Last edited by Antonyraison; 08-09-2017 at 02:51 AM.

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    Senior Member Antonyraison's Avatar
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    If I really think long and hard on this... I dont see why there Are these devides and definitions.
    Survival/bushcraft/Woodcraft.
    I really dont understand it.
    Maybe I was raised differently
    I always played outside as a kid, always had a knife, always made and carved things.. did scouts.
    Went to my grandfathers farm often played there, shot guns..
    And A lot of 'Afrikaans" people here grew up the same, learnt to hunt,fish,camp.. had knives..
    skills just where pasted down from boer to boer.. and a lot of these boer farmer families still around..
    its like a right of passage you teach your sons how to Make it happen in the bush.

    BOSVELD-mcgiver "bush veld Mcgiver" hahah

    hahah we dont really use terms, only place i found them was once I started doing survival via a school Simply to differentiate Making stuff to improve situation or just for fun.. and the actual knowledge of how to stay alive in the bush.
    I see them hand in hand, I rarely make anything in the bush that is not useful for me.
    I can also obviously make a nice orinment if I like or a wall hanger.. but honestly a waste of calories...(evidence of My abilities of making bushcraft is littered all over my instagram if you that curios link in signature)
    I much rather make things that can be used... like pot hangers bow drills, shelters fishing poles, traps... so on so forth
    Last edited by Antonyraison; 08-09-2017 at 03:16 AM.

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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Antonyraison View Post
    Houtwerk. I I guess. aka Wood Work.
    but yeah Generally we have no term for outdoors-men. Maybe you can through around the Term BOER. (farmer loosely translated, but not the same in concept...as The boers I am referring to are the Nation of ppl the English faced and got hammered by in the 1st ango-boer war, which is where the scout movement was born, from realizing that Soldiers had to operate much better in the BUSH, and have Skills from survival, knowledge of the bush, herbal remedies, horse riding, and many many many other various skills the boers Had from a result of being so in touch with the actual land, including guerrilla warfare, camouflage, Marksman ship... yess the boers where much much much better shots also...etc etc)

    Seems this thread has produced some interesting information.........
    The scouting angle was interesting....as we associate to a US invention.....
    Seems not........
    Quote>
    Three years later, in South Africa during the Second Boer War, Baden-Powell was besieged in the small town of Mafeking by a much larger Boer army (the Siege of Mafeking).[15] The Mafeking Cadet Corps was a group of youths that supported the troops by carrying messages, which freed the men for military duties and kept the boys occupied during the long siege. The Cadet Corps performed well, helping in the defense of the town (1899–1900), and were one of the many factors that inspired Baden-Powell to form the Scouting movement.[16][17][18] Each member received a badge that illustrated a combined compass point and spearhead. The badge's logo was similar to the fleur-de-lis shaped arrowhead that Scouting later adopted as its international symbol.[19] The Siege of Mafeking was the first time since his own childhood that Baden-Powell, a regular serving soldier, had come into the same orbit as "civilians"—women and children—and discovered for himself the usefulness of well-trained boys.<quote

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scouting

    Seems the seeds of early scouting were influenced by skills for "The New World"...(always laugh at that)....any way
    Quote>
    During their joint scouting patrols into the Matobo Hills, Burnham augmented Baden-Powell's woodcraft skills, inspiring him and sowing seeds for both the programme and for the code of honour later published in Scouting for Boys.[8][9] Practised by frontiersmen of the American Old West and Indigenous peoples of the Americas, woodcraft was generally little known to the British Army but well-known to the American scout Burnham.[5] These skills eventually formed the basis of what is now called scoutcraft, the fundamentals of Scouting. < quote

    So we have a traditional "Term"...."Scoutcraft"

    In a world of labels .......as I said to start with:
    I don't really care WHAT it's called.....or why a label is necessary other than arguing who's opinion is correct.

    .....I just know that some of my life's best and worst moments and events happen while pursuing THE OUTDOORS.

    Thanks AR,... great posts useful addition for all.
    Can't rep you as I have to spread it around.
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    Not a Mod finallyME's Avatar
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    I don't think they are the same words. Bushcraft is more survival type stuff while woodcraft is more making things in camp with natural materials. Stuff that just adds comfort, like a Kuksa.

    Of course my opinion doesn't really matter. People will use what they want. Trying to define it is futile IMHO.
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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by finallyME View Post
    I don't think they are the same words. Bushcraft is more survival type stuff while woodcraft is more making things in camp with natural materials. Stuff that just adds comfort, like a Kuksa.

    Of course my opinion doesn't really matter. People will use what they want. Trying to define it is futile IMHO.
    I would have tought it was the other way around....LOL....
    Anyway...just get out there....have fun, stay safe.
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