Build the foundation to

tackle the elements


Academy for Rescue Training and Outdoor Survival

ARTOS is based in Northwestern Montana with most courses being held in the Flathead Valley and others being held in neighboring public lands such as the Flathead and Kootenai National Forests. Our courses are systematically designed to give you the critical skills and knowledge you need to survive in a wilderness emergency. Take a look below at the three main pillars of our training.

Outdoor Survival

Build a toolkit of proven survival skills, tactics, and philosophies that will keep you alive and get you home following an emergency situation. No matter how you spend your time in the outdoors, from day hiking to multi-day adventuring to operating in the field, the skills you will learn can be applied anywhere and by anyone. The content of our courses is not meant to impress with gimmicky tricks, but is designed to work, plain and simple, every time. Learn to build shelters, make fire, source and treat water, procure nutrition and natural medicines, get rescued, navigate using map and compass, and more.

Emergency Medicine

If you encountered a patient with a traumatic injury or medical emergency in everyday life, would you know what to do? What if it happened in a wilderness setting? Would you know how to properly use the items in your first aid kit or would you be doing more harm than good? Does your first aid kit have the appropriate equipment of adequate quality to get the job done? Would you know how to improvise materials from your environment if you didn’t have certain items in your first aid kit? Could you evacuate your patient without causing further injury? Come take a wilderness medicine course so you can answer ‘yes’ to all of these questions with confidence. We also offer many conventional medical courses such as First Aid, CPR/AED, Stop Life-Threatening Bleeding, Basic Life Support for medical professionals, and more for your unit, group, or business.

Preparedness, Mindset, And Utilization Of Resources

One of the most important aspects of emergency and outdoor survival is preparedness. This not only means packing the appropriate, high-quality gear for any given outing or assignment, but also fostering the attitude and mindset to ensure you retain your situational awareness and keep your wits about you in a high-stress environment. No two things are more deadly than complacency or quitting. Of course, physical training and making a plan are just as important as your attitude. You may also be confronted with a situation in which you need to be able to recognize the resources around you to complete a task. Whether it’s identifying plants for food, choosing the right material for a fire kit, or delegating tasks to group members based on strengths and skills, your ability to recognize who or what you can use to complete the task is crucial. Our courses are not easy and will require critical thinking, teamwork, and a willingness to lead. Come train with us and learn how to prepare your mind and your kit, how to make a plan, and how to utilize the resources available to you.

Meet Your Instructor

Patrick Norton

Patrick Norton has spent extensive time working and recreating in the outdoors and teaching survival and emergency medicine. He is a former federal wildland firefighter, a Nationally Registered EMT with a wilderness upgrade, and a certified medical instructor. He is also a certified wilderness field instructor and swiftwater rescue technician. He has taught and led survival and medical courses for a diverse clientele from the mountains and deserts of Southern California to the boreal of Alaska. He is dedicated to using his experience in the field and in the survival training industry to develop and provide the most effective and practical training curriculums to the public, government organizations, and private businesses.

Courses to build your Survival Foundation

2023 COURSE DATES OUT NOW! CLICK SIGN UP BUTTONS TO ENROLL! ARTOS offers a variety of courses from Basic Survival Skills and Wilderness First Aid to more advanced survival and medical courses, as well as courses dedicated to specific skills such as map and compass navigation, wild plant identification and use, and desert or cold-weather survival. We also have wilderness field courses so you can test your skills and mettle in a real survival scenario. Our open to the public courses are mostly held in the Flathead Valley of Montana or surrounding public lands such as the Flathead and Kootenai National Forests. Please use the contact form below to contact us about private or custom courses for your organization.

coming soon!

3-Day Basic Survival simulation: Wayward on the westside

Have you ever wanted to see if you could make it out alive in a wilderness emergency situation? Now is your chance to test your survival skills and gear in a 3-day immersive wilderness survival scenario. No experience necessary, although the ARTOS Basic Survival Skills and WFA courses are a great way to prepare. Field course dates and information to be released soon!

3-Day Basic

Survival Skills
& Wilderness First aid

The Survival Standard. This is a combination of our 2-day Basic Survival Skills and 2-day Wilderness First Aid course packed into just three days! This is the foundation for which all other ARTOS Survival courses are based on. This course involves physical activity, long training days, and a willingness to get your hands dirty. This course is more of a challenge than our standalone Basic Survival Skills or WFA courses and we train until we are done! 2023 course dates: June 2-4, August 18-20, October 6-8

2-day basic

Survival Skills

This course, when combined with a WFA certification, is the foundation for which all other ARTOS Survival courses are based on. We will cover the essential aspects of wilderness emergencies. Students will train in the most efficient, effective, and practical real-world skills and principles to survive the vast majority of wilderness situations. Whether you are a complete novice or have extensive experience in the field, this course is for you. 2023 course dates: September 16-17


wilderness first aid certification

At ARTOS, we believe a complete wilderness survival skillset is not complete without basic backcountry emergency medical training, since many times the emergency includes or is, in and of itself, a medical emergency. In this class, complete with lots of hands-on scenarios, you will learn all about how to respond to a traumatic or medical emergency in a wilderness setting where help may not be anywhere in sight. 2023 course dates: May 20-21, October 21-22

1-day all-ages

Introduction To Survival Workshop

This all-ages day class will give you some introductory knowledge on survival philosophy, skills, and gear. We will go over the essentials in a more abbreviated, family friendly way than our 2- or 3-day survival courses with some fun demonstrations and hands-on activities throughout. Great for kids! 2023 course dates: August 5

Future Courses

Stay tuned for more courses to build upon your skills, including:

Future Course

Intermediate, Advanced, And Long-term Survival

Learn to get by for longer with less. The next courses in the survival progression will build on the skills from the Basic Survival Skills course and subject you to more complex scenarios. Learn to build more shelters for different environments and for longer stays. Learn the most important knots and their applications. Master the fire. Learn new ways to collect and purify water, find food, and more!

Future Course

Wilderness Survival Simulation Courses

This is where the rubber meets the road! From a long weekend in the snow to a week in the wild, find out if you have the skills, knowledge, and, most importantly, the intestinal fortitude to survive with just a few items, including a knife and a canteen. These courses are not instructional. They are 100% in the field. Do you think you have what it takes to make it to the end?

Future Course

Advanced Wilderness Medicine (WFR And WUMP)

If you plan on doing guide work or are just interested in expanding your knowledge of wilderness medicine, become a Wilderness First Responder. This will increase your scope of practice and your understanding of emergency medicine in the wild. If your occupation is in the medical field, consider the Wilderness Upgrade for Medical Professionals.

Other Future Courses

Desert survival

Winter, snow, and cold-weather survival

Urban preparedness and survival

Map and compass navigation

Wild plant identification and use

Medicinal plants and apothecary

Survival food procurement: trapping, tracking, hunting, fishing, foraging, processing


Primitive Skills

Tool and weapon craft

Instructor Trainee Program

We also offer many conventional medical courses such as First Aid, CPR/AED, Stop Life-Threatening Bleeding, Basic Life Support for medical professionals, and more for your unit, group, or business! Send a message below to inquire.