• ForestLodge01

Northland College is committed to lifelong learning. Our adult programs offer an exceptional variety of experiences from nature journaling to geology of Minnesota’s north shore, Great Lakes Water Wars, a Nature Yoga retreat, and more. There’s something for everyone, including non-credit and credit options. 

Our location on the south shore of Lake Superior makes an outstanding backdrop for our unique enrichment programming. Several retreats and workshops will take place for the first time at Forest Lodge in Cable, Wisconsin.  This unique and historic estate is nestled among 872 acres of old growth forest in the heart of the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest and situated along Lake Namekagon’s pristine shoreline.  So join us this summer and expand your horizons. Register online here.

Please note that to complete your  registration, you must:

View 2016 Sessions

June 4-5 Ι Lake Superior’s Spectacular Bird Ecology

Registration Closed

Join Department of Natural Resources Research Scientist and birding expert Ryan Brady to learn more about the region’s diverse and colorful avifauna. Discover what makes the bay area special for birds, where to find them, and the resources you’ll need to better know them during Saturday’s indoor session. Then venture afield on Sunday to visit spectacular, local destinations, find dozens of species, get identification tips, and discuss optics, field guides, and more! Dress for the weather and bring binoculars, bug spray, sunscreen, water, sturdy waterproof footwear, and other outdoor gear fit for short birding hikes in early summer.

Cost: $95 (no meals or housing included)
: 8AM-12PM Saturday; 7AM-1PM Sunday
Location: Northland College
Program: birding; hiking

June 17-19 Ι The Geology of Lake Superior’s North Shore

Registration Closed

Join Northland College Professor of Geology Tom Fitz on this three-day, two-night trip covering western Lake Superior’s geologic history. You will experience some of the region’s most spectacular and scenic trails, lake views, and waterfalls while discovering the story of Earth’s ancient past. You will explore huge volcanic eruptions that covered the Earth’s surface with vast floods of lava and view some “modern” geologic processes in action. Visit impressive bedrock outcrops, Ely’s ancient greenstone, and the iron range.

This program takes place in the field along Wisconsin and Minnesota’s north shore, and inland through the Superior National Forest to Minnesota’s mysterious iron formations. Stops include Amnicon State Park, Silver Cliff, Sugarloaf Cove, Gooseberry Falls, and Soudan Underground Mine State Park. Overnight hotel lodging and brown-bag lunches are included. The group will eat breakfast and dinner together but those costs are on your own. Participants must bring good hiking boots, outdoor clothing, and bug gear.

Cost: $425
Duration: 9AM Friday -5 PM Sunday; 2 nights
Location: Ashland, WI to Ely, MN
Program: walking/hiking, geology, history, recreation
Meals: 3 lunches
Lodging: hotel in Tofte, MN and Ely, MN

July 9-10 Ι Exploring the Penokees

Registration Closed

Tom Fitz, credited expert and Northland College professor of geology, will guide you through the Penokee Mountains on a geologic history adventure. Learn about the minerals you will view in the field through lab instruction at Northland College. Discover some of the region’s most scenic trails, waterways, and rock outcrops as you investigate the geologic formations south of Lake Superior in the Penokees. This program takes place at Northland and in the field. Please bring your own lunch, hiking boots, water, and bug gear.

Cost: $125 (no meals or housing included)
Duration: 9AM Saturday – 4PM Sunday; 1 night
Location: Northland College
Program: walking/hiking, geology, history

July 22-24 Ι Nurture in Nature: A Forest Lodge Yoga Retreat

Registration Closed

Retreat to the woods and enjoy peace, quiet, and relaxation during this weekend yoga retreat at Forest Lodge. Take some time to reconnect with nature and yourself through yoga, meditation, forested walks, and time by the water. Join Valerie Damstra for daily yoga classes geared toward all levels of yoga practitioners. In between classes, walk the grounds, explore the area, read or relax, and enjoy the natural beauty of the north woods. Kayaks and stand-up paddleboards may be rented for paddling Lake Namekagon.

Cost: $195
Duration: 6PM Friday – 11AM Sunday; 2 nights
Location: Forest Lodge in Cable, WI
Program: yoga, relaxation, recreation
Meals: 4; breakfast (2), lunch (1), dinner (1)
Meal options: vegetarian & gluten free options; please specify at registration for dietary concerns

August 6 Ι Nature Printing

Registration Closed

From Japanese fishermen preserving a record of their catch to botany studies by Leonardo DaVinci to Ben Franklin’s use of imprinted leaves on early American money, printing images directly from nature has intrigued humans for centuries. Jason Terry, talented artist and Northland College professor of art, will guide your exploration of various techniques for printing native plants and fish of the Lake Superior region. In this workshop, emphasis is placed on your personal expression.

Cost: $95 (no meals or housing included)
: 9AM – 4PM
Location: Northland College
Program: art, nature

August 13 Ι Artful Nature Journals

Registration Closed

Join the talented artist and workshop instructor Janet Moore to discover how to capture and communicate your sense of awe from being immersed in nature. Emphasis is placed on visiting one of Lake Superior’s most scenic shorelines, and learning about the ecology and cultural history of the landscape through the lens of art and literature. This workshop includes creating your own journal with instructed bookbinding; basic field drawing techniques with pencil, pen, ink and watercolor; guided writing exercises; onsite field art instruction; and personal work time.

Participants will emerge from this one-day, intensive course with the basic skills needed to create an illustrated journal that communicates their story of this experience and many adventures to come. The program will begin at Northland College and include a field experience at Houghton Falls near Washburn, Wisconsin. A field kit of basic supplies needed for the course activities will be provided; participants are free to bring their own materials as well. Participants may be able to receive credit based on additional requirements by the instructor.

Cost: $125
Duration: 8AM – 4PM
Location: Northland College and Houghton Point in Washburn, WI
Program: art, nature

August 12-14 Ι Weekend with Wolves: Wolf Ecology Workshop

Registration Closed

Join Timber Wolf Alliance (TWA) Coordinator Adrian Wydeven for a weekend with wolves. Learn about wolf ecology, wolf monitoring techniques, and the latest wolf issues from biologists and educators immersed in this field. Time will be spent in the classroom and in the field surveying wolf pack territories. Participants will assist with wolf howling surveys and learn techniques in wolf tracking and radio telemetry. This workshop meets the ecology qualifications for both DNR Volunteer Carnivore Tracker for winter wolf counts and the training for TWA Speakers Bureau.

The workshop is open to any student or adult interested in wolves and experiencing them in the wild. Workshop fees include meals, bunkhouse accommodations, and all workshop materials. Preregistration is required. The Timber Wolf Alliance is a program of the Northland College Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute. TWA promotes education about wolves and use of sound science for wolf conservation.

Cost: $165 residential / $125 commuter (meals included; no lodging)
Duration: 7PM Friday – 1PM Sunday; 2 nights at Kemp Station
Location: Kemp Natural Resource Station in Tomahawk, WI
Program: wolf ecology, training, monitoring techniques, conservation biology
: 5; breakfast (2), lunch (2), dinner (1)
Meal options: local, vegetarian; Please specify when you register if you have dietary concerns

August 20 Ι Great Lakes Water Wars

Registration Closed

Author of The Great Lakes Water Wars and Codirector of the Northland College Burke Center for Freshwater Innovation, Peter Annin takes us behind the headlines to examine Waukesha’s controversial proposal to divert 10.1 million gallons daily from Lake Michigan. All eight Great Lakes governors must approve Waukesha’s diversion, and a vote is expected this summer. But both sides say they will sue if they lose, which is why Waukesha will be in the news for some time to come.

The issue is complicated, controversial, and emotionally charged. This program cuts through the complexity to draw out the key issues, even for those new to the topic. The program includes lunch and an autographed copy of his book.

Cost: $55
Duration: 10AM – 4PM Saturday
Location: Northland College
Program: literature, history, recreation
Meals: 1 lunch
Meal options: local, gluten free, vegetarian

September 29-30 Ι Artist’s North Woods Retreat

Join two talented and local artists, Diana Randolph and Jan Wise, for this artist’s retreat nestled among the old-growth trees at Forest Lodge on Lake Namekagon in Cable, Wisconsin. Discover how to artistically represent your sense of awe and emotional response from being immersed in the pristine lake and forest environment of this unique north woods retreat. Thursdays’ emphasis will include black and white drawing techniques with Diana Randolph and Friday’s emphasis will explore creative ways to represent the forest and water through color pencil and watercolor.

In addition, you will learn about the ecology and cultural history of the landscape with Cable Natural History Museum’s Naturalist and Education Director Emily Stone who is the author of the popular Natural Connections newspaper column.

This workshop includes individual projects, guided exercises, onsite field art instruction, and personal work time. Participants must supply the following items: Notebook and pen, pencil, 12 inch ruler, sketchbook or drawing paper cut to 5 x 7 inches or 6 x 9 inches to fit mats available for purchase, eraser, charcoal pencil (optional), black-conte crayon (optional), ultra-thin permanent drawing pen (that doesn’t bleed on paper), camera, drawing board for paper, pastels, watercolors, colored pencils and watercolor paper. Optional items include: camera, watercolor pencils (hot-pressed paper-smooth), brushes, stool to sit on, and bag/bin to carry work supplies in the woods. Diana Randolph will have the following materials available for purchase: drawing pens, drawing paper and cut mats to fit paper sizes listed above. Please email her if you have any questions or call 715-798-3619.

Cost: $265
Duration: 9:30AM Thursday – 4PM Friday; 1 night
Location: Forest Lodge in Cable, WI
Program: art, recreation

October 13-14 Ι Writers North Woods Workshop

Registration Closed

Join the talented published authors Lyanda Lynn Haupt and Emily Stone for this writing workshop nestled among old trees at the historic Forest Lodge on Lake Namekagon in Cable, Wisconsin. Lyanda received the Sigurd Olson Nature Writing Award for Crow Planet in 2010. Emily published her first book, Natural Connections, in 2016.

Discover a sense of awe from being immersed in nature while you enjoy the pristine lake setting and rich history of this unique north woods retreat. The landscape will ignite your creative transcript and shall be your greatest studio. Harness inspiration from the perspective of two published authors and explore the natural and cultural history of the estate.

Participants must supply the following items: notebook and pen or pencil for field exercises. Your favorite laptop or other writing implements for indoor writing. Wifi is not available on site. Sturdy walking shoes and clothing appropriate for the weather. A portable camp chair or seat.

Cost: $285
Duration: 9:30AM Thursday – 4PM Friday; 1 night
Location: Forest Lodge in Cable, WI
Program: writing, recreation


Campus meals will be served in Northland’s cafeteria where staff is highly skilled in providing well-rounded and delicious meals, a stocked salad bar at lunch and dinner, and accommodating dietary restrictions.

Vegetarian and vegan options are available at all meals. On field days, students assemble a brown-bag lunch in the cafeteria, including a sandwich, chips, fruit or veggie, and a snack. Camping trips include hot or cold breakfasts, brown-bag lunch, and a hot dinner cooked over a camp stove or fire. Note any dietary requirements in the registration packet.


If your program requires overnight lodging, you will be responsible for that on your own, except for the programs that list the “Location” as Forest Lodge. Programs at Forest Lodge include residential lodging but you must bring your own bedding and towel.

Click to Register