Wild Medicine Retreat

Learn to forage wild medicines and craft your own herbal remedies.

Join Julianne Peterson, herbalist and owner of Singing Springs Botanicals for a weekend excursion in the beautiful San Juan mountains of Southwest Colorado.

  • Meet the magnificent medicines of this unique bioregion.
  • Explore ethical wildcrafting practices in theory and in hands-on practical ways.
  • Share in sacred harvesting practices that go beyond numerical guidelines.
  • Make friends with kindred spirits inspired by love for the Earth and the Plantfolk.
  • Take shelter in the beautiful new Mount Hayden Backcountry Lodge.
  • Meals prepared with local wild ingredients, foraged plants from outings and fresh seasonal veggies from High Desert Seed Farm in Colona.




Our days will be spent largely outside learning to correctly identify the areas bountiful medicine plants and digging into all the practical skills one needs to wildcraft (harvest) these. The other part of the day we will be processing and preparing several medicines with our botanical bounty.

Participants will learn how to prepare the whole gamut of herbal medicaments: aqueous infusions and decoctions, poultices, cordials, infused oils, salves, and more. Preparation skills will be honed and many recipes will be shared so you can return home and make your own herbal medicines. Material is appropriate for ages 12 and up.

The setting is incredible in terms of beauty and access to a large variety of the premier wild herbs of the region. The elevation of the lodge is 11,000 ft in a mixed conifer (Spruce and Fir) forest with alpine wildflower meadows within a 5 minute walk. Plants we are sure to meet include: Elderberry, Osha, Yarrow, Green Gentian, Arnica, Rattlesnake Plantain, Pink Elephants, Valerian, Cleavers, Nettle, Angelica and many more.

July 14th – 16th, 2023



Call (970) 708-0236 to register.


Friday July 14th

  • Arrive Friday afternoon at your leisure. Pick your sleeping area. Settle in.
  • Meet and greet at 6:00 PM
  • Dinner will be served at 7:00 PM
  • Desert following
  • Herbal adventure board game

Saturday July 15th 

  • Breakfast at 7:00
  • Pack your pack for morning foray
  • Herb walk, meeting the locals 9:00-12:00
  • Lunch in the field 12:00-1:00
  • Class- Ethical and Sustainable Wildcrafting, Protecting Our Future 1:00-3:00
  • Break 3:00-4:00
  • Class- Medicine Making Part 1 Herbal infusions, Decoctions, Poultices, Compresses and Fomentations 4:00-6:00
  • Dinner served at 7:00 PM
  • Desert following
  • Rest or celebrate in song sharing, music and merriment

Sunday July 16th

  • Breakfast at 7:00
  • Pack your pack for morning foray
  • Harvest herbs for medicine making 9:00-12:00
  • Lunch on the deck 12:00-1:00
  • Class- Medicine Making Part 2 Tinctures, Cordials, Vinegars, Infused Oils and Salves 1:00-3:00
  • Pack up 3:00-3:30
  • Closing Circle 4:00

Lodging Price $240 includes:
Lodging Friday and Saturday night at the Mount Hayden Backcountry Lodge, Dinner Friday and Saturday, and breakfast Saturday and Sunday morning. Meals are prepared almost exclusively with organic and local farm-grown food (provided by High Desert Seed & Gardens). Students will be responsible for their own snacks and lunches for Saturday and Sunday.

Class Price $240 includes:
7 hours of class time on Saturday and 5 hours of class on Sunday. All materials for demonstrations. Students will also get a few medicines to bring home and loads of medicine-making ideas, inspiration, and a skill set that will last a lifetime.

Total Price for lodging + meals + 12 hrs of class time: $480

What you will need:
Off road, high clearance, four wheel drive vehicle to get to the lodge. It may be possible to carpool up with others. This can be arranged closer to the date or you can do an easy one hour hike from parking and avoid the four-wheel drive.

Appropriate clothing for high mountain weather. It may be very hot and sunny or very cold and possibly rainy so everything from a sun hat, sunscreen and shorts to long underwear a warm hat, raincoat and insulated jacket.
A personal water bottle. There is no need to bring water. There is an amazing spring with super water on the property.
Snacks or lunch for Saturday and Sunday.
A notepad and pen.

As the lodge is at 11,000 feet elevation and runs on solar there is no laundry service so guests need to bring their own silk bag liner, summer sleeping bag or sheet for the beds. There are blankets and comforters but not sheets.

To register call Julie at (970)-708-0236