Paul Sveum

Fly Fishing Guide, Bushcraft & Survival Instructor

Registered Master Maine Guide

Paul on the trail.

Paul on the trail.


Paul blogs at 21 Days On The Road.


Paul grew up in the glaciated lands of southern Wisconsin, home to hardwoods forests, rich black soil and placid inland lakes. It was amongst the fields of corn and urban sprawl of nearby Madison that Paul learned to canoe, fish, hunt and appreciate the small wonders of Nature.

After high school Paul spent time traveling the country with his long time canine friend hiking mountain trails from the Sierra Nevada to the Absaroka-Beartooths, living day to day on whatever food could be caught, found, or gathered, and learning what it means to live without in a country of excess.

After spending a few unsuccessful days attempting to replicate a friction fire lighting technique he saw in a movie, Paul decided that trial and error was not the way to relearn thousands of years of accumulated knowledge. He enrolled in the Wilderness Bushcraft Semester, which proved to be the catalyst that drove him to pursue a path as an educator.

Paul lived in a canvas wall tent for 26 consecutive months before building a cabin on his homestead on the south shore of Lake Superior near Cornucopia, Wisconsin.


Paul has been a residential instructor for the Wilderness Bushcraft Semester since 2013.

When not in the northeast, Paul works as an instructor for the Lost Creek Folk School in Cornucopia, Wisconsin.

Expedition Leader And Guide:

Paul is a Registered Master Maine Guide licensed by the state in the recreation and fishing categories.

He has guided extended canoeing, backpacking and snowshoeing trips in Wisconsin, Minnesota, New Hampshire and Maine in a variety of areas including the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and the Allagash Wilderness Waterway, as well as numerous other locations off the beaten path. He has also guided numerous overnight trips focusing on bushcraft, survival, and local naturalist studies around the South shore of Lake Superior.


Jack Mountain Bushcraft School Certifications
• Journeyman, 2005
• Expedition Instructor, 2010


• Sustainability in Outdoor Education – Northland College Outdoor Leadership Program, 2009.
• Sustainability in Outdoor Education – Wilderness Education Association National Conference, 2008.

Medical Background And Training:

• Search and Rescue Course – 2008
• Wilderness First Responder Course – 2007, 2015
• Wilderness Emergency Medical Care Course – 2007

Sustainability Advocate:

• Worked as a sustainability consultant for the University of Michigan’s recreation department in 2010.
• Contributed to the development of a comprehensive model for evaluating the sustainability of outdoor programs called The As Sustainable As Possible (ASAP) project, located here.
• Taught a series of classes in 2008 through the Edventure department at Northland College focusing on making more sustainable choices in outdoor recreation and continued to work independently on the ASAP model.


Northland College, Ashland, Wisconsin
• BA, Traditional Earth Knowledge in Outdoor Education
This self designed degree encompasses what Paul sees as “the foundation of knowledge someone growing up in an indigenous society would have received at a young age, knowledge of the way the world works- the plants, animals, the weather and how to live in relative harmony with those systems.”
Private community & online learning platform.

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Typos, Etc.
Anything that appears to be an error in spelling or grammar is actually the author’s clever use of the vernacular, and as such is not an error, but rather a carefully placed literary device demonstrating prodigious artistic prowess.

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Featured In:
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Western Colorado University
Academic Partner

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Maine Wilderness Guides Organization Quality Endorsement Award

Life Member – Maine Professional Guides Association
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Life Member – Maine Wilderness Guides Organization
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