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HOPS Press, LLC  PO Box 697 - Pony, MT 59747
Sustainable Living, Wilderness Survival, and Nature Guides
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Classroom in the Woods DVD.       Three Days at the River DVD. Mountain Meadows DVD. Mountain Lakes DVD. Canoe Camping DVD.       Slipform Stone Masonry DVD.       Build Your Own Masonry Fireplace DVD.

DVDs from Thomas J. Elpel
and HOPS Press, LLC

      The written word is ideal for communicating the inner world of principles and theories, intangible feelings and perceptions, as well as facts, figures, and instructions. Video, on the other hand, is an ideal medium for demonstrating principles and theories as applied in the real world. While a book can convey hundreds of ideas as abstract concepts, a video can provide a quick overview or flesh out an idea in step-by-step action. As the saying goes, "One picture is worth a thousand words." And with thirty frames per second in standard video, it is possible to speak volumes with a lot of pictures and a little dialogue.

      The videos described on this page or listed on Thomas J. Elpel's YouTube Channel complement the text of his books. For example, while the text of Participating in Nature: Wilderness Survival and Primitive Living Skills is ideal for conveying the philosophical and technical aspects of wilderness living, the Art of Nothing Wilderness Survival Video Series shows in detail how specific skills are applied in the real world. The videos complement the book. The book complements the videos, and so it is with all of Tom's books and videos covering wilderness survival and sustainable living. From this one page you can link to all of our video projects spanning a variety of topics.

HOPS Press, LLC Videos
Click on the video covers for more details!

Slipform Stone Masonry DVD. Slipform Stone Masonry Video
      Want to build a stone house? It's easier than you might think! Slipform Stone Masonry brings to life the nuts-and-bolts of the slipforming process featured in Tom's book Living Homes: Stone Masonry, Log, and Strawbale Construction.
      Slipforming is the process of using forms on both sides of the wall as a guide for the stonework. The forms are filled with stone and concrete, then "slipped" up the walls to form the subsequent levels. Slipforming makes stone work easy even for the novice. [See more...]
Slipform Stone Masonry
$25.00


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Build Your Own Masonry Fireplace DVD. Build Your Own Masonry Fireplace
      Build an authentic masonry fireplace with the efficiency of a masonry stove! The baffle system in this fireplace extracts heat from the exhaust, warming up the thermal mass of brick and rock. The masonry fireplace can radiate heat for three days after the fire is out!
      In this instructional video, Thomas J. Elpel demonstrates the step-by-step process of building a masonry fireplace, starting from the foundation and ending with the chimney. Elpel shows how to lay up the brickwork for the core of the fireplace, how to build the arch, and how to build the baffle system. With the brickwork complete, Elpel demonstrates freehand stone masonry, using natural rock to lay up the stonework around the brick core. [See more...]
Build Your Own Masonry Fireplace
$25.00


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Classroom in the Woods DVD. Classroom in the Woods: Primitive Skills for Public Schools
      Amid a growing awareness of the need to reconnect kids with nature, Classroom in the Woods vividly demonstrates the power and promise of hands-on, immersive experiences to put kids in touch with the real world. In this enlightening video, author and educator Thomas J. Elpel brings a class of junior high students out into the woods for three days and two nights of hands-on wilderness survival and primitive skills experience.
      Leaving textbooks behind, the kids revel at the opportunity for hands-on learning, as they build a shelter, forage for wild edible plants, make a bow and drill fire set, stalk and observe wildlife, and bake bread in a stone oven. [See more...]
Classroom
in the Woods

$25.00


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Three Days at the River DVD. Art of Nothing Wilderness Survival Video Series, Volume 1
Three Days at the River
With nothing but our bare hands
      No knife. No matches. No food, sleeping bags or other gear. Join Thomas J. Elpel and 13 year-old daughter Felicia for this extraordinary primitive camping experience in southwest Montana. In the cottonwoods along the Jefferson River they demonstrate all the skills required to meet their basic needs, starting with nothing but their bare hands! Skills include:
      Discoidal stone knives, digging sticks, the cottonwood root bowdrill set, grass sleeping bag on hot ground, boiling water in found bottles and cans for purification, killing, skinning, and butchering a porcupine, edible tree mushrooms, shishkebabs and hot rock stir-fry, and edible plants, such as cattail roots, stinging nettles, rose hips, burdock, mustard greens and milkweed shoots. [See more...]
Art of Nothing Series
Three Days at the River
$25.00


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Mountain Meadows DVD. Art of Nothing Wilderness Survival Video Series, Volume 2
Mountain Meadows
Camping with almost nothing but the dog
      With little more than stone knives and the dog, Thomas J. Elpel and cousin Melvin Beattie venture into the Rocky Mountains to survive with whatever they can find and improvise from their surroundings. Among the wildflowers, wildlife and scenic meadows of southwestern Montana, they demonstrate all the skills needed to meet their basic needs, including:
      Debris shelter with hot rocks, mullein on sage handdrill set, purifying water with Aerobic Oxygen, killing, skinning, and butchering ground squirrels, wild edible plants, such as sweet cicely, wild sunflower, dwarf huckleberry, musk thistle stems and "artichokes", brook saxifrage, and rose petals, plus cooking on an upright rock slab, making glass-knapped knives, and use of the jo stick. [See more...]
Art of Nothing Series
Mountain Meadows
$25.00


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Mountain Lakes DVD. Art of Nothing Wilderness Survival Video Series, Volume 3
Mountain Lakes
A survival fishing trip
      With little more than a flint & steel kit and a copper drinking cup, Thomas J. Elpel and daughter Cassie trek five miles back into the Rocky Mountains for a few days of fishing, fun, and survival living. Among the spectacular lakes and mountain peaks, they demonstrate all of the skills required to meet their basic needs, including:
      Rock and log shelter with a fire, flint & steel fire starting, making char cloth, drinking from mountain streams, wild onions and glacier lilies, catching mountain suckers by hand and hook, fishing laws, cooking fish on hot coals, steaming wild vegetable in a stone oven, tin can knives, forging the nail knife, and making a pine bark pot. [See more...]
Art of Nothing Series
Mountain Lakes
$25.00


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Canoe Camping DVD. Art of Nothing Wilderness Survival Video Series, Volume 4
Canoe Camping
On a song and a paddle
      With two water bottles and a flute in their canoe, Thomas J. Elpel and intern Kris Reed go survival camping at the local lake. Amidst the abundant waterfowl, wildlife, and intermittent rain showers and thunderstorms, they camp for three days and two nights and demonstrate all of the skills required to meet their basic needs, including:
      Canoe lean-to and hot coal bed, soda bottle puddle lens, using aromatic herbs to kill germs, harvesting, cooking, and eating cattail shoots and pollen, orache, and desert currants and giant horse mushrooms, steamed veggies and veggie wraps, figure-four deadfall traps, bull snakes, cattail visors, soda bottle fishing pole, mudscreen, cactus slime, and more. [See more...]
Art of Nothing Series
Canoe Camping
$25.00


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Stone Age Video Classics Series DVD, Disc One. Stone Age Living Skills Video Classics Series, Disc One.
Food, Fire, Cordage:
Three classic skills videos on one disc!
      Friction Fire: Jim Riggs teaches how to start a fire by friction with the handdrill and bowdrill. Learn to confidently make and use your own sets from materials found in nature.
      Plant Fiber Cordage: Jim Riggs teaches how to make durable plant fiber cordage from dogbane, milkweed, and stinging nettles, using several different techniques.
      Primitive Life Skills: Robert Earthworm demonstrates primitive skills as part of his daily life. Earthworm teaches fire by friction with the bowdrill, cooks campfire bread, makes jerky, teaches cordage making, and demonstrates the use of medicinal plants. [See more...]
Stone Age Classics
Disc 1: Food, Fire, Cordage
$25.00


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Stone Age Video Classics Series, Disc Two. Stone Age Living Skills Video Classics Series, Disc Two.
Hide Tanning:
Two classic skills videos on one disc!
      The Ancient Art of Tanning Buckskin: Learn to transform raw deer skins into soft tanned buckskin using the dry-scrape method. Robert Earthworm teaches how to properly skin, flesh, rack, scrape, brain, stretch, soften and smoke deer hides.
      Tanning Spirit: Melvin Beattie was among a handful of people who revived the brain tanning process when it was nearly a lost art. Beattie teaches how to brain tan hides using the wet-scrape method. Learn to efficiently skin, flesh, scrape, brain, soften, and smoke hides to make your own durable clothing, moccasins, and bags. [See more...]
Stone Age Classics
Disc 2: Hide Tanning
$25.00


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Stone Age Video Classics Series, Disc Three. Stone Age Living Skills Video Classics Series, Disc Three.
Arrows:
Two classic skills videos on one disc!
      Pressure Flake Stone Arrowheads: Learn to make your own stone arrowheads. In this flintknapping primer, Brian James demonstrates how to safely and effectively spall blades off of an obsidian core. He teaches how to pressure flake these blades into arrowheads using deer antler or copper tipped tools.
      Arrows from the Stone Age: A good bow won't make a bad arrow fly straight. Brian James teaches how to make quality primitive arrows from both wild-crafted and purchased materials. [See more...]
Stone Age Classics
Disc 3: Arrows
$25.00


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About DVD Video Formats: NTSC, PAL, or SECAM

Classroom in the Woods DVD.

      Starting in the 1950s and 1960s, different countries adopted different video broadcasting standards, also called picture standards, known as NTSC, PAL, and SECAM. The picture dimensions and frame rates are different with each format. North America, Japan and Taiwan adopted NTSC, while most of Europe, Australia and New Zealand adopted PAL. France and former French colonies adopted SECAM.

      As video technology evolved to VHS videos and later DVDs, the videos and the players were manufactured specifically for one format or another. All HOPS Press, LLC DVDs are all formatted NTSC for North American viewers.

      Today's DVD players are typically smarter than old VCR equipment, but they are often limited to reading one format or another. Fortunately, there are two ways to resolve the issue if a DVD player is unable to read a foreign disc.

      First, try playing the DVD in a computer. Computers often have the software to read multiple DVD formats. Most of our European customers are able to watch NTSC DVDs on their computers.

      If that doesn't work, look online for a code to "hack" your DVD player. Some DVD players are capable of reading multiple formats, they are merely programmed to read one format or another. By entering the correct sequence of numbers into the remote control, it is possible to unlock the DVD player to play multiple formats.

      If nothing else works, ask a friend or neighbor to try the DVD in their computer or DVD player.

Countries that use NTSC Format
      Antiles, Netherlands, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Bolivia, Burma, Canada, Chile, Columbia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Equador, Grenada, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Japan, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Phillipines, Puerto Rico, South Korea, Surinam, Taiwan, Tobago, Trinidad, United States of America, Venezuala.

Countries that use PAL Format
      Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahrein, Bangladesh, Belgium, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Cameroon, China, Denmark, Ethiopia, Fiji, Finland, Germany, Ghana, Gibraltar, Hong Kong, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lesotho, Liberia, Luxemburg, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mozambique, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Portugal, Qatar, Rumania, Seycheles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tanzania, Thailand, Turkey, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Uraguay, Yemen, Yugoslavia, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Countries that use SECAM Format
      Afghanistan, Benin, Bukina Faso, Bulgaria, Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Czechoslovakia, Djibouti, Egypt, France, French Guiana, Gabon, Greece, Guadalope, Guinea, Gyprus, Haiti, Hungary, Iran, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Lebanon, Libya, Madagascar, Mali, Martinique, Maruitius, Mauritania, Monaco, Morocco, Niger, North Korea, Poland, Russia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Syria , Togo, Tunisia, Vietnam, Western Samoa, Zaire.


Hi Thomas,

      Your Art of Nothing videos do indeed work fine on a UK computer. These are some of best videos I have seen (I can't think of any better). I also like the cardboard sleeves. I've had so many DVDs arrive in their plastic cases popped out inside and already scratched.

Three Days at the River DVD.       What I love about these videos is that they are more hardcore than Bear Gyrlls' programs make out they are and so beautifully understated. At the time I had been reading threads on Bushcraft UK once called 5 items or less (but food & water don't count). That's the summertime challenge, the winter one is 15 items or less. There was also a thread where a guy was going out with I think just his knife and a cooking pot and people were talking in awe about how hardcore that was.

      I'm not a fan of Bear's programs, the first time I watched one I was like Huh? and I had to tell the kids,"This is just a TV program it's not real, Ray Mears is more like reality." So it was so cool to see your videos going further than either and taking the girls and Mel out made it so normal and understated. And from that it ripped through the thinking that going out with so little was somehow really, really difficult or "unachievable." Going out with no knife and making cutting tools was a nice contrast to "your knife is your life."

      The only downside on the whole set was the black round frame that appears sometimes on number 4, which was a bit distracting, but not that big a deal. Are you doing any more? And what would you take out in Autumn or Winter?

      I also love the whole ethos bits at the end about the Art of Nothing. Living in London and having a fairly chaotic life, I've a bit to go to master that ethos yet.

All the best,

Allen

Books
authored by
Thomas J. Elpel
Roadmap to Reality: Consciousness, Worldviews, andthe Blossoming of Human Spirit
Roadmap
to Reality
Living Homes: Stone Masonry, Log, and Strawbale Construction
Living
Homes
Participating in Nature: Wilderness Survival and Primitive Living Skills.
Participating
in Nature
Foraging the Mountain West: Gourmet Edible Plants, Mushrooms, and Meat.
Foraging the
Mountain West
Botany in a Day: The Patterns Method of Plant Identification
Botany
in a Day
Shanleya's Quest: A Botany Adventure for Kids
Shanleya's
Quest

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