August is the beginning of high fungi season in SW Scotland and this event is designed to make the most of it, and prime you for the season ahead. Over the course of about 1.5 miles of easy walking over 3.5 hours we will explore the fascinating world of fungi. Our focus is on understanding, learning to identify and appreciating the incredible diversity of queendom fungi, including, but not restricted to, edible wild mushrooms.
Your host for the day will be Mark Williams of Galloway Wild Foods. Mark is a passionate mycophile, wild gastronomer and professional wild food educator, who has been teaching about fungi and wild mushroom identification for over 30 years. Mark is a font of knowledge and enthusiasm on wild fungi, specialising in making this often daunting subject fun and accessible to novices, while providing solid foundations for a lifetime of discovery, enjoyment and worry-free wild eating. Mark writes widely on this subject and works closely with leading mycologists, landowner/conservation organisations such as The National Trust, Kew Gardens, and Scottish Natural Heritage.
Image ©Mindy Coe Photography
“You’ve really changed my life with the exceptional knowledge you passed on to me on the foraging day. So ecstatic that the rest of my life is now an everlasting treasure hunt. Life changing! The skills you passed on and the enthusiasm for observance was a true gift and I now see the world through an extra dimension!” – Kit Cubitt, E. Lothian
Please note that while this date and location will be selected to maximise the potential range of fungi we encounter, it is not possible to guarantee what we will find.
Location: Within 30 minutes drive of Creetown (SW Scotland), about 2 hrs drive from Glasgow, 1 hour West of Dumfries. Ticket holders will be notified of the exact location in the week prior to the event.
Expect: Up to 1.5 miles gentle walking on well made paths over 3.5 hours followed by a wild picnic and workshop session
- The important role fungi plays in nature
- Fungal feeding strategies
- Understanding mycelium
- Key terminology and mushroom anatomy
- Identification Skills: identifying important families and species of fungi
- How to home in on the most rewarding edible species
- How to recognise dangerously poisonous species
- Medicinal and utilitarian uses of fungi
- Ecological roles of individual species
- Sustainable harvesting practices for edible species
- Fungi myths, stories and folklore
- Preservation and cooking techniques
- Key resources for taking your personal learning forward
- Other autumn woodland wild foods
If time and weather allow, we will lay out and label our finds to serve as an aide-memoire of the afternoon’s discoveries
Eat/drink: Eating wild mushrooms is a wonderful entryway into a greater appreciation of the wider world of fungi, so I come with a hefty bag of lovingly prepared fungi-themed treats, tasters and tipples to share throughout the walk. These are not only tasty, but serve to illustrate how to use to use some of the edible mushrooms we encounter. After the walk you will be served a fungi-themed wild food tasting picnic, comprising dozens of lovingly foraged and prepared treats served in your own bento box. All dietary requirements can be catered for, and these can be noted when booking.
Essential: Stout footwear, weather-appropriate clothing, drinking water
Optional: A small basket or cloth bag, notebook, camera, fungi field guide if you have one. If you make any foraged delights at home and would like to share them with the group, please bring them along!
Please read the IMPORTANT INFORMATION tab on this page before booking and again before setting off for the event.
Galloway Wild Foods Gift Vouchers can be used to book and pay for this event – apply your voucher code at the checkout.
Foraging Gift Vouchers
Please note: I do not recommend this event for children under 12 years old. Dogs by prior arrangement only.
Summer Cep, boletus reticulatus
Please read the following information before booking a Galloway Wild Foods event.
The general event location is provided in the event description, and in your booking confirmation. This location is usually an approximate location (eg. “Within 30 minutes drive of XXX”), so that you can consider and plan the area you need to get to prior to booking.
For general information on visiting Galloway for events, including recommended accommodation, see here.
Detailed event information, including exact meeting place, will be sent to the email address you provide on booking in the week prior to the event. This allows me to account for the often fickle nature of wild plants and fungi and select the optimum location for our walk – which can be especially important for fungi forays.
It is important that you add email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org to your email contacts/whitelist or the information email may get caught in your spam filters. This is extremely important if you have a .hotmail email account as they are notorious for having very sensitive spam filters.
The detailed event information email will be sent in the week before the event – sometimes as little as 3 days prior to the event. There is no need to badger me for it – I will send it! If you haven’t received it by within 3 days of the event, check your spam folders. If it isn’t there drop me an email – email@example.com.
Any cancellation must be sent by email to firstname.lastname@example.org, quoting the event title, date and order number (viewable on your booking confirmation.
Galloway Wild Foods is under no obligation to refund, rebook or reinstate vouchers for no-shows or cancellations within 14 days of the event. If I can refill the place at short notice, I will pay a full refund less 10% to cover admin & PayPal fees, or send a voucher to the full value of the tickets. Please state your preference in your cancellation email.
If you cancel or amend a booking giving 14 days or more notice, you will receive a full refund less 5% to cover Paypal fees, or a Gift Voucher to the full value of your booking.Please state your preference in your cancellation email. Information on using gift vouchers is here.
In the unlikely event that an event is cancelled by GWF you will receive full refund, exchange or voucher.
Galloway Wild Foods is not liable for any travel, accommodation or other costs you might incur if an event has to be cancelled. We recommend that you take out travel insurance if your financial commitment to travel/accommodation is substantial.
The only weather that causes events to be cancelled is dangerous wind. In these instances you will be notified as early as possible.
INFORMATION YOU PROVIDE ON BOOKING
Please provide the following information for all members of your party in the “Additional Information” box on the payment page :
- Relevant medical conditions
- Mobility issues
- Eating restrictions – differentiating between preferences (e.g. vegetarian), intolerances (e.g. gluten intolerance) and serious allergies (e.g. peanut allergy), and clearly stating if an allergy is potentially life-threatening. All requirements can usually be catered for, but these differentiations are required for risk assessments.
It is your responsibility to provide accurate information about all members of your party. If you write “None” in the additional information box, I will assume all attendees are omnivorous and have no relevant medical conditions or mobility issues.
All information is kept private, securely, and in line with GDPR – more information on this here.
WHAT TO BRING ON A WALK
Please ensure that all members of your party come suitably dressed for the weather, season and event.
On all walks, for your comfort and safety, walking boots/wellies, waterproofs and spare clothes are necessary. I always recommend wellies for coastal foraging events – you are likely to get wet feet if you don’t have them!
Please bring your own drinking water.
Your learning and enjoyment may also benefit from bringing a camera, notebook, field guide, small basket/cloth bag. Feel free to bring along any of your own wild food preparations to share and talk about.
Most GWF events are suitable for one dog on a lead.
Even on walks that are suitable for dogs on leads, because we tend to move very slowly as we learn and forage, dogs often get bored/agitated/cold by the slow pace. One thing we absolutely can’t have is an unhappy noisy dog on an event.
Where events are suitable for dogs, I restrict it to one per event as there is no way of knowing whether dogs will get on with one another. Dog places are offered on a first-come-first-served basis.
With all this in mind, if you would like to bring a dog, please note this on the booking form in the “Additional Information” box (along with human dietary, mobility, medical info) and I will get contact you to let you know suitability and availability.
If being able to bring your dog is a deal-breaker for you, please email me before you book.
Further information on Galloway Wild Foods Terms and Conditions can be found here.
If you have specific questions that are not answered here, please contact mark on email@example.com, or if you are running late on the day.