Blacksmithing Classes at Ness Creek

Stay on after CanIRON and take part in hands-on blacksmithing classes with CanIRON XII demonstrators. Two classes will be offered July 2-5, 2019 at the Ness Creek site.

Class: Axes, Hatchets, & Tomahawks
Instructor: Shawn Cunningham
Level: Intermediate
Register here:

Class: Tools of the Trade
Instructor: Megan Carter & Mike Armstrong
Level: Intermediate
Register here:

Other forestART classes at Ness Creek this summer:

CanIRON XII Demonstrator: Rick Marchand

Rick Marchand, Lunenburg, Nova Scotia

Artisan bladesmithing and practical handmade goods for the bush

I’ve always been an outdoor enthusiast and have studied with several wilderness skills instructors. Over the years, I had either made or modified my equipment to suit a variety of conditions and environments.

My tinkering eventually led me into the world of custom leather craft. Friends and colleagues showed interest in acquiring my work and urged me to go public. As a result, my business Wildertools was born.

In 2007, I met American Bladesmith Society, Master Smith, Wally Hayes, whose friendship and generous guidance proved to be invaluable to me. Wally’s influence changed my focus to include hand-forged knives and ignited my passion for bladesmithing. My 14+ years of experience in the tool, die and fabrication industry gave me a firm foundation that benefited me during my apprenticeship. It wasn’t long before I became consumed by all aspects of the craft. From moving metal with a hammer to manipulating its internal structure with heat, this melding of science and art fueled my passion.

By 2009, my skills had developed enough for me to be referred to as the “Canadian Bush Master” in Tactical Knives Magazine, win first place in a Camp Knife Challenge on BladeForums (internationally recognized website) and later that year, receive the “Best New Maker” award at the USN Gathering (Trade Show). This was just the beginning. My work has evolved into a distinctive style, renowned for its raw beauty, high quality and strong emphasis on functionality. My pieces have appeared in numerous other publications. Most recently, I was featured in a 2019 Blade Magazine article titled “Secrets of the Pros” and ranked third place in the “2018 Best Bowie” competition held on BladeForums.

Throughout my career, I’ve cultivated and maintained a strong online presence by participating in internet forums and networking on social media. In 2016, I created @wildertools, an Instagram account that has reached over thousands of organic followers. My recognition has enabled me to work with a host of international clients, from Rock Stars with private knife collections to making movie props for Hollywood giants like 20th Century Fox and Disney.

I’m still learning every day and loving it. I’m proud of how far I’ve come and thankful for the opportunities I’ve received. Eager to share knowledge, I plan to offer more extensive bladesmithing classes. Hopefully, the next generation of potential smiths will be inspired as I continue to be.

Rick Marchand


Dates: June 28-30, 2019
Location: Ness Creek
Host City: Just outside of Big River, Saskatchewan

CanIRON XII will run from Friday June 28 to Sunday June 30, 2019 at the Ness Creek Site located minutes away from the picturesque Nesslin Lake Campground and the resort town of Big River. The Saskatchewan Chapter of the Western Canadian Blacksmith Guild will host the event.

more about registration and accommodation

Featured Blacksmiths

Shawn Cunningham, Edmonton, Alberta
Megan Carter & Mike Armstrong, Georgetown, Ontario
Rick Marchand, Lunenburg, Nova Scotia
John & Nancy Little, East Dover, Nova Scotia
Ethan Harty, Strome, Alberta

and more…

Organizing Team/Contact

Saskatchewan Chapter of the Western Canadian Blacksmith Guild


CanIRON 11 – Vancouver Island Blacksmith Association
Artist Blacksmith’s Association of North America
Mighty Forge
Canadian Knifemaker Supply Ltd
Meridian Manufacturing, Regina, Saskatchewan