In the unforgiving wilderness, survival depends on skill, wit and perseverance. Joel Vail is no stranger to relying solely on his capabilities and resourcefulness, honed since his solitary childhood days roaming the Maine woods. From learning invaluable lessons under fire in the military to overcoming personal tragedy, Vail's experiences have forged an unwavering resolve to spare others the hardships he endured. This is the story of how Joel Vail transformed adversity into a mission to cultivate courage and resilience in children through superior wilderness survival training.

My name is Joel Vail. I am 39 years old and the owner/director of Nanoq Guide Services and Survival Training / AKA / Ancient Wisdom Survival School Maine. I am a veteran of the US Military where I served as a medic/EMT. At the end of my time in service I was working as a training instructor for CPR/AED/Tourniquet. I helped with updating training standards based on NREMT updates and TCCC updates.

A Solitary Childhood Forges Survival Skills

Joel Vail's upbringing amidst the Maine woods was defined by a profound sense of solitude and self-reliance. Fully immersed in the vast expanse of nature, he devoted his formative years to mastering the art of survival, inheriting ancient skills passed down through generations and delving into the knowledge tucked within the pages of books. With a few companions, he cherished the opportunity to challenge himself within the seclusion of the forest, where he pushed the boundaries of his abilities, honing his resourcefulness and cultivating quick thinking. From his earliest memories, Joel discovered solace and a deep sense of belonging in nature's embrace, relying solely on his own capabilities to navigate and thrive in the wilderness.

survival skills-rhino rescue
Licensed by Joel Vail

Military Service Sparks Passion for Empowering Others

At 23, Vail embarked on a military career, aspiring to become a SERE (Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape) instructor. However, a severe injury forced him to alter his path, redirecting him towards roles as a combat medic and EMT. Through service marked by trials and tribulations, Vail underwent profound personal growth, learning priceless leadership lessons and continually pushing himself to improve. Despite mistakes along the way, his time in the military galvanized his character and honed his skills. During this transformative period, Vail's passion for empowering others through wilderness survival training ignited. His devotion to helping others is evident as he tirelessly strives to become a paramedic, furthering his mission of making a positive impact.

Tragedy Sparks Renewed Purpose

Recently, hardship struck Vail's family, deeply impacting him. However, amidst the heartache, this experience served as a catalyst, renewing Vail's sense of purpose. Determined to make a difference, he made the momentous decision to wholly dedicate himself to imparting potentially lifesaving skills and training to children. 

Vail firmly believes proper preparation can transform potential victims into resilient leaders, equipped to confront the evils of the world. 

Fueled by this conviction, he is committed to furnishing children with the necessary tools not just to survive, but to thrive in the face of adversity.

lifesaving skills and training-rhino rescue
Licensed by Joel Vail

Preserving Wilderness Survival Skills for Future Generations

Vail's passion for sharing his expertise in wilderness survival led him to forge partnerships with fellow veterans, culminating in the establishment of a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides unparalleled, real-world survival training. Combining the lessons learned from his childhood experiences, military service, and his role as a registered Maine Guide, Vail is committed to imparting the highest caliber of wilderness survival knowledge to others. Each training session becomes an opportunity for him to pass on invaluable skills and techniques that could mean the difference between life and death in the untamed wilderness.

Among the many moments that have touched Vail's heart, one memory stands out vividly. It was a defining moment when a young boy, who had attended Vail's training, used the skills he had learned to rescue an injured friend's life. The immense pride and joy that swelled within Vail as he witnessed the transformative impact of his teachings reinforced his unwavering dedication to his mission. Knowing that his tireless efforts have the potential to make a tangible difference in the lives of others in critical situations is what keeps him motivated and inspired.

While the path he has chosen is demanding and often challenging, the rewards Vail reaps are immeasurable. Witnessing individuals gain confidence, resilience, and the ability to navigate treacherous terrains through the knowledge he imparts fills him with a sense of fulfillment that goes beyond words. It is these milestones, the tangible proof of lives positively impacted, that serve as a constant reminder of the significance of his work.

Empowering Wilderness Survival Training with Rhino Rescue

I was skeptical about Rhino Rescue at first. I honestly thought it would be another knock off that had no quality control. However, I took the chance and am glad I did. Not only is it affordable but it provides a level of quality that others at a higher price fail to accomplish. They are open to suggestions when those working in emergency medicine or TCCC offer input on how to make things better or more in line with the work it's intended to operate in.

Rhino Rescue IFAK
Licensed by Joel Vail
Rhino Rescue IFAK

For Vail, proper training means having dependable, quality gear like Rhino Rescue products.As an emergency services professional, Vail values a company open to feedback from field practitioners. 

Cultivating Brave Hearts through Survival Skills

At just 39, Joel Vail has packed lifetimes of experience into his remarkable journey. From a solitary childhood in the Maine woods to overcoming trauma in the military, every challenge has forged Vail into the passionate wilderness survival trainer he is today. Now a devoted husband and father of three, Vail is driven to spare others his own hard-learned lessons.

By imparting wilderness survival training to children, Vail strives to empower them to transcend potential victimhood and embrace a warrior's indomitable spirit, equipped to flourish in the face of adversity. Through his nonprofit organization, Vail's mission is to transform hardship into triumph, ensuring future generations possess the skills to overcome any challenge. By cultivating resilience and self-reliance, Vail's efforts lay the foundation for a more courageous and resilient tomorrow.

wilderness survival trainer-rhino rescue
Licensed by Joel Vail