Today we built Skills!
After flag raising and breakfast we dove right into skills rotation. This is where the counselors set up stations like campsite management, weather protocols, knots, tents, fire making, weather reading, warmth on trail, hydration. etc…
Basically it’s our chance to treat each camper like a first timer and bring the collective group knowledge up a peg or two. Wilderness curiosity is not a casual endeavor and we like taking our craft seriously. That and of course having a ton of fun.
After the skills rotation we bounced into some creative shelter making with creative writing and zip-lining! Random things put together for no reason always makes things fun.
After lunch the campers split into groups. The girls buddied up with Lakota Village while the boys ventured on a hike with Matt or went mushroom hunting with Lincoln. Of course we didn’t eat any of the mushrooms but that didn’t stop us for appreciating their diversity and attempting to identify them with their Latin names.
After the exploration we hit the water front and headed to dinner with another summer afternoon behind us.
After dinner we all participated in a game called Rainbow Catcher. This is where there is a game played all over camp with clues and riddles. The counselor shaman paints a band on the camper’s wrist if they complete tasks and one de-bower can wipe them off. The first group to get a full rainbow completes the challenge! These games can get old if you don’t have creative staff pumping life and characters into every moment. Our staff never back away from a challenge like that.
Once again under the stars of the Catskills the campers are currently completing devotion in their tent groups and preparing themselves to crash against their bunks and dream about another awesome day at camp.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Born and raised in Wisconsin, Zach couldn't keep himself out of the woods when growing up. He started working at a Northern Wisconsin YMCA Camp as a wilderness trip leader while in college and fell in love with getting kids into nature. The smiles on kids faces after returning from a once in a life time wilderness experience is why he is here today. Zach brought his talents to Frost Valley YMCA, in 2014, when he started as the Trips Coordinator and soon was promoted to Adventure Director. Zach loves all forms of Wilderness exploration, though some would say his heart lies most with canoeing.
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