Finding the right adventure summer camp in California can be daunting, but the first question you should ask yourself, is your child ready for a multi-day backpacking adventure? Hiking by waterfalls, campfires alongside a lake, and reaching the summit of a peak tend to gain much interest from those youths seeking adventure. The journey to these experiences can be challenging, and it’s important to recognize your child’s strengths and weaknesses prior to enrolling in backcountry summer camps like Lasting Adventures. Other variables to take into consideration include erratic weather, wild-animals, and of-course the lack of modern conveniences, like bathrooms and showers; all which remind us of the realities and unpredictability of any particular adventure. Consider the following questions in deciding if your child is ready for an adventure summer camp:
Is your child comfortable in the outdoors?
If your child has a developing interest/passion of the outdoors, he/she is bound to do well. Lasting Adventures provides a unique experience to get close to nature, in all its beauty and its challenges. Our backpacking summer camps expose your children to the wilds of Yosemite, from sleeping under the stars and bathing in rivers/lakes, to possible encounters with wild animals and insects. You know your child, so ask yourself, how far are they able to be challenged, are they open-minded to experiencing new things, and what is their comfort level in the outdoors?
Equally important to their mental strength is their physical ability. Campers are required to carry their own backpacks, through various terrains and elevations. At times strenuous, the backcountry hikes will test your child’s endurance. If your child is healthy and is actively involved in ongoing physical activities, he/she should do fine. Most youth who participate in team sports excel at our summer camp.
Does your child get along well with others?
Simple question really, how does your child do in group situations? How might he/she respond after hiking uphill for over a mile carrying a backpack, hungry, and then a storm rolls in? Would they respond well to the pressure? To instructions from adults? Would they work well as part of the group or present a challenge to others?
Does your child have a diverse palate?
Being open-minded to trying new things and having a diverse palate is recommended. Our backpacking menus can accommodate most special dietary requests however, in general, your child will be introduced to healthy and sometimes foreign snacks and foods.
Does your child want to participate in this summer camp adventure?
Lasting Adventures is not a program for your child to be sent to. We are also not a wilderness-counseling or therapy program. Your child should want to participate and be interested in doing so. He/she should be looking forward to the adventure or at least open to the experience. Youth who are sent against their will can create a toxic environment for everyone else, while also risking expulsion from the program.
Deciding on sending your child to an adventure summer camp should not be a challenging decision for most. However, recognizing your child’s limitations is vital when researching the right camp for their summer experience. Most adventure sleep-away camps start at a later age to give children opportunities to prepare both physically and mentally. But as a parent you are ultimately the expert and best decision maker. If unsure that this is the right adventure summer camp for your child, reach out to our office for program consultation.