WYLD Summer Camp: Backcountry Beginnings – Rock Climbing and Multi Day Camping
Backcountry Beginnings – Rock Climbing and Multi Day Camping
AGE GROUP: 14-16
Length: 8 DAYS
Dates: July 20-27, 2013
Skills: Backcountry Basics, Paddle Strokes, Rock Climbing, Map and Compass
Difficulty Level: Introductory/Moderate
By the end of this moderately challenging backcountry introduction participants will be leading the group as they travel by sea kayak and by foot in the Strathcona Park wilderness.
This introduction to backcountry travel is a sampling of the best of Strathcona’s chunk of paradise: rock climbing and high ropes at Strathcona Park Lodge; day hikes into the Vancouver Island mountains; and a multi-day sea kayak trip on glacier carved lakes. You’ll challenge yourself high off the ground, hike a pristine valley and follow bear and elk tracks across an estuary, all while learning how to be self sufficient in the backcountry.
Day 1: After arriving at Strathcona you’ll meet your fellow Expedition members and your instructors. The instructors will show you around the Lodge and play a few games to get to know your group. You’ll also begin planning your Expedition. Dinner is in the Whale Room and you’ll sleep at the Lodge’s base camp.
Day 2: The high ropes course will be your first challenge. Suspended 40-feet off the ground the ropes, logs and wires are a physical and mental challenge that requires team work and trust to navigate. It’s also a lot of fun. In the afternoon you’ll head down to the water to become familiar with sea kayaking skills, strokes and rescues in preparation for your kayak expedition. Eat and base camp at the lodge.
Day 3: Start the day with another challenge, this time on the rock climbing bluff to learn the basics of climbing, knot tying, rope systems, safety equipment, rappelling and grabbing the rock to climb up. Getting off the ground and reaching the top will require teamwork, trust and perseverance. The feeling of accomplishment at the top is matched by the adrenaline of rappelling back down. After lunch you’ll pack your sea kayak and head out on an adventure.
Day 4-7: Over the next four days you’ll explore Upper Campbell and Buttle lakes. You might take side trips into the river mouths, or look for the perfect swimming spot, or you may just lay back and float enjoying mountain rimmed lakes. A highlight of this expedition is a day hike through the pristine Tlools Valley where you will attempt to reach spectacular Mia falls. Tlools is a wild and rugged old growth valley, home to abundant wildlife. By the last few days you and your group will become self sufficient, you’ll be taking over the decision making from your instructors, you’ll navigate, pick campsites, set up camp, prepare meals and light fires. A celebratory dinner and last night with your group rounds out your WYLD experience.
Day 8: On your final day, paddle back to Strathcona Park Lodge, enjoy a shower, clean up, pack up and head home knowing you have accomplished more than you likely thought possible; proud of your new skills, increased confidence and shared memories.