Category Archives: Wilderness Youth Leadership Development (WYLD)

Find out everything related to the school programs and teen summer camps at Strathcona Park Lodge and Outdoor Education Centre.

Picture This! (WYLD)

Taking a break cooling off in a glacier fed stream after a morning of hiking in the sun.

Taking a break cooling off in a glacier fed stream after a morning of hiking in the sun.

Weather Update

Everyone is out and enjoying the outdoors at Strathcona Park Lodge.  Kids are all dressed in warm clothes and rain gear conquering the high ropes, ziplines, tree climb and more.  “There is no such things as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.”

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Pack to Go WYLD

Picture This! (WYLD)

Did you know we now offer caving trips?

Did you know we now offer caving trips?

Picture This! (WYLD)

Learning the finer skills of glissading on a WYLD summer camp.

Learning the finer skills of glissading on a WYLD summer camp.

Picture This! (WYLD)

Kids take off on the Backcountry Beginnings trip tomorrow! Rock Climbing, high ropes and exploring Vancouver Island's biggest lake by sea kayak will be had.

Kids take off on the Backcountry Beginnings trip tomorrow! Rock Climbing, high ropes and exploring Vancouver Island’s biggest lake by sea kayak will be had.

Picture This! (WYLD)

Strike a summit pose this summer with Strathcona Park Lodge

Strike a summit pose this summer with Strathcona Park Lodge

WYLD Summer Camp: Nootka Adventure – Sea Kayaking

Nootka Adventure – Sea Kayaking

WYLD NootkaAGE GROUP: 14-16
Length: 8 DAYS
Cost: $1395
Dates: July 20-27, 2013
Skills: Backcountry Basics, Kayak Strokes & Rescues, Ocean Travel, Marine Navigation and Weather, Surf Landings and Launchings, Trip Safety
Difficulty: Moderate

A moderately challenging sea kayak trip in Nootka Sound, a little known remote and wildlife rich destination on Vancouver Island’s west coast.

 

 

 

 

 

 

We’re not sure why more people don’t sea kayak in Nootka Sound, but we’re not complaining. The rugged coast near Gold River on the west side of Vancouver Island is a sea kayaker’s dream. There are dozens of islands, empty beaches, tidal pools galore, coves, inlets and passages to explore and resident whales, sea lions and sea otters to spot. On this 8-day adventure we’ll learn about thousands of years of First Nation history, hundreds of years of European occupation, the tides, weather and ocean navigation all while visiting some of the best campsites on the coast.

Day 1: After arriving at Strathcona you’ll meet your fellow Expedition members and your instructors. As a group you’ll begin planning your trip, including an introduction to sea kayaking skills, strokes and rescues. Dinner is in the Whale Room and the group will sleep at the lodge’s base camp.

Day 2: The adventure beings after breakfast with a van ride to the Nootka Sound. In a quiet marina you’ll pack your kayak and set off across the sheltered waters following the coast of Bligh Island. As you paddle past coves and small beaches you’ll begin to get comfortable in your sea kayak. By late afternoon the group will begin looking for a good place to camp for the night.

Day 3-6: Over the next several days time is spent learning the backcountry basics as well as exploring the islands, beaches and shores of Nootka Sound. You may spend time fishing for dinner, or scrambling around tidal pools teeming with new and exciting sights, or you may just lay back and float, enjoying the peaceful solitude of the Sound. You may visit Friendly Cove where Captain Cook landed in 1778. Here you are introduced to the First Nations people and culture of this region. Being in the wilderness means attending to the essentials. As days pass you will find you have honed many of your camping skills and your group begins to take over more responsibility from your instructors, taking over the navigation, campsite selection and set-up, and meal planning and preparation. It is your opportunity to use everything you have learned to finish your journey and succeed as a team.

Day 7: The last strokes return you and your group to the marina where a van will be waiting to take you back to the Lodge, a warm shower, a celebratory meal and a final night with your group.

Day 8: On your final day campers 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.

WYLD Summer Camp: Discovery Camp

Our introductory camp combines an overnight canoe trip and a mountain hike with rock climbing and high ropes course at Strathcona Park Lodge.

Our introductory camp combines an overnight canoe trip and a mountain hike with rock climbing and high ropes course at Strathcona Park Lodge.

WYLD Summer Camp: Backcountry Beginnings – Rock Climbing and Multi Day Camping

Backcountry Beginnings – Rock Climbing and Multi Day Camping

WYLD BackcountryBeginningsAGE GROUP: 14-16
Length: 8 DAYS
Cost: $1095
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.