Summer Camp

Our Progressive Camping Philosophy

We believe in age-appropriate adventures as a key ingredient in fostering resiliency and self-confidence in childhood.
Campers on a camping trip taking a group photo with their backpacks on

Yes, there is camping at our camp! Our camping program is progressive in the skills we teach and the trips on which we embark. Our very youngest campers learn basic camping skills and go on an ‘Almost Overnight’ on our campus. As skills increase and children get older campers work their way up to week-long adventures in our oldest groups.

We believe camping builds confidence and resilience, cultivates group bonding, opens up new vistas and horizons (literally and figuratively), brings children closer to nature, and, in an un-plugged environment, gives them experiences they’ll never forget.

Our camping staff is certified, experienced, gentle and encouraging, following the ‘roughing it easy’ philosophy. We do not approach the outdoors with the idea that we are going out to ‘conquer’ something, but rather that we are going out to open up to something even greater than ourselves.

Let the Adventures Begin!

Almost Overnights

Ages 4-8

This is designed as an introduction to our camping program for our younger campers. The excitement these campers show building up to this event is amazing. To look at such a group about to head out to our field to set up tents, one would think that they were en route to a month-long expedition climbing the Himalayan peaks!

During an Almost Overnight campers learn what kind of gear to take and how to pack it, how to set up tents, help cook their dinner and say hello to the mosquito-eating bats swirling high up in the air. Other Almost Overnight activities include a night hike, an amazing display of fireflies, sitting around a campfire singing songs, eating a snack around the fire and maybe even seeing ‘shooting stars’ overhead. Campers are picked up by parents early that evening. We want everyone to get home and in bed as quickly as possible, recognizing that this has been a long, tiring and great day!

On-Site Overnights

Ages 8-15

On-Site overnights are the perfect introduction to sleeping outdoors (in a tent of course!). Sleeping “close to home” pairs the exciting experience of spending the night outdoors with the familiarity of being on our campus. Besides getting to go on night hikes, see fireflies and shooting stars and sing around a campfire, campers will learn outdoor living skills. Campers, by staying the whole night, get involved with more of the cooking, learn some more advanced outdoor skills like using map and compass, learn how to go to the bathroom outdoors, practice using the tents properly and learn how to sleep warm (or cool) and dry in a sleeping bag. Older campers going on more extensive trips later in the summer also participate in an On-Site overnight early in the season to learn some of ins-and-outs of minimal impact camping.

Canoeing – Cedar Pond

Ages 10 & Up

Cedar Pond is a beautiful campsite that juts out into Lake Tiorati. This is our home base for our flat-water canoe trips. Here campers learn some of the fundamentals of canoeing. Building skills is the most important part of the canoeing program at The Nature Place. Learning and becoming proficient at various canoe strokes, steering, performing water rescues and a host of other paddling and water safety techniques all help to build self-confidence. When at Cedar Pond you can almost imagine yourself to be in the wilds of Maine or somewhere in the heart of Colorado.

Camping skills are further refined and there is time for lingering around the campfire in the evening before turning in for a good sleep in our tents under the pines, serenaded by the soft lapping of the water against the shore.

Canoeing – Delaware River

Ages 14 & Up

River canoeing, in flat (quiet) water or in white (quickly moving) water sets a whole new tone to water adventures. River canoeing skills, taught and practiced at Cedar Pond are put into action on this, the longest free-flowing river east of the Mississippi.

We learn how to read the river, safely navigate our course, how to upright an overturned canoe and how to watch the sky for changes in the weather. There is much wildlife to be seen: bald eagles, the ever-present white-tailed deer, and even an occasional black bear!


Ages 10 & Up

These overnights are a great combination of hiking and camping. Staged in nearby Harriman State Park, unless otherwise noted, these trips allow campers to travel through natural areas, experiencing the woods in a conscious and tangible way.

Campers learn how to pack and wear a backpack, how to create a healthy, good-tasting, packable menu for the trip, how to read a map, find firewood, and even start a fire in wet weather. On backpacking trips campers may need to step carefully around a sunning snake, experience a beautiful mountain top sunset, hear coyotes howling at night, or meet a thru-hiker on their 2,000-mile journey along the Appalachian Trail.