One of my favorite things to do as a kid, was bike to the creek to explore.
I’d spend hours there wading through the cold water, stacking rocks, sending paper boats to navigate the small currents, and looking for crawdads. I’d carefully turn over stones hoping to uncover these critters and I’d watch as they scurried to find new hiding places. My friends and I liked to try to catch them.
It was a simple activity but it was a challenge!
And it was exciting.
At camp, there are many opportunities for campers to engage in similar simple activities:
- Some early risers grab a fishing pole and head for the lake where they cast a line and wait. And when a fish bites, the enthusiasm builds. Sometimes when a fish is really big, and the struggle is too, a crowd of campers and staff gathers and the excitement is palpable.
- Free time is perfect for a walk around the lake in search of snapping turtles or goose feathers.
- Occasionally, a camper who’s taking the slow approach to skills or the dining hall has found a skink, toad, or a snake.
- Hikes and campouts take the campers deeper into nature where there might be sightings of hawks, animal skat, native wildflowers like Trillium or Lady Slippers, and more.
- Watching the sky can also be a fun way for campers to explore new territory at camp. During the day, they might observe clouds taking the shape of familiar objects or people. At night, they may see an unfamiliar constellation or maybe even a shooting star.
- And of course, creek play is always a hit. It was forty years ago and it still is today. Some things never change!
Simple pastimes. Exciting discoveries. That’s camp!
I can already imagine the gleeful expressions of campers this summer as they explore the outdoors. Can you?