Every camper at Avid4 Adventure receives a passport outlining the skills we’ll teach at camp. Given that campers have varying levels of expertise, instructors group campers according to ability to provide them the right level of challenge. Below is a list of skills we take campers through at our survival skills camps.
- Level 1
- I understand & practice Leave No Trace principles.
- I can set up a tarp that keeps out rain.
- I know 3 ways to signal for rescue if I am lost.
- I have identified 10 different native plants.
- I know where I can gather firewood without hurting the forest.
- Level 2
- I can shoot a bearing with a compass.
- I have learned how to use a map & compass together.
- I can build a shelter with natural materials.
- I have identified different animal tracks.
- I can lash sticks together to make tools & shelter.
- I can build a tepee fire.
- I know how to tie a square knot, bowline, clove hitch & taut line hitch.
- Level 3
- I can read a topographic map.
- I have made rope from natural materials.
- I can orient myself using natural surroundings.
- I can identify poisonous plants.
- I have set up a bear bag to keep my food safe.
- I have made a mini shelter with downed materials.
- I have practiced making fire with a bow-drill, hand-drill or flint & steel.
- Level 4
- I have slept outside under the stars.
- I have made fire with a bow-drill, hand-drill or flint and steel.
- I have made fire using wet wood.
- I have learned how different cloud formations can help predict weather.
- I can build a solar still to purify water.
- I know where to find protein to eat. I have learned how to make stone tools.
Please visit the website page for your camp location to learn more about the locations we’ll travel to.
Survival Skills – At select day camp locations, we offer a single-sport survival skills camp for entering 2nd – 7th graders where campers, grouped by grade, practice survival skills all week long. Campers learn basic navigation skills, explore the principles of Leave No Trace and learn to observe and identify useful plants as they build awareness, appreciation and respect for the world around them. Some locations offer canoeing as part of the survival skills experience.
Outdoor IQ (California day camps only) – Our California multi-sport camps for 2nd – 7th graders, Skills and Adventure, offer a mini survival skills experience, which is one day of Outdoor IQ. During that day, we focus on increasing campers’ confidence in outdoor settings. They learn to set up shelter, cook on backpacking stoves, read maps and GPS devices, assess risks and understand what it takes to be self-reliant in the outdoors.
On their hikes, campers learn basic navigation skills, explore the principles of Leave No Trace and learn to observe and identify useful plants as they build awareness, appreciation and respect for the world around them.
We teach campers how to track animals, identify scat, find food and medicine in the wild and fashion utensils and shelter from gathered materials. We also cover the basics of flintknapping, tool making and fire safety, giving campers hands-on practice with hand-drill and bow-drill fire tools.
Out on the water in select locations, campers master the basics of paddling a canoe, getting familiar with water safety and canoeing equipment as they hone their technique. They’ll also learn how to read terrain to lead them to water and purify the water they find.
Outdoor IQ (offered in California)
Our California multi-sport camps for 2nd – 7th graders, Skills and Adventure, offer a mini survival skills experience, which is one day of Outdoor IQ. During that day, we focus on increasing campers’ confidence in outdoor settings. They learn to set up shelter, cook on backpacking stoves, read maps and GPS devices, assess risks and understand what it takes to be self-reliant in the outdoors.
While no outdoor adventure is totally risk-free, we work hard to minimize risk. Every activity starts with an environmental briefing. Here, campers assess their natural surroundings and the potential risks involved. With the guidance of their instructors, they determine ways the group can stay safe. As a result, kids learn how to approach new challenges with intelligence and confidence.
Examples of topics covered include fire safety, what to do if you get lost in the outdoors and how to signal in an emergency. Instructors ensure that campers remain well hydrated throughout their adventures with extra water on-hand and reapply sunscreen regularly. All instructors are CPR and Wilderness First Aid certified, and many have additional certifications.
Read more on our approach to safety