Expedition Backpacking Washington - 7th to 8th Grade - Expedition Camp

Built for campers looking for a backcountry experience, our weeklong Expedition Backpacking Summer Camps are ideal for beginning backpackers and expedition enthusiasts alike.

In a tight-knit group of up to 13 campers and 2 skilled, supportive instructors, expedition backpackers will spend up to six hours hiking and exploring the park’s spectacular terrain. Routes may include longer hike days and also “layover” days where campers get an opportunity to carry light day packs on excursions to nearby peaks or high alpine lakes. Throughout the week, they’ll make camp in picturesque places, pitching tents and cooking meals together on backcountry stoves. They’ll learn to adapt to a range of weather conditions and environments, use backpacking best practices, hone their interpersonal skills, and develop an increased appreciation for the natural world.

Away from the comforts of home, this camp fortifies kids with self-reliance, imparting the skills and confidence they need to fuel many future journeys—and even lead your family’s next outdoor adventure.

* Departure and pick up are in Bellevue, WA.


Camp Length One Week
Price $1,205
Total Camp Hours 125

Add-Ons Price
None Available To minimize Covid risks we are not renting sleeping bags.
Packing lists and gear purchase options will be available.



Entering 7th-8th


1-Week Session
Sunday Check-In, 10:00 AM
Friday Check-Out, 3:00 PM


Drop-Off/Pick-Up: Forest Ridge School of the Sacred Heart 4800 139th Ave SE, Bellevue, WA 98006

Camp Location: Olympic National Park

The Week's Adventures

Gear Management

Backcountry Cooking

Expedition Skills


Campers will get familiar with the equipment they need for backpacking—from compact cooking, cleaning and sleeping gear to camping basics like bear protocols and water treatment systems—learning how to set it all up, break it all down and pack it efficiently. They’ll spend each day’s hike with their gear on their backs, experiencing the empowerment that comes with carrying everything they need for the week on their own.

Camping in the woods means cooking and eating in the woods, and campers learn everything that entails, from menu execution to food storage to safely filling and lighting a camp stove. Backpackers will take turns cooking and cleaning up energy-packed meals for the group.

As they explore and adventure, campers will practice important interpersonal skills like communication, problem solving and teamwork. They’ll gain experience leading as they guide the rest of their group on a hike, and spend some time alone reflecting during a brief, structured “solo” experience. They will also gain valuable skills using a map and compass. Coupled with their other adventures, these experiences push their comfort zones, build their confidence and give them a sense of independence that lasts well beyond the camp week.

Throughout the week, campers will practice important interpersonal skills like communication, problem solving and teamwork. Through games during downtime, stories around the campfire and time alone reflecting, they’ll build confidence and comfort within the group and as an individual.

Sample Schedule

Every camper’s schedule is a little different. However, to get an idea of a typical day, here’s our rough schedule:

7 AM
Rise and shine!
7:15 AM
Morning Circle
7:30 AM
8 AM
Camp Pack Up
9 AM
On Trail Lunch
1 PM
5:45 PM
Set Up Camp
6 PM
7 PM
Evening Circle
8 PM
Tent Time / Bedtime

Expedition Pre-Camp Guide

Already registered? All the information you need about your expedition backpacking adventure – where to go, what to bring, camp photo links – is waiting for you in our Pre-Camp Guide.

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While no outdoor adventure is totally risk-free, we work hard to keep your kids safe. Every activity starts with a discussion about the risks involved -- what they are, how to prevent them, how to respond if something goes wrong -- so kids learn how to approach challenges with intelligence and skill.