Wilderness Trips

ACO Trip July 24, 2015 0191

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    Dedicated wilderness trip staff

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    Hours required to complete the required Wilderness First Responder course

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    Two night to three week trips taken last summer

  • Quetico, Canada

    Location of final canoeing Big Trip for 9th graders

  • 21 days

    Longest trip taken by campers

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    Days campers were on trips last summer

Camp Nebagamon is a traditional summer camp with a robust wilderness tripping program. Indeed, for many campers, one of the highlights of coming to Nebagamon is the chance to paddle, hike, and cycle throughout the Northwoods. Our location in northwest Wisconsin allows us easy access to some remarkable wilderness locales, and we have a specialized staff of men and women whose sole job it is to plan and lead the array of different trips that we offer every summer. All of our trip staff are American Red Cross certified lifeguards and certified Wilderness First Responders, a certification requiring 80 hours of wilderness medical training.

Our youngest campers participate in a two-night trip with their cabin mates to give them a taste of life in the woods. As boys get older and their mastery of outdoors skills grows, the length and variety of trip opportunities increases.

On all of our trips we emphasize safety and teaching, but it is the development that happens inside each of our campers that is the most remarkable. Mentored by our wilderness trip staff, campers participate in adventures that unveil leadership skills and unearth new strengths, develop a compassion for the natural world, and teach wilderness skills that will spark a life-long journey.

The following is a brief summary of our tripping program:

3rd, 4th and 5th Graders

IMG_2258Each session, every camper in these grades takes a three-day, two-night trip with his cabinmates, counselors, and a member of the trip staff. For many boys, this is their first taste of the wilderness and so the goal of these cabin trips is simply to introduce campers to a positive wilderness tripping experience. The cabin trips travel to the Chequamegon National Forest in northern Wisconsin and campers are able to hike, fish, and swim, as well as enjoy the use of rowboats. For younger campers who express an interest, we also offer an overnight canoeing trip across Lake Nebagamon.

5th Graders

Beginning in the 5th grade, in addition to their cabin trips, campers have the opportunity to sign up for hiking and/or canoeing trips. Hiking trips usually travel on the Superior Hiking Trail in Minnesota. Canoe trips paddle on the pristine Sylvania Lakes in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, or on the highly regarded Brule River in northwestern Wisconsin.

6th-9th Graders

As campers grow older, the scope and breadth of Nebagamon’s tripping program increases to meet their needs. Campers choose between canoeing (we offer both river trips and lake trips), hiking, and mountain biking trips. We also offer a sea kayaking trip through the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore in Lake Superior and a rock climbing trip along the bluffs of Lake Superior.  The culminating wilderness experience for our 8th and 9th grade boys is the two-week “Big Trip,” hiking around Isle Royale National Park and canoeing in Quetico Provincial Park, Canada respectively.

Trip Options

Virtually all of the canoeing trips for Nebagamon’s boys travel to either the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in northern Minnesota or the Quetico Provincial Park on the Canadian side of the border. Together these two parks comprise the best canoe country anywhere in the world. Our shortest canoeing trip, for fifth graders, is three days long, while our ninth graders can opt to take a 14-day “Big Trip” through the Quetico.

Our river canoeing trips take us to some of the most beautiful and fun stretches of river in the area. Campers choose from trips down the Brule, Namekagon, and St. Croix rivers. Trips range from overnighters to five day trips that follow rivers from source to mouth.

Nebagamon’s hiking trips cover ground from the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore and the Porcupine Mountains in Michigan all the way to the Superior Hiking and Border Route Trails in the Superior National Forest in northern Minnesota. Hiking trips generally last anywhere from four to seven days, although eight-week eighth graders are eligible for a 14-day “Big Trip” that circumnavigates Isle Royale National Park.

IMG_1390Mountain biking trips range from day trips to three day excursions. Campers get to ride the well developed trail system around Duluth, MN designed by COGGS, the Cyclists of Gitchee Gummee Shores, and explore the trails in the Chequamegon National Forest.