Five Things To Pack For Teen Wilderness Camp

A teen wilderness program is an amazing way to let your troubled teen disconnect from the stress of their school world, and get into nature while learning very valuable life skills amongst peers. However, these wilderness camps are often in the depths of nature, where the elements can be unknown even to the most skilled of campers.

If you are baffled as to how to pack your teen for one of these wilderness summer camps, see below for a list of five essentials that will be useful on your teen’s journey into the outdoors.

A warm hat and a sun hat. Although it may seem silly to think about packing winter gear for a summer expedition, some of the locations of these camps can drop temperatures quickly in the evenings. Most suggest that bringing a sun hat for protection during the day as well as a fleece lined hat for the evenings with sunglasses secured by a neck strap is enough to protect your head and face from the elements.

Quick dry rain gear and winter clothing for your body. There will be no running from the rain in the great outdoors, so it’s essential that your teen be able to stay as dry as possible if caught in a downpour. Waterproof clothing that can be layered over shorts or pants is a great way to protect from the rain and be able to transition quickly into more seasonably appropriate gear. Long underwear is also recommended for cold nights, as well as fleece lined pants and shirts.

Several pairs of wool or synthetic socks, and hiking boots. Wool socks are better at keeping feet in a cool or warm temperature, and hiking boots are essential for getting around the sharp rocks and tree roots that a natural landscape will have. For more relaxing times, it's recommended to have a pair of sports sandals that will securely stay on the feet, with nothing as flimsy as flip-flops.

A warm sleeping bag and a lightweight backpack. For gear, the most important rule to remember is that your teen shouldn't take anything they aren't willing to carry for long distances. A lightweight backpack with a small, rollable sleeping bag is enough to hold all that they need but will keep them moving at a pace they can tolerate.

Last, but certainly not least, the basics of body care. Essentials include sunscreen, bug spray, reusable water bottles, any needed daily medicines and first aid kits. Some other suggestions are things like reusable eating utensils for campfire food, a small towel and trash bags for when things get wet or want to be protected from the rain. A camera or a journal are also great little things to pack to have your teen document their journey and be able to share it with you when they return.