The kitchen is open, counselors are arriving, the water toys are in the lake, and we are eagerly preparing for our campers to arrive!
Many of you might wonder what we do throughout the year, when camp isn’t in session. Because camp is not something with an easy on and off switch, we have been working hard since the day camp closed last August to get ready for this summer!
Besides improving programming and activities, upgrading facilities, and hiring staff, we believe in intensive training. To that end, Camp Pinnacle hosted its first Wilderness First Responder course, which is an intensive nine-day course in wilderness medicine required for our backcountry trip leaders. More important than medical skills, it helps teach judgment, decision-making, and risk management. Reid and Dylan, our mountain bike team leaders, just received their level 1 instructor certification from the International Mountain Bicycling Association after a three-day course we hosted on Pinnacle’s trails. Other counselors are taking riflery, archery, and kayaking courses off-site to improve their teaching and safety skills.
Emory, Walker, Dock, Jake, and Misha just completed a three-day challenge course in management, customized specifically for the operation of our brand-new Sky Park. We will have another Sky Park training next week for our outdoor staff as we prepare to officially open the course on June 11. Several of our local campers have been up in the “Sky” testing the elements as we constantly make tweaks prior to opening.
Early next week, we will host a Wilderness First Aid course and lifeguarding course to make sure our staff is prepared for summer. Every counselor will have, at minimum, a Wilderness First Aid certification as we focus on creating a safe experience.
Our senior staff members arrived Tuesday, May 22, to begin leadership training. Our outdoor trip leaders arrive Wednesday, May 23, for seven days of extensive skills training prior to the arrival of our general counselors on May 31. Then, we have 10 days of all-staff training, where we prepare for the summer ahead as an entire team.
I want to emphasize the incredible job our facilities team has done this winter under the leadership of Tom McCartney and George Nagel. We are always amazed at how much they accomplish in often-frigid winter temperatures. The video below shows some of the improvements we made to camp since summer 2017.
Here’s a quick summary of what we’ve added and built:
- Brand-new Sky Park
- Two new miles of mountain bike trails
- Regraded biking flow trail
- New bike park and trail features
- New landscaping on girls’ side and by the gym
- New walk-in cooler in the kitchen
- New boys’ showers
- New paint in cabins
- New bike building
- New outdoor center
- Upgraded climbing wall with automatic belay system
- A new campsite called Ridgetop
- Two new gaga pits
Plus, we have purchased
- 12 new stand-up paddleboards
- 12 new mountain bikes
- A new water trampoline
- A new inflatable water triad
- A new Supsquatch
- New Big Agnes tents
- And more…