This summer, me, a Fourteen-year-old, decided to run a Survival Camp.
I got this idea last year but thought the task too big for me, and so I did not run it.
However, this summer, I decided to try it out. Therefore, I started preparing for this camp in early April.
I had to think of what equipment we needed, if we needed insurance, where we would make the camp, how we would run the camp, how to introduce the camp to others, and more.
Therefore, I decided to split up the camp tasks to multiple people. I got two of my friends, Matthews and Samuel to help me run the camp. We split the tasks between us and after a couple months, we had set up a company, started a website, made a plan, found a place to run the camp, and bought all the equipment we needed.
After all the planning, all we had to do was enlist people in the camp. All in all, we managed to get five people to join the camp, Barnabus Gui, Daniel Li, Joshua Zhan, Stella Zhang, and Nicholas Zhang.
Now, it was time for the camp to be run. The day before the camp, we scouted out the place, went over the schedule, and made sure everything was ready. Then, it was finally time. On the day of the camp, the kids arrived, and we went through the schedule. The first day we went through Shelter Building. We got each camper to get into groups of two, where one of them went with me. Then, each group made shelters. Turns out, their shelter’s were well made, because later in the day, it started raining, and so we had to take cover under the shelters. Nobody ended up getting wet, and at the end of the day, we made a campfire. When I got home, I was dead tired. I’d say the first day was pretty successful.
I woke up the next day, refreshed and ready. On the second day, we taught them how to start fires. After the lesson, we went to collect sticks. Sadly the day before it had rained, and so fire starting was rather difficult. However, in the end, Daniel finally managed to start a fire, and with everyone else’s help, they got a nice big fire started, which concluded the day. That day, when I got home I almost fainted from exhaustion. Then, at night time we went back to the campsite to sleep, and I slept in a hammock, under the tarp. That night, it rained hard.
The next morning was very cold, and damp. The rain hadn’t stopped yet, so we decided to go to one of the big shelters. When the kids arrived there, I taught them how to wrap themselves a Tripod, and later, we got to the campsite and had a shelter skirmish, that is, a shelter building challenge. I challenged them all to build a different type of shelter, but only Daniel’s and Stella’s ever turned out well. Barnabus, Josh, and Nicholas decided to stay with the regular one, and with time, managed to make it. At the end of the day, we were all tired but had fun playing around a campfire.
Then, came Thursday. On Thursday, we learned about wilderness foods, and how to tell if they are safe to eat or not. Then, we went to gather cattail, started a fire, made a tripod, and started to cook our cattail. The cattail was pretty hard and tasted like dried gum. Later that day we went on a hike to gather some wood for a fire in the next day. That night, we went back to the campsite to sleep. This time, Joshua’s family also came, and we cooked meat over the fire, and then went to sleep, Josh and his sister slept pretty late, talking throughout the entire night.
The next day, Daniel came to camp early by around 45 minutes, and we went on a hike together to gather rocks for the firepit’s. When the rest of the camper’s arrived, I separated the five of them into 3 groups, Daniel by himself, Barnabus and Joshua together, and then Stella and Nicholas together. Each of them had gathered wood the day before, but just in case they didn’t get enough, we went to get more. Then, we started our Fire Competition. Each of the groups were to start a fire themselves with their Firesteel’s and build their fire high enough to burn through a rope above their fire. Surprisingly, Daniel, the one by himself, was the one to do it first. Eventually, however, all the other teams also built great fires. Each team got their prizes of candy. Then, at lunch, we had a barbecue which my parent’s provided of sausages and of corn. We continued in the afternoon with Trap making. I taught them how to do the T-bar snare, which actually took a while. Some of the camper’s decided to quit after working for 10 minutes, but a couple of them continued, and we ended up with 2 pretty cool, working traps. We ended off the week with a camp review and rating. All the reviews were positive, and I will probably end up hosting this camp again next year.
I really think this camp was a great experience, and I learned a lot from this camp. I enjoyed the challenge that running this camp provided, and am thinking of hosting it again. So, what did I learn from this camp? First of all, I learned that it is very important to not procrastinate. I ended up making the schedule for camp one week before it actually took place, and the lessons were not quite as planned out as they should have been. Building on to that, I also learned that Planning is probably one of the most important things you can do. Why? Because if I had planned better for the camp, it could have gone much smoother, and the camper’s probably would have learned more.
In conclusion, I really loved the process of running this camp, and have learned a lot from doing so. Thank God for such a good time, and for having no big injuries taking place. Who knows what God has in hold for me next.
See you next time.