Once per summer, some of the most qualified wilderness leaders of the century gather in one location to test and hone their skills. That place happens to be Camp Voyageur. And these wilderness leaders I speak of? Why, they’re our camp counselors of course!
Over the past two weeks, our counselors have been put through the ringer. They’ve been trained and tested in risk management, wilderness first aid, life-guarding, CPR, aquatics and water safety, behavior management, counseling techniques, transportation safety, healthcare, and a number of specialized activities we do here at camp. That’s not including the other certifications they need to be able to guide wilderness trips in the Boundary Waters, Quetico, Superior National Forest and Apostle Islands.
And that’s not all! Our staff are ultimately tested on the “staff trip,” a challenging 4-day canoe trip in the Boundary Waters designed to get us in shape for the camp season and practice many of the skills we’ve picked up in the last few weeks. That being said, with all but one of our staff this year being veterans, the focus of our training has been more on improvement and documenting our shared camping knowledge for future generations of staff.
Part of the training on the staff trip is focused on media, and in particular, photo and video taking. With veteran counselor Joe Baumann on board this summer, we’re taking media development to another level. We’ve upgraded a lot of the camera technology around camp, equipping ourselves with GoPros and rugged cameras perfect for capturing our wilderness adventures. We’ll be getting into photo taking techniques and theory. We’re aiming to impress.