Click on any of our Frequently Asked Questions to see the answer!

Why should my son choose Camp Voyageur over other summer options?

Located on the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness Camp Voyageur is the ideal place for a boy to grow, gain independence, self-reliance and have fun in the summer. We are a small camp typically enrolling 35 to 50 boys per 2 or 4-week session, and we maintain a ratio of one college-age counselor to four boys. Our in-camp program of land and water sports and extensive wilderness trips allow boys to make lifelong friends and experience things they can’t do at home. We’ve been in business since 1951.

How long are the sessions?

Sessions are two, four, six or eight weeks long. In a four week session, the foundation upon which Camp Voyageur was built, boys break the cord with home becoming more independent. It takes time to form friendships and to get in shape so boys will be ready for the longer trips at the end of each session. Campers develop physically and socially at camp, and they become more responsible for their own well being. It takes a few weeks to get in shape for the longer trips that occur at the end of the four week session. We’ve also added 2, two week sessions for boys to sample or add onto the four week session. During a two week session new campers will get a shorter Boundary Waters canoe trip and enjoy lots of in-camp fun. Experienced Voyageurs will get longer trips up to 10 days within a two-week session.

Does my son need to come to camp with a friend?

Some do (and there are discounts for referrals), but most frequently campers do not. He’ll make friends quickly at Voyageur. Many campers return year after year to see their camp friends from other areas of the country and world.

How are campers assigned to cabins?

We group campers by age in cabins. Most other activities and wilderness trips intermix ages.

What are the cabins like?

Our cabins are simple buildings with screens for windows. Bunk beds line the edge of the cabin and we generally house 5-7 campers in each cabin with 2 counselors.

Do the cabins have toilets?

No, there is a central wash-house facility near the boys cabins.

Can my boy choose his daily activities?

Sure. Often the day’s weather will determine the activities offered. We will offer three or four activities a camper can choose from in each activity period.

What if my son does not compete in school sports? Will he still enjoy the in-camp program?

Sure. We stress recreational participation rather than competition. These are fun games with plenty of time for play. We strive to teach sports activities that campers can enjoy for a lifetime.

My son has never been on a camping trip. Will he get to go on any camping trips?

Yes. No previous camping experience is necessary to attend Voyageur. We are wilderness camping experts and spend the first few days of each session going over basic canoeing and camping skills. We also interview each camper to find out what kind of wilderness trips he wants to take throughout his stay at Voyageur. He will start out with a short trip and he’ll be out longer as the session progresses. We aim to spend 1/2 our time in camp and 1/2 our time out on the trail as campers get more experience.

My son is an experienced wilderness camper. Will he be challenged by Camp Voyageur's wilderness trip program?

Our trips will challenge every camper. We canoe, hike, and sea kayak and he’ll have a chance to do all three kinds of trips if he wants. Campers who demonstrate the desire and ability will spend up to half their time at Voyageur canoeing, or hiking in the wilderness.

If my son has to withdraw early is there a tuition refund?

No. The $500 deposit is non refundable after March 1. The balance of tuition is due by June 1. No refunds are given after June 1 because of the expenses Camp Voyageur incurs in preparing for the camp season.

Who are the counselors and staff?

Most of our staff grew up at Voyageur. They are here because they love camp and believe in the value of the CV experience. New counselors are carefully screened, at least 18 years of age and are usually in college or have graduated.

How many counselors per campers?

Campers are closely supervised. We maintain a ratio of one counselor to three campers.

What kind of training do Camp Voyageur counselors receive?

All our staff go through two-weeks of staff training. Additionally in order to lead trips counselors have current certificates in CPR, Wilderness First Aid and Lifeguard Training.

What kind of a background check do you have on your staff?

All of our staff have a criminal background check that include the National Criminal Database and National Sex Offender databases from their place of residence on file. In addition we personally check all their employment and/or personal references prior to hiring.

How does my camper get to camp?

Many campers drive to camp.If you drive your son to camp plan to arrive between 10 and 2 on the first and last day of camp. Most boys however fly to Duluth, Minnesota. We ask that you schedule your son’s flight between 10-2 on the first and last day of the camp session. We transport boys from the airports by camp 12-passenger van. (Duluth is $90 round trip and Ely is $10 round trip)

How long have you been in business?

Since 1951. Camp Voyageur was founded by our parents Mim and Charlie Erdmann. We, John and Deb (son and daughter of the founders) have been running camp since 1984. It is a mission and tradition we believe in and plan to continue for generations.

Do you have camp families that can give Camp Voyageur a reference?

Yes, call Deb and request a listing of people you can call. Some may even live in your area.

Two, four, six or eight weeks seems like a long way to be away from my son.

Time will pass very quickly for your son at Voyageur. During a session lots of growth and development can occur at camp. The session length allows your son to become acclimated to the camp routine and get in shape for the long trips at the end of each session. We hope he’ll try all the activities Camp Voyageur has to offer. Camp is a wonderful, supervised place for him to gain independence, confidence and self -esteem and explore the northwoods while making new friends.

Does my son need special camping gear for wilderness trips?

The only camping gear he’ll need is a small sleeping bag and fishing gear, if he plans to fish. CV provides the rest of the group camping gear needed. Boys planning to hike should bring hiking boots that are broken in already.

How do I go about registering my son for camp?

It’s easy to apply, use our contact form and Deb will respond to you shortly. Deb will send you a registration form and get a $500 deposit to reserve the spot.

Can I contact my son once he's at camp?

The first day of camp we allow campers to call home from the airport. Campers do not have access to a phone for the rest of the session. You can write your son by snail mail and encourage him to write you back. A letter from home can be one of the highlights of a day for him. Your son can also receive up to two e-mails per week, though he will not have access to a computer to respond. Your e-mails will be distributed with the regular mail. We frequently post pictures on our website so you can watch what’s going on at camp. On-line you can see your son and trace his progress by pictures. This feature is password protected for camp families.

Can my son bring a computer, cell phone or other electronics?

No. We do not allow electronics at camp. Please do not send your son with iPods, video games, cell phones, laptops, radio or any other electronics. Taking advantage of our location, we want to tune boys into their surroundings, without any electronics. Any electronics brought to camp will be confiscated the first day of camp and returned at the end of the camp session.

What if my camper is homesick?

We work hard to integrate new campers into the CV routine. There may be a short adjustment period for some new campers but we’ll help them through that. Campers keep busy all day and once a camper makes new friends and takes that first wilderness trip homesickness usually fades.

Are discounts are available?

Yes. Please visit our Tuition page to find out more information about tuition discounts.