Best Wilderness Programs

Danielle Fletcher
• Wednesday, 18 November, 2020
• 13 min read

Wilderness Therapy Programs: A Comprehensive Guide For Parents Skip to contents to content We are closely monitoring information related to COVID-19 and have implemented additional safety precautions to mitigate risks.

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Our enhanced admissions screening and program guidelines are informed by the CDC and Utah department of health. These roles contribute to his broad overview and deep understanding of Aspire as a whole, allowing him to effectively lead through experience.

His passion for adventure therapy, his vast clinical and leadership experience, plus his genuine ability to connect with others make Ryan a dynamic leader. Ryan therefore creates numerous opportunities for his staff to learn and improve both physically and mentally, and motivates them to continually strive for excellence, in order to provide the best service possible to the students and families that come to Aspire.

As an original member of the Aspire Leadership Team, Josh has fulfilled several roles at Aspire including Clinical Wilderness Therapist, Clinical Supervision, Admissions Director, Strategic Development, and currently serves as the Chief Marketing Officer. It’s a type of holistic care that involves participating in outdoor activities.

They typically include tasks or adventures that young adults might enjoy. Believe it or not, one popular wilderness program that young adults tend to love is gardening.

Gardening therapy teaches them a lot about themselves and the value of responsibility and hard work. It’s actually among the most popular addiction treatment programs in North Carolina.

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Hiking also ranks among the best wilderness therapy programs for young adults. Hiking is also helpful at building trust and special bonds with others in rehab.

Feeling included in a group is a major part of therapy. Any outside activity is a great way to stay busy, which is one of the best coping skills for avoiding relapse.

The activities encourage young adults to get up and moving as well as spend time with others. This kind of healthy lifestyle can help them stay sober.

Learn more about the best wilderness therapy programs for young adults and how they can help. The best camps are the ones which provide the treatment and facilities enabling your teen to become a new person.

It is possible your teen could get lost in the crowd and miss out on the life-changing experience needed. The whole purpose of going to a wilderness camp is to help your troubled teen turn their life around.

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General therapy will have its benefits but where a known condition exists then a known course of treatment must follow. It’s important your teen gets to work and play in the open air, tackles all sorts of outdoor activities but also that they receive plenty of the right type of therapy.

Whatever else your teen will experience, the best camps give opportunities to challenge the participants. When the challenges are met, participants gain an increase in their confidence.

It might be paddling a canoe, hiking, horse riding, rope climbing or sailing. The best camps offer structured outdoor activities which challenge and then reward the teens.

Beautiful scenery, ideal to explore and enjoy and far away from the distractions of home, friends and family. Of course trained therapists are essential but they allow the beauty of nature to have its own healing effect on the teens.

Nature has a way of inspiring and teaching us about safety and respect for the environment. The best camps offer programs which allow your teen to change their lives forever.

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Parents will speak highly of the teen’s success at such and such a wilderness camp. Certain people will respond best to more hands-on, alternative approaches to addiction treatment, such as wilderness rehab programs, which offer adventure and immersion in nature.

Wilderness drug rehab programs can be ideal for teens, young adults, and even pre-teens who have a dual diagnosis. Having a dual diagnosis means they are struggling not only with addiction but with mental illnesses, such as depression or attention-deficit disorder.

These programs help individuals build trust in their peers and their own abilities. They bolster the patient’s confidence by letting them solve the challenges that come with interacting with the outdoors.

The program also supports families whose loved ones suffer from addiction and mental health issues. Inpatient treatment here teaches patients the skills necessary to navigate the wilderness, which cultivates awareness, insight, and self-reflection.

They also receive individual and group therapy, though these sessions are held outdoors around a campfire. Patients are given journals to use throughout the residential rehab program, and adventure therapy teaches them new sets of skills and coping mechanisms.

(Source: www.isu.edu)

Patients are then let loose in the wilderness for 72 hours, though still under the supervision of the staff. However, it is also challenging to navigate, and mastering survival skills during wilderness treatment helps to bolster the self-esteem of a person struggling with addiction to drugs or alcohol.

Field trips that include hiking in the mountains or swimming teach the addicted person that they cannot only master skills but can have fun even when they’re sober. This Joint Commission-accredited substance abuse program for men is found on a working farm and involves wilderness treatment for addiction.

Fishing camping hiking bouldering rock climbing skiing Whitewater rafting snowboarding Phoenix Outdoor is a CARF-accredited inpatient rehab program that treats patients between ages 14 and 17 with a dual diagnosis.

Part of this drug rehab program embraces wilderness therapy, where the patient learns skills such as building traps, making fires, and hiking. Outdoor therapy includes walking on nature trails, hiking, and tours of Montana’s parks and waterfalls.

This helps the patient’s physical and psychosocial health and enhances their cognitive functioning and bonds with their community. Other parts of the drug rehab program include mountain climbing, fishing, hiking, exploring, and learning to meditate in the wild.

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The Treehouse is Joint Commission-accredited and also provides alternative addiction treatment in the form of equine therapy. Found on a 5,900-acre dude ranch, this wilderness rehab program is for young men ages 14 to 24.

Wilderness Treatment Center follows the Minnesota Model, which utilizes the 12-step program with the support of professionals and peers who are in recovery to help patients heal from their addictions. Because there are wilderness rehab centers around the United States, an individual seeking recovery shouldn’t reject the idea of traveling to a rehab center away from home to find treatment.

A wilderness rehab program may be the best -fit addiction treatment for a person struggling with substance abuse. In this case, the journey to find the best rehab program will be worth the distance traveled.

These include peer-reviewed journals, government entities and academic institutions, and leaders in addiction healthcare and advocacy. We are currently updating and adding to our 2021 Wilderness Summer Camp Guide information daily, so please check back often.

2020 Update, Please Read: Many wilderness camps may be changing their schedules and plans because of COVID-19. Many Summer Wilderness Camps for Teens offer some very advanced, immersive or even 'intensive' programs.

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It is always a good idea to talk to each camp you are interested in SPECIFICALLY about the 'intensity' of the programming, so you know exactly what to expect. International Wilderness Summer Camp Parents & Campers: There is a special section in our Summer Wilderness Camp Guide with info and advice for International Campers and Parents (from outside the US and Canada) who would like to attend a US or Canadian summer wilderness camp.

This is the question you have to ask BEFORE you set out to choose the best summer camp for you (your son or daughter). Nowadays, a camp could also have an official Facebook page, or several 'unofficial' one's put up by previous campers.

Then call the camp -- yes even in the era of 'live chatting' and email forms, you should really try to talk to someone 'personally.' Enter the target summer dates and check out the average temps, how many days of rain, storm history, etc.

VEGETATION/POLLEN/MOLD ALLERGIES: If you (your camper) has them, you should find out about the surrounding vegetation AND the natural occurrence of mold. -- some are intentionally rustic and wilderness oriented, some are very high-tech and modern with resort-level creature comforts.

WILDERNESS CAMP SCHOLARSHIPS, FINANCIAL AID & 'MEMBERSHIPS' : Many camps now offer full or partial 'camper ships' or some form of financial aid to deserving campers and their families. Sometimes these programs are not listed prominently on the camp's website or printed materials, so it is always a good idea to ask.

If the camp you choose does offer options for international campers, your next step should be to contact your home country's tourist or foreign travel bureau to find out EXACTLY what will be required legally. Parents need to talk with each camp IN DEPTH to make sure they offer exactly the right program, staff and facilities for their special needs camper.

Summer Camp Experience is different from teaching experience -- just because someone might teach computers and technology, that does not mean they would be a good fit as a computer or technology camp counselor. You should also ask about background checks, and if staff are trained in basic personal safety and first aid.

Some camps are 'famous' with previous campers for their special canoe-trip overnights, inter-camp sporting contests, staff variety shows, live 'campers' broadcasts, parent days, all-camp musicals, backwards days, midnight ice cream dances, star-gazing parties, or cabin swaps -- just to name a few. Get a sense for how much structured activity vs. 'FREE TIME' there is over the course of the entire day (and evening, if it's a resident camp).

These are typically ALL positive -- so don't be afraid to ask if you can speak to (or email) a previous parent or camper as a reference. For instance, many summer camps now allow readers & tablets, such as Kindles since they have amazing battery life and are less bulky than books.

If your camp allows digital cameras, we would suggest one that also shoots video and is waterproof -- yes, they exist, and they are not that expensive. Summer Camp can be one of the most personally rewarding and fondly remembered experiences in anyone's life.

If you would like more detailed information on these specialized camps, you can click on any of the direct links below. In the past, most academic summer camps were sponsored by local high schools and state universities.

There are outstanding summer adventure camps for: mountain climbing, canoeing and kayaking, wilderness camping, long-trail hiking, mountain biking, water sports, and many more. Many aquatics summer camps also offer: Canoeing, Kayaking, Sailing, Rowing, Rafting and other water craft sports.

The diversity of Summer Basketball Camps for teens and kids is amazing. Other cheer camps are taught in wilderness settings where you can truly relax after an intense day of exercise and training.

Choosing the right computer, technology, science, or web design summer camp comes down to zooming in on the answers to specific questions: what technologies will be included in the camp curriculum and how 'deep' will the instruction go? There are some new computer science 'immersion' summer camp programs where campers build complete robots, rockets, iPhone APS and websites.

Horseback riding and summer camp have a very long and rich tradition in both the US and Canada. There are many equestrian camps where campers are assigned their own horse for the entire summer, and learn to provide all its care, grooming, and feeding.

Many of these gymnastics summer camps have helped train some of our best Olympic hopefuls. Other summer camps offer horse riding as a daily option, but without an intense focus.

You should talk to each camp to make sure you understand how much focus is placed on horseback riding, horsemanship, etc. Nowadays, there are summer CIT (Counselors in Training) and leadership programs for teens offered not only by summer camps, but also by church youth groups, colleges, environmental and community service groups, and even political organizations.

But, by far summer camping still offers the most leadership training programs and opportunities. Many summer camps think of their City literally as potential future counselors, and invest in them many additional responsibilities and privileges.

In other camps, the City are assigned to specific counselors more than assistants and observers and are regarded more than campers. Some summer leadership and CIT & LIT (Leaders in Training) programs are 'free' and some require tuition.

Families and future City should ask each camp (or summer organization) MANY questions so that they know exactly what to expect. Will be included in the camp curriculum, how 'deep' will the instruction go, and what other 'recreational' opportunities are offered -- just to name a few.

There are some new 'immersion' math summer camp programs where campers create science projects using new math skills to solve critical problems, such as: predicting the flight path of a model rocket, calculating the gear ratio in a robotic arm, etc. Some of the best summer music camps in the world are located right here in the USA, many are housed on major University campuses.

Whether you're interested in sailing a Tall Ship on the High Seas, a Sailboat on Mission Bay, or a Sun bird on a Texas lake -- there's a summer sailing camp for teens and kids of all experience levels. There are some great 'immersion' summer science camp programs where campers build complete robots, explore the geology of the Grand Canyon, launch their own rockets, create iPhone APS and websites, and much more.

There are some great day and overnight summer soccer camps for teens and kids, boys and girls, all across the US and Canada. Many private summer camps have been designed around the special needs and disabilities of their campers.

For instance, there are special needs summer camps specifically for children with amputations, or diabetes, or for campers who have some form of cancer. Other camps take a more adaptive or “Inclusive” approach, providing special access, equipment, sessions or programs for campers with special needs, but otherwise operating as a traditional day or overnight summer camp.

Parents need to talk with each camp IN DEPTH to make sure they offer exactly the right program and facilities for their special needs camper. There are literally hundreds of terrific summer sports camps for kids and teens of every level of experience, in every corner of the US and Canada.

Of course, there are also summer sports camps attached to major universities, with nationally recognized coaches and the most modern summer sports training facilities on the planet. Some summer sports camps are VERY INTENSE with hours of daily instruction, practice, competition, and fitness training.

Would you rather enjoy a peaceful swim in a clear mountain lake with your cabin of best friends? The diversity of Summer Swim Camps for teens and kids is amazing.

The diversity of Summer Tennis Camps for teens and kids is amazing. There are teen travel camps that venture out each summer to almost every corner of the planet.

Other volleyball camps are taught in wilderness settings, or even right on a California, Florida, or Hawaiian beach, where you can truly relax after an intense day of exercise and volleyball training. You will want to 'interview' each camp carefully to make sure their program fits your exact physical, health and dietary needs.

Many of these summer wrestling programs are connected with major universities and some have been the home to US Olympic wrestlers. You can go directly to any of our other 2021 Special Interest Camp Directories from the list in the black bar at the bottom of this page.

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