Thursday, August 6, 2020

Stories from each week of Summer Camp:

Many of the skills we teach are inspiring: wilderness survival, farm life, blacksmithing and fishing. We recognize these fantastic possibilities bring kids to our camps. When you get into it, these skills can sometimes turn out to be more difficult than first imagined. Yet our instructors collaborate with kids to step-up. And that’s where the true magic happens. Discovering the power of resilience and gaining confidence in their capability to learn teaches kids to explore and live a great life.

Farm & Wild Craft Camps
Maya was thrilled she got to milk a goat today. She said, “It’s much harder than it looks to get the milk to come out.” She’s really enjoyed every day of camp, her leader (Skye) is fantastic, and she’s learning a lot & making new friends! -Marci, Parent

Blacksmithing Camps
The instructors for, Apprenticeship of the Blade, have an enormous amount of skill and knowledge about how to forge blades and they understand how to communicate it to their students. It was refreshing to find a camp that offered such wonderful instructors. Often, teenagers share very little information, not so with this class, our teenager would share his completed pieces and the knowledge that went into it. So, thank you, it is so great to hear him speak with enthusiasm instead of sarcasm. -Karen, Parent

Wilderness Survival Camps
Sebastian is normally a kiddo who doesn’t like to get dirty or wet. You can imagine my delight when I came to pick him and he was covered in charcoal “camouflage” after spending a good portion of his day out in the rain and had a blast! All he talks about is all the cool things he does including shooting “real arrows like the big kids.” Thanks for making it a super fun week for him. It’s worth the drive -Kimberly, Parent

Zombie Camps
Claire has really loved this camp. I went in to wake her yesterday and she was sobbing in her sleep. I was worried and held her while she woke up to tell me she was having a dream that she couldn’t go to zombie camp that day. Good job guys! -Robin, Parent


Check Which Camps Are Available

S-hook forged in blacksmithing camp

Last year’s quotes and reviews Trackers Earth Portland summer camps:

It sounds like she was in heaven today. I love the wonderful outdoor experiences she had and she was so excited to ride on a bus! This is my first time at pick up and I was very kindly personally escorted to pick up my daughter.
-Andrea, Parent

Thank you for a very positive first camp experience! This is the largest group activity my son has been involved with, and he came home with amazing tales and tidbits everyday. We weren’t sure what to expect and now can’t wait to come back!
-Meredith, Parent

My son was very chatty when he came home, which is always a sign that he had a great time.
-My son was very chatty when he came home, which is always a sign that he had a great time., Parent

Stella had an amazing day at Rangers camp. She recalled clearly every detail of the day and indicated that she had the most fun of any camp she’d been to before. Was very excited for the next day
-Steve Marx, Parent

She loved everything they did at trackers. She is shy n timid by nature so I was not sure how this week would go for us. However the experience was everything I had hoped for her and blew her away. She was ways asking me to drop her off early n she wanted to stay late. Having a female instructor was pivotal for her first experience. Maybe not necessary for all little girls but was great for us. From here on out will be no problem what the sex of the instructor is because she feels like she can do it. we can’t wait to do more. Very Excited. VERY impressed how organized this was. The morning drop off should have been a disaster but it was so professionally managed from those outside, to the map, to those inside, that it was a piece if cake. Everything was great.
-Nazy Sharifi, Parent

Steven has really enjoyed this camp. It was a great way to start his summer. This camp is great compared to other non-Trackers camps. I have never seen Steven so happy (and tired) at the end of the day.
-Yin Bo Tooze, Parent

So many highlights– my daughter’s favorite was going to a farm and throwing watermelons over a fence to feed the pigs. Where else could she ever do this?
-Barbra Fisher, Parent

Emma had a great time. She was a little nervous before going about the archery component, but really got into the week. She really enjoyed the camo component. She also loved the animal walks and being able to be in the forest. Every time she is with you she gains confidence and appreciation for nature and her skills.
-Anna York, Parent

Tori had an awesome time at CTV. This was her second time and she had an idea what it would be like. Her summer had not been a “dream summer” and had been somewhat stressful. She came back calmer and so peaceful. Very zen. We went and got ice cream when she got back (she was craving something sweet) and commented on how “loud” the city seemed after being away from all the noise for a week. That’s awesome. She said it felt like she’d been gone for a month, but in a good way.
-Kristen Nguyen, Parent

Owen is not a child who likes camps or trying new things. That said, he LOVES Trackers! The instructors are very inspiring to him, the freedom in the outdoors, the slathering himself with mud….he loves! Thank you 🙂 The way Owen describes the staff is sort of god-like. He has mentioned the firm but compassionate way they have handled tough situations with children’s behavior.
-Amy, Parent

Everyone that we came in contact with from the parking attendants to the camp counselors was friendly, helpful and knowledgeable. Danielle loved learning new skills, especially archery, wood carving, casting a fishing line, and learning more about animals and wilderness survival. She didn’t like the games as much, but still stretched herself a bit by participating. I could see her confidence growing over the course of the week, as she’d relay the events of the day to me. She wanted me to be sure to pass along how much she really enjoyed her camp counselors, Casey and Derek. They were wonderful all week – willing to listen, share the days events and just seemed to have great attitudes and a bunch of positive energy. The place itself was a veritable beehive of positive energy, which I loved. We also had a nice experience buying Danielle’s new Morakniv at the camp store. The woman who worked there in the mornings was extremely helpful and knowledgeable in helping us decide which knife Danielle should choose, as was Casey. I also enjoyed my brief conversation with Chris Codino at the beginning of all this, when she took the time to answer my questions. At camp, I also loved the fact that her counselors always had something interesting going on during check-in and check-out times. Many thanks to everyone for making our week at your camp an exciting and special time. I really love your mission and all the positive, helpful attitudes that go along with it. Keep up the good work.
-Julie Brabandt, Parent

He started nervous and excited. Every day he had a new story to tell of exciting things he did. He keeps asking if he can go back. For me the biggest difference was his interest in computer games. Before the week of camp, he would beg to play with electronics every day. During the week of camp and after, he wanted to play outside and practice stealth. He started begging for a bow and arrow.
-Andrea Leech, Parent

Ben played stealth games on Monday. He came home the dirtiest we’ve ever seen him, caked in mud and joy. We thought, perfect!, and then sent him straight to bath, smooth, MUCH better location than last year, especially parking
-Alice W, Parent


Interested in Trackers Earth Bay Area summer camps. Check out last years quotes and reviews:

She had a fantastic week. She had zero complaints even with heat, long days, etc. She came home talking about the events of the day, and somehow you managed to make blood and guts exciting rather than gruesome. (How’d you do that?) She enjoyed the counselors and appreciated them. She made several friends during the week and felt comfortable. (Ended up with a swimming play date with one girl, and a repeat next week.)
-Lisa, Parent

Ethan had an incredible week and is back to loving Trackers. The week’s program was fantastic and seeing a Bald Eagle and Osprey fight overhead was the highlight of Ethan’s summer so far. All of the Counselors we ran into in the fishing area were really nice, friendly, etc. Sonya was great, and Jeff was over-the-top fantastic. What a special guy — really fun, warm, expressive, funny, effective with the kids, etc. He clearly puts a ton of effort and care into his work. And Shane does such a great job managing a huge program! Thank you, Trackers.
-Kristina Whitney, Parent

This was Egan’s second (out of 3) week of Trackers this summer and he comes home every day so excited and happy about his experiences. He literally tells us every detail of the day and can’t stop talking about it. He really loved making cordage and worked on it for hours at home in the evenings and early mornings before camp. Catching leopard sharks, crabs and jellyfish were his highlights and we heard all sorts of stories about different types of crabs. He loved both of his counselors and I really appreciated Tess. She had a personal story to tell me each afternoon about Egan and what he had done or learned and I looked forward to it each day.
-Allison Krasnow, Parent

Dylan had a blast! By the end of the week, he forget his shyness and was handling bait and live crabs like a pro. I knew this from what he told me each day, but his instructor noticed and took the time to tell me too. Your instructors are just incredible. Faith in humanity: restored.
-Carl, Parent

The week started off with an amazing recounting of a discussion held in Trackers where Marina explained to me that there isn’t really good and evil, but rather two opposing sides and misunderstandings/or different motives. It was very sophisticated and interesting and great to see her so engaged in not only the physical/emotional experience, but also stimulated to think about some hefty philosophical topics. Made me think too. Then on Wednesday she got into a fantasy-check situation as an interrogator of an adult and I heard from the Agent Slime aka Jimbo (so present, in tune, responsible, creative, good, smart) that she was so good, so powerful that she talked back to an adult as part of the scene being played out. But then it got emotional for her and she cried. You know, neither or or her other mom were upset by this. Emotions are a part of life. Girls often have big emotions (boys too but they learn to hide them and often deal differently). She was really feeling the experience and that’s powerful. I was so appreciative of the care, compassion, and appreciation shown toward her by the counselors and staff. What a wonderful way to be oneself, fully. I couldn’t be happier with Trackers and I know Marina loved it too. Such a holistic, whole body/mind/spirit experience. Very very pleased and extremely grateful.
-Jenny Strauss, Parent


A has been telling all kinds of stories during the camp week, from hunting boar to how to not get lost in the forest. He is a veteran in summer camps (start going to summer camps from 3 years old), but this is his favorite so far.
-Tianyi (SE Portland)


He was so thrilled each day to come home and tell us about his days, practice his new skills, and fall into bed each night after a full day romping and stomping in the woods. It was his favorite week of the summer! “Best week ever,” direct quote.
–Emily (NE Portland)


J is having a great time! Everyday he has a story to tell! My favorite is about the baby bunnies they found, he said they found several babies bunnies and the mommy in the forest. What a great experience for him!

– Melissa (Hillsboro)