There’s nothing like taking a rod of metal and forming it into a unique piece of art! Campers who take blacksmithing will first learn all necessary safety protocols, as well as how the forge works. Boys will create basic iron crafts in the forge, learning additional techniques with more advanced projects as they advance. Unique to Camp Arrowhead, campers will have the opportunity to participate in scholarship program by having their wares sold at the Renaissance Fair in Maryland.
Based on the plan developed by Chief Red Dawn (A Lakota Sioux) in 1954 for Camp Sequoyah, boys involved in Indian Lore will learn and appreciate the different histories and cultures of Native American groups. They will learn different crafts and many skills that translate to other camp activities. At the end of a session, campers will be given the option to take part in a Grand Council program where they will showcase their crafts and perform traditional native dancing. Campers will learn how to throw tomahawks, set up a genuine tipi, make traditional fry bread, and even practice their accuracy with Cherokee blow guns!
Imagine learning a skill that has been practiced by humans for hundreds of thousands of years. Camp Arrowhead offers campers the unique chance to learn how to fashion their own arrowheads from scratch! Using obsidian, flint, and re-purposed material (like glass bottles), boys will take something that looks like a rock, and carefully and skillfully work it into something that is both beautiful and useful. They will also be able to use their creations to make functioning arrows that they can test at archery!
Archery is a summer camp tradition! Campers will first focus on range safety skills, including correct arrow notching and range commands. Boys will also be comfortable around their compound bows, learning all components of the bow and arrow. Campers will work on their accuracy in the range built according to National Archery Association guidelines.
Down on the homestead, campers get their hands dirty cultivating the garden. Some of these plants contribute to our meals in the dining hall! Boys will also have the opportunity to care for our animals, including goats, ducks, and chickens. Homesteading really shows us how self-reliance and community go hand in hand.
Pioneering & Bush Craft
Survivorman, Camp Arrowhead style! Also known as woodlore, this activity will develop skills relating to living and thriving in nature. In this activity, Campers will learn how to identify and utilize wild plants and study local wildlife behavior, while also learning primitive skills. Boys will become confident in the basics of orienteering, fire making, and preparing a campsite (including knots). Another area of instruction will be wilderness first aid skills, which will further aid campers in the quest for self-reliance in nature.
A rare opportunity at summer camp to work on an actual dig with a real archaeologist. We will be excavating an old home site with an eye toward discovering how the early homesteaders lived in Western North Carolina. Campers will be learning the field and lab techniques required to help answer these questions as well as discovering footprint of the home and outbuildings so they can be reconstructed in future summers.
Want to hang out with your friends on the water? Canoeing is the perfect outdoor adventure! Campers will start by learning water safety, as well as basic grips and strokes in the camp lake. Canoeing is not a solo activity, so boys will have to work on communicating with their partner(s) if they want to advance to an off campus canoe excursion!
At Camp Arrowhead, all boys will undergo a swim test at the beginning of the session. Any camper that does not demonstrate proficiency will spend one of their activities at the swim docks. A differentiated program will allow more advanced campers to fine tune their skills. The focus will be on freestyle, backstroke, and breaststroke. However, more advanced campers can also work on their butterfly form. Life saving skills, including sidestroke, will be included.
Field & Court Sports
In Field Sports and Court Sports alike, boys build technical skills while practicing leadership and sportsmanship. Since we focus on fun over competition, teams and activities are always changing. Some of our favorite field sports include soccer and ultimate frisbee. You’ll see us on the court for basketball, floor hockey, and volleyball.
With a roof overhead, boys can climb the wall at Arrowhead rain or shine! Our wall has routes of varying difficulty to learn the basics, prepare for an out-trip, or spend some free time pushing your limits. In addition to climbing skills, boys will learn knots and belaying skills as they work through the climbing progression.
Another historical camp favorite, campers who participate in the riflery program will be instructed by a retired Marine. Boys will first learn range and gun safety skills. Once they move on to target practice, campers will learn how to shoot in prone, sitting, kneeling, and standing positions. The program will follow guidelines from the National Rifle Association.
Arts & Crafts
Campers will be given the opportunity to focus their energy on self expression in Arts and Crafts. Boys will learn a variety of camp favorites (tie dye, pottery, and painting), as well as some they may not have done before (leatherwork, book binding, unconventional painting techniques, weaving) , incorporating materials they find around camp. Our goal is creative expression and a feeling of accomplishment for those who might not have natural artistic talent.. The beauty of Camp Arrowhead is the perfect inspiration for some incredible artwork!
There are many opportunities for Fishing at Camp Arrowhead! Campers are able to utilize the main lake, the many on property streams including Rock Creek, as well as the many other streams found in Western North Carolina. On the larger waterways, boys will focus on rod and fly fishing, including how to choose the most effective lures. The smaller streams are a perfect place to learn how to go seining. There will be opportunities for fly fishing excursions off campus.
Our fully equipped wood shop will help campers create projects out of lumber harvested from the woods of Arrowhead. They will have the opportunity to use both hand tools and power tools, depending upon their age and level of skill, to create projects ranging from simple fishing lures, to more advanced things like boxes and stools. Boys will learn how to safely use power tools with staff supervision. Campers also have the chance to learn how lumber is made from fallen trees with special sign ups at the sawmill.