July 17-21, 2023: Wildlife Search & Rescue Day Camp in Puyallup

Give your child the gift of our Wildlife Search & Rescue day camp which is excellent for exploratory learners ages 7-13, but not recommended for autism spectrum students, as the itinerary diverges daily based on wildlife “finds” and other learning opportunities. Instruction runs from 9:00-4:00 with drop off between 8:30-9:00, and pick-up between 4:00-4:30. Campers are grouped with others closest to their age within our hallmark 6-1 average student-teacher ratio that’s so critical for safe and profound outdoor experiences this year.  You can also check out our day camps at Lake Sammamish.

Camp Description

Wildlife Search & Rescue is or original day camp theme and will celebrate its 27th summer in 2023. Camp takes place at the wild Clark’s Creek Park where animals hide in their dens during the day before coming out at night to roam the fish hatchery and neighborhoods. Yes, we’ve found resident bear dens, investigated cougar scratching posts, watched bobcats hunting rabbits, heard coyotes yipping after catching prey, foxes marking their trails, owls dropping countless pellets, meditated on osprey diving for salmon … and those are just the big creatures.

Each day, we will explore the field for wildlife tracks and sign. Every find will be used as a lesson to gain better understanding of who made the track; why it made the track; where it made the track; when it made the track; and what it was doing when it made the track. You will discover what it is like to be a bird or other animal by using sensory awareness skills to interpret what is happening around you. Participants will learn to understand and use the language of the birds and will practice interpreting bird language through a series of experiments.

We will work together to make plaster casts of our favorite animal tracks; craft tracking sticks; safely move through the woods; and investigate trails, lays, larders, and other signs of life. This camp is full of exciting, interactive, challenging and cooperative games. Campers will learn to work as a team to develop skills of leadership, cooperation, patience, orienteering, dexterity, and fun. Additionally, our staff, some of whom are Search & Rescue volunteers, will teach you how to navigate in the wilderness and track people!

Camp Itinerary

Itineraries are subject to some amount of change based upon location, weather, instructor preference, and natural resource availability.

Monday: Awareness, Navigation and the Art & Science of Tracking Morning Session: Awareness Skills, Wildlife Safety, Arts of Tracking Lunchtime: Bring & Eat Lunch from home, then our After Lunch Activities (ALA) include choice of Archery, Chill Time, Sprinkler Games & Swimming (creek wading, or go to lake for swim tests on days lifeguards are available) Afternoon Session: Animal Forms, Order of Survival, Lostproofing

Tuesday: Bones, Skulls, Hides, and Teamwork Morning Session: Wildlife Journals, Animal Families, Hides & Skulls Lunchtime & ALA: (see monday description) Afternoon Session: Teamwork, Hand Signals, Scouting Expedition

Wednesday: Birds, Insects, and Amphibians Morning Session: Language of the Birds, Animal Tracks & Sign Lunchtime & ALA: (see monday description) Afternoon Session: Insects & Spiders, Reptiles & Amphibians

Thursday: Trailing, Scats, and Casts Morning Session: Trailing Animals, Scatology, Scent Marks, Browses, Lay Lunchtime & ALA: (see monday description) Afternoon Session: Plaster Casts, Beaver Dens & Dams

Friday: Human Tracking, Animal Rescue, and Celebration Morning Session: Secret Spot, Human Tracking, Animal Rescue Medicine Lunchtime & ALA: (see monday description) Afternoon Session: Parents are invited to attend special end-of-camp workshops from 1:30-3:00.

Daily Camp Schedule, Pick-Up & Drop-Off Directions:

Meet at the Clark’s Creek Park – South Shelter, 1710 12th Ave SW, Puyallup WA 98371 located one mile west of the Puyallup Fairgrounds. The best arrival time is 8:45-9:00 am, and the best departure time is 4:00-4:15 pm.

8:30-9:00 Check-Ins & Morning Care (no early check-ins available)
9:00-9:15 Songs, Stories, Stretches & Late Check-Ins
9:15-12:00 Morning Lessons with snack break from 10:30-10:45
11:45-1:15 Lunch, Games & Archery
1:15-4:00 Afternoon Lessons with snack break from at 2:30-2:45
4:00-4:30 Aftercare & Pick-Ups (all-staff meeting starts at 4:30)

Camp Leaders

Kim & Chris Chisholm guide professionally-trained staff instructors at our hallmark 6-1 student-teacher ratio that’s so critical for safe and profound outdoor experiences. Read our FAQ’s for more details and check out camp testimonials dating all the way back to 1997!

Health Protocols

We exceed the state’s pandemic era guidelines for day camps (2021-22 pdf will be updated when 2023 guidance is issued) and child care facilities, and to start each day, campers must pass our health screening before being allowed to exit vehicles. Parents may walk the property to see the lay of the land, but until pandemic restrictions are fully lifted, cannot accompany children to camp groups.

Hygiene protocols will remain the same as last year, but mask policies will be updated depending on whether there is any new variant or surge, and still no evidence of Covid transmission in the outdoors. We will still require campers to carry masks in backpacks, and likely have them wear masks in restrooms at least.  If there is another surge, we would require masks whenever a line, or when seated less than 3-6 feet from others. As before the pandemic, we will continue requiring hand sanitizing whenever sharing tools and materials, before entering toilets, and we supervise proper hand washing after campers exit toilet facilities. Please click here for full details on our health and safety protocols during the pandemic era and see the latest CDC summer camp guidelines. As before the pandemic, we train campers in specialized “outdoor safety and awareness” skills and encourage appropriate boundaries, with redirection from staff when encroachment occurs.

Full vaccinations are strongly encouraged – we follow the scientific consensus. However, as part of that, we know that due to our 100% outdoor setting, combined with daily health screenings, contact tracing, supervised hand washing and mask when necessary, the risk of disease transmission is negligible at Wolf Camp, so vaccination records are not required at day camps. We do require vaccination records at overnight camps so participants can be partnered according to the wishes of parents and participants.

Day Camp Tuition in Puyallup/Tacoma

Please choose your contribution level for Puyallup Summer Day Camp weeks. It’s fine to mix and match prices if registering multiple children/weeks.

  • $495 is our 2023 Puyallup Tuition rate which includes $100 for in-house financial aid disbursements.
  • $395 if camp is unaffordable at the higher rate this year which reflects an extra camp hour as compared to previous years.
  • $95-$295 if you qualify for a Max Davis Scholarship. When the Conservation College or other funding source can’t cover a need, we provide in-house financial aid to ensure everyone who applies can access at least one Wolf Camp week based on demonstrated need.

You will need to pack a healthy lunch, water and substantial snacks every day. Tuition includes t-shirt at your first camp with us, then choice of orienteering compass, recommended field guide, firesteel and other outdoor essentials depending on number of camps attended, age and availability.

Registration

New Camp Families: Registration opens on January 2nd. In the meantime, click here to join our notification list for priority placement. After the new year, our PayPal registration system will appear below and you can use it to register, or see other options below for returning camp families. After making $100 per camp deposits, we’ll need you to complete a once-in-a-lifetime Registration Form (Microsoft Word or PDF or make your own a copy of our Google Doc, or choose our Bilingual Chinese-English Registration Form PDF / Word Doc) – one per new participant (again, not needed for returning in future years) – and we’ll need you to email it back for review by January 31st to maintain your reservation; otherwise, we will refund your deposit and open your space to our waitlist on February 1st.

Returning Camp Families: Reserve spaces anytime by sending $100 per camp deposits via Zelle to “kim@wolfcollege.com” with a note on camper names, dates and theme choices, or call us anytime at 425-248-0253 ex 1 or ex 2 to register over the phone with a credit card.

Deposits are non-refundable unless we refuse your registration (but if you cancel, we save all deposits as a credit for you to use in future years, or we can move the funds into our scholarship account if you prefer) so the best practice is to make the minimum $100/camp deposit to register, and wait to pay the remaining balance during your camp week via Zelle (free from your online banking account) to “kim@wolfcollege.com” in order to save us transaction fees, or use PayPal to the same email address, or give us a check or have us run a credit card on site during your camp week.





Or email us to be put on our list for this program in the future. We always keep your information absolutely private, and will never share it.

Refund Policy: Deposits are not refundable unless we don’t accept your application. If you cancel for any reason, you may receive a full credit good through the following calendar year on appropriate and available programs listed on our schedule, although an additional deposit may be needed to secure your spot in the future program. If a program you sign up for is canceled and not rescheduled at a time you can attend, you may receive a full refund except in cases of natural (weather, geologic, wildfire, etc) disasters, grid failures, epidemics, government shutdowns, conflicts or curfews, or other unforeseen emergencies making it unsafe for staff and/or attendees to reach or use program locations, in which case all payments made will be held by us without expiration date for your future use in appropriate/available programs of your choice. Reasons include the expenditure of funds (property rentals, advertising, materials, admin staff time, etc.) long before programs take place, i.e. deposits make it feasible for Wolf Camp to schedule programs in the first place, but our mutually understood agreement is that Wolf Camp will run the program at the safest available time in the future. Finally, no refund, nor credit, is given if a participant is a no-show without prior notice, or asked to leave a program for inappropriateness as determined by our kids, youth and adult agreements for participation.

Day Camp Preparation: Agreements, Packing List and FAQ’s

Day Camp Packing List

Day Camp Agreements for Participation

Health & Safety in the Pandemic Era

Other FAQ’s – Frequently Asked Questions

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