Talkeetna Discovery Camp provides local youth with experiential learning adventures through hiking, exploring, and discovering the diverse habitats of the Northern Susitna Valley. This week-long day camp is open to students entering 1st through 8th grades.
Camp Dates 2023
July 10th-14th: Boreal Scouts and Bedrock Detectives (entering 1st-4th grade in Fall 2023) Waitlist Only
July 17th -21st: Susitna Explorers and Mountain Voyagers (entering 5th-8th grade in Fall 2023) Susitna Explorers Waitlist Only
Taking inspiration from both Denali Discovery Camp and Wild Wonders (offered by NSI in the past), Talkeetna Discovery Camp aims to inspire awe and exploration in young people. Through hikes, science, art, and just plain fun, campers will be immersed in the natural world, exploring with their peers and fostering respect and love for their surroundings.
Have your child join us as a Boreal Scout (1st-2nd grade), Bedrock Detective (3rd-4th grade), Susitna Explorer (5th-6th grade), or Mountain Voyager (7th-8th grade), and let the learning begin!
Because using the outdoors as a classroom is a privilege, Talkeetna Discovery Camp teaches and adheres to Leave No Trace principles and strives to have a low impact anywhere the campers travel.
To provide local children with quality learning experiences through hands-on adventures and fun in the Northern Mat-Su Valley.
– Provide an opportunity for children to experience the outdoors in a fun and safe manner.
– Develop a sense of inquiry and curiosity about the natural world.
– Cultivate skills of observation, awareness, and reflection about our environment.
– Promote understanding of the forest ecosystem.
– Foster stewardship of wilderness and wild places.
Registration is underway! All camp groups are waitlist only except the Mountain Voyagers (entering 7th & 8th grade in the fall). Email Shannon Conway at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 907-683-2597 with any questions.
All forms will be available when registration begins in March.
All paperwork is due two weeks after confirmation of program enrollment. Paperwork includes Medical History Form, Authorization Form, Code of Conduct, COVID-19 Release, and Scholarship Application (if applicable).
Camp tuition should not be a barrier to enrolling your child in camp! Full and partial scholarships are available through the Ellen Wolf Scholarship Fund. This fund was created in Ellen’s memory to support opportunities for young people to participate in outdoor adventure programs and learn about stewardship of wild places. Ellen was a Northern Susitna Institute board member, now Denali Education Center. We are honored to provide these scholarships in Ellen’s name, a true lover of wild places and advocate for “letting nature run wild.” Ellen’s kind and gentle spirit continue to guide us as we connect kids to Denali and the special community of Talkeetna.
Applications are due within two weeks of registration, along with your other camp paperwork. Please do not submit scholarship applications until your child has been accepted into camp.
In addition to scholarships, we are happy to provide lunch and snacks for your child per request, thanks to a partnership with the Upper Susitna Food Pantry.
Tuition for each camp group is $250. Full and partial scholarships are available.
The cancellation and refund policy is as follows:
5 weeks before camp- Full refund
4 weeks before camp- 75% refund
3 weeks before camp- 50% refund
2 weeks before camp- No refund
Talkeetna Discovery Camp runs Monday through Friday. Each day, parents and guardians will drop campers off at DEC’s Talkeetna Campus (unless otherwise noted) at 9:00 am ready for a full day of adventure (and ready for the elements). During the day, kids will hike, explore, and learn about Denali, the Upper Mat-Su Valley, and their community. Parents and guardians pick up campers at 3:00 pm.
Boreal Scouts (entering 1st-2nd grade in Fall 2023):
Boreal Scouts will focus on the wildlife in the Talkeetna area. From bugs to beavers to bears, the Boreal Scouts will cover it all while hiking local trails and exploring all that the woods and rivers have to offer.
Bedrock Detectives (entering 3rd-4th grade in Fall 2023):
The Bedrock Detectives will learn all about why Alaska rocks: from glaciers to earthquakes to the soil under our feet. Bedrock Detectives will make models, explore the geologic wonders in their backyards, and spend quality time with (and maybe in) the dirt and mud.
Susitna Explorers (entering 5th-6th grade in Fall 2023):
The Susitna Explorers will do just that – explore the Susitna and learn about how water shapes Alaska. From learning about watersheds to spending time out on the rivers and lakes, the Susitna Explorers will be filled with water knowledge.
Mountain Voyagers (entering 7th-8th grade in Fall 2023):
Wildlife, rocks, and water all move around the state, but what about the people? The Mountain Voyagers will learn about how humans move themselves around the Last Frontier. Dog sleds, bush planes, and water vessels will all be part of the Mountain Voyager’s week.
Please Note: Detailed itineraries, including trails, pickup, and drop-off locations, will be provided to parents and guardians on Day 1 of Camp at orientation.