So Many Fun Options

two summer camp girl friends

The recent streak of days with perfect summertime weather continued today as we woke to a foggy cool morning. As the camp begins to stir and the girls make their way to the dining hall for breakfast, it’s common to wear long pants and a sweatshirt or fleece. The temperature today was about 64 when we woke, so it felt great to cozy up like that. Then as the sun burned off the fog, we soon felt warm and comfortable under bright blue skies and clear sunshine. The temperature climbed to about 83, but with relatively low humidity it again felt really good to be outside. Since we essentially spend all of our time outside —even the cabins are open-air, screened buildings— this kind of weather is inspiring. It makes everything we’re doing pop with more vibrant colors, perhaps a little more pep, and an extraordinary freshness. Yes, it was ideal camp weather.

“Cinnamon Apple” was the surprise muffin flavor today. The bakers in the kitchen start about 7am to be ready for this mid-morning snack. Mixing, scooping, and baking 300 individual muffins takes some time. Having a freshly baked treat like this, though, is definitely a highlight of most everyone’s morning.  The muffins are so delicious, it’s challenging to have to limit yourself to just one!

cool tetherball fashion girl

Rockbrook girls know that wearing a costume adds to whatever we’re doing, making things funnier and more fun. That’s why we’ll occasionally declare a costume theme for the day, like today’s “Under the Sea” theme. It was fun to see how the girls and staff members interpreted that theme. They mixed things up with beach attire (Hawaiian shirts, sunglasses, hats), shark and octopus hats, seaweed skirts, and colorful coral leggings. The Hi-Ups and several counselors decorated the dining hall with streamers and painted banners, and an “ocean-related” playlist of music was queued up for all three meals.

There have been a flurry of adventure trips going out this week too. We went rafting on Tuesday, but today Clyde took an excited bunch of girls out to Looking Glass Rock in the Pisgah Forest for an all-day rock climbing adventure. They left early in the morning to reach the south side of the rock face in time to jump on a couple of popular climbs, one called “B52” and another called “Fly By.” Leland and Sarah took a few advanced kayakers to run the rapids of section nine on the French Broad River north of Asheville. Meanwhile, Jayne and Sam offered an overnight camping and canoeing trip on a different section of the French Broad.  All of these trips were offered to the girls as options they could choose, switching up their schedule as they like. So many options all on the same day!

shaving cream fighter

We presented another fun option to the girls during dinner when we announced that tonight’s twilight activity would be a shaving cream fight and slip-n-slide held down on the grassy sports field. This is an event of exuberant play. Girls of all ages, and counselors too, dress in their swimsuits, arm themselves with cans of white foam, and proceed to spray wildly being as mischievous as possible splattering unsuspecting friends. Soon, there are wild hairstyles, messages written on bellies, and even some girls completely covered in shaving cream. As you might expect, this makes the slip-n-slide an extra slick ride. Be sure to visit the photo gallery to see some of the wild messy fun of the evening.

It’s been another full camp day, one with plenty of adventure, creativity, and fun with friends. We couldn’t have asked for a better combination of cheerful campers, enthusiastic staff members, weather and camp activities. Life is very good here at Rockbrook!

Just a Heavy Dew

If you’ve been paying attention to the weather in our area, perhaps checking the Rockbrook weather station, you know we’ve had plenty of rain over the last couple of days. The temperatures have hovered right around 70 degrees (a little cooler at night and a little warmer during the day), but it’s been cloudy and rainy lately— almost 2 inches of rain yesterday and almost 3 the day before that. A trough of low pressure is slowly moving out of the area, but at the moment we are all wearing our “dew coats.”  After all, around here rain is really just a “heavy dew.”

Flooding can be a problem in our area as it turns fields lining the French Broad River into expansive lakes, but for Rockbrook only a portion of our horse pasture land is at risk since most of camp is far up the hill from the river. This much rain does swell our creeks and creates much more dramatic waterfalls (like this video of “Stick Biscuit Falls” behind the office shows), but we have an elaborate system of underground culverts and spillways that carry rainwater strategically under, through and around the camp, keeping everything intact despite the rushing runoff.

camp girls paper crafts

With only a few exceptions (swimming, e.g.), our activities at camp have carried on nicely in spite of the rain. With so much covered space— our gym, dining hall, activity cabins, stone lodges, porches, barn and arena —we can easily stay out of the rain and still have fun together. All of the craft activities, for example, didn’t even skip a beat today. The potter’s wheels kept spinning, the looms clicked back and forth, and the brushes applied paint and inks to paper in the drawing classes. Yoga, Drama, and Dance all met in their usual buildings.

Also today, several outdoor trips went out for a (little more wet than usual) adventure. The kayakers got out on the Tuckasegee. A big group of Middlers and Seniors took a backpacking trip to an area near John Rock in the Pisgah Forest. And we still ran girls through our zipline course despite the consistent drizzle and periods of rain. Did we get wet? Sure did. Did it ruin any of the trips? Nope. In fact, zipping through the trees in the rain made the ride feel, if anything, a little edgier and more exciting.

gym sports parachute game

The gym became a particularly fun place to be. The Alpine Tower climbers moved inside to the climbing wall to give some of its short, but challenging routes a go. Meanwhile, the gymnastics staff worked on cartwheels with the girls on the other end of the gym, and on the main gym floor, a massive, fun game of dodgeball whipped up. At another point, the counselors pulled out the parachute to play a game where campers would run under it when it was lifted in the air.  Another gym game involved pool noodles used as hockey sticks, easily inspiring the girls to race around the gym after a ball.

The girls were particularly happy that their time horseback riding wasn’t cancelled because of the rain. With our new covered riding arena, everyone’s riding lessons could go on as planned. The arena is positioned right next to the new barn, so it’s possible to tack up your horse and walk him directly out of the barn and into the arena without ever getting wet. And no mud too! That’s really nice.

All of this is to say, we are having plenty of fun here at camp, “even in the rainy weather,” as the Rockbrook song says. The girls are extraordinarily resilient in the face of being a little wet, a little muddy, and a little cool most of the day. They happily want to carry on with what we’re here to do— to play together as great friends, to create, to feel a part of a caring, kind community, and to learn and grow by enjoying this beautiful place.  Rain or shine, that’s what’s going to happen!

camp buddies gymnastics

That Relaxed Feeling

Weaving Camp Kid

Today we saw more evidence of just how quickly your girls have taken to life at camp. It’s just the first day of activities, and everywhere we look, both the new and returning campers are having a great time with each other. At all the craft activities, hands were busily creating, weaving, painting, pressing clay, trying new friendship bracelets, and decorating all sorts of things. There were balls bouncing on the tennis courts, in the gym for basketball, and out on the gaga ball court. Girls climbed all three sides of the Alpine Tower while others took wild rides through the trees on our zipline course. Girls stretched and posed in the yoga class and made up improvised scenes in the drama activity. Dozens of arrows and .22 caliber ammunition were (respectively!) shot at archery and riflery targets. The sound of the diving board thumping and water splashing all day meant the lake saw lots of action too. Camp life was buzzing with action.

Add to that an absolutely perfect day of weather— brilliant blue skies and sunshine all day, no rain, low humidity and a high temperature barely above 80 degrees —and being here in the mountains was wonderful. Did you know that you can always check the weather conditions here at camp by visiting our weather station on Weather Underground?  On our station page you can find real-time and historical data, as well as weather forecasts for our area.

Rifle Shooting Children

Today was also the first day out on the water for our kayak camp girls and their instructors. The girls practiced their “wet exit” maneuvers (escaping from a kayak after it turns upside down) in the lake yesterday as a refresher, and spent time double checking their boats before loading a van and trailer with other paddling equipment, camping gear and food for their first two-day river trip. These girls already knew each other from camp last summer and had already spent a good amount of time paddling together, so right away they were excited to be set for the next week of river trips. Their plan is to paddle a different river everyday, so we’ll keep you posted about their progress.

Camp Free Time

Describing all the action, the activity that enlivens camp, like this might give you the wrong impression. The busyness is not stressful or burdensome. Just the opposite; there’s a carefree element to it. The girls are relaxing as they play. They’re loosening up while getting to know each other. They’re not rushed from one thing to another. Our daily schedule builds in free time and snack breaks (our famous muffin break in the morning, for example), and has an easy pace. We eat great food, get plenty of rest, and spend the majority of our day outside. There’s time for conversation all day long, time for silliness, dressing up, and a good laugh with friends. A camper told me today that she loves camp because “it’s so chill.” I think she’s noticing and appreciating the relaxed pace of life at camp, especially in contrast to life at school.

I suspect that’s true for lots of girls at Rockbrook. However ironic, they love the relaxed feeling along with the variety of action built into the rhythms of camp life. What a great way to recharge and enjoy yourself. Your girls are already thanking you.

zip line children

Spirited Shenanigans

Whitewater Rafting Rapid

Being a camp community that spends most of its time outside, you can imagine that we pay a great deal of attention to the weather. But I should clarify that; the directors and other adults think about the weather, plan for it, make adjustments because of it, celebrating or bemoaning what mother nature sends our little nook in the mountains. We are focused on the weather (even to the point of installing our own weather station!), but the kids, the girls at Rockbrook generally are not. Today, for example, we had “perfect” warm and sunny weather for our whitewater rafting trips, and all of our other in-camp activities, but I don’t think the girls noticed it much. Instead, they paid attention to each other and to the activity, laughing and splashing, bumping and paddling down the Nantahala. It’s amazing how “in the moment” these girls are, oblivious to everything beyond what they’re doing and the friends they’re doing it with.  On other days, I’ve seen campers completely ignore the rain, happily wearing a hat instead of a raincoat, playing in the creek as if it was any other day. There’s no air conditioning in the cabins, but that simply doesn’t matter to the girls when there are so many more immediate things to discuss with bunkmates. When it’s hot and humid late in the day, that’s just another reason to head to the lake. The weather demands attention now and then, but most of the time it’s just the context for our daily camp experience. We all know, for example, to stay safely inside when there’s a threat of lighting, or the opposite, we may stop what we’re doing in amazement of a brief hail storm. This kind of complete engagement, energized immersion into the daily activities that structure our day— which makes “time fly” and fuels the intensity of the fun, by the way —makes everything external largely insignificant. The weather? “Oh yeah, I guess it rained.”

We took about 60 people whitewater rafting on the Nantahala River today. We offer this trip every year to all of the Middlers and Seniors, and for many it has become their favorite outdoor adventure experience of their session. One bus of girls chose to spend the night at our outpost near the river, enjoying a little camping complete with maybe one too many s’mores before bed. The river trip itself delivered plenty of frigid water and thrilling drops through the class II and III rapids, but as you can see the girls added a good dose of silliness to the trip as well, posing for photos, making “high-fives” with their paddles, and riding “the bull” until falling back into the boat or forward into the river. Using our own equipment and guides the girls already know helps this extra silly fun take over. Songs and spirited shenanigans all the way down!

Camp horseback riding girl

Be sure to take a look at the online photo gallery. Today’s shots are particularly good. We have two full-time photographers who roam around camp trying to capture the action. At times only one is working, and at others, both are busy trying to snap a photo of every girl (at least one!) while also showcasing the different activities all happening at once. It’s difficult to be everywhere at the same time, but especially when both photographers are working, they do an amazing job keeping the gallery interesting. Spend a few minutes scrolling through the photos and you will discover the incredible variety of things your girls are doing— riding, shooting, jumping, zipping, weaving, tie dying, playing, swimming, balancing, paddling, acting, painting… —but also I hope you’ll get a sense of how they’re learning along the way. Every activity involves specific skills, techniques, terminology, equipment or materials. Some require careful athletic coordination, imagination or creativity.  Personal qualities are being exercised too: perseverance, bravery, patience, humility, and stamina come to mind. Rockbrook’s organized camp activities bring all of this together, and when led by such amazing, caring instructors, and when the forces of “positive peer pressure” (“Let’s sign up for kayaking!”) soften feelings of hesitation, girls grow in astounding ways. They experience not just something novel and fun; they discover new success and confidence too.

Tower course climbing kid
girl learning to belay

Climbing is a great example of this learning, of the broad educational (in the best sense of the word) benefits of camp activities. Of course, beginners learn about the special equipment needed to climb safely: the kernmantle rope, helmet, locking carabiners, belay device, and harness with its array of straps and buckles. They learn about different climbing techniques: various holds, body positions, and balancing stances. The older girls can learn how to belay. There are mental skills also: concentration (“Don’t look down!”), determination, and problem solving each step of the way, for example.  Emotions like fear and frustration often play a role too, not to mention the elation of achieving the goal of reaching the top of a climb. Climbing means overcoming your fear of heights (which we all have to some extent) by learning to trust, to trust the safety equipment and ultimately to trust your own ability to climb effectively. Whether it’s on our high ropes climbing tower, wall in the gym, the routes on Castle Rock, or on Looking Glass Rock in the Pisgah Forest, the Rockbrook girls who climb are learning so much more than simply “how to climb.” So much more!

camp water slide girl

This Place is Bustling

wood working camper
Wood Working Bracelet

During breakfast we announced another special activity for the girls today: a visit to George Peterson’s woodworking studio for a tour and project workshop. George has offered different workshops like this to our Rockbrook girls for three years now. His wife Margaret is an Alumna, and his two daughters attend camp every summer. George is widely known for his art, his creative carving, etching, burning and painting of different species of wood, old wooden skateboards, and skis. He’s displayed his work in galleries in New York, Tokyo, San Francisco, and Atlanta, and continues to work as a professional artist out of his studio, The Circle Factory.

When the girls arrived, George first toured them around the studio pointing out several of his specialty tools, like drills, saws, torches, and the giant lathe he uses to turn logs into huge bowls. The girls were fascinated by the stacks of raw materials they saw too: slabs of wood, old skateboards, leather cords, paints and inks. There were finished pieces and works in progress displayed almost everywhere. Each girl was then able to make their own project, a leather and wood bracelet. With help from George and Margaret, the girls used a drill press, a carving tool, sandpaper and a metal “RBC” brand to shape a small chip of multicolored skateboard that they then sewed to a leather strap. There were multiple steps to the project, but the girls each had a cool, one-of-a-kind bracelet to wear proudly when they were done.

tennis camp girl
camp archery girl shooting

For all of us who stayed in camp, our morning was filled with a whole range of activities. Girls were climbing high above camp on Castle Rock, trying to “slay the dragon” (which is lingo for climbing to the top of our route called “Dragon Tail”). Others were whooping as they flew through the trees on our zip line course. A few Senior girls took on the challenge of climbing the Alpine tower blindfolded, while at the lake, Sarah and Stephanie, our kayaking instructors, were teaching a roll clinic. Archers and riflemen (girls actually!) were gleefully shooting holes in their targets. Equestriennes were gliding their horses around the arena, outdoor ring, and jump course. Girls played tennis; they shot basketball, and swam laps in the lake. Of course, there was non-stop arts and crafts too, from weaving on the loom to stringing beads and glazing pottery, making candles and blended dot painting. It’s difficult for our photographers to capture all this activity— though they do pretty well! — but you can tell, this place is bustling!

Just as lunch ended today and the girls were heading back to their cabins for rest hour, the sky began to darken and suddenly our lightning warning system sounded its alarm. A few stragglers took off running, and about 3 minutes later we all jumped when a loud crack of a lightning struck nearby, not so close that we could tell where it hit exactly, but close enough to be frightening. Fortunately, everyone was safely inside, but then as the storm built overhead, the wind picked up, the temperature dropped 15 degrees, and a hard rain began to fall. A moment later, it was hailing pea-sized hail! For about 5 minutes, that storm passed by and put on quite a show. Several girls told me later that this was the first time they had ever seen hail.

The main event of the evening was something many of the girls, particularly the Senior campers, anticipate and look forward to every summer: a dance with Camp Carolina. This was a chance to get cleaned up a bit (find that hairbrush), pull out a special outfit, costume, or glittery makeup, but mostly to enjoy jumping around with friends to favorite pop songs.

With both camps involved, there are too many children to hold a single dance for everyone, so we held two again: one dance at Rockbrook for the younger boys and girls, and another at Camp Carolina for the older ones. For about and hour and a half, both dances kept everyone moving, pausing now and then for a photo or a water break. Everyone was hot and sweaty by the end of it all, but the girls had a great time dancing together and singing along to the songs. Oh, and there were boys there too, though that didn’t seem to matter much. It was a fun, classic way to spend an evening at camp.

camp dance crowd

Happily Leaping

Girl Campers Outside
Girl Campers arriving

The first sign is the red and white balloons floating at the entrance, and the second is the smiling Hi-Up campers greeting you partway up the driveway. Then at the top the hill, when you see the mob of cheering counselors dressed in their staff uniforms, it’s clear something special is happening, something VERY exciting. It’s the opening day of camp! …in this case, for the mini session campers arriving to join the full session girls who have been at Rockbrook for two weeks now. For everyone— new and returning campers, and all of us already at camp —this is an exciting day. It means camp can finally begin for these girls arriving, reuniting with camp friends from last summer, and equally, it means we all have a renewed chance to make new friends in this active outdoor environment.

It was particularly cool and foggy first thing this morning, with the Dew Point (62 degrees) almost equal to the temperature (62.5), and, according to our camp weather station, with 99% humidity, the fog was really thick.  It was the perfect morning to wear long sleeves, or, as one camper decided, to wrap yourself in a blanket at breakfast. When the sun popped over the hill, miraculously burning off the fog, we were treated to a perfectly warm, bright summer day ideal for exploring the camp, meeting all these new people, and then enjoying sample activities like a hike through the woods to Rockbrook Falls, jewelry making in the shade of the hillside lodge porch, archery, and gaga ball.

We held a quick assembly on the hill right before lunch to introduce everyone arriving to the directors and program staff, to recognize the cabins with the best inspection scores (awarding them the mop trophies), to learn about our lightning protocol (in response to our Thorguardian system) and the boundaries of the camp, and just to enjoy singing a few songs together, charging up our camp spirit.

An orientation to our waterfront area was also an important part of the day. We want to make sure everyone at camp understands our tag system and feels comfortable swimming in the lake. The new girls zipped right through their “swim demos,” happily leaping in the water to earn their blue, green or yellow swim necklaces (Notice them being worn by the four girls below). These soft elastic necklaces indicate to the waterfront staff a camper’s swimming ability and thereby where she can safely swim in the lake, in the deep areas, or perhaps restricted to the shallow section, for example. We make it possible for everyone at camp to enjoy the lake in some capacity, and the lifeguards are always willing to help a girl improve her swimming skills if she’s interested.

We always plan something big for Sunday afternoons, some kind of all-camp event that integrates many of the components that make a great party—music and dancing, costumes that revolve around a theme, snacks, activities, games and challenges with prizes to win. What better way to launch our new camp session too? So with the help of the full-session Senior campers and counselors, we held a Star Wars themed carnival, or more precisely, a “Jedi Knight Training Academy” down on our landsports field today. There were a dozen different activity stations, each related to Star Wars: “Jedi Agility Training” that included a lightsaber duel with Darth Vader, a “Death Star Destruction” shooting game that used Nerf pistols, and an archery game where the girls had to hit a Sith solder with a paint-dipped arrow, for example. The girls made their own lightsabers using a foam pool noodle and different types of tape. They solved a matching game puzzle, and got their faces painted (“The Face is with You”), one girl turning her whole face into Yoda’s! We had girls dressed as the character Rey, several Jedi Knights, Yoda, and of course many with the hairstyle of Princess Leia.

One highlight of the event were two huge inflatable games: a 25-foot tall, dual water slide, and a challenging obstacle course called “Leaps and Bounds.” The girls lined up for multiple slides and leaps on each. Meanwhile, our snow cone machine ground ice for snow cones all afternoon, helping keep us cool in the sun.  Group dances to favorite songs, racing about with water pistols, activity in all directions, we had an excellent camp party going on!

We’ll be ready for our first full day of camp activities tomorrow, the girls scattering and eager to give everything a try. Stay tuned; it’s going to be great!

quick camp friends

Active Creative Fun

Small Camp Girls


It’s been an amazing few weather days, with everyone surprised by how cool it’s been. If you’ve been checking the Rockbrook Weather Station, you know what I mean. For example, this morning it was a chilly 51 degrees (!), which means overnight we had perfect sleeping weather (in our open-air cabins), and in the morning everyone layered up with sweat shirts, long pants, and in some cases hats. The humidity has also been unusually low, so as the day warmed into the 70s with clear blue skies, it felt wonderful to be outside. It didn’t take long for the girls to shed their layers and enjoy the sunshine as they romped about the camp for their activities.

Camp Twin Day Costumes

So many twins! Not actual twins (mostly, since we do have a few sets of biological twins at camp right now), but costumed twins could be spotted around camp today, since, yes, it was “Twin Day.” We love costumes at Rockbrook, and tend to take any chance we can to dress up, to put on something— and the wackier the better —that’s out of the ordinary. There’s something inherently fun about taking on a different character, perhaps completely changing your hair (neon purple!), wearing a shiny black cape, or even changing your accent (Arrrrh, pirates!). It’s good fun to dress up, but more importantly, it’s active creative fun, and not some kind of passive entertainment. There’s no recipe or formula for how to make your twin costume; you and your friend have to decide. Same shirt, shorts, glasses? What about hairstyle? And since our dress up days at camp are always open to the whole group, there’s both a performance element, and a sense of pride that comes from presenting your costume creativity to everyone else. In this way, participating in a group costume event like Twin Day provides a real boost to our (admittedly zany) community.  When we’re into it, it brings us together. It can be a little disconcerting to see two girls wearing lab coats playing tetherball before lunch, but you can’t help but smile at the sight.

While girls were trotting with horses, zipping high among the trees, and tying t-shirts for dye in camp, about 60 middlers and seniors spent part of the day in Swain County rafting the Nantahala River.

Camp Rafting kids
Nantahala Kids Rafting

The Nantahala has been ranked as the best class II whitewater river in the southeast because it offers both incredible scenery as it passes through a steep, forested gorge, and a perfect mix of whitewater rapids, calm stretches, and an exciting class II+ drop for a finale. Back in the early 1980s the US Forest service awarded Rockbrook a permit to raft the Nantahala, and since that time we are one of the very few camps to do so with its own equipment and guides.  Over the years, taking a whitewater rafting trip has become an extremely popular adventure outing for Rockbrook girls.  There’s no additional charge and we offer the trip to everyone who is old enough to go (that’s a limit placed on us by the Forest Service): the middlers and seniors. One camper explained to me that this was her fourth time down the river— every year she’s come to camp —and it’s more fun every time. “Best trip ever!” One of the defining features of the Nantahala, and I’m sure you’ll hear about this from your daughter if you ask her about rafting, is the temperature of the water. Thanks to the frigid bottom-of-the-lake water released into the river by the Duke Energy hydroelectric project, falling into the 50-degree river is an unforgettable, wide-eyed, breath-taking experience. Toward the end of the 2-hour trip, it’s a safe bet that most toes are numb. Of course, there’s a thrilling rapid around each bend of the river, and a boat of laughing, singing friends to keep the whole trip exciting and fun.

Back at camp, our evening program tonight was an all-camp special event down in the gym, and as you might guess, we turned on the costumes again, this time to the theme, “When I grow Up.” This is a brilliantly conceived costume theme that can accommodate the conventional (I saw a doctor or two, a “professional equestrienne,” and a soldier, for example.) as well as the imaginative, like a shark trainer, a unicorn princess, or a food fairy. All of the costumes were resourceful, mostly eclectic and certainly colorful.

The event was a goofy spin-off from the popular game show “Family Feud.” For us it was more like “Cabin Feud” where groups of girls from each Line (age group) attempted to guess the most common answers to questions like: What’s a fruit that has lots of seeds? Or, What’s a sport that does not involve a ball? Or, What do teenagers like to do when they’re bored? Counselors knew the top 7 answers to each question and as team members correctly guessed answers, the team earned points. Meanwhile the audience rooted for their friends, shouted helpful suggestions, and had a great time following the competition. Each winning cabin (per age group) would receive a delicious-looking cookie cake trophy, so the audience went wild with enthusiastic cheering whenever a group won a round. It was a fun spirited evening celebrating our collective creativity.

Girls Camp Relaxing

Eager Enthusiasm

Camp Friends Return

Today, our very first day of camp this summer, was exciting. We opened the summer 2016 summer season today with our first session girls arriving all morning beginning around 8:30. Like every opening day of camp, it was exciting for everyone— the campers, counselors, and directors alike. But there’s something special about the first opening day of the summer. We’ve had to wait for so long, have so many new fun things planned, been preparing the camp facilities, gathering equipment and supplies from new kayaks to yarn for weaving. We’ve been thinking about camp for months, literally all year long waiting for this day! Mostly, and this is the best part, we’ve been thinking about all the great campers who will be attending Rockbrook this summer, all of your great girls. It’s wonderful to see them again, to see how they’ve grown and feel their excitement for camp. For the new campers too; it’s a delight to welcome them to Rockbrook. Bringing all of this together, the eager enthusiasm and anticipation for camp, made the morning full of smiles, cheers, and hugs. With this kind of feeling, it’s already clear this is going to be a great session.

After speeding through the arrival process (perusing the latest RBC gear, meeting the office folks and medical team) and getting settled in the cabins, parents said goodbye and the girls launching right into group games (hula hoops!), hiking the trail to Rockbrook falls, tying their first friendship bracelet of the summer, warming up their tetherball arm, and just catching up with a new camp friend sitting on the hill while enjoying the view.

Camp Lake Dive

Camp life is life lived outside… or at least mostly outside, with our rustic screened cabins, and daily outdoor activities. The weather is naturally always a factor. Like today when the forecast called for a 90% chance of rain after lunch, we thought we’d surely be unable to open the lake for our “swimming demonstrations.” As is often the case here in the mountains however, the rain was spotty, hitting some places more than others, and we were lucky most of the afternoon. Clouds rolled by with patches of sun appearing now and then allowing us to hold a Reggae dance lake party during the swim demos (with hot chocolate waiting for the girls after sampling the chilly, stream-fed Rockbrook lake), tour all of the camp activity areas, laugh through counselors performing their activity skits, and sing songs together during an assembly of the entire camp on the hill. A sprinkle of rain cooled things down at one point, but it didn’t slow us down much at all.

We’re off to a wonderful start. The group of counselors we have this summer, fresh from our week of pre-camp training, is one of the best we’ve ever had. Each one brings talents and skills to teach, but more importantly is a lovely, kind person who will take great care of your girls while here at camp. Likewise, the administrative staff from last year have returned and are ready to guide everyone as we reform the community that makes Rockbrook special. It’s a pleasure for all of us to be here with your girls.

Girls Camp First Day
Girls Camp Swim Buddies