Youth Summer Camps in Charlottesville, VA


Living Earth Day Camps are for boys and girls ages 7-13. These camps are a unique opportunity for children to truly connect with nature in a safe, nurturing environment.

Registration for 2020 Day Camps and Stepping Stones will open January 22nd 2020!

Jun 15 – Aug 14 all-day Ages: 7 - 13
Voted the #1 Day Camp in Charlottesville! The Living Earth Explorers and Themed Day Camps are a one-of-a-kind nature camp experience. We have been voted a favorite summer day camp for over 10 years!!  We will spend the week exploring the mountains, streams and other wild places. Campers work together in small groups learning about[...]
Jun 22 – Aug 14 all-day Ages: 5 - 6
It is now time to have little Living Earth-lings join us for Summer Camp! Do you long to have your younger child connected and at home in the natural world?  We’ve been having parents ask for years, so here it is! Come join the Stepping Stones for fun, first-hand adventures in nature, with caring nature mentors. Our[...]
Jul 20 – Jul 24 all-day Ages: 13 - 17
We’re very excited to introduce our first Teen-Only day camp: Keepers of the Arrow. Experienced bowman Paul Cipriani leads this camp for any camper who is 13-17 and has already participated in one LES day camp. The camp will form a tight knit unit during their week at camp by starting with the basics of[...]

Featuring new themed day camps!! Click here to see all summer day camps.


We offer several different overnight camps for boys and girls, ages 8-17 years old. Earth Roots is our foundation overnight camp, emphasizing connection with nature thru earth skills, like shelter building, making fire by rubbing sticks and harvesting wild edible plants. We also offer a Teen Wilderness Quest, advanced camps for specific skills/projects (Fire Tenders, Archers, and Wood/Leather/Metal), Ancient Ways, and Advanced Ancient Ways.

Registration for 2020 Residential / Overnight Camps will open January 22nd 2020!

Jun 14 – Aug 14 all-day Ages: 8+
Earth Roots is our foundation overnight camp, designed for both new and returning campers.  Get back to your roots and learn the philosophy of living close to nature, wilderness survival, and nurture your connection to the earth.  We will explore the surrounding forests, swim in mountain streams, as we discover more about the magical world[...]
Jun 29 – Jul 4 all-day Ages 11+
Make your own knife and sheath and leather backpack or shoes! 1 year of Earth Roots is a prerequisite for this overnight camp. Join this camp week of crafting your own handmade gear. You can make your own stainless steel knife with sheath, and a pair of leather shoes or leather backpack of choice.  Yes, you can[...]
Aug 2 – Aug 7 all-day Ages: 12+
Advanced Ancient Ways is for ages 12+. Campers must have completed 1 year of Ancient Ways previously. This camp will take a small group of advanced campers to the next edge, living off the land and living as their own tribe.  It is sure to push ones skills in a fun and supportive way.  Are[...]
Aug 2 – Aug 7 all-day Ages: 11+
Here campers will further their knowledge and become a tribe in a sense, living close to the earth and interweaving primitive living skills into daily camp life.  We will spend much of our time living like the ancient ones and moving about the land as a native scout. This week is flexible and shaped around[...]
Aug 9 @ 2:00 pm – Aug 14 @ 12:00 pm
Learn the essential skills of hunting! 1 year of Earth Roots is a prerequisite for this overnight camp. A great next-level option for campers who have already done an Keepers of the Arrow or Peter’s Archery Camp! (Neither of these is a pre-requisite.) This is an overnight camp for students to learn the skills associated with small game hunting.[...]


2020 Teen Expedition Programs:

Jun 20 – Jun 26 all-day Ages: 13+
“The inner and outer journey.”  This camp is for campers who have attended at least one year of Earth Roots.  Come alive with adventure and discover the beauties of nature accessible only by foot. We will leave behind the modern world and use only what we carry on our backs, our own resourcefulness and gifts[...]
Jul 5 – Jul 11 all-day Ages: 13+
Come spend a magical week on a wild river in Virginia! Our special week will flow like a river. We will carry all our needs in our canoes, explore, swim, and more.  We will cover expedition planning, canoe stroke techniques, and water safety. We will navigate our way through rapids,  paddle amongst the mountains, cook for ourselves in small[...]
Jul 26 – Jul 31 all-day Ages: 13+
This camp is open to all teenagers.  There is no prerequisite requirement. One thing that shaped Kate and Hub (and many LES staff) into being lovers of life was all the adventures they did in their teens and early 20’s. It was climbing mountains; paddling rivers; rock climbing, and being deep in the wilds. This[...]


2019 Family Programs:

Jul 26 @ 6:00 pm – Jul 28 @ 3:00 pm Ages 8+ with accompanying adult
This Weekend Camp is designed for families.  Have you dreamed of making and shooting your own handmade bow and arrow, let alone making one with your child? What a gift to be able to do this together and to cultivate this shared skill as a family.  This is for real and this is your chance[...]
Aug 2 @ 6:00 pm – Aug 4 @ 3:00 pm Ages 8+ with accompanying adult
Enjoy family time while you learn earth skills. Come get your hands in gear making your own stainless steel knife with sheath, or leather bags.  Yes, you can do it all and you can use bags that you’ve made your self, or a beautiful hand crafted knife. This is for real and this is your chance[...]