NEW ENGLAND
EXPEDITION

Two-Week Overnight Adventure Camp in Northern Virginia

overview

Our New England expedition is our classic expedition. This trip takes campers into New England to experience some of the best backpacking, rafting and climbing in the nation. Backpacking in White Mountain National Forest, rafting on the Hudson River and climbing at the ‘Gunks will give everybody the beautiful scenery and adventure that we are all looking for. Towards the end of the trip, we will all have the chance to give back during a Service Learning Project at the Appalachian Mountain Club’s Camp Dodge!

LENGTH

13 days, Sunday through the following Friday

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DROP-OFF & PICK-UP

Drop-off is at 2PM on Sunday and pick-up is at 7PM the following Friday at Hemlock Overlook Regional Park in Clifton, VA

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ACCOMMODATIONS

Campers will sleep in tents at family campgrounds

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DATES

July 9th - July 21st.

Two-Week Overnight Camp Adventure Links at Hemlock Overlook

New England Expedition

$2,195 per trip
  • Rising 10th-12th Graders
  • Challenge Course with Zip Line
  • Hiking / Backpacking
  • Camping
  • Rock Climbing
  • Rafting
  • Tubing
  • Service Learning Project
  • Accommodations in Tents at Family Campgrounds
  • All Meals, Snacks, & S'mores
  • Transportation Between Locations

Are you ready to give your kids the summer of a lifetime?

itinerary

Day 1, Sunday

Challenge Course and Zip Line at Hemlock Overlook, Clifton, VA

After a 2:00 PM Drop Off, Campers will get to know each other and begin learning to work as a team while participating in a series of interactive initiative games and challenge course elements, including the Zip Line. Campers will then have an introduction to camp craft including Leave No Trace Principles, camp cooking, and campsite set-up, and camp out at our home base at Hemlock Overlook Park.

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Day 2, Monday

Travel Day to New Paltz, NY

With everything and everybody packed into the van, the journey North begins with the first stop in New Paltz, NY. With a stop for lunch and much needed leg stretch at Spruce Run Recreation Area, campers will be able to break up the trip with some frisbee and other field games.

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Day 3, Tuesday

Rock Climbing at the Gunks, New Paltz, NY

The Gunks, short for Shawnagunks, is one of the top destinations for rock climbing on the East Coast and in the country. After a quick lesson in climbing techniques and belay school, campers will be ready to take on this awesome crag.

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Day 4, Wednesday

Hiking in the Adirondacks near Warrensburg, NY

 At the southern end of the Adirondack Mountains lies Warrensburg, NY, our destination for the next two days. Today we will go for a day hike to prepare us for our backpacking trip later in the week. Our two favorite day hikes in the area are Prospect Mountain and Crane Mountain, but the decision will be up to the group.

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Day 5, Thursday

Rafting on Hudson River, Warrensburg, NY

Whitewater rafting in New York means taking a trip through the Hudson River Gorge. Offering Class III - V whitewater, this rafting trip will always be an exciting highlight of our expedition. Sleeping will not be hard after spending the day on the Hudson.

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Day 6, Friday

Driving and Backpack Prep, Gorham, NH?

Today will be spent creating menus and going shopping for our backpacking trip that begins the following day. Campers will learn how to prepare for a multi-night backcountry trip including selecting a backcountry-friendly menu,  properly packing a backpack, and, most importantly, how to avoid blisters.

Day 7, Saturday

Backpacking in White Mountain National Forest, NH

There are few mountain ranges as scenic as the White Mountains. With plenty of backpacking trips to choose from, your instructors will pick a trip that will provide everybody with a challenge and a great reward at the end. Our two favorites, other than Mount Washington, are Kearsarge North and Mount Willard. No matter where we go, we can guarantee a view that will rival the best in your life.

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Day 8, Sunday

Backpacking in White Mountain National Forest, NH

After spending the night under the stars and cooking an awesome backcountry breakfast, it’s time to hike back to the van and indulge ourselves in one of the best pizzas you have ever had. It’s the best because you were thinking about it for the whole 8 mile hike.

Day 9, Monday

Tubing on Saco River, NH

Relaxation and adventure are both priorities on this trip and tubing down the Saco River offers both. While the crystal clear water is relaxing, there are plenty of places to dip out of your tube and find a rope swing.

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Day 10, Tuesday

Service Learning Project at Camp Dodge, NH

Campers will get a firsthand experience of the local ecology of the White Mountains while assisting the Appalachian Mountain Club with preserving the forest for future generations. The work that we do over the next two days ranges from to trail maintenance to habitat restoration, but will make a difference for generations to come.

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Day 11, Wednesday

Service Learning Project at Camp Dodge, NH

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Day 12, Thursday

Driving to Mohican Outdoor Center, NJ

The long journey to the Mid-Atlantic begins and ends shortly at the Mohican Outdoor Center in New Jersey. This center provides an ideal place to set up camp and stretch our legs. Our day will consist of a quick dip in the lake and hike up to the fire tower for a great sunset.

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Day 13, Friday

Travel Day and Awards Night at Hemlock Overlook Regional Park, Clifton, VA

After the long drive back to Hemlock, we will clean and repack our gear. After a pizza party, we will have an awards ceremony and eat s’mores over one last campfire.

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Trip conclusion and parent pick-up at Hemlock Overlook Regional Park.

Are you ready to give your kids the summer of a lifetime?

pack list

To make sure campers come to Adventure Links prepared, we've generated a pack lists for North Carolina.

Please Note: Campers are encouraged to bring only essential items for the trip. Campers should plan to arrive with one large duffel bag, one medium/large backpack, one small day pack or back pack, and a small stuff sack containing a compact sleeping bag. Storage space is limited on our Mini-buses, so any bulky or non-essential items may be left at base camp for the length of the trip.

PACK ITEMS

  • Pack items in a Duffel Bag for bus travel (no wheels on bags)
  • Large overnight backpack for overnight hiking
  • Medium/Large overnight backpack for overnight hiking
  • Day pack/Small backpack for day trips
  • 32 oz. re-usable water bottle/Nalgene (2)
  • Eating utensils and a mess kit or sturdy bowl and cup (campers will be using to eat breakfast and dinners)
  • Sleeping bag (rated between 35-45 degrees / synthetic material)
  • Sleeping pad (recommended)
  • Camping pillow (small packable size)
  • Sunglasses
  • Rain Gear (rain jacket and rain pants – no ponchos)
  • Small flashlight or headlamp
  • Extra Batteries (2 sets)
  • Bug Spray
  • Sunscreen (at least 30 SPF)
  • Personal toiletries (toothbrush, toothpaste, etc)
  • Towel

OPTIONAL ITEMS

  • Camera
  • Book
  • Journal/pen/pencils
  • $20 for spending on program

PLEASE DO NOT BRING

  • Cell Phones
  • iPods
  • Electronics
  • Knives
  • Jewelry
  • Expensive Personal Belongings

CLOTHING

Note: Synthetic materials such as polypropylene, synthetic wool, or polyester, will wick moisture away from the body, maintain warmth when wet, and dry much quicker than cotton. Synthetic material clothing is essential to comfort and safety on this expedition.

  • 1 pair - sneakers
  • 1 pair - sturdy hiking boots with ankle support (make sure boots have been broken in before the trip!)
  • Water Shoes, old sneakers that can get wet, or fixed heel/fixed toe sandals (no strapless sandals or flip-flops):
  • Camp Shoes (something comfortable to wear around camp)
  • Jacket or windbreaker (can double with rain gear)
  • Wool / fleece pullover
  • Long sleeved polypropylene shirt (2)
  • T-shirts (4)
  • Polypropylene t-shirts (3)
  • Shorts (3)
  • Synthetic material long pants, i.e. jogging pants or warm-up pants (1-2)
  • Bathing suit
  • Underwear (7)
  • Cotton socks (5)
  • Wool or synthetic fiber socks (3)
  • Cap or brimmed hat
  • Winter hat and gloves
  • Bandanna
  • Trash bag with name on it for dirty clothes
  • Gaiters (optional for backpacking)
  • Polypropylene or synthetic fabric long underwear (tops and bottoms)

Are you ready to give your kids the summer of a lifetime?

frequently asked questions

Are you accredited?
Yes. The American Camping Association, a nationally recognized certifying body, accredits Adventure Links (accreditation reviewed and approved October 2011).
How are my children transported?
Participants are transported by both van and mini-bus. All drivers are screened and must be approved by our insurance company. All of our drivers are required to complete a supplemental Adventure Links driver training program. Adventure Links strictly adheres to regulations set forth by the Virginia Department of Transportation.
What are your staff's qualifications?

Our Instructors must be over the age of 19 years old, hold a minimum current certification in Wilderness First Aid and CPR and are subject to pre-employment drug screen, random drug screening, and Federal Criminal Background Checks. Overnight camp activities will have at least one instructor with a minimum certification of Wilderness First Responder.

All of our Instructors are selected based on their skills in outdoor leadership and a high degree of commitment to working with youth.

Does my child need to be physically fit?
Participants do not need to be skilled athletes to be successful in our programs. Some of the activities may be more difficult for a child who is less physically fit. To best prepare for any active camp program, it is helpful for a child to consistently exercise and maintain good health.
My child has never done these activities before. Is this camp suitable?

 Our programs are designed at mainly an introductory level. A large percentage of campers are trying at least one activity for the very first time. The structure and philosophy of the program allows for personal growth and development at a variety of skill levels.

My child has done a lot of these activities before; is this camp suitable?

The unique quality of adventure activities is that each child can choose their challenge level. For example, when at the rock site, all levels of climbs are available for campers to try. In addition, if a child has had exposure to any of the activities in camp, they approach the week with an increased level of confidence.

Where is Adventure Links?

We are located at Hemlock Overlook Regional Park in Clifton, VA. Just 20 miles from Washington D.C. in Fairfax County. The 228 acre park is part of a network of 5000 acres of park land that run along the Bull Run River.

Can I contact my child at camp?

In the event of an emergency, you may contact the Adventure Links office and we will relay the message to your child. Instructors are equipped with cellular phones but due to the nature and location of our activities, the phones may be out of service and we rely upon messages. The Instructors on overnight and expedition programs are instructed to contact the office at least once per week during their program and immediately in the event of an emergency. It is at this time that updates and messages can be delivered. It is not feasible to receive updates on a daily basis.

What if my child becomes sick or injured at camp?

Minor injuries and illnesses will be documented and reported to parents at the end of the camp day. If a major injury or illness occurs during camp, Adventure Links will attempt to contact the parent or guardian utilizing the emergency phone contact information provided on the medical form. Placed on each medical form is the authorization to provide advanced medical care in the event of a major emergency.

Do campers sign up with friends or come on their own?

It is common to see campers sign as a part of a group of friends, and every effort is made to keep these campers in the same group or in the same bunk during overnight camp.

It is also very common to see groups of campers that are all meeting each other for the first time, as Adventure Links is a great place to meet new people and make new friends.

What happens in the event of inclement weather?

Please see our Summer Camp Policies for a detailed description of our inclement weather policies.

In summary, our camps run in all weather conditions. Adventure Links reserves the right to make changes to the scheduled itinerary as necessary to ensure the safety of our campers, and refunds will not be provided for activities that are altered or replaced due to inclement weather.

What should I do if my child will not be attending a day of camp?

Please contact the Adventure Links office at your earliest convenience, preferably the evening before. We can then relay such messages to the staff departing early each morning.

For day camps, can I drop off my child at the Adventure Links Base Camp at Hemlock Overlook or other pick-up/drop off sites?

We ask that parents pick up and drop off only at the designated pick-up location for their camp session due to space limitations on our vehicles.

  The exception if you’d like to pick up and drop off at Hemlock Overlook for days when the camp activity will be on-site. Please contact the Adventure Links Office to make arrangements.
What is the ratio of campers to counselors?

We maintain a ratio of 1 Instructor per 7 campers for day camps and expeditions. Residential camps have a ratio of 1 Instructor per 6 campers.

How high are the rocks that my child will be climbing? Does my child have to go to the top of every climb?

The rocks range from 15 to 60 feet in height. Our philosophy places choice in the hands of the camper, not our staff or fellow campers. We encourage all campers to try to push their limits, but clearly define the difference between support and coercion. Success is not measured by the campers’ ability to reach the top of the climb, but in the courage and effort they display in participating in the activity.

Where are each of the activities located?

Our activities are located throughout Northern Virginia, West Virginia and Pennsylvania. Please refer to the specific itinerary for the program or inquire with the Adventure Coordinator who will check your child in the first day of camp. If you have specific questions about a location you can call the office and we would be happy to address all your questions.

Where are the pick-up locations for day camps?

We have convenient sites located throughout Northern Virginia; please refer to the Day Camp Pickup Locations page for further details.

Can parents join their child for a day of camp?

No. We like to involve and communicate with parents openly about their child’s camp experience. However, we have found that having a parent present during the camp day has a detrimental effect upon a camper’s ability to fully immerse and focus on the experience.

What kind of food do we have on overnight and expedition programs?

The food chosen for the trips is both youth and expedition friendly. We design meals with variety and nutrition in mind. We have vegetarian options and, if provided ample information and pre-trip notice, have very successfully worked with food allergies and restrictions. A “picky” eater may struggle a bit as there is not normally the option to prepare another meal at the last minute.

Where do most of the camp participants come from?

 There is a strong participation from the Mid-Atlantic region. However, our campers have come from all over the United States and even from other countries.

Should I send money with my child?

This is at your discretion. Due to the nature of the overnight programs and expeditions, students do not have many opportunities to purchase items. Students have brought spending money for mementos (t-shirts at the rafting company) during the trip.

Does my child need a physical examination before camp?

Yes. We require that a child has had an examination within 24 months of the camp program.

Is there any special equipment I need to buy for the trip?

Campers must be prepared to bring the items listed on the pack list for their specific camp. This may include specific items such as backpacks, sleeping bags, or certain types of clothing. All other adventure equipment such as helmets, harnesses, or paddles will be supplied by Adventure Links.

Can my child bring a cellular phone or other electronic device to camp?

No. The Adventure Links camp program is designed to immerse campers into the natural environment and dynamics of the group experience. The use of camper cellular phones or other electronic devices is severely disruptive to maintaining this atmosphere. In the event of an emergency, it is the responsibility for the staff to maintain contact with the Adventure Links office and the parents of the camper.

Have more questions? Email your question [email protected] and a member of our team will get back to you as soon as possible.

Are you ready to give your kids the summer of a lifetime?