Youth Groups

Wilderness Wind provides a place for youth from schools, churches, and communitIES to come and grow in their relationships with  each other and nature.

Youth thrive on the physical challenges of wilderness living, and the unspoiled beauty of the Boundary Waters provides a fertile soil for growth. Wilderness Wind staff also provide insight into the fascinating ecology and history of the region.

“We paddled hard, soft, and everywhere in between. Beavers, moose, eagles, and pike visited us; and rapids, j-strokes, and bare feet nearly did us in. We learned immense truths about ourselves, each other, the wilds, patience, laughter — and God.”  –Ben Gerig, camper  ’11

Goshen College, May Term 2011

In addition, high schools and colleges have incorporated Wilderness Wind youth trips into courses on environmental education and camping recreation. Contact the director for further details if you are interested in establishing such a partnership for your school.

orientation day

Each Wilderness Wind trip begins with a day of orientation at Pine Ridge (base camp) where groups practice their canoeing skills, pack for the trip, and prepare themselves. Wilderness Wind trip leaders will teach wilderness skills and provide wilderness safety expertise. For the youth with significant camping and/or canoe experience, advanced options are also available. All trips have additional environmental education components you can select according to your group’s interests.


Waking, sometimes with the sun, is followed by breakfast, breaking camp (getting bear-bags down and packing up tents and personal belongings) and individual quiet time.The traveling part of the day begins with discussion about the day’s route. Depending on the desired paddling distance and the weather, we may have lunch at our next campsite or continue paddling after lunch. Once a suitable campsite is located, we set up camp and gather fire wood.

Evenings involve time to relax, community meal preparation and conversation. Some groups enjoy one or two “lay-over days” in the course of their trip. Leaving the campsite set up while going on a day trip can create a different rhythm and experience.


Wilderness Wind trip leaders are trained within the Boundary Waters. They know the history, geography and some of the ecosystems you will be paddling through. Trip leaders teach the required skills and facilitate the kind of experience the group chooses.

WW trip leaders will lead group discussions that promote wilderness discovery and care as well as personal development. Their priority is to offer you a safe and fulfilling experience that addresses your interests (relationally, mentally, physically) within this ever-changing wilderness setting. Read more about the benefits of a guide.


Fees include all gear and accommodations during the wilderness trip as well as lodging and meals at Wilderness Wind camp during Orientation Day (one day prior to trip). Click for the complete list of what’s included in the trip fee. For full pricing guide, visit Canoe Trip Rates. For 2013, youth groups receive a 10% discount.
  • As always, don’t hesitate to contact us with any further questions!