Camp Eagle is nestled in a beautiful and rugged environment that is perfect for every kind of outdoor adventure and extreme sport. While beauty and adventure draw many to the camp, it's the experiential Bible-based curriculum and relationships that leave a lasting impact.
The Gap Year program at Camp Eagle, known as "Walkabout," enables high school graduates to truly live out their faith through intense service, study, and sojourning in an enviroment of wilderness solitude and adventure. This program is for those who seek a different kind of classroom founded on community, wilderness, service, study, and scripture. Walkabout at Camp Eagle cultivates an environment free of distraction, allowing students to gain focus and perspective by examining the life they have lived thus far, and the life they will live in the future. Participants will learn what it means to be a disciple of Christ, to live without compromise, while escaping the trappings of this world. The Walkabout program is not a break from the every day rhythm of life, it is a challenging commitment that will stretch each participant and inspire Christ-like change that could potentially change the course of a life forever.
Discipleship is what the whole experience is all about. Each piece of the nine month gap year is constructed for the edification of the student as a disciple. Every student is challenged to live an examined life. They’ll take part in Bible studies, mentorships, and family homes. These activities and relationships help them examine the content of their life and develop habits of a disciple of Christ. Students are encouraged to have faith that an examined life, with the light of Christ shining on it, is the only way to truly live and bring glory to the Kingdom of God. Ephesians 5:13-17
Our Mission Statement is to Inspire Christ-like change through outdoor adventure, authentic relationships and biblical truth. Students are brought into the ministry of the camp and charged with helping inspire Christ-like change in all our guests at Camp Eagle. Students will gain practical ministry and work experience in this gap year program. They’ll be trained and given the tools they need to fulfill their role in the camp.
The nine-month curriculum of the gap year is designed to root the student in God’s Word and develop each student’s identity as a disciple in the time and place God has them. We begin with our understanding of scripture, how we should see it and how we should study it. After students are able to responsible study and apply the Bible we turn to theology. Students look at important theological topics in light of scripture. After the students have developed what they believe and why they look at other worldviews and determine how they are different from their own. Students should walk away with a defining sense of who they are in Christ and their call as a disciple.
Walkabout students take nine wilderness adventures during the gap year. Wilderness adventure is a large part of the Walkabout experience because the combination of adventure, outdoor experiences and Christian community provides a powerful classroom that inspires students. It connects lessons to lifelong memories. It also provides a context and constant reminder that Walkabout is a fast from the life they’re used to for the purpose of growing as disciples. Adventures include backpacking and peak summits in the Rocky Mountains, paddling remote rivers, mountain biking, rock climbing, desert canyons, and plenty more. Students not only take part in the adventure but they learn the skills it takes to pursue similar adventures on their own.
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Walkabout was truly life changing. Initially, I joined the program because I didn't know what else to do. I had no idea what God had prepared for me there. Part of me was nervous, thinking I was going to be a year behind in college, that's money that could have gone towards tuition, etc. When I caught up with old friend during and after walkabout, I found all that I had missed out on (mostly) was a year of mess ups and regrets. Many of my friends had a year of "trying to find themselves" in things like drugs, meaningless relationships, and ultimately, a year of wasted tuition because of changing majors thirteen times. I, on the other hand, had the same experience in a beautiful Christian environment. My beliefs were questioned and made stronger, I found what relationships with people were supposed to look like, I learned who God really was, and I fell in love with Christ. I think walkabout was life changing, by every definition.
I loved my time in Walkabout, it was fun, challenging, and life changing. I learned so much about community, service, discipleship, and myself. I continue to use lessons I learned in Walkabout everyday, even years later. Walkabout truly is a once in a lifetime experience that I am so thankful for and I continue to recommend it. Some of the things that changed my life and continue to shape me are the adventure experiences; I loved being challenged and coming out stronger. The community, I really believe the community in walkabout is the closest I've ever been to experiencing true biblical community. The discipleship and mentor aspect, the intentionality in spending time with the Lord, and finally being able to joyfully serve in whatever aspect is needed. Walkabout wasn't always easy, but what I learned has profoundly changed me and I am so grateful!