Keewaydin Temagami remains true to the vision of our founder, A.S. Greg Clarke "The Commodore", who wanted to start a camp that focused on time out of base camp, on canoe trips.
Today we look much the same as we did in 1893; paddling in wood canvas canoes, using tump lines to portage canoes, equipment, and wannigans (the wooden boxes which we carry food and equipment.) Sections travel the surrounding wilderness waterways, often portaging from lake to lake or up and down rivers, making camp at new spot each night, sleeping in tents with one or two other campers.
We offer canoe trips for boys and girls ages 10 through 18. Each season we enroll about 150 campers, both girls and boys, who are assigned to wigwams based on age, experience and physical maturity. Each wigwam is split into smaller tripping groups of 4-8 campers called "sections", all of which are single gender. The duration and difficulty of the trips is determined by the age and level of experience of each section. We pride ourselves on placing each camper in the group that ensures a positive experience. For this reason camper's applications are carefully reviewed by the staff and placed in sections of similar age, maturity and experience.
Meals are cooked over open fires and sections prepare all of their food from scratch. Typical breakfasts are hot cereals, such as oatmeal or cream of wheat, and on special occassions pancakes and bacon. Lunches and dinners often include spaghetti, chili, stews, and curries. Meals are always made with a focus on good healthy calories. We do quite a bit of baking using our reflector ovens - from basic baking powder breads called bannock, to doughnuts, yeast breads and cinnamon rolls.
Most Keewaydin Temagami campers are in the 10-15 year old age bracket and take trips of five, ten and even twenty-one days right from our island base camp, Devil’s Island.
Returning campers can spend the summer at the Evans Outpost on Lake Kawaweogama at the southern end of Wabakimi Provincial Park. They ride a train 18 hours west to Keewaydin's cabin, where they take trips of varying lengths and difficulty.
The oldest campers - 16, 17 and 18 years old will take six or seven week expeditions, the longest of which, the Hudson Bay Trip, is our culminating experience for campers and concludes on Hudson Bay.