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The Pathfinder Experience

Camp Pathfinder offers the finest wilderness summer camp experience to 110 boys, ages 7 - 16. We are located on Pathfinder Island, Source Lake in world-famous Algonquin Provincial Park.

Pathfinder is all about exciting outdoor sports and canoe trips, a boy's ideal summer adventure. A Pathfinder summer also means growing independence, character, values, abilities, and friendships for life.

Boys attend Pathfinder from the U.S., Canada, Europe and South America. Our campers hail from 14 U.S. states, 4 Canadian provinces, and many overseas countries, from Spain to Australia to China, from France and the U.K. to Mexico and Argentina.

Since 1914, Pathfinder has provided a renowned canoe tripping program, and a rich in-camp program of paddling, nature lore / ecology, swimming, athletics, arts, and ropes-challenge. Traditions are many at Pathfinder, including everything from games to awards, to events celebrating our long history of fellowship. Pathfinder puts the emphasis on friendships and community, on simple-living in a low-technology setting and on a boy's personal connection to the natural world.

A camp with a culture devoted to positive youth development, Pathfinder's historical roots in the progressive era Woodcraft movement, and its founders' vision strongly connected to judeo-christian values, play out in many wonderful traditions and observances prized by campers, staff and alumni across the generations. Among many are the daily flag ceremonies, table grace at meals, traditional letter-writing, weekly non-denominational Chapel services, custom of quiet reflection time and personal connection to the natural world, and the emphasis on respect, friendship, teamwork, service, and simple living without technology's intrusion.

Fine leadership is another Pathfinder tradition. An expert, highly trained staff of 75 counselors and guides provide the crucial 1:2 ratio that ensures individual attention for every boy. Owners Glenn Arthurs and Mike Sladden personally steward Camp's leadership program. As many boys grow up in the camper ranks, they set their sights on becoming a staff member, an experience that itself lasts a lifetime, opening the door to leadership opportunities in college, career and community.

Traditional Pathfinder sessions are 2 weeks,  3 1/2 weeks or 7 weeks during July and August. For new boys, ages 7 - 8, there is a special one-week "Mic Mac" program offered twice each summer. For boys 9-12 there are special first-timers' 2-week sessions.

I feel so grateful that I am in a position to contribute to the real building efforts of these guys' character. It does feel a little like money in the bank.

Mrs. L. Tilden, grandmother to three Pathfinder campers

A Boy's Summer Life

On the canoe trip trail with Pathfinder.

What is it like to be a Pathfinder camper? Viewing our gallery of photos will give you a pretty good idea.
Web Gallery of Pathfinder ...

The Pathfinder in-camp program features a wide variety of water and land sports, from paddling to swimming, from archery to ropes course.

The Pathfinder canoe trip program ranges from 3-day to 35-day expeditions in the back country of Ontario and Quebec.

Pathfinder Island has provided a boys' summer life for 102 seasons.

Pathfinder has sessions of 2 weeks, 3 1/2 weeks and 7 weeks each summer. Each session is designed especially for the camp's age groups, ranging from age 7-16. A special one-week session is offered to boys age 7.
Camper age groups ...

Jonathan had a great time on both of his trips, and goes over the pictures regularly. What a good experience for those guys! Thanks for the great opportunity you’re offering all of your campers, and my sons in particular. They will carry that experience the rest of their lives.

D. Trimble, Parkland, FL

Leadership and Friendship

Campers and guides before their trip.

Leadership makes all the difference at summer camp. Pathfinder has a highly trained staff of counselors and directors, raised from within the camper ranks. Staff training and preparation is the very best available. The Staff-to-Camper ratio at Pathfinder has always been 1:2. This ensures individual attention for every boy, and the proper safety and supervision on Pathfinder canoe trips.

Leadership and the Pathfinder Counselor


Meet the 2015 Pathfinder Staff

Setting and Tradition

Algonquin summer days in Pathfinder canoes.

Pathfinder is a close community of campers and staff, enriched by long history and a large, active alumni family. The routines, traditions and values of the camp are shared by 4 generations, remaining vibrant as Pathfinder passes her 100th anniversary, and sets her sights on the next century of camping excellence.

Learn about Pathfinder traditions ...

Pathfinder Island and Algonquin Park provide a spectacular north woods setting. Algonquin is the crown jewel in the Ontario parks system. Pathfinder has remained beautifully rustic and wooded since her founding in 1914. Here in Canada's canoe country is a chance to live simply and in harmony with a pristine ecosystem.


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