The Power Nap is over. The participants stride briskly back into the Chewonki boat shop, put on their respirators, and return to work. For two weeks now, they’ve used glue and fiberglass to join okoume plywood pieces into hand-crafted kayaks, 17’ 8” long and with a beam of a bit over 23”. All six vessels rest upside-down, side-by-side, on saw horses in the soft light of the shop. The goal for the day is sanding, and they hum about their boats like raspy, dusty worker bees among the orchids, … [Read more...] about To Push their Boats from Shore
Morning pea-picking is good work. The farmers move down rows of emerald tendrils “dripping with peas,” as Assistant Farm Manager Hilary Crowell puts it, pinching off round, ripe pods and dropping them into buckets. With this bumper crop, harvesting goes quickly. And there are plenty of sweet snap peas for snacking. “Take a few for the return trip!” Crowell calls out to a couple of visitors who, after sampling one pod, don’t need convincing. The morning harvest is 65 pounds of Super Sugar Snap … [Read more...] about Sugar Snap Super Shack
Summer keeps rolling along! Here’s what some of our summer leaders told us were highlights of their week: "What was the highlight of this week?" Jen Adams, Wilderness Trips Coordinator: “I was part of a covert mission to deliver ice cream by canoe to the Puffins [Chewonki’s youngest campers] camping on Pinky Point. We took a couple of flavors, and I didn’t expect the Puffins to love chocolate-churro—that was aimed more at counselors. But the boys took right to it!” Garth Altenburg, Director, … [Read more...] about Week 2 Highlights from Camp Chewonki
The only people possibly more excited about this summer’s Chewonki Wilderness Trips than the trippers themselves are the trip leaders. A gang of them arrived this week to begin preparing and their energy’s rocking the Neck. Most are equally fanatic about backpacking and paddling, but a few just can’t get enough time on the water. Karen Blakelock, Conor Burke, and Eric Nathanson are a part of this elite category. Something about being on the water holds a special allure for them, and they can’t … [Read more...] about The Life Aquatic
“This is it!” says Nancy Kennedy beaming. She’s standing at the upper edge of a gentle slope facing east, below the forest glade known among Chewonki-ites as the "Pineapple Forest". An old stone wall, a relic of 19th-century sheep farming, stretches toward the shore. Chewonki Creek sparkles through the trees, opening into the light of Montsweag Bay. A few stumps and a fresh stack of firewood attest to the newness of the clearing--staff volunteers cleared the area only last week. In the center … [Read more...] about Every Campfire Starts with a Spark
Greg Shute’s Must-have Items for Wilderness Adventure Trips Chewonki Vice President Greg Shute is a Maine Guide, lifelong naturalist, and the veteran leader of too many wilderness trips to count. We rely on him to know what to do in any backcountry situation, and he always comes through. Looking ahead to the summer season at Chewonki and dozen-plus unique wilderness adventures his staff has planned, we asked Shute what items he considers “indispensable” for any expedition into remote … [Read more...] about Shute’s Loot on a Hiking Route: Crooked Knives and a 64oz. Adventure To Baxter Peak
At 6:45 on a summer morning, Chewonki’s waterfront lifeguards make the rounds. Stationed outside campers’ cabins, they toss two words into the air with operatic flare: “Polar Bearrs! Polar Bearrrs!” This is an invitation all Chewonki campers and counselors recognize. “Polar Bears, come on out!” the lifeguards urge. The implicit message is: “Come dare to jump into chilly Montsweag Creek with us to start the day.Come enjoy being young, healthy, and at Chewonki!” In cool or rainy weather, only … [Read more...] about Polar Bearrrrrrrrrs….
It looks like winter is going to hold to the very end this year. Chewonki is still covered in snow, but the days are getting longer and we're eagerly counting down to the first day of Camp! It's hard to believe, but our first session is less than 100 days away! Garth, Nancy & Greg have been incredibly busy this winter, visiting different camp families, lining up summer staff, and planning out every detail of our residential program and trips. Here's a few key reminders: Open House at … [Read more...] about Counting Down to Camp! (Important Dates & Reminders)