A new series of weeklong day camps for “tweeners” will be offered this summer through NAU Outdoors to help older youth develop their social, leadership, environmental awareness and technical skills.

The Wilderness Initiative Leadership Development Ventures program, or WILD Ventures for short, is a series of five weekly adventure-based day camps designed for youth aged 12-15.

“We felt it was the right time to introduce a program targeted to older students,” said Rhonda Powers, associate director of Campus Recreation Services.

Each weeklong camp focuses on team building and working together as a group.

“We wanted to offer something to keep these kids engaged and active, to expose them to something new,” Powers said. “These are lifelong skills they’ll be learning.”

WILD Ventures is open to the public. The cost for each one-week camp is $150 for NAU students, $170 for NAU faculty and staff, and $200 for the public.

The camps run from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and each is designed around a particular theme:

Week 1: Boating and Kayaking Skills
June 12-16
Learn to navigate kayaks in the Wall Aquatic Center. The final days will be spent at an outside location.

Week 2: Backpacking/Cooking
June 19-23
Hike various trails around town, adopting the “Leave No Trace” philosophy, while using camping stoves to cook while on the trail.

Week 3: Rock Climbing
June 26-30
Spend two days at the NAU indoor climbing wall learning and practicing climbing skills, belaying techniques and basic safety systems. By the end of the week, participants will travel to an outdoor climbing site.

Week 4: Outdoor Living/Survival Skills
July 10-14
Learn and practice the skills required to survive in the wilderness—fire and shelter building, basic first aid, emergency procedures, orienteering and water safety.

Week 5: Mountain Biking
July 17-21
Daily trail rides and hands-on activities will teach participants about the maintenance and repair of the basic equipment associated with mountain biking, trail riding skills, etiquette, hazards and “Leave No Trace” principles.

Enrollment is limited to 18 participants each week, with a minimum enrollment of nine participants.

To register, call (928) 523-1733, or visit the NAU Recreation Center (bldg. 25).