Enhancing the Classroom Experience

Through Outdoor Education


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YMCA Camp Chingachgook welcomes over 6,000 students annually to the shores of Lake George for experiential outdoor education programs. Schools attend from New York, Vermont, Connecticut, and Illinois for single day and multi-day field experiences. Dynamic outdoor educators lead students of all ages in valuable life-long learning through instruction on building and maintaining a positive community and teaching individuals to be stewards of the natural world. All programs are customized to meet state education standards and the needs of each school group. Our three part curriculum includes:



Students explore Lake George and the Adirondack park by paddling, sailing, hiking, backpacking, and camping. Participants learn new outdoor skills and form lasting relationships with nature.



  • Canoeing
  • Nature Hikes
  • Sailing
  • Orienteering




Through a series of individual and group initiatives on our challenge course, students learn about individual strengths, how to collaborate within a group, and the benefits of perseverance.



  • Teambuilding
  • Low ropes
  • Climbing Tower
  • High Ropes




Our diverse campus provides an ideal setting for the study of Adirondack ecosystems and the Lake George watershed. Students learn environmental science through sensory exploration, scientific inquiry and hands on fun.




Classes run from 2-3 hours to allow ample time for students to explore the
natural environment, challenge themselves in new ways,
and discover science and history first hand.




Evening Programs:

Fun and learning continue after dinner with an evening activity to close out the day. Evening programs run for 1.5-2 hours and include:



  • Night Hikes
  • Town Hall
  • Campfire
  • Critter Hunt



Curriculum Progression

At Chingachgook we have something for every grade level and can customize a series of experiences that match school-wide needs and reinforce learning. For example, elementary students participate in a day of sensory exploration of our ecosystems, middle school students attend a three day residential experience, and high school students embark on a multi -day wilderness excursion.


Outdoor Education Overnight- Three Days

Our signature program for school groups combines the elements of meaningful field experiences with community development and social growth. Students come away with memories that last a lifetime.

The Adirondack Experience- Five Days

We welcome schools from across the country and internationally for an immersive experience in the Adirondacks. Opportunities abound to study the natural and cultural history of this spectacular region.

Field Experience- On Day

More than your average field trip, a day field experience can be an extension of a science unit, a day to work on goal setting and interpersonal skills, or an adventure in the great outdoors.



Life at Chingachgook

The student residential experience is one where we see tremendous social growth. Staying at Chingachgook allows children to live close to nature and practice personal independence with guidance from their school community and experienced outdoor educators.



Meals are an integral part of the Chingachgook experience. Each meal includes rituals that promote gratitude, awareness or natural resources, and community. Our chef’s prepare food that is delicious, wholesome and plentiful.


Chingachgook cabins are rustic and comfortable. Each cabin has a large room for 10-12 students and a small room for 2 chaperones. A modern bathhouse facility is a few steps away. Click here to view our cabins.

Choice Time

The hour before dinner time is a favorite with our participants. This is the time when they get to choose their activity. Choices can include archery, basketball, teatherball, gaga, bouldering wall, farm, swimming, hikes and volleyball.




Discover how YMCA Camp Chingachgook can be the highlight
of your student’s school year, and take your classroom to the next level.
Contact our Outdoor Education Director, Tricia Biles at or 
518-656-9462 ext. 6644 for a customized program proposal.