Pineywoods Camp: Adventure and Spiritual Growth

Spending time outdoors surrounded by nature provides immense benefits for both mental and physical health. Getting back to basics in a stunning natural environment allows us to reduce stress, get exercise, and bond with loved ones. For the ultimate rustic retreat that facilitates outdoor adventure and transformation, look no further than Pineywoods Camp in the heart of East Texas.

Great Outdoors Await at Pineywoods Camp

Tucked away on 300 acres of Piney Woods forest, Pineywoods Camp offers an escape from the grind of everyday life. Surrounded by tall pines, tranquil lakes, and winding trails, this serene natural escape provides opportunities to challenge yourself both physically and mentally.

Since its founding in 1974, Pineywoods Camp has been providing campers ages 6-16 with a quintessential outdoor experience focused on character development and environmental stewardship. With activities like archery, canoeing, wilderness skills, and horseback riding, campers expand their capabilities while forming friendships and gaining confidence.

Leading with its motto “challenge by choice,” Pineywoods Camp empowers campers to move beyond their comfort zones under the guidance of caring and enthusiastic counselors. For an unforgettable summer adventure that builds lifelong skills, there is no better place than Pineywoods Camp.

The Basics of Pineywoods Camp

Located just outside of Lufkin, TX, Pineywoods Camp sits on 300 acres of lush forest featuring pine and hardwood trees, two lakes, and over 5 miles of hiking trails. The rural setting provides a peaceful escape into nature, with modern amenities available as needed. Camp capacity is 130 campers and 40 staff members at a time. Campers stay in screened platform tents or open-air sleeping cabins with their assigned cabin group and counselor. Three nutritious family-style meals are served each day in the dining hall.

Activities operate Sunday to Saturday during various sessions lasting from 5 to 16 days. Campers choose their own schedule based on interests, with adventure and challenge being the focus. Safety is also paramount, with all activities carefully supervised by qualified and caring staff members. Basic amenities like toilets, hot showers, electricity, and heating allow for comfort during an otherwise rugged experience. With its breathtaking setting and thoughtful features, Pineywoods Camp offers the perfect gateway into nature.

A Look at Daily Life at Camp

A typical day at Pineywoods Camp is packed with excitement, challenge, and opportunities for growth. Campers start the day with a nutritious breakfast in the dining hall before heading out to activities. Options range from archery to arts and crafts, wilderness skills, hiking, canoeing, horseback riding, swimming, sports, group games, and more.

Campers get to choose their own schedules based on personal interests, which provides autonomy and engagement. After lunch, there is time for rest in the cabins before the next round of activities. At the end of the busy day, the whole camp gathers around the fire for songs, skits, and reflection. Dinner, evening activities, and campfire follow before heading back to the cabins for lights out. With its balance of structure and freedom, each day at camp builds self-confidence and deepens bonds with others. Campers also learn to appreciate the simple things in life like laughing with friends, gazing at the starry sky, and bonding over adventures.

Activities and Programs

The extensive variety of activities makes Pineywoods Camp exceptional. All programs focus on character growth, leadership, environmental awareness, skill building, and fun.

Outdoor Adventure:

  • Archery – Learn safety, technique, and accuracy using compound bows. Earn levels like Bowman and Marksman.
  • Canoeing – Paddle across lakes and streams and explore the stunning piney woods landscape.
  • Rock climbing – Scale boulders and rock walls. Develop trust as you support teammates.
  • Hiking – Trek along peaceful trails through forests, across streams, up hills, and more.
  • Horseback riding – Ride beautiful horses on trails through the woods and into the lake. Gain horse care skills.
  • Fishing – Catch fish on the well-stocked lake. Identify species and learn best practices.
  • Wilderness skills – Gain competencies like fire building, shelter construction, and outdoor cooking.
  • Camping – Pitch tents, hang hammocks, cook over the fire, tell stories under the stars.

Sports & Recreation:

  • Swimming – Swim laps or just relax in the lake. Work on strokes and practice water safety.
  • Basketball – Play pickup games on the camp basketball court. Develop skills and teamwork.
  • Volleyball – Bump, set, spike on the sandy courts. Dive for the ball and hustle.
  • Soccer – Pass, shoot, and save goals on the open field. Increase speed and endurance.
  • 9-Square in the Air – Hit the ball over the net in this fast-paced game. Rally for points.
  • Gaga ball – Dodge and strike the ball in this exciting dodgeball-like game.

Arts & Education:

  • Arts & crafts – Express your creativity through mediums like tie-dye, leatherwork, jewelry making, woodburning.
  • Performing arts – Act in the camp play. Play instruments and sing silly songs.
  • STEM challenges – Build structures, make inventions, and solve problems.
  • Night hikes – Use teamwork and your senses on hikes under the stars.
  • Stargazing – Gaze at constellations through telescopes and learn about astronomy.

Team Building:

  • Group games – Play interactive games that require strategy, communication and trust.
  • Low ropes challenge course – Navigate obstacles while supporting teammates up to 15 feet off the ground.
  • Climbing wall – Scale the 40-foot wall and ring the bell at the top. Gain courage and strength.
  • Cabin activities – Bond with your cabin through songs, skits, stories, outdoor cooking and more.

The Benefits of Summer Camp

The structured yet flexible days at Pineywoods Camp provide benefits that last well beyond the summer. Campers gain independence by making activity choices and taking care of themselves and their cabins. Trying new things and pushing boundaries foster resilience and self-confidence.

Unplugging from technology and connecting to nature reduces anxiety and boosts wellbeing. Building social skills, making friends, and working as a team teaches invaluable interpersonal lessons. With its experiential approach focused on progression, Pineywoods Camp imparts life skills and core values that campers carry forward.

Environmental Awareness & Service

In addition to adventure programming, Pineywoods Camp integrates environmental education and conservation into the experience. Lessons about leave no trace principles, ecology, and sustainability nurture stewardship for the natural world. Campers develop a deep appreciation for the pine forests, lakes, and wildlife surrounding them.

Several times per session, the entire camp also participates in service projects like trail maintenance, gardening, and ecological restoration. Caring for the land reinforces the interconnectedness of nature and our responsibility to protect it. With its beautiful natural setting and environmental ethos, Pineywoods Camp inspires a generation of thoughtful outdoor citizens.

World-Class Staff

The exceptional staff make the magic happen at Pineywoods Camp each summer. Staff members undergo extensive training and meet stringent qualifications before the campers arrive. The camp directors boast decades of outdoor education experience. Year-round staff handle logistics like healthcare, maintenance, housekeeping, and food service. Counselors always work in teams of at least two per cabin group.

The counselors tend to be passionate college students or graduates studying education, recreation, psychology or related fields. They are selected based on demonstrated responsibility, energy, problem-solving skills, and care for children. Top-notch supervision and instruction are paramount at Pineywoods Camp. Campers forge bonds with their counselors who become role models and mentors. The remarkable staff make campers feel secure, motivated, and loved.

Safety of Pineywoods Camp

With adventure programming taking place in the wilderness, safety is a top priority at Pineywoods Camp. All activities are led by trained staff who orient campers, demonstrate proper technique, establish rules and boundaries, and monitor behavior. Helmets, life jackets, harnesses and other protective gear are mandatory for many activities. Healthcare staff live on-site to manage illness and injuries promptly.

A hospital and medical clinic are 20 minutes away in Lufkin. All staff are certified in CPR and first aid. Campers provide health history and immunization records before attending. The secluded camp location enhances safety, with no outsiders permitted on the grounds. Pineywoods Camp’s excellent safety record instills confidence in both campers and parents.

Food & Accommodations

Campers refuel with energizing meals three times daily in the dining hall. Meals consist of hot entrees, sides, salad bar, sandwiches, soup, desserts, and beverages. Options accommodate various diets and restrictions. Picnic lunches are provided on full-day outings. Campers and staff all dine family-style to promote bonds and gratitude.

After busy activity-packed days, restful accommodations await each night. Campers sleep in platform tents or open-air sleeping cabins grouped by age and gender. The tents contain cots with vinyl-covered mattresses. The sleeping cabins feature bunk beds. Restrooms and hot showers are located nearby. Electric lighting, heated blankets, and mosquito netting add comfort. With its tasty meals and cozy lodging, Pineywoods Camp satisfies campers’ physical needs so they can thrive.

Session and Tuition Information

Pineywoods Camp offers sessions tailored for various ages and interests during the summer. The sessions run from early June through late July.

  • Explorer Camp, ages 6-10, 5 days
  • Junior Camp, ages 8-11, 12 days
  • Senior Camp, ages 11-16, 12 days
  • Wilderness Trip, ages 13-16, 16 days
  • Ranch Camp, ages 12-15, 12 days
  • Performing Arts Camp, ages 11-15, 12 days

Tuition ranges from $650 for a 5-day session up to $1600 for the 16-day wilderness trip. Discounts, payment plans, financial assistance, and camperships are available. Transportation is provided from major Texas cities for around $100 each way.

For specific dates, rates, and registration, visit the Pineywoods Camp website at www.pineywoodscamp.com. Spots fill up quickly, so book your adventure today!

Frequently Asked Questions

How physically demanding is camp?

Camp keeps kids active and engaged in the outdoors up to 6 hours per day. Most campers adapt well to the increased activity. Options are available for all ability levels.

What is the counselor to camper ratio?

The ratio is around 1 counselor for every 6 campers. Safety is closely supervised.

What medical services are available onsite?

A healthcare manager and several nurses live onsite. They administer medications, provide first aid, and manage illnesses and injuries. Doctors are on call and hospitals are nearby for emergencies.

What do campers do during inclement weather?

Programming continues during light rain. For severe weather, there are sheltered pavilions and buildings for activities. Our flexible program ensures nonstop fun, whatever the forecast.

What is the refund policy if my child leaves camp early?

Refunds are provided on a prorated basis for campers who leave early for medical reasons with a doctor’s authorization. Otherwise, no refunds are given once camp is in session.


Pineywoods Camp offers an idyllic gateway to move beyond your comfort zone and deepen your connections to nature, others, and yourself. With its stunning forest setting, stellar programming, and exceptional staff, this traditional summer camp provides endless opportunities for adventure, achievement, and cherished memories. Campers gain confidence, resilience, environmental stewardship, and lifelong skills. If you or your child crave meaningful outdoor experiences, renewed perspective, and tons of fun, make Pineywoods Camp your natural destination this summer.


My name is Evelyn and I started Camping The Camp to combine my love of the outdoors with my background in environmental science. I hope you’ll find helpful as you discover the joys of camping. It’s more than a weekend trip - it’s a chance to disconnect from devices, reconnect with loved ones, and make memories to last a lifetime

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