A canoe and outdoor adventure camp for young men
Langskib is dedicated to a young man’s need to explore, to embark on an outdoor adventure, challenge themselves, develop independence and experience the unknown.
Most often in going out and exploring, of all the many things we see and experience, the thing that we discover and learn the most about is ourselves. These wilderness adventures balance us, become a part of us and help to make us whole.
Young men choose Langskib because it represents challenge, freedom from regimentation, and “down to earth living,” all of which are often lacking in contemporary life.
While adventuring in the Temagami Wilderness, we teach and model confidence, self-awareness, compassion, cooperation, commitment, respect and common sense. Surrounded by boys and men provides freedom for camaraderie to naturally develop, free of distraction and competition.
Getting Started: Arriving at Base camp
The Langskib journey begins with a short float plane flight to our picturesque island base camp. After a delicious home cooked meal, we meet in the longhouse for a gathering of all the guides and participants. Together we talk about the things that have brought us to Temagami, the community we are creating, and how we wish to be treated. We discuss our responsibilities as members of the camp community and part of a wilderness expedition. There is time for everyone to be heard. Collectively we agree on basic tenants that will shape our wilderness canoe trip experience — things like honesty, acceptance, trust, patience and humor.
A young man’s first few days at Langskib are spent developing the skills necessary for wilderness canoe travel. With the help of the trip staff and more experienced campers, they learn to portage, pack a Duluth, set up a tent, work with others and of course, how to paddle a canoe!
While these first few days help to lay the foundation for a successful backcountry experience, they also give leaders the opportunity to spend time with each participant. Once we get to know each other, we divide up into age-appropriate groups of six to twelve boys and two to three leaders. We create groups according to the needs of the individuals. These groups are called “sections.”
The 20-Day Canoe Trip
Each tripping section plans a route according to the skills, experience and dynamics of the group. The canoe trips they plan range from local excursions through the lakes and streams surrounding our island base camp, to more challenging whitewater expeditions down one of the region’s rivers.
During the course of each canoe trip, camp leaders draw on their many years of experience and extensive training to guide the group through the challenges of wilderness travel.
Using proven designs and techniques to build trust, encourage communication and foster community, leaders establish a base from which the group begins to set goals, solve problems, and make relevant decisions. As the trip develops the group draws on its experiences together. Problems become opportunities, challenges become successes, travel takes on a rhythm, and the trip becomes a journey.
At the end of the trip, groups return to a hero’s welcome. Each section paddles into base camp to the cheers of their comrades and the beat of a drum. We celebrate and feast together, share stories of our travels, and what we have learned about ourselves. We talk of brotherhood, community, and adventure.
The next day is spent re-entering the larger community. We continue to share stories as we de-outfit our trips, do ‘giveaways’ and get together to honour each young person for their accomplishments, success, gifts and contributions to the community. We paddle down lake in Voyageur canoes to celebrate with Northwaters participants, staff and parents. Together, we have a giant barbecue and celebration where we hear from every single section about their adventures on the trail.