History & Philosophy
High Rocks boys summer camp is a place for fun and learning, for challenge and adventure, and for living in an environment that is geared to a camper’s needs and interests. Aided by a well-trained staff we seek to teach and to inspire lasting skills and values.
We offer ongoing opportunities for success, a freedom from inhibiting competitive pressure, and daily instruction in activities which promote rapid development of skills. Through this framework for success we build among all campers increased self-esteem and a sense of community.
Camp High Rocks is a community where boys connect with the outdoors, each other, and most importantly themselves.
The connections made here at camp stem from the adherence to and inspiration of our core values:
Community is the result of our campers living, working, and playing together in a supportive, nurturing environment. Our unplugged policy connects boys to each other by removing distractions present in their daily lives at home. Our emphasis on personal growth and development instead of inter-camper competition fosters an environment where each individual is encouraged to be the best camper that he can be. Individuality is celebrated and encouraged at High Rocks; here our boys are free to be themselves. A testament to the strength of our community is the number of former campers who return as staff to provide for new campers the same quality experience they enjoyed as children.
Adventure is seeking out new people, new places, and new experiences. Adventure is hiking to the top of Rich Mountain; it can even be trying new foods in the dining hall. We create a physically and emotionally safe place where boys can step beyond their comfort zones and revel in the joy of discovery. “What is around the next bend in the river? What kind of critters live under that rock?” are the questions we want them to ask. And, where appropriate and safe, we let them answer those questions themselves. By building this spirit of exploration, we prepare boys to embrace the infinite unknowns they will explore throughout their lives.
Leadership is helping a new camper find the way to his next activity. It is organizing cabin cleanup in the morning. And for our oldest returning campers, it is assisting the staff in teaching an activity. Leadership is expected and not suggested. Boys learn that leadership is not simply giving orders from the head of a pack but is found in the way that they carry themselves. By leading himself in a positive manner, each boy creates the community that draws campers and staff back year after year.
Independence grows from personal responsibility. We teach campers that all their actions affect those around them regardless of intent. By instilling this notion, we move beyond simple benchmarks of independence like tying shoes, making a bed, and keeping track of a water bottle. Through our program we offer challenges that build confidence and competence; we place campers in situations where they recognize what they are truly capable of, whether that be climbing a rock face or navigating the Tuckasegee River. When boys realize that they hold great power within themselves, they are prepared to grow into the men they will become.