DSCN9802Beauty is not in short supply here at Camp Timberlake, and the mountains that graced the background of my cabin and I’s morning routine as we woke up from an on site camping trip served as a beautiful reminder of that. Moments like this happen millions of times a day here at camp and they always serve to reminisce on a great gift we’ve all been given by the opportunity to be at Camp. A new day always provides a new set of challenge and uncertainty, but it seems like things are a exponentially easier when boys are surrounded by freshly built bonds of friendship and joy driven adventure.

After an eventful cabin night the night prior, the sound of reveille resounded through camp and Camp Timberlake was off to the races. The energetic younger cabins swarmed to the dining hall followed closely by the much slower older cabins and all were greeted happily with the sweet scent of French toast sticks and the seas of syrup they would soon be doused in.  Well into the groove of the week, the morning yell as always joined the camp together in ritual, as well as got campers excited for the busy day to come.

As the ritual continued, Timberlake filed into the chapel, ready to hear another True Story that sought to inspire and focus our actions for the day. Today’s story was a wonderful retelling of the parable of the prodigal son and the beauty of the love our father in heaven. After that activities were once again under way. In Wrestling, Lucky O. showed off his prowess on the mats and narrowly earned his bronze mark right as the period was ending. It was launch day in Rocketry Class and every camper’s rocket launched successfully! Hugh S. earned his gold mark today and helped the other campers with his mastery of the subject. Campers Louis F. and Layton H. launched their rockets so high they lost them in the skies!

As the sun rose into mid morning, it was the perfect time to jump into the Lake Doris. Swimming class practiced breaststroke and Logan B. and Scott K. displayed their seriously good form consistently throughout class. On the other side of the lake the kayakers paddled about and showed off what they had to offer too. The class demonstrated perfect decorum in the lake and Nathan V. even got his roll!

As lunchtime came and went, the campers proceeded through the day, their stomachs full with a camp favorite, Taco in a Bag. A much needed rest time followed Lunch and then free time provided opportunities for even more skills to be developed. In Mountain Biking, Josef M. worked hard and expertly displayed his prowess on the Tomahawk Trail.

Climbing Class existed on the Traverse Wall today, which excited campers with ample opportunities to earn marks. Layton H. demonstrated his mastery of knots and gained his bronze bar astoundingly. It was a huge day in Fencing as the campers were fine tuning what they have been learning the past few weeks in class. Carlton W.Archie G., George S., Garrett S., and Jimbo D. all earned their bronze today!

Campers, reluctant to leave their activites were interrupted by the dinner bell, welcoming campers with a meal of tortellini and fresh vegetables, which didn’t fail to satisfy. Washed down with a desert of decadent strawberry cobbler, the energy of the day continued into evening activity, where the Seminoles squared off against the Iroquois in a ferocious game of Pirate Ball, a waterfront game with kayaks, rafts, volleyballs, canoes and so much more. Everyone has a part to play in the game, and Pirate Ball always leaves the whole camp worn-out and ready for bed. While upper cabins enjoyed post evening activities like an extended free swim or a camp out trip at the on site shelter, the lower cabins nestled into bed.

Camp Timberlake left each and every camper satisfied on this exhilarating Tuesday, and as the day comes to a close, a look back shows that memories made today give us a greater understanding of the true beauty of this place were all so fortunate to be in. As a first year counselor, I’ve already fallen for everything Timberlake stands for and can’t wait to watch these boys grow with friends and adventure for the rest of the session.

James Cloutier

University of Tennessee – Knoxville Class of 2019

Big Piney Counselor

Climbing Instructor

Proud Seminole