AMC Boston Chapter

All About Camp

New to August Camp?  click here first

A more detailed version of the information on this page with additional useful material may be found in GeneralAugustCampInfo.pdf which you may download and save or print for reference.

August Camp is a volunteer-run summer program of the Appalachian Mountain Club. It offers four one-week sessions of group hiking for adults in or near National Parks, Forests, and Wilderness areas, chiefly in the Western US. The hikes are led at several levels of pace and challenge daily, to accommodate a variety of preferences. When the area allows, the program may also offer (at an extra fee) canoeing, kayaking or bicycling outings as well. Each summer August Camp sets up a tent community for about 60 people in the chosen area, which serves as a base camp, with most activities being within an hour’s drive. Participants sleep on cots in 2-person tents, and are provided three meals a day, transportation to the day's activities, and an evening campfire program. The Camp Director, Head Hike Leader, and Hike/Activity Leaders are all highly skilled and trained volunteers. The weekly fee covers the costs of running and maintaining August Camp, including salaries for the Camp Manager, Assistant Manager, Cook and Croo.

Hikes and other activities at Camp are designed to be a group experience. We offer hikes at several different levels to accommodate as wide a range of experience and expectations as we can. Our trained hike leaders will do their best to ensure that each group has a rewarding and safe experience. You can help by choosing a suitable level of activity, staying with the group throughout the day, and taking responsibility for your own safety. Groups are generally limited to 12 people, so we don’t anticipate a very wide range of abilities on any hike. That said, we set out as a group and return as a group.

A Typical Day at Camp:

  • 6:15 am each morning - bugle wake-up call; self-serve coffee/tea tent opens
  • 6:30, the lunch tent opens and you go make your lunch for the day with the food provided (vegetarian options, too)
  • 7:00 am - breakfast is served
  • 8:00-9:00 am - depart camp for a day of hiking
  • 4:00 - 6:00 pm - return to camp/shower
  • 6:30 pm - Dinner is served
  • 8 pm – campfire: hike reports, hike announcements for the next day, and sometimes singing.
  • 10 pm quiet hours begin

For a more detailed example of a typical day, click here


  • August Camp is planned and overseen by volunteers.

  • Day hikes are led by volunteers who are certified in Wilderness First Aid and CPR, and have undergone AMC training in group leadership. Hike and activity leaders are not paid guides.

  • When camp is in session, a hired staff consisting of a CAMP MANAGER, COOK, and “croo” of young adults run day-to-day operations. Croo members are often students saving money for their school expenses. Tipping the croo is greatly appreciated.


  • Campers share two-person wall tents, approximately 8’ x 10’, large enough to stand and walk around in, but without a floor.

  • Campers usually bring a tarp or small throw rug for the floor.

  • Tents are equipped with two cots, two washbasins and a water pail.

  • Campers provide their own sleeping bags, full length air mattresses or foam padding, and pillows.

  • Drinking water will be available at camp.

  • Shower tents/stalls are provided for using with one’s own sun shower.

  • Chemical toilets and hand-washing facilities will be provided at Camp.


  • Breakfasts and dinners are prepared and served by August Camp’s hired “Croo.”

  • There is a dining pavilion with seating for 64.

  • A hot beverage tent is open about an hour before breakfast and in the late afternoon before dinner.

  • Campers prepare their own lunches at the lunch tent which opens about one half hour before breakfast.

  • August Camp accommodates vegetarian diets but not vegan diets. Vegetarian options often include tofu, pasta and cheese.

  • For gluten-sensitive campers Camp will have available rice cereal, rice cakes, baked potatoes, rice and fruit.

  • We are a “field kitchen” in a primitive setting and cannot accommodate individual food requirements/preferences.

  • If you have very specific dietary restrictions, you may need to bring some of your own food to camp.

  • Lactose-free milk is available if you alert us on your registration form.

  • Food cannot be stored in tents.  There will be bear box storage (with limited space).


  • Happy hour is an August Camp tradition that enhances relaxation and camaraderie.

  • Campers provide their own drinks and snacks.

  • During dinner, the discreet use of alcohol is permitted.


  • Campfire at which campers report on the day’s hikes and hear announcements about the next day’s plans.

  • There are sometimes sing-alongs for interested campers.


  • Multiple hikes at different levels will be offered each day.  Hikes are categorized as strenuous, moderate, easy, and walks (not offered every day)

  • A hikes - faster paced with significant elevation gain (up to 15 miles, often with greater than 3000’ elevation gain).  Plan on encountering exposure, stream crossings, uneven footing.  

  •  B hikes - moderate pace with steady elevation gain (up to 10 miles, and less than 2,500 ft. of elevation gain).  Potentially exposure, stream crossings and uneven footing. 

  • C hikes – more leisurely pace, limited mileage, minimal elevation gain (4-5 miles, <1,000 ft.)  Generally smooth trails. 

  • Excursions/walks are offered occasionally and may be focused on photography, nature trails, or visits to a scenic area, museum or local events (2-3 miles, less than 500’ of elevation gain)

  • There is usually a backpacking and/or car camping overnight offered each week.

  • Some water-related trips (canoeing, kayaking, float/raft trips), usually involving an additional fee to campers, may be scheduled if available in the area.

  • DO NOT plan to “get in shape” at Camp.

  • You do not need to purchase trail guides, but many campers like to familiarize themselves with the area beforehand. Guidebook recommendations are in the Activities and Hike Lists section.


  • August Camp has no children’s program.

  • Children over 10 are welcome, provided they are under the supervision of a responsible adult at Camp and on daily activities. They must have the proper gear and clothing and ability to do the same trips as the adult responsible for them.  There is no reduced rate for children.

Don’t forget to check out the Yahoo group and visit our Facebook page.  Links to application form and specific info about this year’s camp are found on the left sidebar of this page


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