Camp Carysbrook is a phenomenal summer camp. I have been a camper there for eight years, and I keep returning year after year. Camp Carysbrook is a sleep away camp for girls ages 6 to 16. It's in Riner Virginia, which is absolutely bucolic. The camp is nestled in the mountains, surrounded by forest and the Little River is nearby.
This camp is great for well rounded girls looking to try new things and have fun, because there are a multitude of activities to try. Unlike many other summer camps, campers don't sign up for a specific activity. Instead, they can do which ever one they want, and pick something new each day! Camp Carysbrook was the first time I had ever fenced, caved, shot an arrow with a bow, shot a rifle, or been in a canoe.
Another great thing about this camp is that campers can still pursue their individual interests while at camp. There are two hours of free time each day. I brought my cello to camp, and I used some of this time to practice. The rest of my free time was spent playing cards with friends, working on summer reading, or just relaxing in a hammock.
Some critics of Camp Carysbrook complain about the mandatory swimming lessons or the lack of technology and the bugs. However, in my opinion, all of these things are an advantage and not a detriment to the camp experience. Swimming is a very important life skill, and swim lessons at the lake are helpful, fun, and only 30 minutes long. As for the rural setting with no cell phones and lots of bugs, I like it because it's such a contrast from my life for most of the year. Being without my phone or computer is hard at first, but then it really helps me to slow down and appreciate spending time with the people around me. There ARE bugs at camp, but that's bound to happen when you are so close to nature. The bugs are harmless, and they don't bother us at all.
The food at Camp Carysbrook is delicious. I like meals at camp because everyone eats together, and we sing songs after meals. It's a great way to bond with everyone and to have fun.
Overall, there is a place for every girl at Camp Carysbrook. (The only thing is that you need to know how to take a shower on your own.) It's a place where you can be outrageously silly and try so many new things without fear of failure. I've made some of my best friends at camp, and each year at Camp Carysbrook is truly a summer to remember.