Senior Overnight Base Camp: Grades 6-8

Base camp is a great introduction to camping and the outdoors for middle school-aged campers. This five-day program focuses on building skills and confidence for camping and outdoor pursuits. Participants practice skills such as canoeing, hiking, kayaking and archery, play team building games, and enjoy campfires. Base Camp participants sleep in cabins at camp and do day trips away from the core of camp.

Senior Overnight Quest: Grades 6-8 Choice of 5, 9 or 12 day programs

Adventure in the outdoors is the core of the Senior Quest program. While at camp, Senior Quest campers hone their outdoor living and pursuit skills by learning about low-impact camping and travel under their own steam. As a group, campers learn to be effective paddlers or hikers by practicing advanced skills as taught by our certified instructors. In the Quest program, each out-trip offers different challenges in a unique environment. Senior Quest campers plan and pack for their trip. They also take an active role in camp duties such as setting up camp, cooking and clean-up.

Five-day programs have a one-night hiking out-trip on Camp Thunderbird property. These are similar to Junior Quest trips, but with a more challenging hike, seeing further reaches of our property in the Sooke Hills.

Senior Hike (9 or 12 Days, with 3 day out-trip)

Nine-day or twelve-day Senior Hike programs travel along the north end of the Juan de Fuca trail from Botanical Beach to Sombrio Beach.  They camp at Payzant Creek and Little Kuitshe Creek campsites. This end of the trail is a less challenging portion and well suited to the age group of the campers. The distance traveled is reasonable and the overall elevation gain is minimal in comparison to other portions of the trail and other marine trails. These factors make this trip the ideal location for campers to discover the joy of walking through the natural world. The pace is set to be achievable for all participants, and normally the group travels approximately 7 kilometers per day.

Senior Kayak Northern Gulf Islands (9 or 12 Days, with 3 day out-trip)

Senior Kayak campers explore the natural beauty of the Northern Gulf Islands. Sharing the water with wildlife including seabirds and marine mammals, kayak campers camp on three or four of the campsites on Tent, Wallace, Galliano, Valdez and De Courcy Islands. Most campers travel in a double kayak, but each group takes a combination of single and double kayaks. Paddlers can expect approximately 2-5 hours of paddling per day. While there is no portaging, campers help with loading and unloading boats at campsites each day.


Check back soon for 2022 information

Returning Camper Information Click Here

2022 COVID-19 FAQ



Please review the Family Information Booklet for detailed camp information.

2021 Day Camp Info Booklet

Overnight Camper – Cabin Selection

Please ensure you select the gender cabin that you wish your camper to stay in during their overnight program at camp.  The cabin type can be found in the title and description of the camp on the Online Service Portal.  We cannot guarantee space should an error in selection occur.



Each year our community on Vancouver Island supports the YMCA-YWCA with charitable donations. These donations in turn are made available through Financial Assistance to families who demonstrate a financial need so all children may have a summer camp experience. Click here to learn more about Financial Assistance or to make a donation.

Transportation Information

Registration in overnight camp DOES NOT include bus transportation. Campers can be driven by car by a parent or guardian or registered for bus transportation from the the Downtown Y or the Westhills Y.

Bus Departure and Arrival Times

Times listed below are bus departure times, and buses do not wait for late participants. PLEASE ARRIVE 15 MINUTES EARLY to allow COVID-19 screening.

Morning Drop Off

Location Time
Downtown Y 8:00am
Westhills Y 8:30am
Camp Thunderbird – driven by car 9:00am

Afternoon Pick UP

When picking up your camper traffic on Fridays can be especially heavy.  Please give yourself ample time to arrive to camp or the Westhills Y.  Late parent/guardian arrival further delays our bus service.

Location Time
Downtown Y 5:15pm
Westhills Y 4:30pm
Camp Thunderbird – driven by car 3:45pm

COVID-19 Screening – Before Boarding the Bus

Campers and one caregiver will be asked to arrive at the bus stop 15 minutes before the scheduled bus departure times in order to allow enough time to complete the required COVID-19 pre-screening process with all families. Screening will also occur at camp for anyone who is driven to camp directly by a parent or guardian. Please be patient.  Mask wearing is required for staff and campers on the bus.



The YMCA-YWCA of Vancouver Island is a charity dedicated to building healthy communities and will subsequently be referred to as “YMCA-YWCA”.

YMCA-YWCA  Registration Policy

The customer agrees that by completing registration and making payment into a single activity or multiple activities with the YMCA-YWCA that they immediately become subject to the activity or program specific cancellation and refund policy.

Camp Cancellation and Refund Policy

Cancellations received by May 1st are subject to a 25% administration fee of the total camp cost including future payments. All requests must be submitted by email to This includes all non-medical refund requests including but not limited to those due to camp space being unavailable for friends, siblings, and/or due to other summer opportunities becoming available outside of Camp Thunderbird programs.  The YMCA-YWCA of Vancouver Island follows all Public Health Officer orders.

Medical cancellations will qualify for a refund of the unused portion of the program, less a $50 administration fee. In some cases, a doctor’s note will be required, at the discretion of the Camp Managers.

No refunds will be issued in instances where a camper is removed during a camp program at the choice or request of the camper or camper’s parent(s)/guardian(s) or is dismissed from camp for contravention of the camp commitment.

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