Packing for camp

To help you prepare for camp, we have included a suggested packing list along with some other helpful packing tips. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact us.



  • 10 pair Underwear
  • 2 sets Sleepwear
  • 4-6 pairs Shorts (including khakis for travel day uniform), 4 pairs for Horse Staff, Long Shorts or Capris for Rocks
    and Ropes staff.
  • 8-10 Shirts (camp appropriate – No alcohol/drug slogans)
  • 2-3 pairs Jeans, 2 pairs for Rocks & Ropes, Backpacking and Waterfront Staff, 3-4 pairs for Horse Staff
  • 1 pair Sweatpants
  • 3 Sweatshirts
  • 1 Warm Jacket (polar fleece is best weight)
  • 1 Pair of knit gloves (Optional)
  • 1 Knit ski hat/beanie (Optional)


  • 10-12 pairs Socks
  • 2 pair Athletic Shoes with good tread
  • 1 pair Sandals/Flip Flops (For use at Shaver Island Outpost and waterfront docks only)
  • 1 pair Hiking Boots (Backpacking staff only)
  • 1 pair Riding Boots (Horse Riding Staff only)


  • 2 Swim suits, 3-4 for Waterfront Staff (one-piece recommended for females at water sports, but not required)
  • 1 Beach Towel, for Waterfront Staff
  • 1 Wetsuit (Optional – short or spring suit recommended)


  • 1 Sleeping Bag (We recommend a rating of at least 30°F or 0°C)
  • 1 Pillow
  • 2 Pillow Cases
  • 1 Fitted Twin Sheet


  • 2 Bath Towels
  • 1 Washcloth or Loofah
  • 1Toiletry bag, including:
    • Toothbrush & Paste
    • Soap or Body wash
    • Shampoo/Conditioner
    • Sunblock
    • Lotion (Highly recommended! Because of our elevation, your skin can get VERY dry.)
    • Lip protection with sunscreen


  • 1 Footlocker, soft-sided trunk, or plastic drawers
  • 1 Duffel Bag (for overnights)
  • 1 Small Backpack
  • 1 Water Bottle
  • 1 Laundry Bag
  • 1 Hat or Visor
  • 2 pair of (cheap) Sunglasses
  • 1 Flashlight/Headlamp
  • 1 Battery-operated alarm clock
  • Various Costumes for each dance and theme days (See summer calendar for themes)


In general, our daytime temperatures range from 75-85ºF, or 25-30ºC, and campers and staff wear shorts and a t-shirt when they’re not in their bathing suits or at specialized activities.

Since we are in the mountains, the evenings and nights can be chilly. Evening temperatures usually range from 50-55ºF, occasionally dropping into the 40’s (approximately 5ºC). Most wear sweatpants or jeans with a sweatshirt or jacket during evening hours around the campfire.

Be sure to bring a sleeping bag which is warm enough for mountain camping. We recommend a sleeping bag rated to at least 30ºF, or 0ºC. If you don’t want to travel with one, a sleeping bag can be purchased in local stores starting at about US$35.

If you are sensitive to cooler temperatures, an additional blanket might help make you more comfortable. If your head gets cold, a knit ski cap or beanie may help you sleep at night.


Here are some tips to help you pack and prepare for your summer at Gold Arrow Camp.

  • Please arrive at camp for Training Week in compliance with the Gold Arrow Camp grooming policy (ex. clean shaven, body piercings removed, tattoos hidden, etc.).
  • Please be sure to arrive at camp with your closed-toed shoes already on. We have uneven terrain and wouldn’t want anyone to get hurt on their first day at camp!
  • To help ensure that you return home with your clothes, please be sure that all of your clothing and belongings are clearly and consistently labeled (Using camp name, initials or first and last name).
  • Generally, we suggest that clothing and personal articles should be packed in a footlocker or soft-sided trunk. Since there are no drawers or shelves in the cabins, cardboard or plastic drawers are a popular way for staff to store their belongings. These can be bought in Fresno on time off for those who are unable to bring them to camp.
  • We recommend that you pack your sleeping bag, blanket, and pillow in a duffle bag. Since you will be sleeping on an army-style cot for the summer, we recommend bringing a twin-size fitted sheet to cover your mattress. Nights can get chilly at camp, so an extra blanket may come in handy. Fleece blankets usually work best for extra warmth and packability.
  • Since there is no electricity in the tents, we recommend bringing a good flashlight, head lamp or battery-operated lantern.
  • Be sure to pack a warm jacket or fleece, as the nights can get cold.
  • Please bring old clothing that does not require dry cleaning or special washing. Do not purchase new or irreplaceable items for camp, as they could get lost.
  • Laundry is done weekly for staff members.
  • Do not bring valuable items such as expensive cameras and jewelry. We recommend campers and staff use a disposable camera marked with a first and last name. If you prefer you can purchase a camera in the Gold Arrow Camp store.
  • There are certain items which campers are not allowed to bring to camp. We ask that our staff abide by the same guidelines. These items include: food, fireworks, knives, matches, lighters, tobacco, alcohol, or illegal drugs. Staff may use personal electronics and cell phones on time off when away from campers.
  • For Counselor use, lockers are provided in the staff lounge to store personal electronics. You can get a locker, and lock, assigned to you from the office when you get to camp. Personal electronic items are not permitted in your cabin or in the view of campers.
  • The camp can store important items such as passports, cash, and airline tickets in the camp safe.
  • If you have any questions on what to bring for camp, please feel free to email Bean or call our office at 800-554-2267.