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Keystone Science School: Summer Camps for the Adventurous Learner (Exclusive Discount!)

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If you live in Colorado, you are likely familiar with acclaimed Keystone Science School’s (KSS) programs for sixth graders. My children were not among the fortunate ones to attend with their school but our luck is changing this summer. Out of all the many wonderful summer camps in Colorado, they have chosen to combine science with adventure and fun at Keystone Science School.

Located at 9,200 feet on the site of Old Keystone Village in Keystone, Colorado, their historic 23-acre campus serves as the ultimate outdoor laboratory and is the home base for their diverse suite of programs. Their facilities include modern log-style dormitories, a central dining hall, an outdoor amphitheater, and a state-of-the-art observatory. Their camps are designed to progress your child from being a five-year-old Stellar Day Camper to a seventeen-year-old Counselor Assistant as they inspire curiosity and critical thinking through the lens of science, which allows us to change lives and build communities.

This summer’s theme is the Summer of Imagination and Camp Director Seth Oglesby gives a snapshot of their offerings:

Stellar Day Camp, GRADES K-5 (Minimum Age 5)

Each week, we feature a different theme that speaks to the minds and imaginations of campers. At Stellar Day Camp your child can transform into an inventor, a creator, or an explorer—complete with costumes, hands-on educational opportunities, and outdoor adventures. We incorporate creative activities, teambuilding, and investigative learning into each day.

Specialty Day Camp GRADES K-5 (Minimum Age 5)

Have a high-adventure child? Our off-site Day Camp program combines topical science lessons with tons of outdoor activity and skill building in swimming and/or rock climbing. 

Nova Day Camp GRADES 6 – 8

Nova Day Camp offers super-charged adventures and fresh challenges to our older campers with a unique perspective on their Day Camp experience. Taking Science. Adventure. Fun! to the max, each session includes multiple adventure days, community service opportunities, and advanced curriculum.

Discovery Camp Grades 2-9

Discovery Camp is Keystone Science School’s flagship residential camp program where Science. Adventure. Fun! collide in a traditional camp setting, as campers experience hands-on education and build lifelong connections with friends. Every regular camp session includes a backpacking overnight, challenge hike adventure, team-building activities, a healthy dose of camp magic and time-honored songs by the campfire. We also offer a shorter, “Intro” session for our younger campers (K-5th grade) who have never been away from home before and a longer, “Deluxe” 12-day session for our seasoned veterans!

Keystone Voyagers (KV) GRADES 7-9

Our newest program, Keystone Voyagers, takes our traditional Discovery Camp program on the road and dials up the action! We travel to remote base-camps around Colorado to experience bigger adventures daily, including horseback riding, rock climbing, rafting, kayaking and climbing peaks. Each session is unique in both environment and activities, but all sessions are packed with new experiences and will make memories to last a lifetime! 

Keystone Mountain Adventures (KMA) GRADES 7-12

KMA is our wilderness-based program, with a focus on leadership development for our oldest campers. Trip itineraries vary and take place throughout Colorado and Utah, with each trip providing a unique perspective and lessons on the natural environment, backpacking and wilderness skills, team building and developing friendships that will last a lifetime.

Counselor Assistant Program (CAP) GRADES 6-12

The Counselor Assistant Program offers teens the opportunity to serve as role models, develop as leaders, and make a difference in the lives of others. ‘CAPs’ take part in all aspects of the Discovery and Day Camp programs and work closely with their counselor mentors.


The Keystone Science School campus is full of tradition and legend. We may have some conventional camp traditions, such as campfires and talent shows, but we have many that are unique to KSS. Every night KSS encourages campers to talk about their day and share details with one another. Each cabin has a “Candle Chat” every night where campers and counselors sit around a candle in a circle. Counselors facilitate constructive conversation on topics such as what they’re nervous/excited about, what success looks like, and missing home. 

Upon arrival each camper will be given an empty necklace. Throughout each camp session and program, campers collect various colored beads for different activities and experiences. They might earn a bead for going on a Discovery Hike, respecting a fellow camper, or overcoming a personal challenge on their Challenge Hike. Later, they can look back at their bead necklace and remember everything they’ve accomplished at camp.  Some campers keep and add to their bead necklaces year after year. There are many other traditions, such as our closing ceremonies and opening the “Love” at the end of a long challenge hike, that your child will have to come to camp to find out about!

Our most famous camp tradition is a local legend: the elusive Hot Pink Gorilla! Rumored sightings occur throughout the year around Summit County, but they seem to be centered around the Keystone Science School campus. We are still unsure of its origins and reasons for living at KSS.

But if your child is lucky they’ll be able to see the Hot Pink Gorilla…while experiencing so much more at Keystone Science School

Exclusive Discount

Get 10% off tuition on all camp sessions (Keystone Mountain Adventures, Keystone Voyagers, Discovery Camp, Stellar Day Camp, Nova Day Camp, Specialty Day Camp, CAP programs). Code to enter in the Coupon box at checkout is: MILEHIGHMAMA10. Coupon is good until Friday, June 2, 2017. 

Amber Johnson
Author: Amber Johnson

Amber is the founder and editor of Mile High Mamas, travel writer and former columnist for The Denver Post. She is a passionate community builder and loves the outdoors. She has two awesome teens and is happily married to a man obsessed with growing The Great Pumpkin.

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