Boating is a popular part of the waterfront program at Treetops.

Waterfront counselors provide general instruction, as well as play, to teach campers the basics of boating. Activities like sailboat tag, water obstacle courses, and “sinky boats” make the learning process fun for campers of varying interests and experience.


Prior to canoeing, kayaking, sailing, and other boating activities, all campers must complete a deep-water swimming assessment.

In addition, they must learn:

  • lifejacket safety
  • water safety
  • boating rescue procedures.

When campers have mastered these skills, as well as those specific to canoeing, kayaking, and sailing, they are eligible for day and overnight camping trips.

Canoeing & Kayaking

At Treetops, all campers have the opportunity to learn the art of canoeing and kayaking, no matter their skill level. Under the guidance of our certified staff, campers first learn and develop basic skills in Camp at our waterfront. They learn:

  • paddling basics
  • safe portage methods
  • boating rescue procedures and more.

When they have demonstrated sufficient proficiency, campers may embark on overnight camping and boating trips with our wilderness trip leaders, using lightweight canoes and kayaks from our well-stocked fleet.


All campers are encouraged to participate in our sailing program.

Beginners first learn the basics of knots, rigging, and points of sail. On our own lake, they sail first in small boats like Sunfish before progressing to larger 15-foot Capris.

As they become more advanced and knowledgeable sailors, campers have the chance to test their knowledge on overnight trips to larger lakes in the Adirondack Park.