What do you get when you mix a hike, expert naturalists, room to explore, and a dash of serendipity?
Trail School at Baltimore Woods!
Inspired by one of the great naturalists of the 19th century, Enos Mills, each excursion will take us on an adventure through Baltimore Woods as we explore away from the main trails. Our 182-acre “classroom” is rich with diverse habitats, including streams, forests, wetlands, beaver ponds, and open meadows.
“Often I am too busy, or there are too many boys and girls, or it seems best to have someone else accompanying a party afield. But to find individuals who will do this without becoming teachy or preachy and deadly to the children is most difficult. Most teachers, some parents, and many others want us to ignore interest and desire and force of the children to memorize something which they consider worthwhile.” – Enos Mills
Students will explore our 182-acre “classroom” and experience hands-on discovery and learning while connecting to the natural world!
Choose Your Adventure!
Hike to the Spruce Groves
Thursday, January 17, 10am-12pm
Explore the spruce groves of Baltimore Woods
and search for winter animals.
Hike to Hidden Meadow
Thursday, February 7, 10am-12pm
Take the secret trail to Hidden Meadow –
who knows what we might find there?
Big Tree Hike
Thursday, March 7, 10am-12pm
Take a cross country trek to find the biggest
and oldest trees in Baltimore Woods.
Hike to Salamander Hollow
Thursday, April 4, 10am-12pm
We’ll head out to Salamander Hollow, where
– you guessed it – we can find salamanders!
Children must be accompanied by an adult and should bring a water bottle and snack. For ages 5-15. $6 members; $9 public. Families are encouraged to stay after the programs to see our exhibits, read a book in our children’s discovery library, play with the puppets, or enjoy some play time in our Fox’s Den nature play space.
The Philosophy Behind Our Trail School
Enos Mills himself describes the philosophy best as he talks about his Trail School at the base of Longs Peak, over 100 years ago: “These children were dealing with real things through interest, and their imaginations blazed with more keenness than it was possible for the powers of legends and fairy tales to incite. They had been to school, had studied, had worked, had learned without realizing it. Their reports amounted to enthusiastic recitations of new, big lessons well learned. Best of all, they were happy, and were eager to go on with this schooling – this developing.”
Our professionally trained and experienced environmental educators bring a wealth of knowledge and a passion for hands-on discovery and learning, while building lasting connections to the natural world and inspiring a sense of stewardship in your children. We also have an extensive collection of natural history artifacts and field guides to bring added meaning to each hike.
Tom Meier, our Camp Director and Public Programs Manager will guide each meeting of our Trail School. He has been working with children outdoors since 1993 and running our Nature Day Camps since 2007.
For more information of the power of nature play for children check out The Children and Nature Network’s extensive library of research: