Survival Camp


Kanakuk's Survival Kamp offers you the opportunity to test the limits of your endurance. 

Imagine high adventure, lifetime skills, and solid Biblical discipleship - along with more fun than you can imagine!

*Kamp Store Credit of: $65 for 14-Night Kampers will be added to your final tuition. Merchandise and personal care item purchases will be deducted from this credit and the balance refunded. To increase this amount or set a maximum spending limit for your child please login to your account.

Kamp Snapshot

This two week training course echos the U.S. Army Special Forces "SERE School” survival, Kanakuk style! Build character and learn spiritual lessons through using only what God has provided in the woods.  

Survival Camp will push campers to the limits of their physical and mental endurance. We will teach them to go into the woods with nothing and survive.  

In fact, for the final test, campers will be dropped off by themselves for a two day solo survival trip. Not to worry, before they go we will teach them to do the following: start fires by making a bow and drill from wood collected from the forest; build a wind proof and water proof shelter from limbs, branches, leaves and bark; strip bark from trees, pull weeds from fields, dig roots from the ground and weave baskets from all these materials;  make cutting edges by flint-knapping rocks to make a knife blade; set deadfall traps and take small game, skin them out, tan their hides, use the meat to make survival food and animal fat lamps; make charcoal water filters, cups, bowls and eating utensils by burning them from wood; fashion fishing lures from sticks and bone; make string and rope from grass and bark; navigate without the aid of a map or compass and more... they will learn it all by doing it. There will be several survival campouts, each one becoming progressively more difficult.

Survival Camp is divided into Training Week and Survival Week. During the first week, campers will spend a lot of time learning all their survival skills. There will be two campouts during the first week just to get them use to sleeping in a shelter that they have constructed, cooking over campfires and practicing their newly acquired skills.  

They will also learn how and where to find food in streams and rivers. Just so they are not bored, we will rappel off a three hundred foot bluff during the second campout.

The second week will be spent survival camping. We break this week down into three scenarios: lost backpacker, lost hiker and airplane crash. On the first campout,"lost backpacker," they will land navigate with only a compass but no map. They will terrain navigate to find water and to select a suitable survival campsite. This is where they will be given live rabbits to dispatch, skin, clean and tan the hide. They will cure the meat and make survival food known as pemmican.

The second survival campout, "lost hiker," the campers will navigate using a map but no compass. In order to obtain food, they must set deadfall traps that they build from natural materials. Because they will have only the items a day hiker would have, the level of difficulty becomes much greater on this campout.

The final survival campout, "airplane crash," simulates a pilot who has crash landed. Before the crash, the pilot noted that a river was close by the crash site. We take campers, one at a time, to an isolated spot and give them a compass heading to the water source. They are given only a multi-tool and the materials they fashioned during training. This two day campout will test all the skills they have learned. 

All campers are closely monitored, but they will not be aware of anyone. This is a time of learning to deal with fear, determination and reliance on God. Survival Camp was described by past campers as “the hardest thing I have ever done but, the most awesome thing I have ever done.”

Area Lodging

Find out where Kanakuk families love to play, stay, and eat while in Branson! Many of our Kanakuk families like to stay in the Branson area either right after they've dropped off their Kampers, or right after pick-up. Over the years, they've let us know about many of the places where their family prefers to relax and unwind, spend quality time together, or enjoy a great meal where "someone else does the cooking". 

We'd like to share a few of these recommendations with you- just click the picture below and you'll be taken to the Lodging and Attractions page of our website. Of course, if you choose to visit any of these establishments, we'd love it if you'd let them know that the Kanakuk family recommended them to you.

Enjoy! Visit the Lodging and Attractions page.

Provided Equipment

The following equipment is provided for Kampers to use during the Kamp term. It is not necessary or required to bring these items. For Kampers packing list, click here.

  • Backpack
  • Lanyard
  • Compass
  • Two Water Bottles – Nalgene
  • Headlamp
  • Multi-tool – Gerber
  • Poncho
  • Poncho Liner
  • Tarp
  • Cook Kit
  • First Aid Kit
  • Gloves
  • One-man tent
  • Camp chair
  • Life Jacket

Closing Ceremonies

Survival Camp Graduation/Closing Ceremony will be held at Bull Creek base camp, on the final Friday evening starting around 6:00 pm. Bull Creek base camp is located at the end of Shary View Road. Follow these directions: From U.S. 65 take the Bee Creek exit north of Branson. Bee Creek goes east from U.S. 65 and continues in a north easterly direction. Follow Bee Creek for approximately 1.7 miles until you see Rinehart Road. Rinehart goes east (or a right turn). Follow Rinehart for approximately 0.6 miles until it ends at Shary View Road. Go left on Shary View Road and follow it for approximately 2 miles, where it will dead end. You will see a large “SURVIVAL” sign at the entrance to the Bull Creek base camp on your left. You will be met by Survival Kamp staff that will direct you where to park. They will also direct you to the site where a BBQ picnic dinner and graduation will be held. The entire meal and ceremony should last approximately one and a half to two hours. If you will not be able to attend and pick up your Kamper after graduation, your Kamper will be taken to K-1 for overnight lodging and will be transported to the airport, or other transportation locations, the next morning (Saturday).

Please bring a couple of lawn chairs to closing ceremonies, as we do not have a lot of seating at our base camp.

How to Enroll

Please email your child’s T-Shirt size to Dee Dolloff by May 15, 2014.

Packing list

The following items need to be provided by each survival Kamper and packed in a large duffel bag

Bible 1
Blue Jeans or Pants (required) 1
Casual Clothes for Fun Day 1
Copy of Insurance Card 1
Duffel Bag (no trunks) 1
Insect Repellant 1
Jacket, Sweater, or Sweatshirt 1
Laundry Bag 1
Long Sleeve Shirts 5
Notepad, Pen, Envelopes 1
Pair Underwear 12
Pair of Shower Shoes (thongs) 1
Pair of Socks 12
Pair of hiking shoes or boots 1
Pair of long pants 5
Pillow 1
Pillow Cases 2
Shorts 2
Sleeping Bag 1
Sunscreen and Chapstick 1
T-Shirts 2
Tennis/Jogging Shoes 2
Toiletry Articles 1
Wash Cloth 5
hiking shoes or boots 1
one-piece swimsuit (modest) 1


Spray all clothing with Permethrin (tick and chigger prevention). This product can be found at most camping supply stores. This is very important that ALL clothing, including socks and underwear, be saturated with permethrin and allowed to dry.