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Opportunities for Young Men – Camps

Form 4 Camps

Important documentation is handed out to students before each camp. If parents have any queries about the camps or require further information, please contact Master in Charge of Form 4 camps M. Gaspar via email.

Auckland Grammar School encourages students to recognise and develop their individual potential by setting personal goals and striving to attain them.

While these goals are often set in the classroom, on the sports field and on the stage, we also encourage the development of the whole person by offering a number of opportunities for our young men outside of the School. These include initiatives such as Leadership Camps, the Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award, the Spirit of Adventure and various overseas cultural and historical tours.

Taking part in these activities helps our young men gain valuable skills in often challenging situations, while discovering and building on their strengths, interests, knowledge and personality.

All Form 4 students will participate in a four-day camp at Venturelodge, the School’s outdoor education facility at Ohakune. Students will participate in an extensive programme of activities in a challenging outdoor environment. The programme is ideal for their personal and social development.

The camp is part of the School’s teaching programme, and as such, normal School Rules apply and must be strictly adhered to. Any serious breach of these rules could result in the student being returned to School at the parent’s expense.

2024 Camp Dates

Term 2:

  • Week 1 (Wednesday 1 – Saturday 4 May): 4C
  • Week 2 (Sunday 5 – Wednesday 8 May): 4D
  • Week 2 (Wednesday 8 – Saturday 11 May): 4M
  • Week 4 (Sunday 19 – Wednesday 22 May): 4N
  • Week 4 (Wednesday 22 – Saturday 25 May): 4O and the other half of 4P
  • Week 5 (Wednesday 29 May – Saturday 1 June): 4G
  • Week 6 (Tuesday 4 – Friday 7 June): 4H
  • Week 7 (Sunday 9 – Wednesday 12 June): 4I
  • Week 7 (Wednesday 12 – Saturday 15 June): 4F
  • Week 8 (Sunday 16 – Wednesday 19 June): 4E

The course aims to:

  • Introduce students to a range of outdoor activities, and safe practices they need to adopt to pursue these activities independently;
  • Provide opportunities for enjoyment, adventure and challenge; and
  • Increase the students’ self-confidence and to develop their social and interpersonal skills in a challenging but supportive environment

Course information for parents

The cost for the camp is $695 which includes all activities for the week, transport and food at Venturelodge. Boys are advised to bring their lunch with them on the day that they travel, as the bus will make a lunch stop en route to Ohakune.

It is important that student’s camps are paid in full before his camp departs. Payments can be made in instalments via the Parent Portal which has been loaded onto your son’s account at the start of the year. All consent forms should also be taken to the Finance Office.

The School wishes to ensure that no student should miss out on camp due to financial hardship. If payment is a problem, please contact the Finance Office via email or phone (09) 623 5400 ext. 425, so the situation can be discussed and an alternative schedule of payment can be arranged

Programme Overview

Students will be given instruction in outdoor safety and survival. They will participate in a range of activities which are selected daily in accordance with weather conditions, including caving, tramping, gorge walking, rock climbing and abseiling. They may learn basic navigation skills, undertake the High Ropes Course and will camp out overnight at some stage.

All of these activities involve some degree of risk, which is what makes them challenging and educational. The activities are run by qualified, professional outdoor instructors and safety is their prime concern at all times. A full risk management process has been carried out for each activity. Each class will be accompanied by at least two staff members, and four Form 7 students.


The mountain and plateau environment can be harsh and unforgiving. Dramatic changes between extremes of temperature are common and students must be equipped with clothing for the most adverse conditions, even in summer.

This means waterproof raincoat and over-trousers, sturdy boots or walking shoes, woollen/polar fleece jumpers, woollen gloves, hats and socks, woollen or polypropylene shirts and undergarments. Failure to be correctly clothed may endanger not only the particular student’s safety, but that of the whole group.

It is essential that each student has all the items on this list. Without suitable warm clothing to provide protection from the elements, your son will be a danger to himself and his group and therefore may be barred from participation in outdoor activities.

Purchasing all the required gear will be very expensive. It is strongly recommended that you borrow items from friends and family. Every student in last year’s Form 4 went on camp, so try asking some of them. Alternatively, the Living Simply outdoors store in Newmarket has jackets, boots and sleeping bags available for hire. You could also try Kathmandu and Bivouac Outdoor.


Students will be provided with all meals whilst at Venturelodge (apart from lunch on travelling days), however they are not provided with morning or afternoon teas and therefore will need to bring sufficient foods to snack on between meals to provide energy whilst in the field.


Although there is a drying room at the lodge, there are no facilities for the students to wash their clothes. Dirty gear will be taken home for washing.

Form 6 Leadership Camps

Auckland Grammar School is pleased to be able to offer an opportunity for Form 6 students to gain valuable skills in how to be effective leaders through experiencing challenging situations within an outdoor education context.

As part of our wider Leadership Programmes portfolio, two Form 6 Leadership Camps will operate out of Venturelodge in Ohakune in Terms 2 and 3. The camps run for the duration of the week with the students departing early Monday morning and returning early Friday evening.

Each camp will see the students work from our base in Ohakune, using the contrasting terrain in and around the Tongariro National Park. Your son will be expected to lead a number of team activities and scenarios throughout the five day camp. The activities are designed to place students out of their comfort zone, so that they gain a better understanding of their own leadership skills and how team dynamics operate, with a view to developing strong leaders.

The cost of the camp this year will be issued in our application correspondence and will include travel throughout the week, all food, activities, and instruction. During the week, your son will receive verbal feedback on his performance from his team leader. The skills learnt on this camp can be utilised in various leadership roles and we would strongly encourage him to act as a Form 7 leader on one of next year’s Form 4 Camps.