Venture Expeditions

Wilderness adventure trips for struggling teens and young adults

July 22-Aug 3



Venture Expeditions are designed for teens who are struggling in family relationships, engaging in school, and/or starting to display behavior issues. Venture trips offer a unique opportunity for teens to commit to impactful outdoor experiences lead by two experienced Bighorn Facilitators along with a Bighorn Technical Adventure Coordinator. Venture curriculum is designed and grounded within a Biblical worldview and utilizes challenge and adventure in a backcountry setting as catalysts for relationship building, character development, and personal growth.


Real experiences on the river and in the wild are facilitated to help students gain a better understanding of self awareness, life decisions, and worldview. Students will experience programming that includes foundations, ropes course, backpacking, specialized white water events, and rock climbing. The course ends with a family celebration, feedback, and goal setting to help transfer themes and concepts to everyday living.


Skilled facilitators are involved in helping transfer the concepts back to family life with action goals to implement within the student’s family at the end of the course. The facilitators are committed to connect with students on a quarterly basis throughout the year.


We are excited about how a changed environment can be conducive for communication skills, understanding conflict, and developing a worldview!



Course Segments

The Venture Expeditions program for struggling teens and young adults is characterized by the following segments: Foundations, Wilderness and Adventure Expeditions, and Celebration/Debrief. Venture Expeditions values Adventure with Purpose - students will face physical and relational challenges that are inherent within adventure environments and temporary community. This develops leadership aptitude, increases problem-solving skills, and improves communication, all while enjoying and stewarding the wilderness areas we use.






This section is where families and youth collectively meet to “break the ice” and get to know one another. Teens will be introduced to their expedition group and will commit to participating and upholding the community values through a facilitated “Full Value Contract.” Parents will have opportunity for a pre-course seminar so they understand the challenges their students will be going through, given an overview of the core concepts, and then send them off into “adventure.”


Expeditions are broken into sections of specialized outdoor and adventure activities over a 12 day period.


Backpack experience, Rock Climbing Clinic, White Water Intro, White Water kayak Clinic

4:1 student to instructor ratio - students have individual care in making goals, stepping into relationship, and experiencing personal expedition feedback.

Outdoor Experiential Education - real experiences in the wilderness and on the river will give clearer understanding of decisions and their benefits as well as consequences.

Reflection and Processing - Students are given opportunity to reflect on the experience through intentional individual and group reflection time, goal setting, and feedback.

Core Concepts - Leadership as a non-anxious influencing presence, Personal Value as made in God’s image, Servant Leadership, Perseverance over Immediate Gratification, and Joy in contrast to Happiness.



After the Wilderness and Adventure section, families come together for a shared adventure experience to celebrate their teen’s challenges and successes. Then in a half day seminar, students and families are given feedback, and facilitated through a clinic to help set their own action goals for change back in the family environment.


phone: (888) 316-0367

Safety Management

Many times people ask whether or not the events we facilitate are “safe.” Surprisingly, our answer is “no.” There is an inherent and unavoidable level of risk in all wilderness and outdoor adventure activities, which plays a vital role in our ministry. Venture Expedition staff are experienced facilitators and technical adventure coordinators with industry standard level equipment and safety techniques that work to mitigate real risk. Engaging with participants through decision making processes and navigating a participant’s awareness and perception of risk are key aspects of outdoor experiential education. The Lead Expedition Facilitator will have at minimum a certification in Wilderness First Aid. Trips outside a 2 hour travel time from a hospital setting will have access to either cell phone coverage or a Spot Tracking device to activate EMS and/or Search and Rescue in case of a life threatening injury.

Outdoor Experiential Education vs.  Wilderness Therapy

Venture Expeditions are designed within experiential education curriculum that includes concepts of theory, reflection, review, and transference. Students have opportunity to commit to challenge and be exposed to relationship skills, decision making, and critical thinking in an outdoor expedition environment. At the end of the course, the facilitator will debrief the experience during the celebration segment and assist the family in creating their own individual realistic family action goals to commit to in their home context. This type of facilitation in reflecting and reviewing an experience for change is considered outdoor experiential education.


Camp Bighorn does NOT offer therapeutic wilderness therapy programs. Students join the Venture Expeditions course by their free will and have the ability to choose to be in the course. Also, Camp Bighorn does NOT have licensed therapists on its staff team. Though Bighorn has skilled facilitators who can assist participants and families in setting healthy lifestyle and relationship goals, we are not a resource for those who are in need of professional clinical counseling that establishes a long term relationship with licensed continual care. If students and/or families are in need of professional counseling, Camp Bighorn is able to refer students and families to Christian counselors.


Venture Expeditions participants may be experiencing dysfunction in family life and school based on their choices. However, Venture Expeditions is NOT a program for teens with the following history: Juvenile offenses, chemical dependence, violent behavior, recent suicide attempts, or eating disorders.


The Staff

Josh V.

Caleb S.


Learn more about the staff on our Meet the Staff page.

1850 MT Hwy 135  Plains, MT 59859

P: (406) 826-3144  F: (406) 365-1400