Programs designed for young adults in Grade 8 - 12

Choose from 2 locations within Maple Ridge’s Malcolm Knapp Research Forest, including the convenient Main Entrance muster point; and the lakeside services at Loon Lake Lodge & Retreat Centre.

Location 1: Malcolm Knapp Research Forest, Maple Ridge (Main Entrance)
Runs: All year
Program Types: Half-day or Full-day options
Cost*: $10 for Half-day Programs; $15 for Full-day Programs.

Location 2: Loon Lake Lodge & Retreat Centre, Maple Ridge
Runs: August – June
Program Types: Day-use or overnight retreat
Day-Use Cost*: $40 includes lunch, facility use, & instructor-led programs
Retreat Cost*: $10 for half-day programs; $15 for full-day programs when booking an overnight retreat. Please contact Loon Lake for rates and availability.
*Costs are per youth & include staff and materials.


Our Saplings program has been created to grow both old and inspire new natural connections between students and the environment. These programs have been crafted to facilitate place-based learning and ecological enlightenment through exploratory adventures and academic modules. Students will critically analyze real-world issues by observing them on a more local and immersive scale. Our modules focus on developing prior knowledge of natural environments and understanding the interconnected nature of various ecosystem components. Students can gain practical field experience while strengthening their teamwork, communication, observation, and problem solving skills.

Module Examples:

We offer teachers and youth leaders a choice of 15 modules within the Saplings program. Modules range from invertebrates studies to team-building survival challenges to identifying the ecosystem significance of common plant species in the forest. To view our current modules, drop us a note and we'll reply with the full range of curriculum.

Here are 3 examples (of the 15 modules) to choose from:

Invertebrates - From the bottom of stream beds to the top of the forest canopy, invertebrates are ubiquitous inhabitants of coastal rainforests in British Columbia. In this module, students will learn about the ecological role of different invertebrate species and how to identify them. Students will have the opportunity to handle and collect invertebrate specimens, deepening their understanding and appreciation of these incredible organisms!

Survival Challenge - The best laid plans of hikers and campers often go awry. In this module, students will learn what items they should have in their packs when going into the wild. Students will also learn basic survival skills, such as how to start a fire, how to collect fresh water, and how to build a shelter.

Soil and Vegetation - Students will get a chance to dig a little deeper into soil science and plant identification in this module. Students can get their hands dirty and gain an understanding of the mineral and organic components, formation, and importance of soil. Students will also explore the different plant species in the region, their human uses, and ecosystem significance, through guided hikes, learning stations, and more.

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Understand the interconnected nature of forest ecosystems and the role humans play as part of that system.

  2. Strengthen teamwork skills by working in groups to solve real-world problems in a local and immersive setting.

  3. Develop deeper connections with the natural environment by enhancing ecological literacy.

  4. Practice wilderness survival, observational, and analytical skills in a hands-on outdoor setting.

  5. Explain the importance of all stakeholders involved in resource management and the importance of incorporating traditional environmental knowledge and First Nations’ perspectives.


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