10 Things To Expect From BSA Summer Camp at Lake of the Ozarks

bsa summer camp

Summer camp is the pinnacle of the Scouting calendar. Every year, young men and women eagerly anticipate camp and the experience of immersing themselves in Scouting culture in the great outdoors. At Camp Hohn, located within the breathtaking Lake of the Ozarks Scout Reservation, Scouts find themselves in an exceptional setting where they can engage in the Scouting program, embrace the wonders of nature, and build lasting connections with their fellow Scouts. 

This guide shares 10 things to expect from BSA summer camp in the Ozarks, along with a BSA summer camp packing list to help prepare you for an experience you’ll never forget.

10 Things You’ll Experience at BSA Summer Camp

The Lake of the Ozarks Scout Reservation is located on 450 spectacular acres near Laurie, Missouri. Situated just one hour south of Jefferson City on the Lake of the Ozarks Osage Arm at mile marker 44, the Ozarks’ natural beauty and rocky terrain play host to the camping home of the Great Rivers Council. 

Great Rivers serves Scouting youth and adult volunteers in 33 central and northern Missouri counties. Camp Hohn has welcomed BSA Scouts and their leaders for over 50 years. Here’s what you can expect during your 7-day, 6-night camping experience with us:

1. Genuine Friendship

Campers have the opportunity to make new friends at Camp Hohn in an environment that encourages teamwork, cooperation, and good citizenship. The genuine connections forged at camp last a lifetime. Throughout the week, campers participate in unit activities and competitions designed to strengthen existing bonds and build new ones.

2. Watersports Activities

The Lake of the Ozarks Scout Reservation boasts more than a mile of lakefront property. Spend time on the beautiful waters of Lake of the Ozarks enjoying watersports, including:

  • Tubing
  • Jet skis
  • Stand-up paddle boards
  • Canoeing & kayaking
  • Motorboating
  • Rowing
  • Small-boat sailing
  • Water sports
  • Swimming
  • Fishing
  • Fly fishing

3. Campfires

Gather around the campfire to roast marshmallows, sing camp songs, and share and reflect on the day’s successes with your fellow campers before heading to bed under the stars each evening.

4. Shooting Sports

Try your hand at marksmanship by participating in one of our many shooting sports, including:

  • Rifles
  • Shotgun
  • Pistols
  • Archery
  • 3D archery

5. Creative Activities

Your imagination is the only limit to what you can achieve at Camp Hohn. The recent addition of the Sinquefield Invention Campus features state-of-the-art equipment, including laser engravers, 3D printers, forges, knife sanders, power hammers, and more. Innovate, design, and construct during one of the many creative pursuits we offer in our fast-growing invention and skill/trades area, which is designed to stretch a young person’s thinking. 

Some of the options you can choose from include:

  • Inventing
  • Digital/Robotics technology
  • Game design
  • Blacksmithing
  • Welding
  • Woodworking
  • Graphic design
  • Photography & moviemaking
  • 3D printing

6. Cooking

The camping program of the Great Rivers Council uses a campsite patrol method instead of utilizing a dining hall. Your food service commissary will deliver food for each meal, and you will prepare it at your campsite. Campers develop independence and self-reliance through this experience. Enjoy the fellowship of other campers at two camp-wide meals prepared by staff during your stay as well.

7. Opportunity To Earn Merit Badges

Throughout the week, Scouts can work on multiple merit badges and participate in many camp activities that can lead to advancement. Each of these experiences supports the BSA mission to provide youth character development, citizenship training, self-reliance, and personal growth in physical, mental, and spiritual fitness. 

Merit badges don’t require additional fees, except for watersports and motorboating. Camp Hohn offers more than 60 different merit badges and activity offerings, including:

  • Advanced Blacksmithing
  • Animation
  • Aquatics
  • Architecture
  • Astronomy
  • Automotive Maintenance
  • Brownsea (First Class Trail)
  • Camping
  • Chess
  • Climbing
  • COPE
  • Eagle Required Badges
  • Electronics
  • Fish and Wildlife Management
  • Forestry
  • Geology
  • Handicraft
  • High Adventure
  • Indian Lore
  • BSA Lifeguard
  • Model Design & Building
  • Nature & Ecology
  • Order of the Arrow
  • Painting
  • Pioneering
  • Plant Science
  • Plumbing
  • Programming
  • Shooting Sports
  • Signs, Signals, & Codes
  • Skills/Trades
  • Truck Transportation
  • Weather
  • And more!

8. Emergency Preparedness Training

Scouts participate in emergency preparedness training at camp to learn skills like wilderness survival, first aid, and orienteering. These competencies will serve them well into adulthood and for the rest of their lives.

9. Beautiful Natural Settings

The Ozarks are beautiful during the summer, with plenty of green trees, sparkling lake water under blue skies, and stunning sunsets each evening. Be part of the area’s natural beauty when you immerse yourself in your surroundings at the Lake of the Ozarks Scout Reservation.

10. Lifelong Memories

BSA camp reinforces Scouting values such as trustworthiness, good citizenship, and outdoor skills. You will carry the knowledge you learn at camp over a lifetime and make lifelong memories from your experience at BSA summer camp in the Ozarks.

BSA Summer Camp Packing List

Knowing what to bring for your stay with us is important to having a successful experience. The following are suggested items to pack for BSA summer camp:

Personal Gear

  • Scout uniform (including appropriate badges)
  • T-shirts, shorts, and underwear (enough for the duration of the camp)
  • Long pants and long-sleeved shirts for cooler evenings
  • Swimsuit(s)
  • Socks and hiking boots
  • Hat or cap for sun protection
  • Rain gear (poncho or rain jacket)
  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad or air mattress
  • Pillow
  • Flashlight or headlamp with extra batteries
  • Personal hygiene items (toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, shampoo, etc.)
  • Towel
  • Insect repellent
  • Sunscreen

Camping Equipment

  • Tent (if not provided by the camp)
  • Groundsheet or tarp for the tent
  • Mess kit (plate, bowl, utensils, cup)
  • Water bottle or canteen
  • Pocketknife (if allowed by camp regulations)
  • Backpack or daypack
  • Extra garbage bags for waste disposal
  • Camp chair or stool (optional)

Activity Gear

  • Scouting handbook
  • Merit badge pamphlets and worksheets (if working on specific badges)
  • Writing materials (notebook, pens, pencils)
  • Compass
  • Map of the camp and surrounding area
  • Camera (optional)


  • Medications (if required, provide detailed instructions to camp staff)
  • Extra spending money for the trading post or camp store
  • Personal first aid kit (band-aids, antiseptic ointment, etc.)
  • Snacks (if allowed by camp regulations)
  • Cell phone (if permitted by the camp)

Attend Camp Hohn at Lake of the Ozarks Scout Reservation 

We’re committed to providing the best possible program during your stay with us. The friendly and responsive staff at Camp Hohn has been carefully selected and trained to assist Scouts and Scout leaders throughout the week while setting an excellent example of what Scouting should be to all those attending camp. 

Lake of the Ozarks Scout Reservation hosts over a thousand Scouts during camp each summer. Fall is the perfect time to plan ahead for your BSA camp experience. Registration for Camp Hohn opens in October of the previous year, so don’t delay. 

Not sure about your summer plans yet? Before May 1, all deposit fees of less than $25 per person are refundable or transferable as part of our Camper Savings Day. Space is limited, so reserve your unit’s campsite today. 

Give your Scout the gift of personal growth, life skill development, and enduring friendship while celebrating Scouting and all your camper has accomplished this past year. Sign up today to secure your camper’s spot at Missouri’s premier BSA summer camp in the Lake of the Ozarks. 

For questions regarding important dates or the registration process, visit our website, call (573) 374-5761, or email great.riverscouncil@scouting.org. We look forward to growing with you and your campers next summer.