Summer Camp FAQ

Please find the answers to our commonly asked questions below. If you still have questions, feel free to reach out to

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We organize our summer camps by the grade level that participants will be entering in the following fall. (For example, if your child is currently enrolled in Kindergarten, you would register them for grades 1-2 summer camp.) We have found this to be the best way to create a beneficial environment for program participants to learn and play. It also sets our educators up for success, as we carefully design the camps for specific grade levels

We love having your kids in our camps! Please help us do our job well by choosing the appropriate grade-level camp. We reserve the right to cancel and refund your camp registration if your child is not registered for the correct camp based on their grade. Together, we can do our best for your kids AND our educators. Thank you!

Scholarship forms will be available the week of February 26.

ACES offers tuition assistance to full-time residents (children need to attend school in the Roaring Fork Valley or in the Re-2 School District; adults need to rent/own a home and live in the area on a full-time basis). A limited number of scholarships are available based on financial need and are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. Applicants may receive tuition assistance for 25-100% of the camp cost.

Once your application has been approved, we will contact you with the scholarship amount offered and a discount code. You can then proceed to complete the online registration. 

Scholarships may not be transferred to another person. If, after accepting the scholarship, the participant is unable to attend, please notify us at least two weeks prior to the first day of the camp. If ACES cancels a camp, you will have the option of transferring your scholarship to another camp, space permitting.

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Centro de Estudios del Medioambiente de Aspen (ACES) ofrece asistencia para el costo de matrícula a ellos que viven en el valle del Roaring Fork o en las comunidades cercanas todo el tiempo (los niños necesitan asistir escuela en el valle o en el distrito escolar Re-2). Un número limitado de becas están disponibles, basado en necesidad financiera y están adjudicados por orden de llegada. Los candidatos pueden recibir asistencia de 25-100% del costo de la clase.

Cuando su aplicación está aprobado les contactamos con la cantidad que ACES puede ofrecer y un código de descuento. Entonces, se puede completar la registración por internet a

No se puede transferir una beca a otra persona. Si, después de aceptar una beca, el participante no puede asistir, por favor notifica a ACES dos semanas antes del primer día de clases. Si ACES cancela una sesión de clases, usted puede elegir otra clase, según lo que está disponible.

We understand that plans can change, and we try our best to work with you if you need to cancel a class. Email cancellation requests to Please read carefully.

A FULL REFUND (less a $30 cancellation fee per camp) is given if the participant cancels PRIOR to May 1.

A 50% REFUND (less a $30 cancellation fee per camp) is given if the participant cancels between May 1 and within 14 DAYS PRIOR to the start of the camp. 

NO REFUNDS are given for cancellation within 14 DAYS PRIOR to the start of the class. We will consider full or partial refunds (less a $30 cancellation fee) for family emergencies, illness (with doctor’s note), or accidents prior to the camp session start date.

In the event that ACES has to cancel a class, FULL REFUNDS will be issued (no additional fees).

Please let us know if you would like to turn your camp registration fee into a fully tax-deductible gift to the Children’s Education Fund to support ACES’ education programs. The amount of your donation will reflect the cancellation policy, and the amount that you would receive as a refund at the date of cancellation. These programs provide valuable experiences for students that encourage resiliency, creativity, and a connection to the outdoors. We thank you, as always, for being part of the ACES family!

ACES Members receive a 10% discount on all our summer camps, birding outings, adult courses, and other community programs when you register through Become a member of ACES today!

Select the ACES Member price when registering.

Join ACES Bird Club to receive additional benefits on our birding programs.

Every participant will fill out a waiver and photo release at the time of registration. This is good through the entire year as long as information stays the same.

Participants with specific medical needs and conditions must follow the procedures described below so that ACES may determine if they have the staff and resources to appropriately respond to the participant’s needs/conditions. This requirement is not intended to be exclusionary. This Medical Management Plan is applicable for all ACES community program participants.

Adult participant/parent/legal guardian is required to provide a written Medical Management Plan to ACES for any child or adult requiring specific medical care while participating in an ACES program. The Medical Management Plan must be either filled out via the Jumbula follow-up form sent to you after registration, uploaded to their Jumbula account no less than two weeks prior to the start of the program or emailed to Adult participant/parent/legal guardian and relevant ACES staff will review the plan together (via email, phone or in person) and address questions prior to the program start date. If the adult participant/parent/legal guardian wishes to discuss the medical management plan again on the day of program, the participant/parent/legal guardian must schedule an appointment to begin no later than 30 minutes prior to the start of the program.  

Medical Management Plan Must include:

  1. Details of participant’s conditions (condition, symptoms, triggers)
  2. Steps to minimize risk or exposure including administering medication
    • Location of medication and description of appropriate storage of the medication. 
    •  Example: Child to have medication in his/her backpack at all times, or Child’s medication will be stored at Hallam Lake or Rock Bottom Ranch with on-site staff.
  3. Action Plan–step by step actions to be taken, including:
    • Instructions for care in event of a medical event
    • Directions for self-administration, when relevant
  4. A written prescription from the health care practitioner who is licensed to prescribe that includes the name, purpose, prescribed dosage, frequency and length of time between doses.
  5. Written authorization from the adult participant/parent/guardian to administer the medication.
  6. Confirmation from the health care provider that the child has been instructed and is capable of self-administration of the medication, when relevant. 
  7. Written statement from the parent/guardian releasing ACES, its employees, board and any associated entities from liability, except in cases of willful and wanton conduct or disregard of the criteria of the medical management plan.
  8. Any additional relevant information.

The Medical Management Plan must be updated on an annual basis and/or when medical changes occur to the participant’s health or prescribed treatment.

Aspen Center for Environmental Studies (ACES) mission is to educate for environmental responsibility. ACES programs are one-day or multi-day field excursions with the goal of inspiring environmental stewardship.  

Our priority is to maintain the health and well-being of our staff and participants, in addition to providing high-quality programming. ACES strives to provide age-appropriate activities that depend on the specific details of the program. If you have questions about what you or your child will be doing, please email or call ACES for more information.

ACES works to accommodate a wide range of abilities in programs. ACES works to make reasonable accommodations with individuals and program leaders to create an accessible learning environment, when appropriate and feasible. 

All ACES Naturalist and Education staff have basic First Aid training. All lead educators in wilderness environments have either Wilderness First Aid or Wilderness First Responder training. ACES staff are trained to respond to basic medical emergencies in the context of ACES programming that they facilitate. You and your doctor are responsible for deciding if you or your child can adequately participate in their ACES program. 

If you have more questions about ACES Community Programs, please email or call either of our locations.

It is free to get on our waitlist! 

    • After registration opens, a program will read “full” in red next to the program name when no spots remain.
    • To add a participant to a camp waitlist, proceed to “Register.” The next page will show the “ADD TO WAITLIST” option. Click “ADD TO WAITLIST,” select the week of camp, and click “CONTINUE.” Proceed with providing registration information and upon completion, you will be added to the waitlist.
    • You will know you are added to the waitlist if the camp item is in your cart. You will NOT receive an email or have the option to “place order.”
    • You will be notified via email if a space becomes available.
    • You can place your child on multiple waitlists.
  • If you delete the registration from your cart, you will be removed from the waitlist.

Every day, campers must come dressed in closed-toe shoes and comfortable clothing for exploring outside. Please prepare your child for the weather and apply sunscreen before coming to camp. 

Every day, campers must bring a backpack that they can carry themselves filled with

  • Their own snacks, lunch, and filled reusable water bottle.
  • A hat, an extra layer of clothing, and a rain jacket.
  • Optional closed-toe water shoes (Keens or similar). Extra socks are also a great idea!
  • Toys and electronics are to be left at home.
  • We ask that cell phones, apple watches, and other communication devices are either left at home or placed in the child’s backpack. These are NOT to be used during camp unless given permission from their educator or ACES staff.

ACES standard weeklong camps run 9:30am-3:30pm Monday-Friday. Kindergarten camps run from 9:30am-12:30pm Monday-Friday.

Camper Drop-off and Check-in
Campers may arrive for check-in from 9:15-9:30am.
Check-in will occur at the table at the front gate of Hallam Lake and on the front patio of the Field Study Center at Rock Bottom Ranch.

Camper Pick-up and Check-out
Campers may be picked up from 3:15-3:30pm. Children MUST be picked up by 3:30pm. For Kinder programs, campers may be picked up from 12:15-12:30pm. Children MUST be picked up by 12:30pm.
Campers will be picked up (and signed out) at their group’s meeting location at Hallam Lake or Rock Bottom Ranch.

ACES Overnight Personal Gear Checklist for overnights at Riverdance or Rock Bottom Ranch

ACES Backpacking Personal Gear Checklist for all backpacking programs

All ACES camps take place outdoors at Hallam Lake and Rock Bottom Ranch. Camps may choose to travel offsite. Any activities offsite will be limited to local trails and parks, and within walking distance of our sites, except for overnight camps. If other offsite travel is part of the camp, parents will be notified ahead of time.

ACES standard weeklong camp costs $400. Standard weeklong Kinder programs are $215. 

Additional costs for overnight programs.

Please park in the Hallam Lake Parking Lot or the Rock Bottom Ranch parking lot and walk to check-in and pick-up.

Camper Drop-off and Check-in

Campers may arrive for check-in from 9:15am-9:30am.

Check-in will occur at the table at the front gate of Hallam Lake and on the front patio of the Field Study Center at Rock Bottom Ranch. Please do not bring pets to drop-off or pick-up at either of our sites.

Camper Pick-up and Check-out

Campers may be picked up from 3:15pm-3:30pm. Campers MUST be picked up by 3:30pm. For Kinder programs, campers may be picked up from 12:15pm-12:30pm. Campers MUST be picked up by 12:30pm.

Campers will be picked up (and signed out) at their group’s meeting location at Hallam Lake or Rock Bottom Ranch. Please park in our parking lots.

ACES does not provide lunch during our standard weeklong programs. Campers are required to bring their own lunch and snacks each day. 

For overnight programs, ACES provides dinners, breakfasts, snacks, and lunches for program participants during the overnight portion of the trip. 

Yes, we have two opportunities for high school students working with our summer camps.

ACES Educator-in-Training (EIT) Volunteer opportunities for students entering grades 9-12 in the fall of 2024. ACES EIT volunteers receive official acknowledgment of their volunteer hours at the end of their service. Join us for a week or more this summer! For more information and to apply click HERE.

ACES Trook Apprentice position for students 16 years or older by June 1, 2024. Full-time (40 hrs/week). Seasonal. Click HERE for more information and to apply. Applications accepted through April 8, 2024.

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Summer Camps