The first all-day rainstorm of the summer came pouring down on Tuesday, watering the plants and trees but certainly not dampening the dun at Primitive Pursuits. The roar of the storm on top of the pole barn’s tin roof provided a white-noise backdrop to the day’s activities. While some groups spent the day under the cover of the barn, others braved the weather out in the forest. The Fire Wizards, of course, built a roaring fire to keep warm on the rainy and chilly day; finding dry wood on a wet day wasn’t an obstacle they couldn’t tackle.

Luna’s rising, a camp designed for young women developing their individual skills and gifts, spent the week coming together as a group to make a pine-bark book, a new tradition that will be passed down to future Luna’s rising groups. One camper tediously bound the pages and the book together, as other campers pressed and arranged flowers to decorate the inside covers. The book will feature writings and drawings from this year’s cohort to be passed down to next summer’s Luna’s Rising, who will continue to add to the book.

Some of the skills and gifts that campers developed included building individual fires, weaving intricate cattail baskets, and learning how to identify wildflowers.

Splashdown dash through the wet grass

Behind the scenes with our photojournalists

Fire maker honing their skills

An archer taking careful aim

The Forest Engineers dedicated strength and time to rebuild the stairs next to Grandmother Hickory. Even on that rainy Tuesday, they hammered stakes into the ground and layered mud and rocks to secure the new stump steps. Later in the week, they added a railing, leaving the hill better than it’s looked all summer long.

Primitive Cafe culminated with a “Top Chef-style” Cook-off captured in this video by photojournalists Joe and Amy