Ascension wilderness Experience 


The Ascension Wilderness Experience is a 3-week outdoor, adventure based Bible school, designed to follow after a pattern found throughout the Scriptures, where God the Father, Jesus & Spirit all lead people out into the wilderness for an intense time of transformation. We want to bring you on a journey and lead you to encounter Jesus in and through His creation. Growth will come through discovering who you were created to be as you are refined in the process that adventure brings. During your three week experience, our hope is that you encounter Jesus in the Scriptures and through your community as you journey together. With basecamp located at Ravencrest Chalet in Estes Park, creativity is the only limit to the adventures to be had. During your journey with us, there will be overnight backpack trips into the backcountry, studies in the Scriptures that dive into relevant topics, multi-day rafting trips, and challenging team building activities. There are opportunities abound to climb and hike in the Estes Valley and surrounding areas while discovering and integrating a new rhythm of adventure, worship and rest in community, both here in the mountains and at home in our daily lives.

Experience objectives

We want to create a space that we can step away from the busyness that blinds us and into a rhythm of adventure, worship, and rest in community. In such a rhythm, it allows the breakneck pace of life to take a back seat to then reconnect with our Triune Creator through His nature, during times learning and reading the Scriptures, and in the community that He has brought together during Ascension Wilderness Experience.

Throughout AWE, there will be times of Bible teaching with subjects including the life of Jesus, Divine wilderness experiences, servant leadership, and your identity in Christ. You will also be taught basic map and compass reading skills, "Leave No Trace" principles, efficient backcountry travel and camping, team building and leadership skills.

All the participants will be placed within a team with a leader. In this team, they will hike, camp, climb, and adventure together. Part of the experience is learning to live out what they are learning within a community through debrief times, team challenges, and other experiences.

Since learning to rest and retreat is part of the rhythm of the experience, there will be down time on weekends for personal reflection, worship, or other opportunities to experience the surrounding area. Estes Park is full of activities to shop, get sweets from the town’s many ice cream and candy shops, go fishing, or play mini golf. There are also many opportunities to enjoy the outdoors and go hiking, climbing, fishing, swimming or horseback riding in the surrounding alpine landscape.

All participants must be at least 18 years of age and be in good physical condition, and willing to grow and be challenged during their time here mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and physically.

gear list

All AWE participants are required to bring:


  • Large backpack (approx. 50 – 60 liters, padded hip-belt, with rainproof cover that fits over entire pack)
  • If available: small backpack (day pack, approx. 25 – 30 liters)
  • Sleeping bag (comfort zone 0°C and less)
  • Foam or air insulated sleeping pad (light weight)
  • Head lamp or small flashlight with extra batteries
  • Pocket knife (small)
  • Cup and bowl (plastic or aluminum), spoon
  • Water bottle or Camelback (1 liter minimum)
  • English Bible (small, translation, not paraphrase), Notebook and Writing Materials
  • Sunglasses (100% UV rating recommended) and sunscreen
  • Band-Aids and moleskin
  • Personal toiletries
  • Any required personal medication
  • A camera is recommended (note that mobile phones are not permitted while we are on tour and so can’t be used as your camera)


  • Hiking boots (these must have strong ankle support and VibramTM  or equivalent soles.
Note: Boots need to cover and support your ankle (over the ankle boot) “Day Hikers” or Hi TecsTM are not adequate. Boots may be purchased here ($120 upwards). If you are bringing boots, you should wear them before you come to “break them in” as well as your feet. Also, bring along waterproofing agent (e.g. SnosealTM for leather and sprays for Gore-Tex material).
  • Waterproof rainwear (jacket, cap or hood, pants)
Note: Breathable fabric is preferable, Gore-Tex is the best, 2 or 3 layers.
  • Underwear
  • Long underwear (it can snow in July!)
  • Socks (including wool socks)Swimsuit – one piece for ladies
  • T-shirts (a few of fast drying materials i.e. wool or nylon)
  • Long-sleeved shirts
  • Shorts
  • Hiking pants (not jeans)
  • Hat (for sun protection)
  • Warm mid-layer sweater (preferably fleece)
  • Wool or fleece mittens or gloves
  • Warm beanie (eg. wool or fleece)
  • Running shoes
  • Slippers
  • Towels
  • Clothing for various activities at Ravencrest (Church Services and special events, lectures, practical work, recreation)

Note: Participants should maintain a general neatness in appearance. We also recommend easy care clothes that may be put in a dryer. Label your clothes for easier identification.


  • Personal climbing equipment
  • Portable musical instruments
  • Bandanna
  • A couple of heavy-duty garbage bags and a 1/2 dozen large Zip Loc™ freezer bags – excellent for watertight packing

Dates and Fees

Please email any questions to
Ravencrest Chalet team photo 1        

Apply Online now!

Apply today to attend a First year or Second year Bible School program at Ravencrest Chalet, find out how to apply.

Ravencrest Chalet team photo 2        

Ready to study?

So you want to study at Ravencrest? Take a look through our Bible School section - it’s the easiest way to find out the most information!  

Ravencrest Chalet team photo 3

Retreats/youth weeks

If you haven’t got a year to spare at Ravencrest, try attending one our retreats. There’s something for everyone, young and young at heart!