Colorado Avalanche: Best Memories from Prospect Summer Camp

BUFFALO, NEW YORK - JUNE 01: Bowen Byram poses for a portrait at HarborCenter on June 01, 2019 in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Katie Friedman/NHLI via Getty Images)
BUFFALO, NEW YORK - JUNE 01: Bowen Byram poses for a portrait at HarborCenter on June 01, 2019 in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Katie Friedman/NHLI via Getty Images) /

With the Colorado Avalanche rookie camp starting tomorrow, let’s look back at the summer camp these same prospects attended.

The Colorado Avalanche rookie camp starts tomorrow. While it’s called “rookie camp,” in fact, it’s comprised of two days of training for rookies and prospects interspersed with a three-game tournament in Anaheim.

Many of the rookies and prospects at this camp will be the same as who attended the prospect development camp, including young players on a tryout. (Read more here.)

Well, as a little throwback before the preseason officially begins, let’s remember the last time the kids were away at camp — in this case literally away at camp.

The Avs took their prospects up to Colorado State University’s Mountain Campus for some team-building activities:

The trip to actual summer camp took place after the youngsters had completed all their on-ice training and 3-on-3 game. It was a final hurrah for them.

And, just like at any summer camp, lunch was a popular activity:

Mmm, pizza and mac-n-cheese. Those poor boys must have been carb overloaded. Well, being so young and athletic, they were probably burning, like, 1,000 calories an hour, so they can handle it.

Also just like at summer camp, the boys liked to fool around before the organized activities got started:

Oops, he fumbled the frisbee. It sounds a little windy up at camp, but… I don’t think that was the reason.

This next activity is hilarious. It’s called Birdie on a Perch. The prospects had to partner up with one young man being the birdie and the other the perch. Just like with musical chairs, they had to mill around until a signal was given, at which time the birdie was meant to climb his perch.

Here’s the first go-round:

The last birdie and perch combo to unit is then eliminated from the game. You can see some of the young prospects trying to block each other as they rush toward their partner — they are competitive young men, after all.

Here’s another go-round of the game:

The game looks almost choreographed at first. However, that competitive instinct — and hockey willingness to check — comes out in the final round.

You also get a sense for how these prospects are still children in a lot of ways.

Anyway, a team-building activity that looked more challenging was the spiderweb:

Man, that’s some next-level spy training there. Those boys could get each other through lasers.

Here’s video of the activity:

Yeah, hockey player booty is never going to pass through a hole made to challenge a mere mortal.


I guess when you approach the dilemma butt-first, you have a better shot.

Shamil Shmakov, he tall:

Aw, I’m so happy to see Conor Timmins in the next group. I wish he had been ineligble for prospect development camp because he’d just finished a year of pro hockey, but there you have it.
We expected nothing less 🤣#GoAvsGo

In the next activity, called Raft, each group had to balance on a see-saw raft by distributing their weight evenly:

No, Bo, keep your pinching to yourself. (I believe he was the youngest kid there. You know how that goes.)

Once they’d completed the Raft activity, it was time for high ropes activities. Yeah, let’s hope none of them had height issues:

This looks a little similar to the team-building activities the Avs players did up in Vail a few years ago before the start of the 2014-15 season.

Look at Shane Bowers leap for the sky:

I bet all the prospects are glad they’ve got so much leg strength for these activities. That’s one heck of a jump Bowers had to make.

Here’s another type of jump, this one meant to be done with a partner.

That’s a nope. And, props to Bo Byram for volunteering for the first leap.

This next picture is so cool looking. It reminds me of the sky dancers. In Tulum, Mexico, a group of “dancers” perform a ritual in which a musician stands atop a tall post playing a flute while the dancers unwind and spin down. (Video)

The prospects below resemble the sky dancers:

It’s official — Matthew Stienburg just likes to snuggle:

That’s all. I’d suspected it all along, and I feel like the above picture is proof positive.

Anyway, here’s a video with snippets of the whole day:

It’s really cool to see the young prospects having so much fun. They’re competing for spots on the team against each other, but they show in these activities that they have more in common than not.

A final picture of the prospect’s day at summer camp:

Rookie camp is going to be very different. Now, it’s not just about learning. They’re fighting to make themselves attractive to the team.

Next. Media Day Suit Pictures. dark

But they can remember these more carefree days when they could enjoy each other’s company and just bond.