In the west section of Palo Duro Canyon and 10 miles south of Amarillo lies Camp Don Harrington, a campsite featuring over 1,600 acres of land, 18 campsites, and a dining hall with a kitchen. Campers can take a dip in the pool located on campgrounds or have a day at one of the largest gun ranges in the area. With numerous bike trails and activities like archery and rifle shooting, there is no shortage of fun to be had at Camp Don Harrington. There is also a large lake that allows visitors to canoe, fish, and row boat.
The campsites are in heavily wooded areas compared to the prairie that surrounds them which adds to the outdoor camping experience. At each campsite, visitors can find a latrine, running water, and a fire ring to build a fire to keep warm.
Camp Don Harrington offers a rope course for visitors to take part in called COPE. The program was formed in order to foster a better sense of self esteem, communication, trust, leadership, problem solving, decision making, and teamwork in participants. The rope course is set up not to challenge campers physically, but mentally. It differs from a traditional obstacle course in the sense that it isn’t designed to be a thrill, rather than a test of the personal characteristics of each individual. The course is tailored for each goal the participant is looking to build upon. Those interested in doing the ropes course must be of 13 years of age or older.
On Christmas of 1945, an investor and oil man named Don Harrington donated 640 acres of land and after his passing in 1974, his widowed wife made the refurbishment of the camp possible when she donated money to get the roads paved, the health lodge refurbished, and two new buildings built including the Cub Scout World and a new quartermaster building.
The camp is owned and operated by the Golden Spread Council, a council of the local Boy Scouts of America in the Texas and Oklahoma Panhandles. In the year of 2010, the council served about 5,300 members and 1,700 leading adults.
Camp Don Harrington is located at 15427 Farm to Market Rd 1541, Canyon, TX 79015 and is fairly secluded with the only a few other entities in close proximity. Even then, the closest place to the camp is a wedding venue called Today’s Memories of Amarillo at 16000 S Georgia St, Amarillo, TX 79118 and it is still quite a drive away. Other notable places that are near the camp are Crossroads Country Church that is a drive up the road and located at 14425 Farm to Market Rd 1541, Amarillo, TX 79118 and L3 Services at 1534 S Mesa Rd, Canyon, TX 79015.
The Harringtons have made many contributions to the Amarillo community in addition to Camp Don Harrington. The Don Harrington Discovery Center came to fruition when the Helium Centennial Time Columns Monument were constructed in 1968 and airlifted to their current home in front of the Discovery Center in 1982.
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